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The United Kingdom can be visited at any time of year, as its climate is relatively temperate and, in general, doesn’t experience extremes during either summer or winter. Overall, spring (late March to early June) and autumn (September to November) are the best times to visit, when it’s usually warm and dry. At these times you’ll see beautiful spring flowers or the leaves changing hue in autumn, and avoid the much busier summer period. Winter (December to February) can also be an enjoyable time to visit. Although some attractions close in mountainous areas and in the north, where there’s likely to be snow, the main cities remain fully open and will be quieter for sightseeing. The highest temperatures are experienced in the summer, but these rarely rise above 30°C (86°F).

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Month-by-month guide to traveling in the UK

Buttermere, the Lake District

Visiting the UK in January

Typically the coldest month of the year, January is also when you’re most likely to experience clear and frosty days, with blue skies and crisp mornings. Extravagant New Year celebrations are held in all the major cities and often include live music, floats and firework displays. The average temperature throughout the month can be as low as 5-6°C (41-42°F), if not lower.

Events & Festivals

  • New Year celebrations are held, with fireworks on New Year's Eve and floats and processions in some cities on New Year's Day.
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UK Climate Guide

Destination Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Bath 45°F 3" 45°F 3" 50°F 3" 54°F 2" 61°F 3" 66°F 3" 70°F 2" 68°F 3" 64°F 3" 57°F 3" 50°F 3" 46°F 4"
Edinburgh 43°F 2" 43°F 2" 48°F 2" 54°F 2" 59°F 2" 64°F 2" 66°F 2" 66°F 3" 61°F 3" 55°F 3" 48°F 3" 45°F 2"
Inverness 41°F 3" 41°F 2" 46°F 2" 50°F 2" 57°F 2" 64°F 2" 66°F 2" 66°F 3" 59°F 3" 54°F 3" 46°F 3" 43°F 3"
London 46°F 2" 46°F 2" 52°F 2" 57°F 2" 64°F 2" 70°F 2" 73°F 2" 73°F 2" 68°F 2" 61°F 2" 52°F 2" 48°F 2"
Oxford 45°F 2" 45°F 2" 50°F 2" 55°F 2" 61°F 2" 66°F 2" 72°F 2" 70°F 2" 64°F 2" 59°F 2" 50°F 2" 45°F 3"
York 43°F 2" 43°F 2" 48°F 2" 54°F 2" 59°F 2" 66°F 2" 68°F 2" 68°F 3" 64°F 2" 57°F 2" 48°F 2" 45°F 2"

Trip ideas and travel guides to exploring the UK

Emily by the coast in County Antrim, Northern Ireland

The UK is at its best when spring has sprung. The British boast exquisite gardens and once things have come into flower, these horticultural creations are at their finest. In April and May, the landscapes begin to flourish with tulips, narcissus, and lupins. Come early June, the weather usually warms up a little more, and smaller towns and cities across England, Scotland and Northern Ireland come to life. After May Day (1st May), festivals and markets are held all across the UK.

Emily, UK & Ireland Specialist