Paris/Europe in Feb/March
December 8, 2014 12:11 PM   Subscribe

How crazy would it be to travel to Europe in late Feb/March for a 5 day vacation?

I am planning a trip for my brother and his soon to be wife in Paris (or any major city in Europe: Switzerland/Milan/etc.) in late Feb/early March. This is a 5 day or so trip and not necessarily a romantic getaway. The weather is a daunting factor and I am wondering what the pros and cons will be. They live in a hot hot country so frankly cold weather/now is more of a novelty. Appreciate advice on activities in Paris (or other city you can suggest) for 5 days and if this is something that is worth a travel considering the weather. many thanks!
posted by jellyjam to Travel & Transportation around Paris, France (10 answers total)
You'll probably get much better answers if you can tell us a) where they're flying from (there's a difference between a two hour hop to Paris from Morocco and a 26 hour epic journey from Australia) and b) why only five days. That's not a whole lot of time for any international trip, unless you're just over the border.
posted by Happy Dave at 12:31 PM on December 8, 2014

I usually travel in Europe in late winter/early spring. It's hardly crazy. Dress warmly and in layers. Buy some thermal underwear.

Our travels have now turned into 90 day stints. We leave again on December 28th.
posted by humboldt32 at 12:33 PM on December 8, 2014

I was in Paris two years ago in the first week of March and it was lovely. Less crowds! Fewer lines! I brought a light winter jacket (with detachable hood) and a scarf and I was fine. We did have light rain on one of the days, but otherwise the weather was not an issue. The only con for me was that nothing was blooming and the fountains weren't on. I loved it so much, I'm headed back next March!
posted by fresh-rn at 12:44 PM on December 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

On a scale of one to ten, traveling to Paris in March would be zero crazy.

It's a city, so frankly any weather there is probably won't be much of a factor. If it rains, just go to a museum or something.

The same is going to be true of pretty much any other major European city. (With the possible exception of Scandinavia or parts of Eastern Europe maybe?)

Even if you decided you wanted to go to the countryside, honestly, I've been to Europe in February and it was chilly but fine. I've been to Europe in April and it's been glorious. I highly doubt that March is some kind of evil hell-beast of a month where up is down, left is right, and cats and dogs lie down together.
posted by Sara C. at 1:07 PM on December 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

FWIW, I know a Japanese professor who takes a group of her students to Germany almost every February, and they seem to like it. I have showed them around two times now and one year we had a lot of snow and it was generally extremely cold and still people went again the next year.

That said, if you are not used to cold weather at all and older than 25, you may not like it.

Also keep in mind that you may get very dull-looking photos from that trip, if you manage many with daylight at all.
posted by LoonyLovegood at 2:21 PM on December 8, 2014

I'm Australian and because of when my longest uni break is, I usually end up in Europe in Winter. I've been several times, because I studied German. Late Winter/early Spring is a fine time to go.

I was in Paris once in January and it was a little rainy and was actually quite warm. I had a great time. I think that by March it would be even better.

Zurich could be a good option if they would like to see snow-capped mountains.

If they want to be somewhere warmer, I'd lean towards somewhere in Spain or Italy.
posted by kinddieserzeit at 3:26 PM on December 8, 2014

It's zero crazy. I'd visit Paris for the whole 5 days but I hate rushing from place to place.
posted by DarlingBri at 3:27 PM on December 8, 2014

I visited Paris in that season and loved it. Cozy indoor cafes with windows, outdoor cafes with heat -- wonderful. And the museums, and the cathedrals.
posted by LonnieK at 5:13 PM on December 8, 2014

I went to Paris for 5 days during the last week in March 3 years ago. Wore a light cardigan and a scarf, or a silk raincoat. Walked everywhere, and it was wonderful.
posted by tizzie at 6:28 PM on December 8, 2014

Best answer: February in London or in Northern Europe...probably a pretty cold vacation. But, that's actually a completely awesome time for Paris--it can be a little rainy and a little raw, but 1) Paris in the rain is freakin' amazing, and 2) omg, a hot coffee and a buttery pastry on a chilly Parisian morning? Like giving God a hug.

Nthing the idea of sticking to just the one city though, and not to bother with Versailles--it's pretty much a whole day's trip, and the gardens won't be anything like themselves in March.
posted by We put our faith in Blast Hardcheese at 7:20 PM on December 8, 2014

« Older How to find a doctor for prescriptions outside...   |   What's the most efficient / least inefficient way... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.