Best time of the year to visit bOSTON and cape cod, MASSACHUSETTS

Boston is a vibrant city. It offers history, culture, seafood, nightlife, entertainment, cultural activities, magnificent summer beaches (Cape Cod-Provincetown; islands: Elisabeth, Nantucket, Chappaquiddick, Martha's Vineyard Island).

Out of Boston - just some miles north or south - you can visit interesting historic towns such as Salem, Lexington or Concord. See: Massachusetts Map

As to the weather, expect mild-warm summers and cold, snowy winters.

WHAT TO VISIT IN BOSTON?

The best way to visit downtown Boston is to follow the Freedom Trail (self-guided trail, marked by a line of red bricks in the pavement). It begins on the top North of Boston Common, at the Visitor Information Center, and allows you to visit key historic sites such as the State House, the Park Street Church, the Old Granary Burying Ground, the King's Chapel Ground, and more. It's a trip throught Boston and American history.

The best way to visit Cambridge University - Harvard Yard, the Longfellow House and its several museums - is to take a ride across the Charles river. It's just a few minutes long but allows for a very good and unobstructed view of the city. WHAT TO VISIT OUTSIDE BOSTON

Cape Cod is a magnificent travel destination, offering summer beach life, aquatic sports, excellent seafood, nightlife and entertainment. Provincetown (at the tip of Cape Cod, and a major attraction) and Boston are united by regular ferries.

Also popular are Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket islands - there are regular ferries to these islands (especially from mid-June to mid-September).

See maps belows:

Boston Map 

Boston Map

Explore the map for more details:

BEST TIME OF THE YEAR TO VISIT BOSTON

Boston weather is very changeable - and unpleasant during the winter months.

The best time of the year to visit in and around Boston is the period going from April to October, but since the weather varies widely in these months, taking into account 5-7 days weather forecasts before making the trip can be a good idea.

5 days weather forecasts are now pretty accurate and it’s easy getting to Boston, at least for those who are in the States or in Canada.

Obviously, this strategy may not be feasible for multi-day trips, especially because it may be difficult – or a lot more expensive - to book accommodation or to get transportation at the last moment.

Note about arrival to Boston, city transportation and tours

Boston is the center of New England’s transportation system. There are many direct flights to Boston (Logan Airport) and a wide number of rail (Amtrack) and bus services from New York, Chicago and Canada. And there are multiple bus companies providing direct links between Boston and the rest of Massachusetts and New England.

On the other hand there are many city tours, local buses or bike trails in Boston. Keep in mind that driving in Boston is a bit like a nightmare. Walking around town is often the best option. Boston was built long before our cars were invented, and the city can’t provide an easy driving.

Visiting Massachusetts during the Winter months
Visit Boston in December, January, February and March

Boston air temperatures: Average: 30-48ºF (-1 to 4ºC); Average Low: 22-33ºF (-6º to +1ºC); Average High: 37-45ºF (3-7ºC)
Monthly snow: 8-12 inches (200 – 300 mm)

Pay attention: Weather can spoil your visit to Boston and Massachusetts. February is a particularly bad month for trips.

Best options: Take into account 5-7 days weather forecast. Visit downtown Boston (Liberty Trail); enjoy indoor attractions – cultural events, shopping, restaurants, clubs, live music, sports - during the days when the weather is worse than expected.

Make space for alternatives; plan your visits according to the daily weather forecast.

Visiting Massachusetts during the Spring months
Visit Boston in April, May

Average air temperature: 48º-59ºC (9-15ºC); Average Low: 41-50ºF (5-10ºC); Average High: 55-68ºF (13-20ºC)
Monthly snow: 1 inches (25 mm)
Humidity: low

Air temperatures are bearable, but not pleasant. The snow isn't a big problem from April on, but unpleasant weather may still ruin a poorly planned visit. Keep a close eye on the 5 days weather forecast. Make space for alternatives. Plan indoor activities for bad weather days.

Visits to Cape Cod and islands, or to the North shore (Plymouth, New Bedford) and South Shore (Salem, Marblehead) attractions should only be taken in good weather conditions.

Visiting Boston in June or September

Average air temperature: 65º-69º (18º-20ºC); Average Low: 58-60ºF (14-16ºC); Average High: 72-77ºF (22-25ºC)
Monthly snow: 0 inches  
Humidity: low

June and September are enjoyable and popular tourist months. Keep an eye on the 5 days weather forecasts, anyway. Consider the many events available in these months: outdoor markets, Harbor cruises, bike events, open art studios, Boston Calling, the Irish Culture Festival. 

An excellent time to visit the attractions around Boston: Cape Rod (Provincetown) and islands, Plymouth and New Bedford (South Shore), Salem, Marblehead.

Visitors flock to see the Fall foliage spectacle in late September.
Expect high hotel prices and crowds.

Visiting Massachusetts In the Summer months
Visit Boston in July, August

Average air temperature: 48º-59ºC (9-15ºC); Average Low: 41-50ºF (5-10ºC); Average High: 55-68ºF (13-20ºC)
Humidity: occasionally high.

Excellent months for a visit. August weather in Boston is usually temperate, with very occasional thunderstorms.

Downsides: Summer months bring in swarms of tourists and hotel rates are more expensive.

Sidewalk cafes, seafood, entertainment, the baseball games, sightseeing tours, the outdoor concerts and events like the Boston Harborfest (July) or the Boston Restaurant Week (August) make it worth a trip.

Also excellent time to visit the Islands and the Cape Cod, and the North and Sea Shore attractions, with the expected downsides: pricey rates and crowds, especially during weekends.

Visiting Massachusetts in October
Visit Boston in October   

Average air temperature: 56ºF (13ºC); Average Low: 48ºF (9ºC); Average High: 63ºF (17ºC)
Humidity: Low.
No snow.

October can be an excellent month for a visit to Boston, but the weather is much more changeable than during the Summer months, and you should pay close attention to weather forecasts.

The Fall Foliage calls on swarms of tourists, and hotel rates tend to be high, especially in the weekends. Consider sightseeing tours, and visits to South and North shore attractions, or to the islands and Cape Cod, but monitor weather forecast and consider alternatives for bad weather.

Visiting Massachusetts in November
Visit Boston in November  

Average air temperature:
46ºF (8ºC); Average Low: 40ºF (4ºC); Average High: 52ºF (11ºC)
Humidity: Low.
Average month Snow: 1 inch (25 mm)

November weather is very changeable, and you should pack warm jackets, sweaters, warm scarfs and gloves. The weather… grows colder and the days become shorter and the first snows of winter may arrive.

Keep a close eye on the 5 days weather forecast. Make space for alternatives. Plan indoor activities for possible bad weather days. Consider shopping and entertainment, or go for a campus tour at Harvard, explore the Liberty Trail, consider going to the theater or to the Boston Symphony Orchestra (at Symphony Hall), or to the Boston Museum, or excursions along the Charles river to Cambridge...

WHEN NOT TO GO TO BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS

Very unpleasant weather during the winter months can spoil your visit. February is a particularly bad month for trips in Boston and Massachusetts.

Summer months - especially in popular attractions such as Cape Code and the seashore - are crowded and hotel rates are at their peak.

Weekends, in the Fall foliage period, are also crowded and pricey.

See:
Boston Massachusetts weather map
Best time of the year to visit Massachusetts

 

 

 

 

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