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Lobster buoys, Maine, New England

When is the best time to visit New England?

Lobster buoys, Maine, New England

The best time to visit New England depends on what you want to do while you’re there. There are four distinct seasons, each one bringing its own touch to the region.

We particularly recommend visiting during late spring. The thawing spring temperatures bring wildflowers, and baseball when Boston’s Fenway Park opens. Many beaches also open for the season.

The summer months are ideal for a family trip. From June to August, you can expect temperatures exceeding 86°F, ideal for sailing and island-hopping in Cape Cod.

Inland, in the mountains of Vermont and New Hampshire, the New England fall blankets the landscape in rich, warm tones as the leaves change. Harvest time happens in September and October, when farms produce apple cider. These months also offer the best whale watching off the Massachusetts coast.

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Month-by-month guide for traveling in New England

Winter in Vermont

Visiting New England in January - March

The harsh winter months see many coastal resorts shut down entirely, but the mountainous areas of New England attract visitors with a host of winter sports. Vermont is the best-known state for skiing and is home to a wide variety of resorts, from the powdery snow of Jay Peak to the family-friendly Okemo Mountain. New Hampshire also draws in many East Coast skiers.

Events & Festivals

  • Saint Patrick’s Day on March 17 is a public holiday that can take over Boston — some 20% of its residents claim Irish heritage. A parade is the focal point of the celebrations.
Springtime in Connecticut

Visiting New England in April - May

Spring breathes new life into New England, with wildflowers blossoming in the mountains and warming temperatures brightening up the coastline. New Hampshire and Vermont are the main beneficiaries of springtime: alongside the flowering landscape, the maple trees enter their sugaring season. In Boston, baseball fever sparks into life in April as the city’s beloved Red Sox begin their grueling 162-game season.

Events & Festivals

  • The Boston Marathon, which has been running since the late 1800s, takes place on Patriots' Day (the third Monday in April). Now attracting half a million visitors, the event’s recent history has tightened the city’s bond with the race and made it a poignant reminder of Boston’s resilience.
Lobster Buoys, Maine

Visiting New England in June - August

The summer months are one of the two peak seasons in New England, when the entire region is in its element as temperatures soar. Visitors can enjoy fully the area’s scenery, from glacial lakes and mountains to the coast and its pristine beaches. Summer is a great time for families to visit, with a plethora of activities to choose from, although this is one of the busiest times of year. For more seclusion, Bar Harbor in Maine is the launch point for the Acadia National Park, where the majority of the state’s 75,000 moose live along with 40 other wildlife species.

Events & Festivals

  • Tanglewood — every summer, the Boston Symphony Orchestra relocates to the countryside of the Berkshires and holds a series of concerts on the Tanglewood Estate. One of the best-known classical music festivals in the US, it typically begins in mid-June.
Vermont in Autumn

Visiting New England in September - October

New England’s second peak season is autumn, when the shift to cooler temperatures sets off the glorious fall displays. From mid-September to October, the blanket of reds and golds descends from Canada and falls across New England like a curtain, drawing a huge number of ‘leaf peeper’ tourists. The window for seeing the foliage is quite narrow, and New England’s small inns book up many months in advance. The cooler temperatures lend themselves to walking and hiking, and you can also head to Provincetown for whale watching as the cooling Atlantic Ocean pushes whales closer to the shoreline.

Old State House at night, Boston

Visiting New England in November - December

The end of October signals the end of the travel season in New England, and many hotels and inns close up until the end of the year. Thanksgiving typically signals the start of ski season in Vermont and New Hampshire, though the snowfall can be patchy.

Events & Festivals

  • Thanksgiving is the busiest travel day in the US as the majority of the country heads home for this public holiday.

New England Climate Guide

Destination Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Bar Harbor 30°F 4" 32°F 4" 41°F 4" 52°F 4" 63°F 4" 73°F 3" 79°F 3" 77°F 3" 68°F 4" 59°F 4" 46°F 6" 36°F 5"
Boston 36°F 4" 37°F 4" 46°F 4" 57°F 4" 68°F 4" 77°F 3" 82°F 3" 81°F 4" 73°F 3" 63°F 4" 52°F 4" 39°F 4"
Falmouth 37°F 4" 39°F 4" 45°F 4" 54°F 4" 64°F 4" 73°F 3" 79°F 3" 79°F 4" 72°F 4" 63°F 4" 52°F 5" 43°F 4"
Martha's Vineyard 37°F 4" 39°F 4" 45°F 4" 54°F 4" 63°F 4" 73°F 3" 79°F 3" 79°F 4" 72°F 4" 63°F 4" 54°F 5" 43°F 4"
Newport, Rhode Island 37°F 4" 39°F 4" 46°F 4" 55°F 4" 64°F 4" 73°F 3" 81°F 3" 79°F 4" 73°F 4" 63°F 3" 54°F 5" 43°F 4"
North Conway 28°F 3" 32°F 3" 41°F 4" 54°F 4" 68°F 4" 77°F 4" 81°F 4" 79°F 4" 70°F 3" 59°F 4" 45°F 5" 32°F 4"

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Travel advice

Practical tips for traveling to New England, from social protocols to guidance on money matters, with a link to the latest US State Department travel advice.

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