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Andalusia, Spain

When is the best time to visit Spain?

There isn’t a best time to visit Spain – the country’s diverse offerings mean you can find something to enjoy at any time of year. Many people travel there in late spring (April to May) or early fall (September to October), attracted by the lighter crowds and pleasant temperatures, which normally sit around the late teens to mid twenties.

Spain has a relatively mild climate. It mostly stays dry year-round, with winter temperatures rarely dropping below 10℃. It can get cold and wet in the north of Spain during the winter, whereas the south remains very pleasant.

Summers can be quite hot, especially in the south, and a greater influx of European visitors head to the popular beach resorts at this time. Temperatures range from 21℃ to 35℃ across the country. The north sits on the lower end of this spectrum, making it a great option if you’re worried about the heat.

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Spain Climate Guide

Destination Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Barcelona 13°C 42mm 14°C 36mm 15°C 47mm 17°C 50mm 20°C 52mm 24°C 38mm 27°C 23mm 27°C 53mm 25°C 73mm 21°C 86mm 17°C 58mm 14°C 50mm
Bilbao 11°C 123mm 13°C 102mm 14°C 95mm 16°C 121mm 19°C 90mm 22°C 63mm 25°C 51mm 24°C 82mm 24°C 71mm 20°C 107mm 15°C 142mm 12°C 129mm
Costa del Sol 15°C 79mm 16°C 74mm 18°C 60mm 19°C 47mm 23°C 30mm 27°C 17mm 30°C 4mm 30°C 6mm 27°C 18mm 22°C 58mm 18°C 97mm 15°C 89mm
Madrid 10°C 45mm 12°C 44mm 15°C 36mm 18°C 45mm 22°C 42mm 28°C 28mm 32°C 11mm 32°C 12mm 27°C 27mm 21°C 48mm 14°C 55mm 10°C 47mm
San Sebastián 11°C 127mm 12°C 103mm 14°C 103mm 15°C 122mm 18°C 107mm 21°C 77mm 24°C 62mm 24°C 90mm 23°C 97mm 19°C 121mm 14°C 143mm 12°C 133mm
Seville 16°C 78mm 17°C 68mm 20°C 61mm 22°C 54mm 27°C 34mm 31°C 17mm 35°C 1mm 35°C 5mm 32°C 21mm 26°C 61mm 20°C 89mm 16°C 90mm

Month-by-month guide to traveling in Spain

La Rambla, Barcelona

Visiting Spain in January - February

The beginning of the year can be rather quiet in Spain, with thinner crowds and less activity, though most businesses are still open. This time of year, especially January, is known as ‘rebajas’ season, when items at most stores are heavily discounted after Christmas, offering great deals.

Events & Festivals

  • Three Kings’ Day (6th January): Spaniards celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany, or Three Kings’ Day, with street parades where public figures dressed as the Three Wise Men throw treats to the children.
  • Carnival (February): leading up to Lent, Spain’s carnival sees some Spaniards celebrating with large parties involving lots of sangria and outlandish clothing.
Traditional dress, Seville

Visiting Spain in March - April

As the weather starts to warm up, the streets of Spain begin to buzz with more activity, though they aren’t as crowded as the summer months. Many people venture out for Semana Santa, Holy Week, to watch the parades that take to the streets. The warmer, but not overly hot, temperatures make it a very pleasant time to visit.

Events & Festivals

  • Semana Santa (March/April): Holy Week is celebrated with parishes joining together throughout the week for elaborate parades featuring glittering statues carried by hooded men.
  • Festival de Jerez (March): over a couple of weeks, people flock to Jerez for one of Spain’s largest celebrations of flamenco music and dance, to learn from masters as well as watch some of the best dancers in the business perform.
  • Feria de Abril (starts two weeks after Easter in April/May): Seville hosts its annual fair, filled with carnival rides, dancing, along with plenty of food and drink. Men traditionally sport a traje corto (long tight pants and a short jacket), while women don flamenco garb.
Cityscape, Toledo

Visiting Spain in May

Temperatures continue to rise in May, when the country comes alive with vibrant flowers and locals begin spending more time outside in the sunshine. May is a great time for outdoor activities such as hiking or heading to the beaches before they’re overrun with visitors. Temperatures are warm and tend not to have reached the uncomfortable levels of high summer.

Events & Festivals

  • Feria de Abril (starts two weeks after Easter in April/May): Seville hosts its annual fair, filled with carnival rides, dancing, along with plenty of food and drink. Men traditionally sport a traje corto (long tight pants and a short jacket), while women don flamenco garb.
Giralda Tower, Seville

Visiting Spain in June - August

The summer months can be hot and crowded and, like many other Europeans, Spaniards will flock to the coast to enjoy cooler weather and relax on the beach. Despite the heat, this time of year shouldn’t be avoided altogether. Buoyed by the longer days, Spaniards look for ways to unwind at night, so these months see a greater number of lively festivals and more evening revelry. Many festivities surround Spain’s food and wine and can be a real highlight of the summer.

Events & Festivals

  • Batalla del Vino, or ‘Battle of Wine’ (29th June): in a lighthearted ‘battle’, locals in La Rioja douse each other with the province’s red wine.
  • International Festival of Music and Dance (June/July): Granada hosts one of Spain’s largest and most important arts festivals, dedicated primarily to flamenco but showcasing other forms of music and dance, with several events taking place against the backdrop of the Alhambra.
Vineyard, La Rioja

Visiting Spain in September - October

Spain begins to quieten down after the rush and crowds of the summer. Temperatures return to pleasanter levels and most visitors have gone home, leaving the country in a more peaceful state, though still vibrant with daily Spanish life. Taking advantage of the pleasant weather and smaller crowds, this is a recommended time for exploring the country.

Events & Festivals

  • Bienal de Flamenco (September): held every other year in Seville, this festival is one of Spain’s largest and most important celebrations of flamenco and attracts professional performers from all over the country.
  • Fiestas de San Mateo (September): a week of parades and concerts in La Rioja as the Feast of Saint Matthew coincides with the grape harvest.
Alhambra, Granada

Visiting Spain in November - December

Spain becomes cool again as winter approaches, but there is still plenty to enjoy. In November, jazz festivals are held in many major cities while in December, Spain’s streets are decorated for Christmas.

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