When we stop and think about just how spoiled we are in Madrid with the amazing climate we have, it almost brings a tear of joy to our eyes. You may think this is an exaggeration, dear friends, but honestly, we’re so lucky.
So, time to back up our constant bragging! We really must thank whatever kind of comic power exists for our irresistible climate that brings so many amazing visitors non-stop. 76% of travellers value the weather as a crucial factor when choosing Madrid as a destination.
For all you poor souls that haven’t yet experienced it for yourselves, here are a few sneak peaks and guidelines to the wonderful weather of Madrid for you to discover which is the best time to visit Madrid and planning your trip clothes.
WARNING: side effects to reading this post include sudden purchasing of flights to Madrid!
MADRID’S CLIMATE: UNBEATABLE
Madrid’s climate is defined by its blue sky which is famous throughout Spain. For example, Velázquez, a well-known Spanish painter from the 1600s, fell in love with the city’s sky, which continued to inspire him throughout his career with his classic ‘Velázquez skies’.
This is partly because we enjoy a lot of sunlight all year round. And here’s the key fact: Madrid is the European capital with the most hours of sunshine per year, according to the agency Aemet. Madrid soaks up more than 2,900 hours, followed by Athens with about 2,800.
This means that Madrid, and its people, bask in sunshine almost 300 days a year. That’s right. How awesome is that?
We love sunshine and warmth, you should know that by now. And what does that mean? It means that we are constantly outside, that we live our lives out in the streets for like nine months out of the year. This is the secret to our never-ending happiness and joie de vivre! The ambience here is unbeatable.
Anyway, enough stating the obvious. Madrid = good weather. It’s that simple. But the particularities of our climate do deserve a brief analysis, because each of the four seasons has its time to shine here, offering a different kind of ambience depending on the month of your visit. So here we go.
WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO VISIT MADRID?
SPRING (21MAR – 20JUN)
An old Spanish saying quotes “La primavera, la sangre altera” – meaning spring is here and love is in the air, basically! Where better to get struck by this spring fever than in Madrid! Our city is completely transformed when spring comes around. We bid farewell to the colder months of winter as our passion for patio drinking awakens.
The first few weeks of spring can be rainy (not much though) but as the season takes full force in Madrid, the magic happens! Spring here is like a suuuuuper nice version of summer, with average temperatures at 22ºC/71.6ºF. From April onwards, the terraces and patios start filling up, especially during Holy Week, our beautiful parks come into full bloom (visit Retiro Park) and we can begin soaking up the sunny days and warmth again!! Not to mention spring is when San Isidro falls (our local festivity and Patron Saint), and the madness leading up to summer begins!
An astonishing 81% of Madrid locals consider that springtime is the best time of year to visit the city, according to data from the City Council. Come check it out!
SUMMER (21JUN – 20SEP)
Let the excitement begin! First things first, be warned. It gets pretttttty hot. But nothing Madrid can’t handle, as there are always so many fun things to do rain or shine. Throughout the summer months the average temperature is well above 25ºC/77ºF (the highest temperature is 35 C/95ºF), there isn’t a cloud in sight and the sun shines for over 12 hours per day! You might think… Its too hot!… but don’t worry, Cats Hostel Madrid has air-conditioned.
With all this in mind, basically all plans and fun get-togethers and activities are pushed back a few hours in comparison to other months! We are EXPERTS in staying up late! The big traditional festivities to watch out for are Madrid’s countless music festivals and Pride. If Madrid had a local sport above all, it would be TERRACE DRINKING. Summer here really is a frenzy.
If you aren’t much of a night-owl yourself, do not worry. During the day there is so much to do as well, whether it’s indoor plans or outdoor activities that float your boat. Why not get all cultural up in here and spend the day at one of our world-renowned museums? Hitting the stores for a lil’ shopping while taking advantage of the AC on full-blast is always a good idea. The cinemas here always give you the option of watching movies with no Spanish dubbing and in good ol’ English. Also, our theme parks are a grand old time and you could head to Retiro and bask in the shade for a while.
Bonus info a July and August are the hottest months in Spain and they are also the two months in which Spaniards take their summer vacay and head to the beach! This means that if you visit in summer there won’t be that many people in the center at all. This comes in handy when making reservations at popular restaurants and avoiding long lines in museums or nightclubs!
AUTUMN (21SEP – 20 DIC)
The Autumn season in Madrid is a seamless transition from the first few days of summer-like weather to the last days of approaching winter time! and, of course, it’s one of the best times to visit Madrid to avoid crowds.
Madrid average temperatures in Autumn stand at around 18ºC/64.4ºF in the beginning of autumn and then slide down to a chillier 7ºC/44.6ºC in the last days. Rainy days start rolling into town also, making Madrid even more romantic than usual.
After a summer of spending all your money investing in FUN, autumn may be a good time to awaken your traveling soul. Prices are usually quite moderate throughout these months, and national holidays are the perfect opportunity to go on long weekend adventures. Spain’s enchanting Easter holidays (Semana Santa) are something no one should go without witnessing!
The falling leaves of autumn will have you falling head over heels with the rustic colors of the trees in the city. There’s also no better excuse than to warm up with some typical hearty hot Spanish dishes, like cocido or even callos.
WINTER (21DIC – 20 MAR)
It might seem that winters are cold in Madrid… but it all depends on what you compare with, right, friends from Central Europe?? (wink wink). Madrid average temperature in winter is a mild 6ºC. Winter does not mean we have to bid farewell to sunny days!!
Truthfully, the thermal sensation and wind chill are never that dramatic here. Some winter days are on the cold side but with blue skies all around! Perfect for a winter stroll through your favorite spots. Big coats and sunglasses are the new official outfit of winter in Madrid!
Obviously, winter here means it’s CHRISTMAS TIME! Around the last week of October, Christmas is well and truly in the air. Twinkly lights start to appear in the streets and the scent of roasted chestnuts also fills the air. Ho ho ho!
The most wonderful time of the year is when some of Madrid’s most iconic traditions take place (New Year’s Eve grapes, the Three Kings’ Parade, San Silvestre Vallecana…). No matter how much of a Grinch you might be, Madrid will fascinate you with its different and enticing concept of Christmas. Our winter months are glorious!
But all this beauty – and here comes the mindful message – is now being seriously threatened by our worst enemy: ourselves.
A recently published study by the ETH University of Zurich estimates that by 2050, temperatures in large cities will have risen so much because of climate change that Madrid will adopt a climate identical to Marrakech’s, with an increase of 6.4ºC/43.5ºF during the summer. And that, considering the current sweltering summer heat, is a lot.
So, it’s time to act on this. Here at Cats we encourage you to be aware of what’s happening and we can’t recommend adopting sustainable habits enough. After all, there is a lot at stake.