When is the best time to visit London? Well, are you a fan of the fall foliage? Or do you prefer to wander around in a tank top, basking in the sun and soaking up the late summer evening light? Although there’s no denying that London is great to visit at any time of the year… When is the best time for you to visit? Here’s your guide on when to visit London by season, as told by a former resident:
Spring in London
Cherry blossom and the relief that the cold winter is finally over, London is spring is buzzing, brilliant and filled with interesting and quirky things to do. Head to the city if you love searching for spring blossom, cheaper deals (hotels and flights in London are typically cheaper in the ‘shoulder seasons’ than in the summer months) and fewer tourists.
Head to the city at the beginning of the year, and you can also expect to find longer daylight hours than in the winter months and ever so slightly warmer weather. However, be warned that the spring rainfalls aren’t called ‘April Showers’ for nothing! Be prepared, and come with an umbrella handy. In my opinion, the very best time to visit London is most definitely in the spring!
Read more: Reasons to visit London in the Spring!
Summer in the city (of London)
London in the summer is one of those rare times in the UK when it doesn’t actually rain too much! Instead, you’ll find plenty of outdoor terraces, opportunities to enjoy cool cocktails with friends and plenty of adventurous outdoor activities. Boating on the Serpentine, anyone?
Summer in the city is also the perfect opportunity to take advantage of all the green spaces the city has to offer. Head to Regent’s Park for a picnic, or to one of the smaller green spaces in the city to enjoy a coffee with friends; I highly recommend the Kensington Roof Gardens if you’re looking for somewhere a little off the beaten path.
However, the one thing you should bear in mind is that the summer months are the school holidays in the UK. This means that everything is a little busier than normal and you can expect to wait in lines for a longer amount of time than at any other time of the year.
Be sure to book tickets in advance when you can, and arrive at places earlier in the day. But, when all things are said and done, despite the increase in tourism during the summer months, if you’re looking for the best time to visit London, then it doesn’t get better than this…
Autumn in London
Fall foliage and fewer tourists than in the summer months, Autumn in London is pretty in autumnal tones and lingering sunsets. Autumn also happens to be the perfect season to start checking out all of the museums and galleries the city has to offer.
After all, you’ll want to get away from the chillier days every once in a while! While the weather is still mild, you can expect a few more rain showers and turbulent weather than in the summer months. Again, come prepared with an umbrella or rain jacket!
Read more: Where to find fall foliage in London.
Winter in London
When it comes to deciding on when to visit London, you might want to consider seeing the UK capital during the winter months. Head to London around Christmas time if you love a festive spirit, plenty of shopping and the chance to drink mulled wine in historic pubs (and in London, historic pubs are a dime a dozen!).
Come the new year, and you’ll find that the January sales are in full swing, making it a great time to snap up a great deal. This is all while enjoying a quieter city (there are definitely fewer tourists in January and February than during any other time of the year.)
Though it rarely snows in the UK capital, it does get pretty chilly! However, much of the chill is made up for by the fact that the city is decked out for Christmas and pretty lights can be found pretty much everywhere you look.