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Best time to visit Ireland

Find sunshine and fair weather in the Emerald Isle.

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Arched stone bridge over river in Ireland

Whether you’re tripping to Ireland for a cross-country road trip, festivals or to see nature, we’ve uncovered the best months to visit the country so the weather conditions are ideal, the crowds are few and the deals are rife.

Best time to visit Ireland

Mid-April to May, and September to October

Spring and fall are the ideal seasons to go to Ireland, as they’re a happy medium of slightly cool weather and tourist crowds are few.

During these months, there’s a greater chance of scoring a deal on airfare, car rentals and accommodation due to lower demand.


Overview

June to August is Ireland’s peak tourist season, with plenty of crowds and the highest prices. The average temperature hovers around 65°F, rural B&Bs and restaurants are open and the country is busy with festivals.

The fall season in September and October brings milder temperatures of 48-60°F with fewer crowds and lower prices, but still sees its fair share of festivals. You’re bound to have some rain, but showers typically move on quickly.

If you’re traveling during winter, December to February, remember to bring a thick jacket as temperatures might drop to freezing. Winter also experiences the most rainfall and the fewest crowds, so you can score a deal if you’re willing to sacrifice on weather — though some might say the shorter days and darker atmosphere feels cozy. Be careful if you’re planning to travel through the countryside as some rural B&Bs and restaurants close over winter.

Spring from mid-April to May, is warm by Irish standards with temperatures in the mid-50s°F. This season brings spells of sunshine and fewer crowds, plus fuchsia blooms through the valleys as the island comes alive. Showers are notorious, but generally are short-lived.


Weather and prices

Best time to visit Ireland, weather-wise: Summer has the warmest weather and the least amount of rainfall. Days are longest overall, with 16 hours of daylight on average in July — compare that to about 7 1/2 in December.

Cheapest time to visit Ireland: Winter is low-season in Ireland and is the best time to find a deal on flights, car rentals and accommodation.


Best time to visit Ireland for…

  • Sightseeing: There’s no doubt that summer is the most comfortable time to visit Ireland as the weather is at its best and the days are long. Many top sights are outside, so good weather is ideal. However, if you’d rather wander through castle ruins with fewer tourists you should aim to visit during spring or fall.
  • A road trip: Visit during autumn or spring, when the busy season has died down and fewer tour buses are on the road. Avoid winter, as snow and ice may amount to dangerous driving conditions.
  • Backpacking through Ireland and Scotland: Summertime is ideal for weather and festivals across both countries. However, if you’re visiting for a more scenic trip, fall is best for wildlife and nature. Plus, fall tends to feature lower prices and fewer crowds.
  • Festivals: Festivals are on throughout the year in Ireland but most occur in summer between June and August. Many feature theater, music and art performances and include Cork Midsummer Festival, Galway Arts Festival and Kilkenny Arts Festival.

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Bottom line

To choose the best time to visit Ireland, first decide whether you’re hoping for long sunny days or cozy winter nights — we promise, there’ll be brews and pubs aplenty regardless. Next, find the cheapest passage across the Atlantic by scouring our best flights to Ireland.

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