No-one goes to Wales looking for a tan, but it’s not all rain clouds and gloomy days. October to January are the wettest months and although it can rain at any time of year, summers are generally mild and fresh with average temperatures just below 20°C. In general, the coast is the driest part of the country and the mountains the wettest. Mt Snowdon gets several weeks of the white stuff per year, while the Cambrian Mountains and Brecon Beacons get about half that amount.
The weather in Wales is unpredictable, and conditions can change within a matter of hours, so if you’re out and about, be prepared!
When to go
Wales is beautiful at any time of year, but the soggy Welsh weather means that summer (June to August) remains the busiest time for visitors. Most of the rain is concentrated in autumn and early winter, with the worst of the downpours generally between October and January. Winter days are startlingly short, and although you may get a picturesque blanket of snow, many smaller attractions, tourist offices and B&Bs close for the entire low season (October to Easter).
After January the rain slackens off and as temperatures pick up and days lengthen it’s a good time to get out walking. Spectator sports, too, hit their peak, with both the rugby and football calendars coming to a close.
July and August is high season for Wales, coinciding with the major school-holiday period across Britain, hence attractions, accommodation and roads can get choked with visitors, prices are often inflated and even the kindest of locals can get annoyed with the crush. However, this is prime time for a long, lingering night at one of Wales’ countless festivals or a concerted assault on its highest mountains.
To beat the crowds, May and September are great times to visit, combining the best of the weather with the colours of the countryside, but without the clogged roads and accommodation rush of midsummer.