March is a wonderful month of the year. For many of us, it signals that spring has arrived. Temperatures slowly warm from the cold winter months, snow melts, and gardens and trees become alive once again. The air fills with expectation. Nowhere is this more true than Europe. So where should you go? Here are the 25 best places to visit in Europe in March.
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Destinations In Other Months
If you are not sure about your timing, then here are a list of other European destinations that would be ideal at different times of the year.
- 24 Best Places To Visit In Europe In January;
- 24 Best Places To Visit In Europe in April;
- 25 Best Places To Visit In Europe In May;
- 23 Best Places To Visit In Europe in September;
- 22 Best National Parks To Visit In Europe In September;
- 23 Best Places To Visit In Europe In October;
- 20 Best Places To Visit In The USA In November; and
- 24 Best Places To Visit In Europe For Christmas.
- 23 Best Places to Visit In The UK In July;
- 22 Best Places To Visit In The UK in August; and
- 24 Best Places To Visit In Europe For Mild Summer Weather.
Best Places To Visit In Europe In March
March is the perfect time to visit many European countries. In addition to warmer weather, it is still low season. That means you get the benefit of travel deals, such as cheaper flights and accommodation. It also means that popular destinations and tourist attractions have fewer crowds making your experience more authentic and relaxed. You get more of an opportunity to really immerse yourself in a European city or small town, or enjoy beaches or other outdoor adventures.
In this article, I asked amazing travel bloggers and industry experts for their opinion about the 25 best places to visit in Europe. They highlight the best things to do, the average temperatures, and whether there are any special annual events or festivals that you might want to try to attend. In addition, if they stayed at a great hotel, I include those as well. Finally, the best international airport and transportation options are described to help you with your travel plans.
By Emily from Emily Embarks
Situated along the far eastern coast of Spain, Valencia is easily one of the best places to visit in Europe in March. Known for its world-famous Science Museum, historic Old Town, and mouthwatering paella, there is no shortage of things to capture your attention.
Valencia is a unique destination that offers everything from gorgeous beaches to world-renowned museums, and even some of the best seafood in Europe. So, what makes March such a good time to visit?
Well, for starters, you’ll have the place practically to yourself. March is the perfect time to visit Valencia, since the crowds of tourists haven’t quite made their way there yet. Because of this, you’ll score great deals on flights, accommodations, and tours. In addition, there will be shorter wait times at all restaurants, major attractions, and landmarks.
You’ll also have more opportunities to capture beautiful pictures without flocks of people blocking your view. Yes, the summers do bring the best weather, on average. However, if you aren’t much of a beach bum and are looking to connect with the locals and experience true Spanish culture on a deeper level, then the off-season is the best time to visit. Just be sure to brush up on your Spanish before you arrive so you can chat with the locals.
While you’re there, be sure to stop by the Science Museum which is part of the breathtaking City of Arts and Sciences. You can explore everything from the invention of Foucault’s Pendulum to futuristic technologies. You should also snap a photo of yourself along the vibrant beach huts on Playa de la Patacona which are a famous part of Valencia’s beach scene.
Weather And Directions
In March, you’ll experience cooler temperatures averaging between 55-65 degrees Fahrenheit (12-18 degrees Celsius) and about 7 hours of sunlight per day. While this provides a much-needed break from the hot weather that accompanies the summer months, you may want to pack a few extra layers for those brisk evenings along the Balearic Sea.
Lucky for visitors, Valencia is home to its own international airport (Manises Airport) which is just a quick 15-minute drive to the Old Town.
Emily says, “After you arrive, check into the stunning Cathedral Suites Hotel before making your way over to Navarro Restaurant for some lunch or dinner.”
By Nicola from All About Rosalita
You can’t come the whole way to Europe in March without spending 2 days in Dublin to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. Dublin is a great city to visit at any time of the year but it’s one of the best places to visit in March during the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. In addition, Dublin is beautiful at this time of year with cherry blossoms blooming throughout the city.
Every year, the St. Patrick’s Day festival and parade attract over 1 million visitors to the capital of the Emerald Isle. With so many visitors wanting to celebrate and experience the Irish craic for themselves, make sure to book flights into Dublin airport and accommodation in the city well in advance of your trip.
St. Patrick’s Day is a national holiday in Ireland. There are celebrations in cities and towns throughout Ireland, but no-one hosts the festival quite like Dublin does. St. Patrick’s Day originally began as a religious holiday but today’s festivities include a massive parade, community events, and a whole lot of green!
The festival is actually a five day event in Ireland’s capital with the main event and big parade taking place on March 17th. The parade route through Dublin runs from St. Mary’s Place (north of the river) to St. Patrick’s Cathedral (south of the river). It’s not too hard to find a spot along O’Connell Street, but it can be pretty crowded by the time the parade reaches this point in the route. The only way to beat the crowds is to get there early.
The parade in Dublin is amazing with some incredible floats, brass bands from all over the world, energetic leprechauns, and a lot of drunk foreigners wearing green. Most head to the popular Temple Bar to party but it’s best to avoid this area and find a traditional pub, like McDaid’s off Grafton Street, to celebrate with the locals and enjoy a pint of the black stuff.
Once St. Patrick’s Day festivities is over, consider doing a free walking tour of Dublin and learn about its fascinating history. Another amazing activity is a musical pub crawl where you follow a band of musicians from pub to pub listening to wonderful Irish songs and folktales.
Weather And Directions
Weather in March is unpredictable. Some years have been really warm and sunny while others have been a complete wash out. Average temperatures are 10-14 degrees Celsius (50- 57 degrees Fahrenheit) so pack both your raincoat and your sunnies!
Dublin Airport is only about 25 minutes outside of the city. The easiest and cheapest way to get into the city centre is by Aircoach.
Nicola says, “If you are looking for a centrally located hotel then the Trinity Townhouse is a good option. The Wilder and Aloft Dublin City hotels are both really fun and trendy places to stay if you want to continue on the party.”
The Algarve, Portugal
By Alya from The Algarve Family
The Algarve region in southern Portugal is known for its beautiful beaches, picturesque cliffs, sunny weather, and turquoise water. It’s one of the best places to visit in Europe in March for several reasons.
First of all, l the weather is sunny and warm in March. The second reason is that there are significantly fewer tourists in the region in March. Third, accommodation and car rental prices are lower than summer. Lastly, March is a great time to see spring blossoms and observe the spectacular bird population.
Algarve is an amazing place for outdoor activities. Hiking, surfing, kayaking, diving, paddle boarding, and cycling are some of the best things to do.
There are many hiking trails across the region of different lengths and difficulty levels from easy one day hikes to more challenging multi-day routes.
Some of the best surfing spots in the region can be found on the West Coast of the Algarve. Sagres, Praia da Arrifana, and Bordeira Beach are some of the most popular.
Kayaking is the best way of visiting some of the Algarve’s highlights such as Benagil Cave and Ponta da Piedade. In addition, the grottos around Sagres and the artificially submerged shipwrecks near Portimao are the best areas for scuba diving in the region.
Lagos and Albufeira are popular places in which to be based. From there, you can do day trips to the nearby attractions.
Weather And Directions
The average temperature in March is 65°F. March has on average 5 days with some rain.
The easiest way of getting to the Algarve from overseas is to fly to Faro International Airport. There are direct flights to Faro from many European cities. From there, you can get by bus or train to any coastal town in the region. If you rent a car, Lagos is one hour away.
Alya says, “Bura Surfhouse in Lagos is a great place to stay if you want to have a holiday packed with activities such as surfing, yoga, kayaking, etc.”
By Lisa from Waves And Cobblestones
Avignon is located in the region of Provence, in the south of France. It has a rich history, and there are many interesting things to do in Avignon. In addition, it is one of the best European cities to visit in March. Avignon is renowned for its rich theater scene. March kicks off the ‘Printemps Anglophone’ festival of English-speaking culture. You can also enjoy Avignon’s opera season with performances from January through June.
During the 14th century unrest in Rome, Avignon was the seat of the papacy. The Palais des Papes is the most impressive building in Avignon. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its historical and architectural importance.
Avignon’s other iconic attraction is its medieval bridge, the Pont Saint-Bénézet (the Pont D’Avignon). This bridge was made famous in the French dance song ‘Sur Le Pont D’Avignon’, although only a portion remains standing today.
Visit Les Halles d’Avignon, Avignon’s indoor market, for a fantastic selection of local produce and prepared goods. Don’t miss the market’s unique north wall: a ‘green wall’ comprised of over 300 square meters of plants. Starting in late March, the market’s green wall is beautiful to behold in the bloom of spring.
Weather And Directions
Expect high temperatures near 60 degrees Fahrenheit, with low temperatures in the low 40s. Days are a mix of clouds and sun. Avignon is generally not too rainy in March, but it is always a good idea to bring an umbrella – just in case!
Most visitors to France arrive via Paris at the Charles de Gaulle or Orly airports. From Paris, Avignon is about a 2.5-hour train ride via TGV, France’s high-speed train. Alternatively, fly into France through the Lyon–Saint Exupéry Airport. From Lyon, Avignon is only one hour away by TGV, or just under three hours by car.
Lisa says, “To really get the best feel for this historic city, be sure to stay at a hotel inside the old city walls. The Hotel de l’Horloge is perfectly located on Avignon’s town square, Place de l’Horloge. From here you can easily visit all of the best Avignon attractions.”
By Dan from Urban Abroad
Venice attracts tourists from all over the world and all year round. Famous for its canals, elegant gondolas, romantic bridges, St. Mark’s Square, and Basilica, the list of reasons to visit Venice seems endless.
Apart from visiting the most popular landmarks, take some time to explore a few off-the-beaten-path gems. First, stop by the Squero di San Trovaso, one of the few gondola boatyards left in Venice. It’s a place with lots of history and you can even observe craftsmen working from the ‘bacaro’ facing the ‘squero’.
If you want to sip the original Venetian Spritz, the best area to do so is in Campo Santa Margherita, located in the Dorsoduro neighborhood.
One of the best spots to admire a beautiful sunset over the Venetian lagoon is Zattere. From there, you can continue your walk and get to the second most important church in Venice: the outstanding Santa Maria della Salute church.
Depending on the year, March may be the month when Carnival celebrations are being held. The Venetian Carnival is one of the most colorful and famous Carnivals in the world, together with the Mardi Gras and the Rio Carnival in Brazil. It would be a perfect time to visit.
Weather And Directions
March is a good month to explore Venice since the temperature begins to rise. This means fewer rainy or foggy days and more sunnier ones. Temperatures in Venice see the lowest around 45 °F and the highest around 58 °F.
The Venice airport named Marco Polo is only 20/30 minutes away by bus or longer by water.
Dan says, “The city is divided into six neighborhoods. If staying for a couple of nights, I highly recommend staying in the San Marco, Dorsoduro, or San Polo districts. A fantastic choice is the Palazzo Orseolo, a beautiful 16th century Venetian palazzo. It is located only a few meters away from St. Mark’s Square and Doge’s Palace. Rialto Bridge is also just 500 meters away.”
Luxembourg City, Luxembourg
By Krystianna from Volumes & Voyages
One of the best European countries to visit in March is Luxembourg. This breathtaking place is highly underrated in Europe, as is its’ capital, Luxembourg City.
What makes Luxembourg City a great destination to visit is its’ interesting culture. Even a quick visit to a restaurant downtown, you’ll realize that the locals speak multiple languages, including French, German, English, and Luxembourgish.
There are many great things to do in Luxembourg, with one of the best things being a visit to the Casemates du Bock. It is a set of historic tunnels with a rich history that guests can walk through for just a few euros. They have grown a lot over the years, but the tunnels were initially started back in the 1600s as underground fortification under Spanish rule. The tunnels once held stables, people during bomb threats, shops, stores, and more. Unfortunately, most of them were destroyed in 1867 under the terms of the Treaty of London. What remains today are the tunnels that couldn’t be destroyed without also destroying the city.
It’s also worth visiting the Grund, a separate part of the city. Luxembourg City is broken into an upper city (which is very modern) and a lower city near the river. The two sides feel distinctly different. The Grund feels a bit more like a classic European fairytale town. Anyone who loves historic architecture should take the time to walk through this area and marvel at the buildings. Even though it has an older feel, this area has grown in popularity due to its nightlife venues.
Lastly, be sure to also take time to visit Grand-Ducal Palace. It’s still in use by the Royals today. Though it’s not open for guided tours in March, it’s still an absolute must-see, even if it’s only from the outside.
Weather And Directions
Expected average temperatures in Luxembourg offer daily averages around 55°F. It usually won’t drop below 30°F during this time of year, but of course, every year is different. It is one of the colder months in Luxembourg, and you can expect a few days of rain. Overall, it is sunny and the weather is quite beautiful in March.
The closest airport to fly into is Luxembourg Airport, which is the only international airport in the country. It’s only about a 15 to 20 minutes drive.
Krystianna says, “When visiting Luxembourg City, it’s best to stay somewhere downtown. Most of the hotels will be found in the upper part of the more modern area of the city, which is near the bus and train station. The ibis Styles Luxembourg Centre Gare is an incredible option, as it’s near everything and is fairly affordable.”
By Jennie from Jennie Wanders
One of the best places to visit in March in Europe is Lapland in Finland. Lapland is known for being a snow lover’s paradise, with March offering thick layers of snow from months of snowfall. You will find warmer temperatures compared to earlier winter months. In addition, the sky is a brilliant ice-blue. Best of all, it’s the best time of year to spot the Northern Lights.
Whilst visiting Lapland in March, you can fill your days with walks through the snow-filled forests, sledge rides down hills and rolling about making snow angels.
If you want to make your stay even more magical, book one of the amazing day trips. One of the most popular ones is being pulled in a sleigh by huskies. It really is a once-in-a-lifetime bucket list experience! In addition to this, you can spend the day with reindeer in the forest, try your luck at ice fishing or even have a go at driving a snowmobile.
When you need to warm up, pay a visit to the Santa Claus Village, located in the heart of the Rovaniemi countryside. You’ll meet the ‘real’ Santa Claus and his elves, visit his post office and send your Christmas mail. You can even get cozy in the ice bar with either a cocktail or a coffee.
Visiting Lapland in March is also one of the best times of the year to spot the Aurora Borealis. The Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon so it is hard to perfectly time your visit to see them. However, to increase your chances, consider visiting in March.
Weather And Directions
Expect average temperatures between 16 degree Fahrenheit and 29 degree Fahrenheit.
Situated in the north of the country, Lapland can be easily accessed by overnight train from Helsinki International, or directly from Rovaniemi Airport – aka the ‘capital’ of Lapland.
Jennie says, “If you’re staying in Lapland for the first time, spend at least one night at the Apukka Resort. Located at least 20 minutes from Rovaniemi, you can spot the Northern Lights from the comfort of your own bed in unique glass igloos, away from any light pollution. They also run tours for a reasonable price, and have an incredible nightly buffet where you can even try reindeer pizza.”
By Roxanne from Faraway Worlds
Athens is the birthplace of Greek civilization, renowned for being the world’s first democracy and the home of Socrates and Plato. It is also one of the best European cities to visit in March.
Weather in March is usually pleasant which makes it an excellent time for exploring the ancient sites. Tickets to museums are also discounted in March (and throughout the off-season), so if you are unlucky and it does rain, spend some time exploring some of Athens’ excellent museums. The National Archaeological Museum, and the Byzantine and Christian Museum are both great options.
The priority for most travellers to Athens is to see the Acropolis, the sacred hill in the centre of the city. The Acropolis is home to the Parthenon, a temple to Athena (the patron goddess of Athens) and one of the most recognisable ancient Greek ruins. Other memorable sites on the Acropolis include the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, a huge Roman theatre built on the slopes; the beautifully-preserved temple to Athena-Nike; and the Acropolis Museum, filled with the treasures of the Acropolis.
March 25th is Greece’s Independence Day, with a parade through the centre of Athens, starting in Syntagma Square. Entry to the Acropolis Museum is usually free on Greek Independence Day. The 25th is also the day of the Annunciation (when the angel Gabriel appeared to the Virgin Mary). There are special church services and many hotels (and tavernas) serve a traditional meal (salted cod in garlic sauce) to mark the day.
Weather And Directions
Expect warm weather in March. Average temperature is around 60 degrees Fahrenheit with the possibility of some light rain.
Most people will fly into Athens International Airport, which is about a 30-minute drive into the city without traffic.
Roxanne says, “There are a number of central areas in Athens which are suitable for travellers. Many first-time visitors choose to stay in Plaka, a pretty neighbourhood at the foot of the Acropolis. Try the Palladian Hotel for rooms with a view.”
Lanzarote, Spain (Canary Islands)
By Paulina from UK Everyday
Lanzarote is the northernmost of the Canary Islands and the most populous after Tenerife and Gran Canaria. Since 1993, the whole island has been declared a Unesco Biosphere Reserve and visiting it is like exploring a completely different world.
The volcanic landscape is the main reason that tourists come to Lanzarote. Who wouldn’t want to see and take photos of Timanfaya National Park, a place that looks other worldly? It is one of the must see places in Lanzarote. When you visit the National Park, try the delicious food at El Diablo restaurant. Not only will you enjoy a great meal, but you will also get spectacular views of lava fields from the restaurant’s huge windows.
Lanzarote is also an amazing place to visit for architecture lovers. There are plenty of incredible buildings on the island designed by famous architect César Manrique. Make sure to visit one of César Manrique masterpieces like Jameos del Agua with an underground lagoon and picture-perfect pool.
Weather And Directions
Warmer temperatures make Lanzarote one of the best European places to go for the sun in March. The temperatures can reach 73.4°F and there are plenty of hours of sunshine during the day.
Aeropuerto de Lanzarote is the best place to fly into and it is only a 10 minutes drive to Arrecife or Puerto del Carmen. There are plenty of sandy beaches near the airport such as Playa de los Pocillos or Playa Grande, which makes it a convenient place to visit if you don’t want to explore the island.
Paulina says, “If you are looking for some luxury, choose Arrecife Gran Hotel & Spa. This 5-star hotel has a great location, less than 10 minutes drive from the airport and next to Playa Reducto.”
By Kelly from Girl With The Passport
One of the best places to visit in Europe in March is London. Not only is it the capital of England, but this wonderfully dynamic and incredibly diverse metropolis is home to some of the best museums and most historic sites in all of Europe.
March is also the best time to visit since it is shoulder season and you’ll pay much less for flights and hotel rooms. Plus, you can also enjoy fun events like the Head of the River Races from Mortlake to Putney, a rowing competition that began in 1829, and the RE-TEXTURED Festival at Printworks, a multi-sensory music and light festival.
After enjoying these fun events, start your visit with a live performance on the West End. After all, there are a ton of amazing shows to choose from including Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Mamma Mia, Wicked, and more. But, don’t pay full price for tickets since you can easily get 50% off by using the TodayTix App in advance, one of many amazing London tips to know.
Next, reserve tickets to ascend to the top of SkyGarden. Not only are the tickets free and the views just as good as from the Shard, but you can enjoy one of the best brunches in London at Darwin Brasserie.
For something a little bit different, do a scavenger hunt in the Victoria & Albert Museum.
Finally, enjoy a bit of culture as you explore the many exhibits inside the British Museum. In fact, it’s the world’s oldest, national public museum and holds an impressive collection of 6 million plus pieces of art, literature, architecture, and sculpture.
Weather And Directions
Never leave your hotel without a raincoat or umbrella since it rains an average of nine days throughout the month, with daily highs around 53°F and daily lows around 42°F.
If you fly into London Heathrow (one of five international airports in and around London), you can easily take the Piccadilly line to Piccadilly Circus station and access your hotel from there.
Kelly says, “Enjoy a luxurious stay inside the Thistle Piccadilly Hotel. After all, it’s well-located, the service is exceptional, and the suites are well-appointed.”
By Ellis from Backpack Adventures
Baku is a city on the crossroads between Europe and Asia and a perfect place to visit in March. As summers can be very hot in Baku, March offers more pleasant temperatures. The cold winter is gone and spring arrives with the Nowruz festival, the Iranian New Year, that has its origins in pre-islamic zoroastrian beliefs.
The Persian new year still sees big celebrations in Baku and preparations for the festival already begin a month prior to the actual festival. Expect special Nowruz concerts and on the day itself, there will be folk music performances, singing, dancing and games like wrestling. Special sweet pastries are made for the occasion and it is a great time to taste Azerbaijani food as well.
During Nowruz, Baku feels more middle eastern than European. But Baku has a different side too. The old historic center with its beautiful palace of the Shirvanshah’s shows Baku’s long history as a multicultural city on the silk road between Europe and Asia.
Historic sights in Baku go together with futuristic modern architecture like the flame towers, the Aliyev cultural center and the carpet museum. Just outside the city, there are peculiar sights like mud volcanoes, ancient petroglyphs and burning hills as well as the less pretty oil wells that did give Baku its wealth.
This makes Baku a city of contrasts and a good reason to visit. It is a very unique mix of modern shopping streets, ancient mosques, holy shrines and modern architecture. A city where you can indulge in delicious Azerbaijani cuisine that is as varied as its history and the people living in the city.
Weather And Directions
In March, the average temperature is 53 degree Fahrenheit.
Baku has an international airport with flights to most other European cities. From the airport, it is a 30 minutes drive to the center of town.
Ellis says, “Baku Old City hostel is a great budget option in the historic old town.”
By Kenny from Knycx Journeying
Porto is the second-largest city in Portugal and a beautiful city. It is known for its food, art, history, and wine. March is the perfect time to visit as it offers a good number of sunny days to walk in the city, enjoy the beautiful sceneries, or even take day trips and go hiking.
Porto features the country’s most artistic treasure, the Azulejo. Azulejo is painted tin-glazed ceramic tiles, which are usually blue, depicting stories of critical events. They can be found in churches, palaces, schools, and important buildings in the city. One of the most famous landmarks featuring Azulejo is the São Bento railway station. Opened in 1916, it is frequently named one of the most beautiful train stations in the world.
Livraria Lello & Irmao (the “Lello Library) is widely recognized as the most beautiful bookstore in the world, and also one of the oldest. The bookstore was designed by Xavier Esteves, with dark wooden walls and a luxurious and winding staircase as the center piece. The interior also incorporates Neo-Gothic and Art Deco elements in its design.
Take a walk along the Douro River, and admire the impressive Luis I iron Bridge – the longest double-deck metal arch bridge in the world. Cross to the other side of the river, and visit wine cellars celebrating port, the wine that was named after the city itself. Port wine is produced by grapes from the Douro Valley, and it’s a beloved dessert wine to many all over the world.
In March, make sure you keep your eye open for the wildflowers blossoming. In addition, some of the biggest festivals happen around spring in Portugal, including the famous Carnaval, the Porto Interceltic Festival, and the Easter events on Holy Week.
Weather And Directions
In March, Porto is at a pleasant temperature of around 45 to 65 Fahrenheit.
Porto is connected with the rest of the continent with an international airport. It’s a 3-hour train ride from Lisbon.
Kenny says, “For accommodation, stay in NH Collection in Porto. The group offers modern hotels in the city center with a hint of historic charm. The locations are convenient to explore many city highlights on foot.”
Punta Umbria, Spain
By Linn from Amused By Andalucia
If you are looking for one of the best places to visit in Europe in March, look no further than Punta Umbria in southern Spain. This is a popular destination among locals from Seville and Huelva, but sees far lesser international tourists. March, however, is a wonderful time of the year to go. There isn’t much tourism of any kind. You can indulge in nice beach weather and walk the sand dunes.
March is also the last month when you can expect to see flamingos in the nearby Marismas del Odiel Natural Park, which is a wonderful day trip.
There are plenty of things to do in Punta Umbria. The enchanting fisherman’s town is situated right between golden, sand-blown beaches on the Atlantic and the salt water river where you can see traditional, colorful fishing boats. There is a nice walk along the river, perfect for stopping by bars for a drink or some tapas along the way.
In the early 1900s, Punta Umbria was inhabited by the British who owned the biggest employer in the area, Rio Tinto Company Limited. For this reason, you can still see the English-style wooden houses on stilts in some parts of the town. Among them, the Town Hall, but also the English House Museum has a good selection of houses.
For the best views of Punta Umbria, climb the old watchtower, the Almenara Tower. It is situated right next to the Our Lady of Lourdes Chapel where Punta Umbria’s patron saint, La Virgen del Carmen is found.
Weather And Directions
Punta Umbria offers a high of 68 degrees Fahrenheit in the daytime in March.
The closest airports are Seville Airport and Faro Airport in Portugal. It takes about 1 hour 20 minutes to drive from either airport.
Linn says, “The best place to stay in Punta Umbria is, without a doubt, the Barceló Punta Umbria Beach Resort where you can enjoy excellent service and outdoor pools.”
By Alyse from The Invisible Tourist
Paris is always a good idea… right? As one of the most popular European destinations, visiting in the summer in high season may not be the best idea. But did you know that March is the best time to visit for a few reasons? In fact, the time between New Year’s and Easter is often overlooked when planning a Paris itinerary.
Due to March’s cool mornings, you can expect far fewer queues to enter the Louvre to experience its lengthy hallways of priceless artefacts. Imagine taking photos of iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower or Arc du Triomphe without other tourists in them? It’s almost a given at this time of year.
In March, you will often feel like you have the city to yourself at times. That also means that there is also the chance to score some great hotel deals.
Weather And Directions
The average temperature for Paris in March ranges from 41°F to 53°F. While it is generally cloudy and rainy for around 12 days of the month, if you’re extremely lucky, you may even get the rare chance to see snow dusting the city.
Home to two international airports, Charles de Gaulle (CDG) and Orly (ORY), you’re likely to arrive at CDG if flying in from outside of Europe, and Orly from within. From CDG to central Paris by car or taxi, it takes around an hour, and approximately half an hour from Orly (or longer in heavy traffic).
Alyse says, “For lovers of art and history, don’t miss staying at the boutique Hotel Relais Montmartre. Its central location allows you to walk in the footsteps of Picasso and Van Gogh.”
Palmero, Italy (Sicily)
By Izzy from The Gap Decaders
Palermo, the capital of Sicily, is a complex European city, caught between West and East for millennia. Full of fabulous buildings, chaotic markets and hidden corners to explore, visiting Palermo in March means you’ll almost have the place to yourself! Shoulder-season travel is always good for fewer tourists, but when you visit Palermo in March, the city is surrounded by wild flowers, and the markets are full of spring produce.
In Palermo itself, there is a lot to see and do. It’s a great city for wandering – from market, to church, to pretty piazza. But you should make time to visit the Arabian-Norman churches of San Cataldo and San Giovanni degli Eremiti, for thier stunning ancient architecture and simple interiors.
At the other end of the spectrum is the beautifully frescoed Sicilian Baroque Catholic Church of Saint Joseph of the Theatine Fathers. Literally on the corner of Quatti Canti and Via Vittorio Emanuele, this hidden church will blow you away when you step inside!
Visiting a food market is a must-do in Palermo, and trying the street food on offer will be a highlight of your trip. Mercto di Ballaro is a lively, messy, and delightful outdoor public market with fish, meat, fruit and vegetables and lots of stalls where you can try the local offerings.
Weather And Directions
Weather wise, if the African winds are kind, you’ll see sunny temperatures around 65 degrees Fahrenheit in March.
Fly to Palermo airport for the easiest access to the city. It’s around 40 minutes. If you’re planning on hiring a car for a road trip to see the rest of beautiful Sicily, we suggest doing so after you’ve spent time in Palermo. This is not an easy city in which to drive!”
Izzy says, “Stay at Casa Nostra Boutique Hotel, just 500m from Palermo Cathedral, in the Monte di Pietà district at the heart of the old town. Housed in the historic Palazzo Bulè, which was renovated in 2019, the decor is stylish yet local, and evokes a sense of rural Sicily.”
By Sarah from Cornwalls Best
Cornwall is England’s most south-westerly county and one of the most beautiful places to visit in Europe in March. It’s spring in Cornwall and that means that Cornwall’s Gardens, which are glorious at the best of times, are truly spectacular.
March is a special time in Cornwall. It’s not only the National Day of Cornwall called St Piran’s Day but also the Cornish Pasty Championships. On St Piran’s Day, there are parades in many of the Cornish town streets. In addition, Cornish singing and music is heard everywhere, after all, he’s also the patron saint of tin miners. It’s the famous Eden Project that hosts the Cornish Pasty Championships, and chefs and bakers from around the world come together to show off their baking skills.
You’ll want to visit the Eden Project, a series of eco gardens in a reclaimed china clay pit, and Land’s End, England’s most south-westerly point. However, one of the best things to do is to visit at least one of Cornwall’s gardens. This sub-tropical paradise has some of England and Europe’s best gardens, especially in spring. The stunning Trelissick Garden, near Truro, is one of the best rated in the county and glorious at this time of year.
Weather And Directions
In March, Cornwall has average temperatures of 45 degrees and 4 hours of sunshine a day, even with 22 days with some rain.
The closest international airport is Bristol, but that’s a small airport only serviced by budget airlines, so you’ll want to fly into London Heathrow or London Gatwick.
Sarah says, “For a truly special experience, you’ll want to stay in one of Cornwall’s castle hotels. The Camelot Castle Hotel overlooking the ancient castle of Tintagel is a glorious place to stay with heaps of history.”
Prague, Czech Republic
By Veronika from Travel Geekery
Prague is one of the most beautiful places and most popular destinations to visit in Europe, especially in the summer months. That’s one of the top reasons why you should visit in March in low season. You’ll have it almost to yourself!
There’s no doubt Prague belongs on the list of the prettiest cities in the world. Everybody should see it at least once in their lifetime. A hundred spires, the majestic Prague Castle, the picturesque Charles Bridge, and the historical heart of the city are what draw crowds of tourists.
When in Prague for the first time, you cannot miss strolling through the historic center, stopping at the Old Town Square, marveling at the Astronomical clock and getting lost in the narrow streets of the Old Town. From there, it’s just a short walk to the Charles Bridge. You should climb the tower on the Old Town side for the best views of the Prague Castle. After that – head straight to the largest castle complex in the world.
In March, the weather may be a bit rainy. But that’s okay since there are, fortunately, many indoor things to do in Prague. You can never run out of galleries to visit! If possible, spend time at the National Museum right at the top of the Wenceslas Square.
In March, events are picking back up after winter. There’s usually a film festival called Febiofest. If it’s Easter in March, you can look forward to some street festivities and Easter markets. During the whole of March, you can also have fun at the amusement park that pops up at the Holešovice exhibition grounds. The Matějská fair is largely popular among locals but anyone is welcome to join in the fun. Also, marathons and half-marathons are starting to take place again after the winter break.
Weather And Directions
Temperature-wise, the average for March is between 2°C (36°F) and 10°C (50°F). Use layers and dress warmly. If you get cold easily, plan frequent coffee breaks in Prague’s many lovely cafés.
It’s easy to get to Prague – just fly into the Václav Havel International Airport. A taxi ride to the city center then takes about 30 minutes.
Veronika says, “You can stay in the well-rated Mosaic Hotel, which offers different types of rooms based on your budget and travel style.”
Golden Circle, Iceland
By Paula from Paula Pins The Planet
The Golden Circle in Iceland is the best itinerary in Iceland and one of the best road trips in the world. Traveling to Iceland in March is a great time to experience this beautiful country when its quieter, with fewer tourists. This month is Iceland’s low season, so attractions will be less crowded and accommodations will be priced more reasonably.
The Golden Circle route offers amazing sites to visit, from waterfalls, to geysers, and many other incredible outdoor attractions. One of the highlights is the Thingvellir National Park, one of the most fascinating national parks in Europe. Its’ incredible geology comes from its location between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates.
Another amazing site to visit is the Geysir Geothermal Area. You can see the earth’s volcanic geography grow more intense with steaming vents and chimneys visible along the way.
During this route, you will also see one of the most spectacular waterfalls in Iceland, Gullfoss. This is a very powerful waterfall located in a plunging, ancient valley. It tumbles down two drops from an overall height of 105 feet.
Weather And Directions
The temperature in Iceland in March averages at around 28°F and gets up to about an average of 38°F. March tends to be a bit of a rainy month, but when the temperature is right, you may see flurries of snow.
International flights to Iceland arrive at Keflavik International Airport. You can pick up your rental car at the airport. The Golden Circle starts only 25 miles east from Reykjavik.
Paula says, “A great place to stay is the town of Selfoss and you can take day trips from here. Guest houses are the best and most affordable accommodations, such as the Lambastadir Guesthouse.“
By Baia from Red Fedora Diary
Barcelona is Spain’s most famous city and one of the best destinations to visit in Europe in March. The weather is mild, crowds are fewer, and outdoor events start to kick off.
The city is famous for its stunning architecture and masterpieces of the world-famous architect, Gaudi. Therefore, one of the main things to do in Barcelona is to visit breathtaking buildings such as La Sagrada Familia, Casa Batllo, Casa Milla, and others.
Start the day with a morning stroll on Las Ramblas, a great way to experience less touristy Barcelona. Then pop inside La Boqueria market right on Las Ramblas for a quick snack of fresh fruits, pastries, and even tapas before locals and tourists arrive during the day.
After a walk through the main attractions of Barcelona, come to Ciutadella Park, right in the center, to relax, people watch and enjoy the atmosphere of the city.
As the spring season starts, it also brings several festivals and events to the city. One of them is Sant Medir, held in the Gracia neighborhood. This is a horse-drawn parade where people throw out sweets to children while riding the horses.
Weather And Directions
The weather in Barcelona in March is quite pleasant, with average temperatures ranging from 44-60F. The days are mostly sunny. When thinking of what to wear in Barcelona in March, bring layers as it can be slightly chilly during early mornings and late evenings while warm during the day. The chance of rain is also high, so bring an umbrella or a packable rain jacket.
Getting to Barcelona is easy as it has an airport serving domestic and international flights from all continents. The distance from the city center to the airport is around 17 kilometers and is well connected with public transport.
Baia says, “When visiting Barcelona in spring, it’s best to stay in the city center. Therefore, one of the hotels to choose is Hotel Oasis which is close to the city and the beach.”
Ring of Kerry, Ireland
By Janelle from Make The Trip Matter
March is a wonderful time to visit Ireland. The weather is starting to warm, the sun is staying out longer, wildflowers are in bloom, and it holds the most famous Irish holiday – St. Patrick’s Day!
The Ring of Kerry is one of Ireland’s most popular natural features and visiting in March or taking a spring break trip to Ireland is perfect. You will see blooming flowers and vibrant greenery but miss most of the summer crowds.
The 179km-long, circular scenic drive around the gorgeous Iveragh Peninsula takes you through incredible coastal landscapes, magnificent views, and adorable rural seaside villages. It’s best to drive (or take a private car tour) through the Ring of Kerry. There are plenty of stops and attractions you will not want to miss along the way.
Visitors love to stop for walks and hikes, especially throughout Killarney National Forest where you can also canoe or kayak on the Lakes of Killarney. The Torc Waterfall is one of the more popular hikes. A relatively steep climb up a set of steps gives you the best view of the 20m cascade. March is a perfect time for this hike as the waterfall is at its best after the winter rain.
One of the most popular attractions in the Ring of Kerry is the Muckross Estate. Built in 1843 and sitting on 1,300 acres of beautiful land, the Muckross Estate holds much Irish history and is quite majestic to behold. Access to the house is only by guided tour, but the gardens will be blooming and magnificent in March. Plus, you might get to see some baby animals on the traditional Irish farm located on the Estate.
Weather And Directions
In March, temperatures in Ireland range from an average low of 37°F / 2.8°C to a high of 54°F / 12.2°C. While there is only an average of 11 days of rain in March (pretty nice for Ireland!), the weather is much more varied and hard to predict during the spring.
To reach the Ring of Kerry, you will start in Killarney. Ideally, you would fly into the Cork Airport which is 1.5 hours away by bus, car, or train. Depending on where you are traveling from, Cork Airport might have limited international flights, in which case you will likely fly into Dublin.
From Dublin, it’s possible to fly to the Kerry Airport which is a simple 20-minute drive away from Killarney. If you are renting a car to drive through the Ring of Kerry, it’s a 3.5-hour drive from Dublin. Or buses will take 6-6.5 hours and trains 3.5-4 hours.
Janelle says, “For easy access to the Ring of Kerry you should search for accommodation in Killarney. If you want somewhere a little smaller but with plenty of delicious Irish food and beautiful surrounding nature, check out the small town of Kenmare.
Bed and Breakfast stays are popular in western Ireland. Alternatively, there are plenty of 5-star accommodations such as the Muckross Park Hotel and Spa.“
By Sydney from A World in Reach
With gorgeous canals, iconic bridges, and tulips galore, Amsterdam is one of the best cities in Europe to visit in March.
Amsterdam is home to a plethora of things to do, from world-class museums to exploring its infamous Red Light District. Visiting the Anne Frank House and learning more about what Anne and her family faced while hiding from Nazi persecution is a must. Museums like the Van Gogh Museum and the Rijksmuseum are perfect for art lovers. You can also take a canal cruise for an up-close-and-personal look at Amsterdam’s waterways, all while learning more about the city’s rich history. For beer connoisseurs, check out the Heineken Experience for an interactive look at the brewing process with the opportunity to enjoy a cold Heineken at the end.
Despite cool temperatures, March is one of the best times to visit Amsterdam. March is the beginning of tulip season, which is a major experience to knock off your bucket list. Keukenhof Gardens, which opens in March and is one of the most famous places to see tulips, is about 30 minutes away from Amsterdam. You can also see tulips blooming throughout the picturesque city. Plus, March is shoulder season for tourism in Amsterdam, which means fewer crowds and cheaper prices for hotels and flights.
Weather And Directions
In March, the weather in Amsterdam can vary from mild to very cold. Make sure to prepare by bringing along a warm coat. High temperatures average around 50 degrees with lows in the mid-30s. March can be a bit rainy as well, so don’t forget an umbrella.
Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is the main airport serving the country. As one of Europe’s busiest airports, it’s well-connected with destinations in the US and elsewhere around the world. The airport is about 15 minutes away by train from Amsterdam Centraal Station. If traveling by rail, you can also get to Centraal Station from many different places in Europe.
Sydney says, “There are many great hotels to stay at in Amsterdam. For a perfectly located and relatively affordable option, consider a stay at the Ibis Amsterdam Centre.”
Ria Formosa Natural Park, Portugal
By Linn from Amused By Algarve
One of the best places to go in Europe in March is the lesser known Ria Formosa Natural Park on Portugal’s Algarve coast in the Faro district.
The natural park is an important resting place for migrating birds traveling between Africa and Europe. March is the last month before summer when you can see an abundance of flamingos in the mudflats.
The natural park usually gets more crowded in the summer months, so March is a great time to go for bird watchers to get the tranquility to discover different species.
One of the best things to do in Faro includes walking the Ludo trails right outside the city where you can combine the marsh land and Faro beach on a good day.
In Olhao, you can easily go on a boat trip to discover the barrier islands, while in Tavira you can even walk or take the tourist train over to Tavira Island. There you can see the unique Anchor Cemetery too, which is an amazing reminder of the tuna fishing industry in the area.
Weather And Directions
Temperatures can reach 63 degrees Fahrenheit during the daytime so you can easily relax on the beach at this time of the year.
The closest airport is Faro Airport, as the Natural Park stretches from Faro and far past Tavira in the east. The main hubs for exploring the Natural Park are Faro, Olhao, and Tavira. From the airport, it only takes 10 minutes to drive to Faro, 20 minutes to Olhao, and 35 minutes to Tavira.
Linn says, “There are many amazing places to stay by Ria Formosa Natural Park. If you base yourself in Tavira, check in at Formosa Guest House. In Olhao, stay at Hotel Cidade de Olhao. While in Faro, the Golden Beach Guesthouse & Rooftop Bar is an excellent choice.”
By Richard from RJ On Tour
Split in Croatia is a fantastic European city to visit as there are lots of interesting things to see, including lots of historic sites. It is in the Dalmatia region of Croatia which has lots of coastline to explore, including some beautiful coastal paths and beaches. In addition, Split has lots of fantastic restaurants to enjoy, many of which serve seafood fresh from the sea.
One of the core attractions in Split is the old town area, which includes the Diocletian’s Palace. The Diocletian’s Palace is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and there are lots of buildings to see which date back to Roman times. Sites include Saint Domnius Cathedral which has an impressive bell tower visitors can climb.
Riva is the seafront promenade of Split which is a beautiful place to hang out and enjoy the sea views. It has many cafes and bars where you can share a meal or a cup of coffee.
If you like hiking, Marjon Hill is a beautiful area for walking. It is a peninsula with some fantastic scenery of the sea and nearby islands.
A great time to visit Split in Croatia is in March as it is relatively quiet. You can enjoy the attractions with limited other visitors. Moreover, the weather is nice for hiking in the nearby hills and mountains.
Weather And Directions
The temperature in Split in March ranges between 46 F and 57 F. On average, there are 7 days per month with rain.
To reach Split, the easiest airport to fly into is Split airport or SPU. The airport is 18 miles from the centre of Split, a 30 minute drive. There is also a bus service from the airport to the centre of the city.
Richard says, “There are lots of options for hotels and apartments in Split. A rather nice place to stay for a holiday in a great location is Fabo Apartments. It is within walking distance of the sea and all the tourist attractions.”
By Joanna from The World In My Pocket
Mallorca is one of the best places in Europe to visit in March. The weather is milder and the island is not yet too crowded with tourists, like it is in summer. Make sure you time your trip to Mallorca outside of the school holidays, and you are guaranteed to have a great time without the crowds.
There are plenty of things to do in Mallorca in spring, starting with visiting the capital of the Balearic Islands, Palma. Here you can see La Seu – the majestic cathedral sitting on a small hill, overlooking the skyline of the city. Inside, the cathedral is spectacular, having different architectural styles and a mural reminding you of the works of Gaudi. Towards the end of spring, the rooftop of the cathedral is open for visiting as well where you can see beautiful views over the city.
Mallorca is also home to some of the most spectacular beaches in the Mediterranean, some of which can only be accessed by hiking. If you visit the island in early March, you will find plenty of parking places close to the beaches, and then, enjoy them in peace.
Another great thing to do in Mallorca is experience the local cuisine. Each day a different town or village around the island hosts its local market. You can buy organic sobrasada, a typical Mallorcan sausage made on the island, or Mahon cheese made on the nearby island of Menorca. There is also plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables to purchase directly from the grower.
Weather And Directions
In general, the weather in Mallorca will be quite mild in March, with the occasional shower here and there. The average temperatures in March varies between 17-20 degrees Celsius (62-68 degrees Fahrenheit). However, by the end of the month, it is warm enough to sunbathe.
Mallorca has its own airport, a few kilometres outside of Palma. Travelling around the island is very easy, either by car or by public transport. The island is very small.
Joanna says, “You can base yourself in Palma and explore a different part of the island each day, as the distances are quite short. A good hotel to stay in Palma is Melia Palma Bay.”
By Shireen from The Happy Days Travels
Brussels is the capital city of Belgium, a small country in Western Europe but large in gastronomical terms. The culinary wonders of Brussels is the best reason to visit this city from the invention of fries to the UNESCO listed beer culture. Of course, some of the best chocolate you can find in the world is here. If you’re still looking for foodie reasons to visit, how about its incredible mussels or the tastiest Belgian waffles in the world.
In between all the incredible food and drink, take a wander through the main square and compare each of the grand buildings. They represent different rulers of Belgium. Spend a few hours musing the Beer Museums and Tastings to get the best of Brussels’ famed drink. Lastly, tour the streets to find the odd but ever so popular statues of a peeing boy (Mannekin Pis), a peeing girl and peeing dog.
Weather And Directions
Visiting Brussels in March is perfect because regardless of the weather (which is pretty dry in March anyway), you can do all of the best attractions. The average temperature in Brussels is 10 degrees Celsius (50 degrees Fahrenheit) so bring a jacket with your empty stomach.
Europe offers many extraordinary places to visit in March. Whether you wish to play in the snow, walk amongst spring flowers, feel the warmth of the sun while at the beach, or explore fascinating cities, you have plenty of amazing destinations from which to choose.