The best time to go to . . .

So you have decided where you want to go, and your calendar has dictated when you can go. Do the two intersect at a time when you’ll have good weather? If not, you might want to reconsider your plans. After all, you don’t want your dream vacation to become a nightmare. Here are some of the most popular travel destinations along with their best and worst months of travel.

Caribbean

Best months: Although average temperatures are between 78-88 degrees year-round, you’ll find that the area is coolest and has more wind from December to May.

Worst months: Mid-August, September and October due to high heat, humidity and the threat of hurricanes. Although hurricane season is technically June through November, June and November have the fewest tropical storms and hurricanes during the hurricane season.

Mexico

Best months: October to May

Worst months: Mexico is hotter during the summer months. In addition, the humidity is higher. If you have the option to visit the Pacific Coast of Mexico (Puerto Vallarta, Cabo San Lucas), you will find that there is far less humidity than in the Mexican Caribbean (Cancun and surrounding areas). 

Hawaii

Best months: Hawaii’s consistently-warm weather makes it a good destination to visit at any time of the year, with temperatures hovering between 73-86 degrees. With that said, the best time to visit Hawaii is between March and September. This is when the islands get the least amount of rain and the warmest temperatures. If you are interested in whale watching, January will be your best bet.

Worst months: Again, there is no bad time to visit Hawaii but you will find that it is wetter and marginally cooler between October and February.

Alaska

Best months: There’s a reason why the cruise ships are in Alaska from late spring to early fall. The best weather is during the summer months. Not only are the temperatures warmer, but daylight is longer, allowing more time for sightseeing. The absolute best time to visit, according to the locals, is June 15-July 15, when it is warm, dry and alive with energy. Daytime temperatures range from 60-80 degrees, and they dip down into the 40s and 50s at night. It’s light outside almost all night long from late May to late July. 

Worst months: The days are shorter, the temperatures are colder, and there is more rain/snow from late September through December. The northern lights are visible from August 20 through April 20, but the best time for an aurora vacation is February and March, when the days are getting longer and the snow conditions are best for winter activities.

Florida
Best months
: March, April, October, November. Temperatures are warm/hot and there is less rain.

Worst months: May to September due to high heat, humidity, and the threat of tropical storms and hurricanes. 

Europe 

Best months: May through September or October. You will see higher temperatures and crowds during the summer but it is considered to be their peak season. Expect the hottest temperatures in July and August. During the “shoulder season,” April through mid-June and September through October, you’ll enjoy decent weather, smaller crowds and long enough daylight.

Worst months: December to February. Because much of Europe is at Canadian latitudes, the winter can be cold and the days are shorter. However, Europe is known for its Christmas markets, making it a popular destination during November and December.

Dubai

Best months: Dubai offers consistently-pleasant weather between November and March, with daily maximum temperatures in the upper 70s. Mid-December to the end of February is their peak season, with great weather and the crowds to go with it. To avoid high prices and crowds, consider traveling mid-November through mid-December or during March. Temperatures will still be warm but the crowds and prices will be lower.

Worst months: June, July and August have unbearably high temperatures, with an average of 106 degrees. It is also humid during the summer. The month of Ramadan usually begins mid-March. Since eating, drinking and smoking in public are banned during this time, many businesses close, making it difficult for tourists who are not observing Ramadan themselves.

Hurricanes

If you’re thinking about a tropical vacation during hurricane season, you’ll want to consider the area you’ll be visiting as well as the month.

Hurricanes in the Atlantic and Caribbean begin around June 1, but it’s rare for a large storm to form. They typically don’t start getting bigger until later in the summer. Statistically, September 10th is the peak in the Atlantic and Caribbean. On a worldwide scale, May is the least active month and September is the most active. 

The ABC Islands that are closer to South America (Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao) are far enough south that they generally aren’t impacted by hurricane season. St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and Grenada are also located outside of this region.

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