What is the best time to visit Madrid? It's a bustling city all year round, but the pace and activities vary from season to season. It's an attractive destination with something interesting going on at any time. At ForMadridLovers we tell you everything you need to know if you can't decide between the 4 seasons. Let's get to it!
Best time to travel to Madrid: Autumn
The best time to visit Madrid is autumn (September to November) or spring (March to May), when mild temperatures sweep through the city and bring it to life. But if you don't mind drab weather and a rather listless Madrid, visit in winter, when hotels reduce their rates. The peak tourist season is summer - despite the almost unbearable heat - but many Madrileños close their shops at this time of year and take their own holidays.
The Spanish capital is a city that really does offer everything, including cultural visits, events, nightlife and entertainment and so when to go to Madrid is entirely up to you!
Madrid's climate makes a holiday possible at any time of the year, but depending on the season you choose you will have a very different experience. Whatever the weather conditions you find, there is always something to do in Madrid, it is really impossible to get bored.
The warmer seasons, spring and autumn, are perfect for those who love to explore the cities on foot, perhaps with a relaxing stop in a city park between attractions.
Mild temperatures, ranging from 50-70 degrees in September, and 40-50 degrees in November, make strolls through Madrid's El Rastro market and Retiro Park very pleasant.
Spring is absolutely the best time to go to Madrid because the warm, but mild weather maximizes the beauty of the city and is ideal for getting around on foot. You may encounter some light rainfall in March and April, but in general in the spring months the weather is almost summer-like, without the heat and high temperatures of July and August.
The parks are filled with flowers, Madrileños rush to the squares and outdoor spaces, the city is imbued with an atmosphere of energy and celebration; there are many events scheduled in this period.
Key Events: Autumn Festival (October-November)
Travelling to Madrid in other seasons
Although in the other seasons Madrid is not so full of life and is low season, it is still highly recommended to go. Here are some advantages of going to Madrid in winter, spring and summer.
It is a good time to find a hotel deal, as many lower their rates at this time of year. But it gets cold: in January, historically the coldest month in Madrid, temperatures reach 30 degrees below zero.
- Three Kings Day (January)
- Madrid Carnival (February)
- Gastrofestival (January-February)
Spring, especially the months between April and the end of May, is another great time to visit for the good weather. Temperatures average between 60 and 70 degrees Celsius. Spring is also a good time to go to Madrid because the warm, but mild weather maximizes the beauty of the city and is ideal for getting around on foot. You may encounter some scant rainfall in March and April, but in general in the spring months the weather is almost summer-like, without the heat and high temperatures of July and August.
- Easter Week (March)
- Madrid Marathon (April)
- Dos de Mayo (May)
- Fiesta de San Isidro (May)
- Book Fair (May-June)
At this time of year, average temperatures are around 80 degrees, which makes travel on foot - or even by metro - quite hot and miserable. It's also worth bearing in mind that many local business owners close their doors in the summer, so they can take a month's holiday themselves (especially in August).
The advantage of choosing this period is that you can take advantage of the longer days, with sunlight well into the evening. You could take advantage of the hottest hours to take a siesta and do what the people of Madrid do, i.e. go out in the late afternoon.
Another positive side of going to Madrid in the summer is to find the city quieter, with less traffic, because even in Spain most people go on vacation in July and August.
Tips for when to go
So far we have explained in summary what is good to visit Madrid in each of the seasons. Here are some tips to help you make up your mind.
- Avoid certain holidays and high season. On public holidays, most attractions and shops will be closed. In high season, Madrid receives more visitors and prices (especially for accommodation) can be higher.
- Keep an eye on the weather. Madrid has a more pleasant climate than most European capitals, but summers can be quite hot.
- In low season, airfares and hotel prices are considerably lower. In addition, the cultural programme (exhibitions, performing arts events) is at its peak.
If you're still unsure of your travel dates and when is the best time to visit Madrid, take a look at the month-by-month calendar of events. It details annual special events, public holidays and the best selections of information, which you won't find in the usual guidebooks or in your hotel lobby.