France is a year-round vacation spot, with numerous points of interest and causes to go to all year long. I’ve visited the nation extra occasions than I can bear in mind, in all the seasons. Nevertheless, the very best time to go to France relies on just a few elements.
Firstly and most significantly, when deciding when to journey to France, you’ll want to take into account what it’s that you simply wish to do there.
If you happen to’d prefer to benefit from the nation’s world-class ski resorts, you’re finest off visiting within the winter; whereas when you’d desire to spend time enjoyable on France’s gorgeous Mediterranean seashores, chances are you’ll wish to come when it’s somewhat hotter.
General (exterior of the mountains), the summer season months are likely to coincide with the height vacationer season, when lodging and different prices are highest and crowds are at their worst. If you happen to’re trying to go to France on a price range, it could be a good suggestion to journey exterior of those months.
General Finest Time to Go to France
In my view, Could or September are the very best occasions to go to France.
With its diversified panorama and intensive shoreline, France has a powerful vary of climates starting from dry and sizzling Mediterranean within the south to moist and temperate within the north.
Nevertheless, wherever you might be in France, the climate is usually a lot better in summer season than in winter.
Given the elevated costs and crowds of the height summer season season (June-August), personally, my favourite time to go to France is both within the late spring (Could) or early autumn (September).
Temperatures are nonetheless prone to be heat however there might be far fewer crowds and you may usually safe reductions on lodging.
Until I’m coming to France for winter sports activities, I normally keep away from visiting in the course of the winter months. Temperatures can get fairly chilly, it rains rather a lot, and you may’t benefit from the lovely surroundings or the wonderful out of doors cafe tradition in the identical method.
Peak Season in France (June – August)
The height season for tourism in France runs from June to August.
That is normally when the climate is at its finest, with lengthy, heat days, and lots of weeks of uninterrupted sunshine. Nevertheless, together with the good climate, this era additionally attracts a lot bigger crowds.
This time of 12 months is well-liked with each worldwide vacationers and home holidaymakers, and the nation’s finest points of interest are typically filled with vacationers.
Moreover, resorts and different lodging can get costly throughout this time, with costs usually being as much as twice as excessive as they’re in off-season. If you happen to’re touring then, it’s finest to guide issues as early as attainable.
Regardless of while you go to France, there’ll seemingly be some sort of pageant or occasion going down. Bastille Day (La Fête Nationale) is France’s nationwide vacation, held on July 14 yearly and marked by fireworks, road parades, and different occasions.
The Tour de France bike race is normally held in the course of the summer season, inflicting street closures in sure components of the nation. Village, city, and metropolis events are additionally frequent all through the summer season months.
Shoulder Season in France (April – Could and September – October)
One of the best time to go to France for price range vacationers is in the course of the shoulder season, which runs from April-Could and September-October.
The climate is usually nonetheless fairly good at the moment of 12 months and you may anticipate loads of sunshine, particularly in September.
Moreover, lodging costs are sometimes decrease than throughout peak season, and the crowds are typically smaller in any respect however the hottest points of interest.
Festivals held throughout these months embrace the Cannes Movie Pageant in Could and the Paris Marathon in April.
Off Season in France (November – March)
The low season in France runs from November to March, when temperatures are sometimes chilly and moist.
Aside from ski resorts (that are significantly busy from December via February), most locations obtain their lowest numbers of tourists. Some points of interest and resorts shut down altogether.
It may be attainable to attain rock-bottom costs on lodging in the course of the winter months. Nevertheless, personally, I are likely to keep away from touring throughout this era because the climate is usually a bit miserable and there isn’t a lot to do.
When to Go to France For Seashores
July and August are well-liked months for seashore holidays, with the very best climate, longest days, and warmest temperatures.
A few of the finest seashore locations in France embrace the French Riviera (often known as the Cote d’Azur), Biarritz, the Médoc Pure Regional Park, and the gorgeous French Mediterranean island of Corsica.
These locations all get pleasure from each day temperatures from 25-30 levels Celsius all through the summer season. Nevertheless, the principle draw back is that they will get somewhat crowded.
One among my favourite seashores to flee the summer season crowds is Plage Sud, within the Médoc. At 14 kilometers lengthy, it’s actually monumental, so you possibly can at all times discover a non-public spot to your self among the many comfortable golden sand and towering dunes.
If you happen to’re into snorkeling, the Mediterranean sea is normally warmest in August and September, because it’s had the entire summer season to heat up!
When to Go to France For Festivals
One of the best time to go to France for festivals is in the course of the late spring and summer season months.
Throughout this era, among the finest festivals to attend embrace Bastille Day (July 14), the Cannes Movie Pageant (Could), and the Carcassonne Pageant of latest music, theatre, and dance (July).
Throughout every of those festivals, you’ll discover vibrant road parades, fireworks shows, and different cultural occasions. You may anticipate temperatures to vary from 20-30 levels Celsius all through these months.
When to Go to France For Cities
This can be a barely tough query to reply as, once more, it largely relies on what you wish to do and see.
General, I feel the very best time to journey to France for sightseeing in its many fantastic cities is throughout both Could or September when temperatures are comfy, costs are average, and there are fewer crowds.
A few of the finest cities to go to throughout these months embrace Paris, Marseille, Bordeaux, Strasbourg, and Good.
When to Go to France For Historic Websites
France is residence to among the most spectacular castles, historic ruins, and different historic websites in Europe. If I needed to decide the very best time to go to France for seeing historic websites, I’d in all probability go together with late spring or early autumn.
A number of of the very best locations value visiting embrace the Carcassonne Citadel (a fairytale Thirteenth-century fortress metropolis), Mont Saint-Michel (a similarly-fairytale-like island monastery), and the Pont du Gard (an incredible 2,000-year-old historic Roman aqueduct bridge).
There are execs and cons of visiting these locations at every time of 12 months. For instance, whereas they give the impression of being extremely picturesque and delightful within the snow, within the spring and summer season the climate is extra nice and the times are for much longer for exploring.
When to Go to France For Wine
Fortunately, you possibly can get pleasure from unbelievable wine in France any time of 12 months! There are lots of wonderful wine areas all through France, among the most well-known being Burgundy, Champagne, and Bordeaux.
Most French winemakers harvest their grapes round September, so that is in all probability the very best time of 12 months to go to France when you’re inquisitive about visiting a winery and watching the masters at work.
When you’ve got time, I extremely advocate doing a wine-tasting tour throughout your time in France.
You might have many to select from, however among the finest ones embrace this wine and cheese-tasting lunch in Paris, this Moët & Chandon champagne tour, and this Bordeaux winery tour in Saint-Émilion (the area that produces a few of my favourite French crimson wines).
When to Go to France For Low-cost Costs
The bottom costs in France are sometimes discovered in the course of the winter months. Nevertheless, as a result of that is very a lot low season, you’ll discover that many locations are shut and there isn’t a lot to do in among the smaller locations.
A superb compromise when you’re trying to economize is to go to at both finish of the shoulder season, so in both April or October, when extra locations are open and the climate is a bit higher. It’s usually nonetheless attainable to make appreciable financial savings on lodging, airfares, and different journey bills in these months.
When to Go to France For Mountaineering
Spring and autumn are normally essentially the most nice occasions for mountaineering. It’s heat however not too sizzling, the paths aren’t too crowded, and there are fewer bugs. Temperatures usually vary from 12-22 levels Celsius, ultimate for an extended hike.
A few of my favourite hikes in France embrace the 13-kilometer Blanc-Martel path within the Gorges du Verdon, Provence, the hike to the highest of the Brèche de Roland cross within the Pyrenees, and the Chemin Des Muletiers which climbs to the summit of the Puy de Dôme, an iconic volcano within the Auvergne area.
Vanoise Nationwide Park within the Alps can also be completely gorgeous. It’s a skier’s paradise within the winter, however as soon as the snow has melted there are a lot of wonderful trails to discover.
The Finest Time to Go to France By Month
As I discussed above, the very best time to journey to France largely relies on what it’s you intend to do there.
Right here I’ve damaged down what every month of the 12 months is like, together with the climate and what there may be to do, that will help you determine when to go to France.
France in January
January is arguably the worst time to go to France, until you’re coming for snowboarding and different winter sports activities.
Climate in France in January
The climate in France in January is normally chilly and moist, the times are quick and the nights are lengthy.
Temperatures vary from 0-10 levels Celsius on common, and it’s frequent to have rain, mist, and thick clouds for days on finish. Snow is pretty frequent, particularly in upland and inland areas.
One of the best locations to go to in France in January are the Alps and the Pyrenees mountains, the place thick snow provides to the spectacular surroundings.
Issues To Do in France in January
One of the best issues to do in France in January embrace snowboarding, snowboarding, and different winter sports activities.
If you happen to do end up in one in every of France’s main cities throughout January, this will also be a great time to discover indoor points of interest similar to museums and galleries. These locations are sometimes at their least crowded in January.
France in February
February remains to be a chilly month but it surely’s barely higher than January, with extra sunshine and longer days.
Climate in France in February
The climate in France in February is normally chilly and dry, with temperatures starting from 4-12 levels Celsius. It’s usually cooler and wetter within the north, and coastal areas usually have milder temperatures too.
If you happen to’re touring to France in February, I like to recommend both visiting the mountains (as per January), or the southeast which tends to be barely hotter and drier than the remainder of the nation.
Issues To Do in France in February
Whereas it’s probably not heat sufficient for a lot of out of doors actions, there are nonetheless loads of issues to do in France in February.
You can get pleasure from a crowd-free metropolis break, or shock your beloved with a romantic Valentine’s Day journey. Don’t simply assume Paris although: Bordeaux, Toulouse, and Marseille are all nice, and less expensive.
Once more, snowboarding and snowboarding are very fashionable actions in February as properly. Costs are typically somewhat decrease too in contrast with December and January.
France in March
March sees the primary indicators of spring in France, and there are a lot of extra issues to do.
Climate in France in March
The climate in France in March is way milder than the 2 earlier months, with temperatures starting from 8-17 levels Celsius. It’s additionally quite a bit sunnier and extra nice.
Rainfall is extra frequent than in February although, so it’s a good suggestion to pack some waterproofs when you plan to spend any time open air.
The south of France is especially good at the moment of 12 months: Cote d’Azur cities like Good, Cannes and Saint Tropez get pleasure from loads of sunshine and the mildest temperatures.
Issues To Do in France in March
March is a good time to go to France when you’re searching for out of doors actions. Mountaineering, biking, and water sports activities similar to kayaking are all well-liked within the spring months.
It’s additionally an ideal month for meals lovers. March marks the start of France’s spring mushroom season, and eating places all around the nation put together seasonal dishes showcasing native chanterelles, morels, and different tasty varieties.
Lastly, when you’re searching for a cut price, March is a good time to seek out offers on flights and lodging as properly. It’s nonetheless a really quiet month for tourism in France, so costs might be considerably decrease than in the course of the late spring and summer season.
France in April
April is a colourful month in France, with blooming flowers, longer days, and hotter temperatures.
Climate in France in April
The climate in France in April is usually nice, particularly within the south of the nation, with temperatures starting from 10-20 levels Celsius. You may anticipate loads of sunshine and blue skies all through the month.
There’s much more rain in April although, so that is value taking into account when you’re eager to do any out of doors actions.
My favourite place to go to in France in April is Provence. This area is thought for its gorgeous landscapes and vibrant colours, that are finest seen in the course of the spring months.
Issues To Do in France in April
So long as you’re not delay by a little bit of rain, April is a good month to go to France when you’re searching for an outside journey. Biking is a well-liked exercise at the moment of 12 months, as are water sports activities like canoeing and kayaking.
When it comes to cultural actions, April will also be a great time to go to a few of France’s beautiful medieval cities and cities, which might be adorned with spring flowers and far quieter than in the course of the summer season months.
France in Could
Could in France marks the beginning of summer season, with nice temperatures and loads of sunshine.
Climate in France in Could
The climate in France in Could is delicate and nice, with temperatures starting from 16-24 levels Celsius. It’s additionally sunny, particularly within the south of the nation.
Could tends to be drier than March or April, and the times are lengthy however not too sizzling, making this one other nice month for out of doors actions.
Issues To Do in France in Could
If you happen to’re a fan of mountaineering, Could is likely one of the finest months for this (together with September). France has 8 nationwide parks and lots of different areas of pure magnificence, with hundreds of kilometers of well-maintained mountaineering trails so that you can get pleasure from.
Cannes hosts its well-known annual Movie Pageant every Could and town actually comes alive throughout this month, making it a good time to go to.
Alternatively, head over to the Loire Valley for some sightseeing and wine tasting. This area is called the “Backyard of France” and it’s finest seen in Could when all the things is in bloom.
France in June
The height vacationer season in France begins in mid-June, and lots of locations begin to get busy from then onwards.
Nevertheless, the crowds (and costs) are typically smaller in June than in July or August. Due to this fact, if you need to plan a visit in the course of the summer season, I like to recommend June as the very best month to go to France.
Climate in France in June
June is usually among the finest months for climate in France. Within the south, it’s normally sunny and temperatures can attain as much as 28 levels Celsius, whereas within the north temperatures are milder however nonetheless heat sufficient for out of doors actions.
Rainfall is comparatively low throughout this month, making it a good time for each out of doors adventures and metropolis breaks.
Issues To Do in France in June
Among the finest issues to do in France in June is to go to one of many many unbelievable seashores alongside the Atlantic or Mediterranean coasts. The climate is normally heat sufficient for sunbathing, swimming, and different seashore actions.
If you happen to’re searching for a extra cultural expertise, June is an efficient time to discover a few of France’s best-known historic landmarks and monuments. There are many occasions going down at the moment of 12 months, together with artwork exhibitions, music festivals, and gastronomic gala’s.
June can also be the beginning of the lavender season in Provence. The hillsides flip purple and the air is comfortable with the scent of lavender – it’s actually gorgeous. One among my favourite locations to go to in Provence to see that is the picturesque little medieval city of Tourtour.
France in July
By July, the height summer season vacationer season is in full swing. Colleges are off for the summer season and many individuals select to take their summer season vacation this month, resulting in elevated costs and crowds.
Climate in France in July
July is normally the most well liked month of the 12 months in France, with temperatures usually exceeding 30 levels Celsius in lots of components of the nation. The south, specifically, can get highly regarded – typically reaching 40 levels for days on finish.
The times are lengthy and sunny, making this a great time for out of doors actions similar to swimming and alfresco eating. Rainfall can also be low throughout July, so it’s not prone to spoil your vacation plans.
Issues To Do in France in July
If you happen to do wish to go to France in July, I like to recommend avoiding the preferred vacationer websites (particularly in Paris). As an alternative, head to one of many nation’s less-visited areas, such because the central a part of the nation, the northeast, or Corsica.
One of the best factor to do in France in July is to benefit from the great climate and revel in some out of doors actions. Head to the seashore for a spot of sunbathing, swimming or water sports activities.
If you happen to’re in France on July 14th – Bastille Day, the nationwide vacation – you’re in for a deal with! Everywhere in the nation, there are road parades, events, fireworks, and different festivities to get pleasure from. July additionally marks the beginning of the Paris Jazz Pageant, which celebrates jazz music from throughout the globe.
France in August
August is one other busy month for tourism in France. Costs and crowds are likely to peak throughout this month, so be sure to guide your journey properly prematurely when you plan to go to then.
Climate in France in August
The climate tends to be related in August as in July, though the evenings are normally somewhat cooler and the solar units earlier. You may wish to pack an additional layer to placed on after dinner.
August is a good month to go to the northwest French area of Brittany. Attributable to its northern maritime location, this space is cool and moist for a lot of the 12 months, however normally enjoys its finest climate in August.
Issues To Do in France in August
August could be a nice time to go to Paris so long as you’re keen to courageous the crowds and better costs. The town is heat and buzzing with exercise throughout this month, and also you’ll discover loads of fascinating occasions going down.
If you happen to’re a eager surfer, head to Biarritz within the far southeastern nook of the nation, near the border with Spain. This little city is a world-famous surf spot identified for its common and highly effective Atlantic swell.
For one thing a bit extra relaxed, rent a motorcycle and take a leisurely journey alongside a piece of the Canal du Midi, a 240-kilometer canal in southern France that passes via lovely and diversified surroundings.
France in September
September is one in every of my favourite months to go to France.
Climate in France in September
All through September, temperatures begin to settle down, though the southern half of the nation tends to remain pleasantly heat till a minimum of the top of the month.
September is likely one of the finest months to go to the French Riviera. It’s a lot much less crowded and normally cheaper in contrast with the summer season, and the ocean remains to be heat sufficient to swim and snorkel comfortably.
That is additionally a great time to go to a lot of France’s gorgeous nationwide parks, gardens, and wine areas with out having to fret about it being too sizzling or too chilly.
Issues To Do in France in September
September is one other nice month for mountaineering in France. I went mountaineering within the breathtaking Vanoise Nationwide Park within the Alps in September this 12 months and it was good.
If you happen to’re craving some adrenaline, there are a number of locations all through the nation identified for his or her wonderful white-water rafting, such because the Ardèche river close to Lyon. This can be a nice rafting tour close to Châteauroux-Les-Alpes.
Additionally, September is likely one of the finest months to go wine tasting in France. The grape harvest takes place throughout this time, so many vineyards open their doorways and invite guests to participate within the festivities.
France in October
October is autumn time in France and the colourful fall colours are one in every of my favourite issues about this month.
Climate in France in October
October is normally fairly a bit cooler than September, with temperatures starting from 8-15°C in the course of the day and dropping to round 4-7°C at evening. Rainfall tends to extend because the month progresses, however you possibly can nonetheless anticipate loads of sunshine.
At larger altitudes, similar to within the Alps or Pyrenees, there may be usually snowfall at the moment of the 12 months.
Issues To Do in France in October
October is a superb time for strolling and mountain biking, now that the climate is cooler and the crowds have dispersed a bit. You’ll discover loads of picturesque trails like these within the Vercors Regional Nature Park close to Grenoble.
October can also be one other nice time to pattern a few of France’s finest wines. You may go to lots of the finest wineries in areas like Bordeaux and Burgundy, the place you’ll discover wonderful alternatives for wine tastings and excursions.
France in November
Because the temperatures begin to cool and there may be extra rain, November is the proper time to bundle up and benefit from the gorgeous autumn colours, and even some snow within the larger altitudes.
Climate in France in November
November temperatures all through France can vary between 5-12°C in the course of the day and drop to round 0-4°C at evening. Rainfall can also be fairly frequent in November so it’s finest to convey an umbrella or raincoat with you when you’re exploring open air.
Issues To Do in France in November
November is an efficient month for low-cost sightseeing in cities like Paris that are normally a lot much less crowded. You received’t be assured good climate, however you’ll get to get pleasure from among the nation’s best-known landmarks largely to your self.
November can also be a good time of 12 months for having fun with warming French delicacies. Go to one of many nation’s many conventional bistros and pattern some traditional autumnal dishes like coq au vin, beef bourguignon, or steak frites.
France in December
Regardless of the poor climate, December in France is a festive and atmospheric time to go to. The nation is filled with vacation cheer, as Christmas decorations line the streets and conventional markets spring to life in main cities.
Climate in France in December
The climate in France in December is normally lower than ultimate. Days are quick, it’s chilly and it rains quite a bit.
Nevertheless, temperatures have a tendency to stay above freezing in the course of the day, starting from 2-8°C. In larger altitudes similar to within the Alps or Pyrenees, you possibly can anticipate heavy snowfall.
Issues To Do in France in December
Regardless of the chilly and moist climate, there are nonetheless loads of issues to do in France in December.
A go to to one of many nation’s conventional Christmas markets is a must-do for any customer. You’ll discover festive stalls full of native crafts, festive treats, mulled wine, and extra. A few of the finest ones are discovered within the jap cities of Strasbourg and Colmar, however there are additionally loads of others, in Paris, Lyon, and different cities.
If you happen to’re searching for a winter wonderland, head as much as the upper altitudes just like the Alps and Pyrenees the place you possibly can get pleasure from snowboarding, snowboarding, and magical walks via the snowy panorama.
If you happen to’re trying to escape the colder temperatures, head right down to the south of France – cities like Marseille, Good and Montpellier are typically extra temperate at the moment of 12 months.
Every month gives one thing completely different and thrilling, so there isn’t actually a “flawed” time to go to France. Whether or not you’re searching for a romantic getaway, a culture-filled vacation, or an action-packed out of doors journey, you’ll you’ll want to have an exquisite time exploring this lovely place.
Personally, I feel the very best time to go to France is September. Nevertheless, it’s an ideal nation to go to all 12 months spherical.