Europe by Season: Where to Go & When

Europe by Season: Where to Go & When

Europe By Season - Where to go and When

Factoring in weather, the amount of other tourists, and cost, here’s a quick guide on where to go in Europe based on the time of year you can visit.


Bright blooms and brisk mornings mark the onset of favorable weather throughout Europe. Expect near ideal traveling conditions by mid-May, coupled with lingering budget-friendly low season prices.


For BLOOMS go to one of the world’s largest tulip festivals in Lesse, Netherlands.

Still shoulder season for Venice and Paris weather will be fair and the cities will be yours to enjoy (without the swarms of other tourists).

The Amalfi Coast comes to life with flowers and vibrant blue water. It’s also the perfect time of the year for boating, hiking and exploring nearby Capri.

May is the sunniest time of the year in Bergen, Norway. Surrounded by 7 hills and 7 fjords, Bergen easily makes the UNESCO heritage list with a spectacular harbor and timber-clad houses.

Lisbon, Portugal offers travelers sunshine, culture and an endless list of things to do, eat and explore. Be sure to check out Quinta de Regaliera in Sintra.

Famous among honeymooners (and everyone else too, for that matter), SantoriniGreece is wonderfully mild and still peaceful in late April. Be sure to watch the sunset in Oia like I did!

Also Visit:

Barcelona Spain, London England, Amsterdam Netherlands, Dublin Ireland, Bergen Norway, Seville Spain, Cinque Terre Italy


St. Patrick’s Day in Dublin, King’s Day in Amsterdam (here is a great post all about it!), Le Feria de Abril in Sevilla

Santorini - The Overseas Escape-1Cinque Terre Aug 2014 -14- Margo Paige - The Overseas EscapeFeria-9- Margo Paige - The Overseas EscapeParis January 2015-26- Margo Paige - The Overseas EscapeLisbon - The Overseas Escape-1


The peak tourist season throughout Europe (most European schools pause for summer break on July 15), avoid the big cities and head for off-the-beaten-path destinations in search of genuine interaction with locals and beautiful landscapes. If possible, avoid travel in August as you’ll face either long lines or complete closures with many Europeans taking the entire month off!


Every week in July and August is Yacht Week in Croatia. Cruise through the beautiful Croatian islands with your pals and 50 other yachts for a week long party.

Summer is the perfect time to explore, so head to the mountains! Visit beautiful Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland for its charming European village nestled in the shadow of the Swiss Alps.

Head to Surf Camp in Portugal!

Lavender season in Provence, France is in full bloom by late June. Explore the region by car to truly enjoy the rolling purple fields, UNESCO villages, and famous gastronomy.

Take a road trip through western Ireland, passing the charming towns of Dingle and Kenmare and the rocky coast of the Wild Atlantic Way, which is unlike any other.

Also Visit:

Oxford England, Hallstatt Austria, Annecy France, Lucerne Switzerland, San Sebastian Spain, Berlin Germany, Menton France, Copenhagen Denmark


Bordeaux Wine Festival, Wimbledon, Yacht Week in Croatia, Tour de France, La Tomatina in Spain, Fringe Festival in Edinburgh

here’s why you need to drop everything and go to lauterbrunnen, switzerland ?

A photo posted by Margo (@margo.paige) on

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My favorite time of year for traveling in Europe – shoot for September to enjoy the wine harvest and booming festival season. The crowds have passed, yet the weather can still be ideal for touring and outdoor activities.


Nothing beats joining the fun of Oktoberfest in Munich. Remember your dirndl and lederhosen! Stop by Cinderella’s famous Neuschwanstein Castle afterwards for a true taste of Bavaria.

Barcelona and nearby Montserrat make for an amazingly scenic autumn getaway. Be sure to tour the famous La Sagrada Familia during your visit.

Autumn leaves in Prague make the city unbelievably romantic and beautiful.

Still not ready to bid farewell to the beach? Book it to Corfu, Greece to savor the remaining sunshine and feta.

Nerja, Spain on the Costa Del Sol is a favorite among Spanish vacationers and should be for you too! White washed buildings and beautiful beaches, the lingering sun still heats up this gorgeous coastline.

Also Visit: 

Santorini Greece, Prague Czech Republic, Rome Italy, Barcelona Spain, Annecy France, Mosel Valley Germany, Colmar France


Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival in Germany, Concurs de Castells in Spain, Oktoberfest in Munich

Nerja (Original)-8- Margo Paige - The Overseas EscapeFrueling_Stuttgart-1Montserrat November 2014-23- Margo Paige - The Overseas EscapeNeuschwanstein Oct 2013-20- Margo Paige - The Overseas EscapeAnnecy Aug 2014-16- Margo Paige - The Overseas Escape


Winter is the ideal time to get a true taste of European culture – whether in a museum, tucked into a cozy cafe, or embracing a piping hot mug of gluwein (mulled wine) at one of the many Christmas Markets across the continent, settle in and experience that tangible charm that we all love so much.


London, with it’s famous broadway productions, museums, and pubs, the city is perfect for a winter visit. Be sure to stop by The Shard for a glass (or three) of wine, high above the city!

Sip hot mulled wine in the closest thing to the North Pole at one of Europe’s beautiful Christmas markets. My favorites are: Strasbourg, France, Heidelberg, GermanyVienna, Austria or Bruges, Belgium.

Hit the slopes in Garmisch, Germany or Chamonix, France.

For the party-lovers, Carnivale in Venice, Italy is unlike any other celebration in Europe. An added bonus: the city is almost totally yours if you get there early.

Budapest, Hungry. A city of spas, relaxing in the steam baths is the perfect way to warm up mid-winter.

Also Visit:

Salzburg Austria, Innsbruck Austria, Chamonix France, Rothenburg ob der Tauber Germany, Budapest Hungary, Tenerife Spain, The Black Forest (HinterzartenGermany


Iceland Airwaves, San Miniato Truffle Fair in Italy, Christmas Markets throughout Europe, Salzburg Music Festival

A photo posted by margo paige (@margo.paige) on

Christmas Markets 2014-25- Margo Paige - The Overseas EscapeBest of Prague (Post)-1- Margo Paige - The Overseas EscapeHinterzarten January 2015-28- Margo Paige - The Overseas Escape
P.S. If you enjoyed this, I bet you’ll love these 20 Perfect One Week European Itineraries!

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  • Thanks for this awesome post! Paris is, without a doubt, a definite must for spring when all the spring blossom is out – it’s so pretty! There are so many places on this post that I am dying to visit – hopefully soon!

  • LOVE this piece, Margo! You’ve seen so much over the seasons and years– kudos! I’m glad to see Spain on the winter list because we’re headed there in December.

  • I’m hoping to plan a trip to Holland in the spring… I think Lisse needs to happen!

  • This is SUCH a great resource! Thank you for sharing! I visited Capri last year and it was one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been to. Excited to check more off this list!

  • This is such a great guide! I’ve always wondered what would be the best time to go to certain places and it’s good to know that there is always somewhere to go no matter what time of year it is.

  • I love this guide!! Your photos are so gorgeous, especially the ones taken in the snow!

  • These photos are incredible! Glad to see most of the places I’m planning on visiting later this year are in the correct time of year bucket you listed 🙂

  • This got me oh so excited for our winter trips this year! We are going to a few places in Europe this winter, and I have been a little concerned about the time of year, but it sounds like we have picked some good places to go in winter including London, Vienna, and southern Germany!

  • Polina Burashnikova

    Such a useful post! Thank you for taking time to put it together!

  • Thanks for this! I never know where to travel in winter and July/August because they are my least favorite times to travel but also when I have the most time off work. I’ve had my eye on Budapest so I’m glad to know it’s a good place to visit in winter. April is so tricky because the weather is unpredictable – this year I went to Seville thinking it was sure to be sunny in the south of Spain, and it rained… but back in France it was beautiful weather! Glad to see you mentioned Annecy, one of my favorite towns to visit around here 🙂

  • What a well thought-out post! I love how you made the time to take advantage of Europe, and I appreciate the time you put into this post!

    Yacht week is HIGH on my Life List! But there are so many amazing places to go and things to see. And the lavender in France…I didn’t even think of that. I bet it is amazing!

  • She does mention the autumn leaves that make Prague beautiful. As a blog, it’s her opinion that autumn is the best time to visit. We all have our favorites 🙂

  • This is giving me so many ideas! I live in Europe and have so much more to discover! I also love how you don’t mention anything in the part of France I live in (except Annecy and Chamonix…although is still 1.5 hours north of where I am). There’s so much more to Europe than the most well-known tourist spots. ;P Visit my blog to get a taste!

  • brindependence

    Love this!! I’ll be in Greece this fall and I can’t wait. We are going to Athens, Santorini & Crete. This is a great post for future trips as well 🙂

  • Aliya Hussain

    This is such a great guide! I will be referring to this when I’m planning my next holiday 🙂

    Aliya x | |

  • It is hard to write or mention everything about Europe as there are so many varieties and colors here 🙂 Europe is much more than the capital of each country.. (Barcelona, Budapest, London, Paris, etc, there are so many other places as well..) And yes for avoiding the tourist-wave during July+Aug in France!!

  • I’m planning for my adventure to Europe in late February or early March next year! Not sure if it’s winter or spring? Coming from a tropical island, Singapore, we only have summer whole year round!

  • This is perfect for our trip planning! It’s always so hard to figure out exactly where to go when. And doing research on each country is so much work. Thanks for compiling this!

  • nice list and I love fall in Germany and France.

  • very clever list!

  • Great list and awesome recommendations! Thanks for sharing!

  • Rebekah Henry

    No Baltic states, really? Lithuania’s beaches are beautiful in summer and Tallinn in the fall is probably my favorite place to get hot wine and hand-knitted wool!