When is the Best Time to Travel to Germany?
From medieval towns to baroque palaces to cosmopolitan cities, Germany offers an engaging mix of tradition and modernity. There’s spectacular scenery — the jagged Alps, flower-filled meadows, rolling hills of forests and farms, and mighty rivers — dotted all over with castles and churches of every variety. Germany’s weather is also as varied as its’ destinations and can be unpredictable. So pack your layers and some wet weather gear!
• Spring (March to May)
The weather in spring can be quite cool and sometimes it can even snow. Average temperatures range from mid 30s at night and low 60s during the day.
There is a lot of variability in spring and the weather can be inconsistent. There may be rain, hail, and sunny, cloudless skies all within a few hours. But don’t let the unpredictable weather stop you from exploring traditional Easter celebrations, spring markets, and festivals.
• Fall (September through October)
Fall in Germany is beautiful. The foliage is ablaze in fall colors and the weather is warm and pleasant (for the most part). Of course, the weather is unpredictable in Germany so be prepared for some cold, rainy times. Lows tend to be in the 40s while highs can range from high 40s to mid-60s. Take advantage of “Altweibersommer” and visit local wine festivals with a glass of Gewürztraminer in hand or grab a stein and head over to Oktoberfest.
• Summer (June through August)
Summers in Germany offer long, sunny days. The average lows are in the mid-50s with highs in the mid-70s. Summer months are also known for having a lot of precipitation, so don’t forget your umbrella or rain jacket. Summer is peak travel season in Germany. Take your fill of open-air festivals, Stadtfests, castles, beer, and kraut.
• Winter (November through February)
Winter is considered the “off-season.”
Areas in the Bavarian Alps can receive a lot snow while other regions may not get any. With temperatures often dropping below zero, you want to make sure that you are prepared. Average lows tend to stay in the mid-20s while highs average low 40s. Because winter is the off-season, you can enjoy fewer crowds, traditional German Christmas Markets (my favorite in all of Europe!), and winter sports.
What to Think About Before Visiting Germany
What to Prepare:
1. Electrical Converter
Electrical items, such as cell phone chargers or laptop computers brought from the United States, require an electrical adapter and transformer to work in Germany, as the electric current is 230 volts and 50 hertz. GSM cell phones can be used in Germany, though you will likely need an international plan or service through a German cell phone company.
2. Must See and Do List
Because Germany has so many things that you must see and/or visit, it is a good idea to make a prioritized list before you leave. Research your desired destinations as they may be farther apart than you think and may need additional resources in terms of transportation.
3. Be Prepared for Inclement Weather
Germany’s weather is inconsistent and unpredictable so it’s best to be prepared for any weather. Germany can experience cold showers, winds, snow but also hot, humid days. Be sure to pack for your season and also pack a light rain jacket for any visit, as rain is a common occurrence year round.
Remember these Tips on your Germany Adventure
1. Use your debit, credit or ATM card to withdraw cash directly from your account once you arrive in Germany. Although exchanging a small amount of cash from dollars to Euros prior to departure is considered good practice in case of an emergency, you will typically receive a better exchange rate by withdrawing funds directly from your account using an ATM machine after you arrive. ATM machines are readily available throughout Germany, allowing most travelers to withdraw euros directly from an American bank account. Check with your bank beforehand to avoid potential issues, as some banks do charge international transaction fees. Others banking institutions may place an automatic block preventing access to accounts from foreign locations.
2. Try traditional food and beer! Germany is famous for its heavy, but delicious dishes. Potatoes, meet and dumplings are the most popular ingredients of German cooking. Typical dishes include Roast pork with dumplings from Bavaria, Rheinischer Sauerbraten (beef marinated in red wine vinegar, served with dumplings), Himmel un Äd – ribs and sauerkraut. The world’s oldest brewery is located in Bavaria. The most popular type of beer is Pils, and it is also produced in Berlin, the Ruhr, Hamburg, Stuttgart, and Hesse. Altbier, a very early product of the brewer’s art, can be found throughout Germany.
3. Most Germans speak English, so you probably won’t have any difficulties getting around. Still, a little German can go a long way and is always appreciated. So why not try to learn some easy German greetings? Try some of these simple German phrases.