Holiday in Andalusia:
when’s the best time for that best time of the year
when’s the best time for that best time of the year
To come to the point first: There’s no clear-cut answer to this question, actually. The best time for your holiday in Andalusia just depends on your preferences, needs and destination, really.
For some, the epitome of a perfect holiday is to simply sprawl out on the beach and revel under the Andalusian sun. Others seek nothing but peace and quiet to recharge their batteries. And yet others want to tour around Andalusia in milder temperatures and get the most out of their holiday in Andalusia and its multifarious activities.
So, the main question is:
Because here’s the thing: In Andalusia playing golf in the scorching heat of the summer midday sun just isn’t fun. The same holds true for a walking holiday in Andalucia: Come during the summer months and your walking tours will end up in lengthy siestas rather than you leisurely skipping from one stage finish to the next.
Therefore, you’re well-advised to adjust your activities to the time of the day or even season.
Only you know the answer to this question, to be honest … You’ll find all other answers and more in this article. Even some recommendations that might be influential in answering the first question … 😉
First of all, weather and climate are a different kettle of fish! Luckily, the difference between the two is quite simple to explain.
Weather is a short-term consideration. The weather describes the conditions at a certain place at a certain time (temperature, precipitation, wind, solar radiation, cloud cover, etc.). And as the conditions change several times a day, the weather is also subject to change throughout the day.
Climate, on the other hand, describes the normal, typical, recurring weather processes that are measured over a significantly longer period (up to 30 years for reliable statements). The statistical mean gives the climate of a region.
But I’ll talk about the weather later. So let’s take a look at the climate first. In order to do so, we need to recall just how huuuge the province of Andalusia is. You can get an inkling of this in our blog about the activities in Andalusia.
In Andalusia there’s a lot of snow in winter. In the Sierra Nevada, that is. As a matter of fact, the Sierra Nevada is the main ski resort in Spain. So while ski buffs tear up the slopes up in the Sierra, you could very well be happily relishing the warm sunshine down on the beach of the Costa del Sol.
Along the Atlantic Coast, i.e. the Costa de la Luz, you could easily get caught in a storm in winter. Whereas in Tarifa, where the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean meet, this can also happen to you in summer.
But if you can’t go without that sense of home even on holiday, then the Sierra de Grazalema is just right for you. Here, in the wettest region of Spain, you’ll get soaked to the bone regularly. The Sierra de Grazalema is situated in the province of Cádiz, not far from the province of Malaga – practically on the Costa del Sol, if you like. Who would have thought it? 🙂
So, I’m sure you have guessed, there’s no such thing as THE climate in Andalusia, Spain’s largest autonomous region. We’ve always got a little bit of everything here.
Where we live, in the province of Almería, we’re blessed with a warm and dry Mediterranean climate. There’s usually not even a trace of a cloud in the sky, which sports a remarkable clear blue in winter. And that’s one of the reasons why most filming here takes place in late autumn and winter.
The summers are hot, the winters mild – a climate that ensures that the best time to visit the Costa de Almería really is “all year round”.
In order to give you a better idea, I’ve divided the year into seasons.
Spring is the best holiday season for many visitors when they think of Andalusia. That’s because temperatures slowly rise from March onwards making the time particularly suited for any kind of active holiday. Whether you’re a hiking, cycling or golf enthusiast – the spring sun is wonderfully warm but not hot. Just any kind of exercise is a delight in this weather.
After all those dark and dull months at home this is the perfect time (and place) to let off steam. Hiking by the sea or in the mountains? Cycling, preferably on a racing bike, mountain bike or gravel bike – or maybe even roaring through the area with a big fat engine? Or stepping up your golf game? These are all things that are so much more pleasurable when the daytime temperature is around 20 °C or more.
To say nothing of the fact that you can also experience some of the most famous fiestas around this time. Above all, there’s the Semana Santa celebrations. Anyone who calls themselves a true Andalusia aficionado should have visited it at least once in a lifetime. Whether in Malaga, with the friendly support of Antonio Banderas (No kidding!), or in Seville, Cordoba or Granada – they’re all an unforgettable experience. The most famous parades closest to us are those in Lorca, in the neighbouring province of Murcia.
Then there’s the Cruces de Mayo in Granada, the Feria de Abril in Seville, the Festival de los Patios de Córdoba and the Feria de Caballo in Jerez. And while you’re there, you should go and explore the respective city. The cities are gradually awakening from their winter sleep and people are starting to go out and live “on the streets” again.
If you’re planning a city trip with extensive visits to the numerous buildings, culture and cuisine, this is the right time to go. And you can find inspiration on things to do in Andalusia in our eponymous blog article.
What’s more, spring in Andalusia is also a true natural spectacle – it’s green everywhere and the spring bloom seriously is second to none. If it were a song, you’d permanently have it on repeat, because you just couldn’t get enough of it.
Well, that may all sound very good, but there’s bound to be a snag somewhere. Truth be told, the only thing that doesn’t work at this time of year is a beach holiday. Don’t get me wrong: You’ll have plenty of days with temperatures making you want to take off your clothes and spend the day at the beach. But a swim in the sea? Brrr! That wouldn’t be the clap of castanets we could hear, but the chattering of your teeth with cold … Although, one or the other hard-boiled bathing belles (or beaux 😉 ) will notice that the temperatures don’t significantly differ from the North Sea in summer.
Most articles about summer in Andalusia go like this: “Heaven forbid – way too hot. Too many people. Crowded beaches. It was an absolute nightmare.” Something along those lines!
I’d like to unravel this issue a bit. Sure, it does get crowded in Andalusia in summer. Admittedly, empty beaches are non-existent. The reason is that in addition to all the foreign tourists, in August the popular beaches are also bustling with (it feels like “all”) Spaniards in Andalusia.
Obviously, a holiday in Andalusia in summer is the best time for all sunseekers, sea addicts and those who have a preference for broiling weather. The thermometer permanently displays temperatures around 30 °C. At night, they tend to drop a little below, during the day they may well rise above. So, wandering the streets at night in your little strappy dress and enjoying a tapa and a drink here and there is no problem at all.
The sea is marvellously warm and invites you to flounder about. You’re just well-advised to keep your urge to move at bay, because even if the temperatures are perfect for indulging in sweet idleness, great sporting challenges should be taken off your agenda.
There’s a place where the temperatures are far more bearable in summer: the mountains. The higher, the better … Here too, however, it’s the wrong time of year to go hiking. Cities should be avoided now, too. Unless you want to experience first-hand how your Christmas goose felt in the oven …
In other words, it’s the perfect time to laze around 😉
Granted, the spring blossom has slowly given way to a withered brown. At this time of year we are, and I am very honest about this, miles away from green and blossoming nature. So why is autumn still the best time for a holiday in Andalusia for me?
Everything you can do in spring can be enjoyed again from mid-September. The big rush of tourists has long since gone home, the night temperatures drop rapidly guaranteeing a good night’s sleep, and during the day the weather is glorious and warm as summer – but not hot.
And here’s the kicker: The sea is still delightfully warm. Even I, and this is an absolute wimp speaking, can happily swim in the sea until the end of October. To me, the combination of brilliant summery weather and pleasant bathing temperatures along with exercising and exploring the surroundings simply represents the perfect mix.
The Andalusians refer to autumn as their second spring. After the almost standstill of vegetation in the scorching heat of the summer months, many plants are now flowering a second time … admittedly not as abundant as in spring, but sufficient in colour.
Anyone who thinks winter in Andalusia is for the birds, has another think coming. OK, as a cold morsel, I wouldn’t actually go to the Costa de la Luz in winter. It’s just too cold and stormy for me.
For the very same reason, I steer clear of the Sierra Nevada. Skiers obviously get their money’s worth here. For them, it’s great to dash down the slopes one day, wedelling through the fresh snow, and to sprawl out on a lounger in the company of a good book on the next day. But I didn’t immigrate to Andalusia for the snow and minus temperatures, did I 🙂
On the Mediterranean coast, the Andalusian winter is probably more like the North European spring. It is indeed likely to rain, and it could also happen that you get out of bed with no sun. But for the past 8 years we’ve had motorbike groups in our house in January and February, and it never rained all day. The occasional shower is always followed by bright sunshine again.
What I like most about winter: It can occasionally get quite warm during the day, so that you find yourself dozing in the warm sun on the sun lounger, ending up sweating. Then, when the sun goes down, you wake up shivering from the cold. The difference in temperature from day to night can be extreme.
Do you want to know the best thing about winter in Almería? The brilliant colours of the sky, and the related sunshine. It’s not for nothing that winter is the time when most films and commercials are shot here 🙂
As you can see – it’s always a good time – and idea – to spend your holiday in Andalusia. It’s just a question of what you want to experience.
As I said above, the weather is more of a short-term consideration of what the sky has in store for us 😉
Click here for the current weather forecast for Mojácar.
Below you’ll find the average temperatures per month. But the answer I always have ready for guests when they ask me what the weather will be like during their holiday next year? “My crystal ball has cracked and is under repair. I haven’t got the slightest idea!”
… and the statisticians say (and this, again, has a lot to do with the climate) probably like in the chart below … or similar … maybe … as a monthly average 🙂 It’s anything but certain…
|Max. daily temp. in °C||Min. daily temp. in °C||Hours of sunshine||Water temp. in °C||Average days of rain|
On this note,
!Hasta pronto en Mojácar!