March is a bridging season in many countries, as they transition from winter to summer and vice versa. Winter is ending in the northern hemisphere, the mercury is starting to rise, and the promise of summer is palpable.
In the southern hemisphere, things are cooling down after the height of summer, the leaves are turning, and autumn is arriving in all its colourful glory.
These shoulder seasons mean different things for different countries. Taking into consideration weather patterns, crowds, activities, and budgets, we've chosen the countries we think are best to travel to during the month of March.
India is a very large country, with varying weather and climate patterns in different regions. In general, the best weather for travelling to India occurs between November and March. Weather-wise, places like Agra and Delhi are perfect during this time, while central India and the coastal paradise of Goa are comfortable. The south is mostly always hot, but this is the time around which it is the most bearable. March is also the time of the year when there is the least rain in India.
Another excellent reason to visit India in March is the Holi Festival, which takes place during this month. This famous festival is one of the biggest and best reasons to visit India. Known as the Festival of Love, it is a colourful and joyous celebration. The streets are filled with people, who shower and spray each other with water and coloured powders. There are activities like bonfires to symbolise good defeating evil, and delicious festival treats to enjoy.
March is also the best time to visit the jungles of Madhya Pradesh, supposedly the inspiration for the famous novel The Jungle Book. Keep your eyes peeled for Shere Khan (the Bengal tiger).
Sudan is located in northeast Africa and is one of the biggest countries on the continent. It is home to vast desert landscapes, strange rock formations, and the beautiful Nile Valley. Sudan is the land of the Nubian people and is very rich in history and culture, featuring temples, holy sites, and traditional houses. A highlight of the country is the unique Meroe black pyramids.
The climate of Sudan is both very hot and very dry in general. The cooler months include December to March. In March, the days are still hot, but not sweltering. Nights are welcomingly cool, and can become chilly as well. November to March is the peak tourism season in Sudan. Out of this time, the heat is virtually unbearable and sandstorms are common.
March is the gateway to autumn in South Africa. The weather is still warm, but not as hot as November to February, which can become sweltering at times. While the rainy season in South Africa differs according to region, rainfall is low in general across the country in March.
There are plenty of activities to be enjoyed in South Africa in March. The game parks, such as the famous Kruger National Park, are green and lush. You are more likely to spot the big cats out in the open, rather than in the shade, where they shelter during very hot weather.
March is also still a great time to enjoy the stunning coastline and beautiful beaches of Cape Town, Durban, and the Garden Route. This is also a good time to visit the Cape Winelands or hike up Table Mountain. Festivals in March include the Cape Town Jazz Festival and the Klein-Karoo National Arts Festival. This is also a good time to visit the spectacular Drakensberg mountain range, with mild temperatures, lower rainfall, and waterfalls at full force.
March is a very good time to plan a trip to the southeast Asian nation of Vietnam. It is peak tourist season, which runs from December to the end of March. This is the time of least rainfall in the country. Temperatures are average, not too hot and not too cold- ideal for enjoying outdoor activities like hikes and heritage tours. There is good beach weather and you are able to enjoy the coasts and sunny islands.
Many festivals take place in the country during this month. One of the biggest is the Perfume Pagoda Festival. The Perfume Pagoda is a sacred temple in a beautiful location. The festival attracts people from all over Vietnam who come to say prayers for the upcoming year.
The United Arab Emirates is a small country in the Middle East. This is a desert region, so temperatures are generally high all year 'round. However, March is a very good time to visit the UAE in terms of weather. This is one of the coolest months, before the summer sets in. It is ideal to enjoy activities out in the desert, as well the myriad outdoor activities on offer in Dubai and other cities. These include beaches, resorts, and man-made islands. Early March is also one of the less-crowded times, as the peak holiday season has ended. Shopping malls and attractions are easier to navigate, and accommodation is also cheaper than during the peak season.
The winter is coming to an end in Croatia during March. The snow is melting and the days are getting longer. Temperatures continue to rise throughout the month- the later part of the month may be good for enjoying the Mediterranean coast. This is still the off-season for tourism, meaning that prices are lower and crowds are smaller.
The mild weather is ideal for exploring the cities and towns, visiting landmarks, and learning about the country's history and culture. Enjoy the cosmopolitan atmosphere in the capital city of Zagreb.
The melting snows also means that the waterfalls are in full flow, so it's a good time to visit the national parks of Krka and Plitvice Lakes. Conversely, the Platak ski resort in the north still has snow on its slopes- so you can add a winter wonderland experience onto your Croatia getaway!
March is the end of wintertime in Greece. Summer is approaching and temperatures are beginning to rise. Spring is in the air! The weather is not too hot nor too cold, making it ideal for experiencing the history and culture that Greece is famous for. Walk through the cities, visiting the countless landmarks and learning about the myths and legends of ancient Greece. This is also the ideal time to visit Greece if you're on a budget, as hotel prices are reduced.
Winter is ending in Jordan in March, and spring is emerging. The rainy season is over by this time. Because the spring is just starting, the tourist sites are less crowded. Temperatures are pleasant, and it's a good time to spend exploring the numerous cultural and historical sites of this fascinating country. Spring and autumn are the best times to visit Jordan- the summer is extremely hot, and the winter is rainy and unpredictable. March is also lovely time of the year for nature in Jordan. Olive and almond trees are still in bloom, springtime means that wildflowers are starting to emerge, and the winter rains have made the landscapes green and lush.
This Jordan tour explores the country's scenery, history and culture, adding special experiences in Salt, Bethany and the Azrac & Shaumari desert nature reserves to the classic sites of Jerash, Petra, the Dead Sea and Wadi Rum.
This week-long Greece tour explores the Athens Acropolis, Argolis & the beautiful Mediterranean coastal town of Nafplion, ancient sites of Mycenae, Olympia and Delphi, and the amazing scenery and clifftop monasteries at Meteora.
Need some travel inspiration or looking for some handy travel tips? Our blog provides excellent insight into our travel destinations - from tour updates to country guides, packing lists to little known things to do, you'll find it all in our travel blog.
The vibrant city of Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam and is the second biggest city in the country. Hanoi encompasses an interesting mix of the East and the West with visible traces of the country’s rich history. Vietnam was invaded by the Chinese for a long time, later by the French and also by the Americans in the 20th century. Hanoi was named the 8th most popular destination in the world in 2016 by TripAdvisor and is a highly sought after destination for visitors from all over the globe due to its rich historical and cultural heritage, breath-taking scenery and delicious cuisine. Hanoi boasts a myriad of places to see and things to do, so we’ve compiled our top 10 suggestions on the best things to do in Hanoi.
Kathmandu is the chaotic, vibrant capital city of Nepal. This is our pick of the best attractions in and around the city.
March is the start of one of Nepal's two annual peak tourist seasons and it's also when the temperatures have truly warmed up after winter – with the thawing of many high-altitude trekking trails, river levels primed for whitewater rafting, and some exciting cultural festivals.
The village itself is small, with lots of plants, trees and charming lampposts. Strangely enough, this place will remind you of Hanoi in Vietnam. There you will also find beautiful buildings in the old style. But unlike Hanoi, Bandipur is much less touristy.
Thinking about travelling to Nepal? Do you want to marvel at the natural beauty of Mount Everest? Then our small group tours to this beautiful country are perfect for you.
The landlocked nation is a paradise for adventurous types, although it also features an abundance of culture with beautiful palaces, temples and shrines adorning the Kathmandu Valley, gorgeous mountain vistas overlooking Pokhara, and national parks rich with wildlife.
Gavin is one of the travel consultants in the Encounters sales team.
If an Egypt trip is on your 2020 bucket list then the Discover Egypt tour is perfect for you – from temples and tombs to pyramids, sailing down the Nile and eating mouthwatering traditional Egyptian cuisine, and so much more.