When to Go to the USA

The Grand Canyon landscape with some clouds in the sky
The Grand Canyon

The USA by seasons

In a country over 2,800 miles wide (not including Hawaii), when to go to the USA is more of a rhetorical question. On just one day there can be sub-zero temperatures in the northern mountains and glorious sunshine in the south. So to help break it down for you, here are our seasonal suggestions:

Spring blossom, Washington DC


Spring is a glorious time to visit anywhere in the States– the flowers are in bloom, the land turns green and the wildlife thrives. With warm temperatures and sunny days, spring is perfect for enjoying the outdoors before the summer crowds arrive. A pleasant period for a city break too, spring is when festivals and events begin again after the winter lull and the baseball season starts.

Go for:

Cherry Blossoms: see the flowers bloom in Washington DC, San Francisco or Philadelphia.

St Patricks Day on 17th March: watch the Chicago River turn green or join the crowds for New York City’s annual parade. 

Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming


As the last of the walking trails open and the temperatures begin to sizzle, now’s the time to grab your hiking boots and head to one of the USA’s 58 national parks. The most popular time to visit, summer is great for lazing on the beaches of Florida and California, but look out for high humidity levels in the Deep South and hurricanes on the southern East Coast and the Gulf of Mexico.

Go for:

Independence Day: join the 4th of July celebrations and expect fireworks, parades, barbecues, carnivals and concerts as the whole country turns red, white and blue.

Colorado wildflowers:  visit in June and July to see the prairies and Rocky Mountains in full bloom.

New England Foliage

Sep - Nov

Autumn is a great time to visit much of the US, especially for the glittering golds and radiant red leaves, best appreciated in New England. Snow and rain begins to creep into the far north, but the southern states including Louisiana and Florida are perfect to visit for warm and dry conditions. Hawaii is still hot and sunny, and prices drop from the summer peak.

Go for:

Thanksgiving: the fourth Thursday of November is a time for family, roast turkey and copious eating. This is one of the busiest travel periods of the year, with hotels and transport routes very full.

Halloween: on the 31st October put on your fancy dress outfit and join the parade in New York City, learn about Voodoo in New Orleans or hunt for witches in Salem, Massachusetts.

Central Park covered in snow in New York

Dec – Feb

Short days and heavy snow makes winter a chilly time of year to visit the US, especially in the north. But it’s a great time to grab a bargain and have the sights to yourself, and of course ideal for skiing and snowboarding. Cities such as New York look lovely in the snow, but if you’re looking for some winter sun head to Florida, Hawaii and the southern states.

Go for:

Christmas & New Year: the festive season is a wonderful time to visit, especially the party cities of New York, Las Vegas and Chicago.

Ski season: head to the Rockies between December and late March.

Mardi Gras: on Shrove Tuesday, New Orleans is the place to be for parades and street parties.

Top USA Journeys

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Round the World Expert Graham Barrett

The best way to explore the US is with a road trip. I drove from Miami to Key West for my honeymoon last year and can vouch that it is one of the best road trips to do.

- Graham Barrett, Expert
Wine pairing course in Sonoma
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