For much of the world, March marks the end of dark winter days with the tentative emergence of spring. Longer, warmer days make many destinations more appealing, and in some places, March is the best month to visit.
Many of the best ski resorts still have a good layer of snow, but the crowds of winter tourists have long since departed. It is an excellent month to catch the shoulder season in some destinations and avoid the hoards that travel during summer vacation.
In this post, we will round up 15 of the best places to travel in March. So, get packed up and get ready to visit these amazing places!
1. Kyoto, Japan
Average temperature: 5℃ (41℉ ) to 15℃ (56℉ )
Trip cost range per day: 14,500¥ to 22,000¥ (USD $100 to $150)
Main airport: Osaka International Airport
The first entry on our list of the best places to travel in March is Kyoto. One of the things that makes Japan’s cherry blossoms so revered is their fleeting appearance. These trees bloom for only a few short weeks, from the end of March to early April.
For this brief window, Japan goes cherry blossom crazy. Crowds flock to view (and photograph!) nature’s beauty. You will be dazzled with cherry blossom coffees, candy, toys, and even beer everywhere you turn.
It is easy to find these celebrated trees in Japan, but one of the best places to enjoy their pink-hued beauty is Kyoto. Kyoto’s crowning glory is a large weeping cherry blossom tree. If you are ready to brave a hike, head to Yoshino, which sits atop a mountain. Thousands of trees line the walk up, dropping their petals to create a pink carpet.
Kyoto is a historical city and is less developed than Tokyo. It is the cultural capital of Japan and is chock-full of traditional buildings and temples to enjoy on top of the cherry blossoms.
2. Austin, United States
Average temperature: 10℃ (51℉) to 24℃ (75℉)
Trip cost range per day: $130 to $200
Main airport: Austin-Bergstrom International Airport
March is one of the best times to visit the “Live Music Capital of the World” Austin! During this month, Texas’s already hip city becomes even cooler with the annual South by Southwest festival (SXSW).
This week-long festival has events celebrating music, art, comedy, and film. Held every year during spring break, it attracts a quarter of a million visitors, and the city rises to the occasion. If you enjoy ‘discovering’ lesser-known acts, this focus here is not only on established artists but on promoting emerging ones.
Even without the festival, Austin has a lot to offer. If trying local cuisine is up your street, Austin’s food scene is some of the best in the world. Here, you can try world-class BBQ, Tex-Mex, Asian fusion, and more! There are also some exciting breweries producing tasty beers to wash it all down. All this can be enjoyed while listening to some live blues and soul music that the city is so famous for.
3. Courchevel, France
Average temperature: -6℃ (20℉) to 5℃ (42℉)
Trip cost range per day: €180 to €365 ($200 to $400)
Main airport: Geneva/Grenoble/Lyon
With glistening pistes, flashy hotels, and traditional Alpine restaurants, Courcheval has something for every kind of skier. The resort is a collection of smaller towns, along with Meribel, and are collectively part of the Three Valleys Ski Area, the largest ski area in the world. Buying a Three Valleys ski pass allows you to ski anywhere across the mountains, so you can explore fresh slopes every day.
Unlike its neighbor Chamonix (which seems to pop up on every list!), Courchevel is slightly quieter by March. The kids are back at school, but the slopes are still skiable. March also sees the weather slowly improving, so sunny terrace lunches on the mountain are usually within reach.
4. Byron Bay, Australia
Average temperature: 18℃ (64℉) to 25℃ (77℉)
Trip cost range per day: AUD $190 to $300 (USD $130 to $200)
Main airport: Brisbane or Gold Coast airports
In Australia, the seasons are opposite to the Northern Hemisphere, so summer is coming to an end in March. The ever-so-popular Byron Bay beaches will be much less busy in March, making this one of the best places to travel this month. With the sea still at a warm temperature, Byron Bay is the ideal place to hone your surfing skills or relax at the beach.
The blistering hot days are in the past, giving way to comfortable days that are perfect for exploring these famous beaches. If being battered by waves sounds like a lot of hard work, there is no end to chic coffee shops with outdoor seats perfect for lazing away the afternoons sipping the obligatory flat white.
Byron Bay is around an hour and a half drive south of Gold Coast and 2 hours from Brisbane. Although it is mostly about the pristine beaches and waves, there are also nature reserves that are ideal for hiking, picnicking, and bird spotting.
5. Havana, Cuba
Average temperature: 19℃ (67℉) to 28℃ (83℉)
Trip cost range per day: $30 to $120
Main airport: José Martí International Airport
With an enviable climate year-round, Havana is the ideal destination for anyone looking for some guaranteed sun. Located in the Caribbean, it avoids the harsh winters that blister across Europe and North America. Sadly, this is not the best-kept secret, and Havana is an extremely popular destination in the winter months. That said, fewer tourists tend to visit the city in March, making it a perfect month to visit Cuba.
March is the end of the tourist season, so it is often slightly quieter. It also avoids hurricane season, which begins in June and runs until November. While the resorts and beaches will still be busy, they will not be as busy as Christmas and Easter.
Another reason March is a good time to visit is to see some beautiful wildlife. In March, Cuba becomes the temporary home of 150 species of migratory birds. These birds take temporary refuge on the island while completing their migratory flights, perfect for any avid birdwatchers.
6. Boston, United States
Average temperature: 0℃ (32℉) to 8℃ (46℉)
Trip cost range per day: $200 to $300
Main airport: Boston Logan Airport
It may surprise you, but St. Patrick’s Day is a big deal not only in Ireland but also in the USA. Nowhere loves the green patron saint quite as much as Boston, which boasts the biggest Irish population in America, with a whopping 25% of residents claiming Irish heritage. This Irish celebration was first held by Irish emigrants in 1737 to show solidarity and embrace their new home.
Since then, the parade has gained a life of its own, drawing up to a million spectators a year! The parade route is 3.5 miles long and is a spectacle of vibrant floats, live music, and all things Irish. Just make sure you wear green to fit in!
The fun doesn’t end there. Head to South Boston to visit any of Boston’s Irish pubs to enjoy some Irish food, a pint of Guinness, and some live music.
7. Yala National Park, Sri Lanka
Average temperature: 24℃ (76℉) to 30℃ (86℉)
Trip cost range per day: 5,000 to 16,000 LKR (USD $15 to $50)
Main airport: Bandaranaike International Airport (6 hours drive)
Sri Lanka is a tropical paradise and a nature lover’s dream. It also happens to be one of the best places to travel in March, as the month falls right at the end of the dry season. The rains are yet to come, so wildlife has to brave the few watering holes to quench their thirst. This is particularly evident in the Yala National Park, a massive nature reserve home to an impressive range of wildlife, such as elephants, jackals, sloth bears, monkeys, and crocodiles.
Although there is a cast of great animals, the star of the show here is the leopard. Yala is home to one of the world’s densest leopard populations. So, if seeing one of these big cats is a dream of yours, Yala is your best bet for spotting one. They are often elusive animals and are often tricky to spot in their preferred habitat of dense rainforest. The lack of water in March forces these majestic cats to water holes, where guides will help you catch a glimpse.
8. Starkbierzeit, Munich, Germany
Average temperature: 1℃ (38℉) to 9℃ (49℉)
Trip cost range per day: €150 to €200 ($165 to $220)
Main airport: Munich Franz Josef Strauss Airport
Many consider Munich the world’s beer capital, made famous by its yearly Oktoberfest. If the idea of knocking back steins with 6 million people isn’t your thing, why not consider its little (and quieter!) sister, Starkbierzeit, which is held in March every year?
Also held in Munich, Starkbierzeit is all about strong beers, making the city one of the best places to travel in March for beer-lovers around the world! In fact, the word “Starkbierzeit” literally translates to ‘strong beer time’. All beers at this festival are a minimum of 7.5%, and some go up to an eye-watering 19%!
Some of the most popular breweries to check out are the Paulaner Nockherberg Brewery, Löwenbräukeller, and the much smaller Augustiner-Keller. The festival runs for most of March, with different events taking place at different breweries, so it is worth doing some research so you don’t miss anything.
9. Matura, Trinidad
Average temperature: 25℃ (77℉) to 29℃ (84℉)
Trip cost range per day: TT $1,000 to $1,600 (USD $150 to $250)
Main airport: Piarco International Airport (in Port of Spain)
Humans have a sad history of destroying animal habitats for our own needs. This was the case in Trinidad until 1990. Matura Beach is the nesting place of the world’s largest leatherback turtle population. In 1990, the Trinidad government protected the turtle population by shutting off the area and organizing patrols.
Local residents didn’t appreciate being shut out of their own beach, so instead, they formed the organization Nature Seekers. This group monitors and safeguards the turtle population.
Trinidad is an excellent place to visit in March as it is the turtles’ egg-laying season. So, this is the best time to see these 2,000-pound creatures embark up the beach to lay their eggs. Nature Seekers control visitors to the beach, and only 100 are permitted at a time. It is worth noting that nighttime visits require a permit to limit disturbing the turtles, so it is a good idea to plan your trip in advance to avoid being disappointed.
With leatherback turtles on the endangered list, your support for groups like this can really make a difference.
10. Seoul, South Korea
Average temperature: 0℃ (32℉) to 10℃ (50℉)
Trip cost range per day: ₩100,000 to ₩160,000 ($80 to $120)
Main airport: Incheon International Airport or Gimpo Airport
If Japan is considered the cherry blossom capital of the world, South Korea is the cherry blossom’s best-kept secret. Only an hour away by airplane, Seoul is one of the best places to travel in March to enjoy spring’s pink floral display. While it is less of a tourist trap, expect to see half of Seoul’s sizable population taking a selfie with these vibrant displays.
March is the perfect time to visit Seoul as this is when the weather is the most comfortable. In between the freezing winters and hot, humid summers, March is an ideal time to get out and about exploring what Seoul has to offer. Surrounded by mountains, Seoul is the perfect destination for any avid walkers, as the hikes range from leisurely to difficult. March’s weather makes it a great time to get some walking in, which will be really needed after eating your weight’s worth in street food! If you are an avid skier, there are a few resorts that make excellent day trips from central Seoul, and the season runs until late March.
11. Dublin, Republic of Ireland
Average temperature: 3℃ (37℉) to 10℃ (51℉)
Trip cost range per day: €150 to €270 ($165 to $300)
Main airport: Dublin Airport
St. Patrick’s Day is obviously a big deal in Ireland, and what better place to enjoy this day than at the heart of it all in Dublin? If you have celebrated this day anywhere else in the world, you probably think it’s all about drinking pints of Guinness, but in St. Patrick’s home, it is so much more.
Dublin welcomes hundreds of thousands of people, so expect crowds. But if you can brave these busy streets, you will be rewarded with a fairground, street theatre, and live music. But, the main event is the parade, which sets off from Parnell Square and ends at the aptly named St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Although it’s not all about the Guinness, you will definitely stumble across LOTS of local pubs claiming to serve the city’s best pint.
12. Arctic Circle (Svalbard, Norway)
Average temperature: -20℃ (-4℉) to -10℃ (14℉)
Trip cost range per day: 3,000 to 5,000 NOK ($300 to $500)
Main airport: Svalbard Airport
For many people, March signifies a rising of the mercury and temperatures beginning to thaw. One place that generally hasn’t lost its chill is the auroral zone in the Arctic Circle. Here, you will find the best chance to view the often elusive Northern Lights (also called the Aurora Borealis).
These spectral dances are viewable in the sky between October and April. However, March is a great time to catch them because tours will be quieter, and the Spring Equinox occurs, offering the best chance to see them.
The auroral zone includes all of north Scandinavia, and any of these countries will potentially give you a glimpse. If you want to feel like you are at the end of the world, Svalbard is a remote Norwegian archipelago that feels like it is on another planet. It is sparsely populated, so it is perfect for people who want to get away from it all.
Other best places to travel to see the Northern Lights in March are Sweden, Finland, Iceland, Alaska, and Canada.
13. Valencia, Spain
Average temperature: 7℃ (45℉) to 19℃ (67℉)
Trip cost range per day: €90 to €140 ($100 to $150)
Main airport: Valencia Airport
March sees the unassuming Spanish city of Valencia host one of the hottest festivals in the world. Las Fallas De Valencia is thought to have first originated in the fifteenth century when carpenters would celebrate the end of the winter months and the arrival of spring by burning the wood supporting their winter lights.
Today, the festival runs from 1st March until the 19th, and it is a celebration of fireworks, art, street food, and humor.
From the beginning of March, the “Mascletà” happens daily. This impressive fireworks display takes place in the Plaza del Ayuntamiento at 2 pm. Be aware that it is LOUD, so we recommend wearing protective headphones or earplugs if possible.
The main event then begins with the “planta” on the night of the 15th. Each neighborhood places a large papier-mache sculpture, which can be up to 15m in height. By the morning, there can be up to an incredible 350 sculptures around the city.
You then have four days to travel the city and view as many as you can. At midnight on St. Joseph’s Day, these are then all set alight. Only those declared the best by the festival’s judges are saved (although only for an extra 30 minutes when they are also burned!)
14. Cape Town, South Africa
Average temperature: 21℃ (70℉) to 27℃ (80℉)
Trip cost range per day: ZAR 933 to ZAR 3,700 ($50 to $220)
Main airport: Cape Town International Airport
With breathtaking vistas, award-winning wines, and an abundance of wildlife, South Africa really has it all. March is the end of the wet season, with the hot summer temperatures starting to cool, making this city one of the best places to travel during this month. Expect the occasional rain shower and warm sunny days. If you are willing to take the gamble, you will be rewarded with fewer crowds. The cooler days lend themselves to hiking Table Mountain. With 350 routes, there is a way up to suit everyone.
Cape Town is well-located to explore all this vibrant city has to offer. Within a two-hour drive, you will find Aquila Game Reserve. One of the first parks to reintroduce the Big Five, Aquila focuses on rehabilitation and community outreach. For a slower pace of life, the Grootobs Nature Reserve has a number of endangered animals, as well as antelopes.
And what better to finish it all off than a glass of locally-produced wine? Less than an hour away, Stellenbosch is South Africa’s second oldest town and home to 200 wine producers.
15. Chichen Itza, Mexico
Average temperature: 25℃ (77℉) to 32℃ (89℉)
Trip cost range per day: MXN 850 to 3,400 ($50 to $200)
Main airport: Cancun International Airport
The last destination on our list of the best places to travel in March is Chichen Itza. For many cultures, March welcomes spring and new life. In Mexico, the pre-Colombian Mayans understood and celebrated the arrival of spring, also called the vernal equinox.
Chichen Itza, which was built sometime between the 8th and 12th centuries, is perhaps the most famous of all Mayan architectural masterpieces. Built to honor Kukulcán, the Mayan serpent deity, it is an impressive site to visit during any month of the year. But it is especially a good place to visit in March.
On the spring and autumn equinox, days and nights are equal in length, which has an unusual effect on how light hits it. The temple is comprised of square terraces, which make up four sides leading to the top. As the morning and afternoon sun hit the temple, it casts the most spectacular shadows. These give the impression of a serpent moving up and down the temple’s staircase.
This mesmerizing spectacle draws a huge crowd, and tourists flock to see Chichen Itza put on its enigmatic show. Luckily, it is possible to see this phenomenon in the week before and after the equinox with fewer crowds.
Go Travel in March!
March is an exciting month around the world, whether it be celebrating saints, music, or just an escape from cold winter weather. Shifts in weather mean March is the prime time to spot some of nature’s most enigmatic creatures and impressive displays. These 15 destinations are some of the best places to travel in March, so book your accommodation and flights, pack your bags, and enjoy your vacation!