Uk ssbhv

WHAT IS THE BEST TIME CAN I VISIT THE UNITED KINGDOM?

  • Post author:
  • Post last modified:February 18, 2024
  • Reading time:8 mins read

If you’re dreaming of having a spot of tea in England or envisioning a bagpipe serenade on the moors of Scotland, then it sounds like you’re on the verge of planning one heck of a British vacation.
There are many considerations to make when planning your trip, including the pros and cons of traveling “in season,” what types of activities you want to do and especially what kind of weather should you expect.
Factors to consider when planning your trip

What is the best time I can visit the united kingdom?
  • The weather
  • Pros and cons of travelling during Peak Season, Shoulder Season or Low Season
  • The impact of daylight hours
    THE WEATHER
    The UK is a small island divided into four nations — England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland. Each has its own cultural identities and attractions to consider, not its weather idiosyncrasies. The entire UK has a temperate climate with warm summers that never get too hot and cold winters that never get too cold. However, their weather is famously unreliable and generally not the primary reason to visit the UK! Think about your many clothing options when packing— and don’t forget the umbrella (my UK packing guide for every season will help!)
    The answer to the question, ‘When is the best time of year to visit the UK?’ really depends on what you’re looking for. The UK’s warmest weather is in the summer. Autumn and spring are charming but maybe chilly for certain outdoor activities. Winter can be cold, windy and damp, though it usually only snows around 24 days out of the year.
    Spring
    Spring in the UK begins in March and goes through to the end of May. The weather starts cold and rainy but becomes milder as the months progress. Finally, the UK starts to warm up by the end of May and the beginning of June. The average maximum temperatures are as follows:
  • March, 12°C (54°F)
  • April, 15°C (59°F)
  • May, 18°C (64°F)
  • June, 21°C (70°F)
    Summer
    The summer is generally very pleasant in the UK and tends to be dryer than in the autumn and winter months. The summer begins in June and ends in early September. The average maximum temperatures for the summer months are as follows:
  • June, 21°C (70°F)
  • July, 23°C (73°F)
  • August, 23°C (73°F)
  • September, 20°C (68°F)
    Autumn
    Autumn goes from September through to the end of November. Days change from crisp to blustery and then get downright cold. There tends to be a higher level of precipitation during these months. The average maximum temperatures for the autumn months are as follows:
  • September, 20°C (68°F)
  • October, 16°C (61°F)
  • November, 12°C (54°F)
  • December, 9°C (48°F)
    Winter
    It can get rather bleak and cold in the UK during the winter months, which go from the start of December through to the end of February. The average maximum temperatures for the winter months are as follows:
  • December, 9°C (48°F)
  • January, 9°C (48°F)
  • February, 9°C (48°F)
  • March, 12°C (54°F)
    Pros and Cons of Visiting the UK During Peak Season
    The peak season for travel in the UK is the summer months of July and August. These dates also coincide with the long 6-week summer school holidays (and hopefully sunny weather)
    What Are The Pros Of Visiting The UK During Peak Season?
  • The UK weather is generally at its best during these months.
  • Hours of daylight are long, which means more time to explore the sights.
  • Some of the UK’s major events occur during July (Wimbledon) and August (Edinburgh Festival)
  • Many historical sights have special events, especially for families, e.g. jousting at Warwick Castle.
    What Are The Cons Of Travelling During Peak Season?
  • It is the most expensive time of year to visit and prices for flights, accommodation and transportation can be sky-high.
  • Main attractions across the country are busy – buy tickets ahead of time (skip the line tickets are worth the expense unless you enjoy wasting precious holiday time in a queue!)
  • Restaurants and hotels are jam-packed.
  • Roads are busy, and traffic jams are common, which can add to the stress if you are planning to hire a car for a road trip
    ADVANTAGES OF VISITING THE UK DURING SHOULDER SEASON
    The shoulder season in the UK is in May, early June, September and early October.
    What are the pros of visiting the UK during shoulder season?
  • Less expensive than peak season
  • Better availability for accommodation
  • Some of the UK’s most popular events occur during these months, such as the Chelsea Flower Show (May), Trooping of the Colour (June)
  • Less crowded (though the Bank holidays can be busy)
  • There are two public (bank) holidays in May (first and last Mondays of May), and many popular historical sights organize events, especially for families over these long weekends.
  • Expect fewer crowds at popular attractions (though school groups may visit museums, art galleries, and castles during term time)
  • Long daylight hours

PROS AND CONS OF VISITING THE UK DURING LOW SEASON
November through to April is generally considered the low season for travel to the UK.
Note that some parts of the UK, such as London and Edinburgh, experience significant tourists during December and early January, which can significantly impact costs.
Pros of Visiting the UK During the Low Season

  • Budget-friendly
  • Less crowded
  • Enjoy special events over the festive period, including Christmas markets, Christmas lights and decorations in significant cities and New Year’s Eve celebrations.
    Cons of visiting the UK during the low season
  • Weather can be very cold (expect snow during the winter months)
  • Daylight hours are reduced (it can get dark as early as 3.30 pm)
  • Many popular attractions are closed over the winter months.
    IMPACT OF DAYLIGHT HOURS
    The amount of daylight you can expect fluctuates significantly across the year and can significantly impact your plans. The amount of daylight can also vary depending on your destination within the UK. The further north you travel, the more daylight you can expect in summer and the less in winter.
    Average hours of daylight in June (longest day)
    London – 16 hours +
    Scotland – 17 hours +
    Average hours of daylight in December (shortest day)
    London – 8 hours
    Scotland – 7 hours