When to travel to England Find your answers here
When to travel to England
Choosing when to travel to England can determine the quality of your trip.
Going in May offers nice, if sometimes wet weather, and smaller crowds.
Going in July offers a bit warmer weather, and ten times the crowds – all headed down the same tourist trail.
Your only choice may be at the height of the tourist season. It can be a nightmare of queues and fighting crowds – but with a bit of planning, you can get the most out of every day, and minimize the impact of so many people.
Here is the good, and not so good, of travelling each season, and ways to work around the not so good.
~ Spring. Crisp weather, gorgeous gardens, and long hours of daylight are all brilliant reasons to travel this time of year. Add in cheaper airfare, and the opportunity for accommodation deals, and it seems close to perfect.
The major disadvantage of travelling to England in spring? Many historic sites close for the winter, and don’t reopen until May or June. If there are sites you really want to visit, make a note of any closures and plan accordingly. My second favorite time of year in England is May. There is so much on offer, without battling the crowds to get there.
~ Summer. Ah, summer. Warm weather, everything open longer, late, gorgeous sunsets. Outside tables appear everywhere, fairs and festivals spring up across the country, and nightlife spills out on to the sidewalks.
Sounds like a perfect time to travel to England, doesn’t it?
Unfortunately, so many other people share the same idyllic dream that they clog the city streets and crowd sights until they are heaving. The best way to help ease the stress, and beat some of the crowds? Here are some tips:
- Buy advance tickets whenever you can. Order them online – and check the website to see if that ticket includes jump the queue privileges.
- Go early. Make it your mantra, and get to those popular sights first thing, to enjoy them before they fill up.
- Take advantage of late hours. Many museums and galleries in London are open late at least one night a week. Since other sights close down by 5 or 6, you can save some of your museum going for the evening. Just be aware that all the rooms may not be open late – check the museum’s website for late opening details.
- Book accommodations as soon as you know you’re going. The best fill up fast – and you will pay far more than you want to if you wait until the last minute.
- Do picnic lunches whenever you can. It will save the time and frustration of waiting in a crowded restaurant. Save the sit down meal for supper, when you can relax and go over the day with no restrictions on your time.
I am not a big fan of crowds, so I rarely travel during the summer, unless something in my itinerary is only available in the high season. If you thrive on the excitement, it is an exhilarating, stimulating time to be in England.
~ Fall. This is my absolute favorite season to travel to England. Temperate weather, with long days – only you are sharing them with far fewer tourists. Many sites close at the end of September, so adjust your plans if you want to include them.
I find travelling this time of year to be the most satisfying for what I want to see. For a more relaxed journey, fall is the season to go.
~ Winter. Short queues, plenty of available accommodation, low airfare – all incentives to travel this time of year. There are also shorter days, England’s weather is cold and often dreary, and outside the cities, many sites are closed. If you are planning your itinerary around major cities, or going to get away from the daily grind, this is a good season for it.
But if you want to do full out sightseeing, choose another time, or you will be headed for disappointment.
Whatever season you travel to England, do your research and make informed decisions. Every bit of planning you do now will reward you with a brilliant trip.