North America Weather Guide
With a pretty epic landmass and variety of topography, the weather varies significantly across North America. In the northern US and Canada, the winters bring snow and frosty temperatures, but in the southern states, the winters are milder and the summers are warm and lovely. Of course, the Pacific Northwest has year-round rain! In Mexico, there’s not really a bad time to visit with a wet season from May to October and a dry season from November to April. In Hawaii, the seasons are reversed with the dry season from April to October and the rainy season from November to March.
Season and Clothing
Summer: June to August
Like most destinations, summer is high season in many of the US and Mexico holiday destinations. Because Canada is a popular skiing destination, many of the resorts have lower room rates in summer, so if you feel like getting adventurous on the cheap, Canada is great place to check out in the warmer months. That’s if you don’t get tempted by the American summer with all of its epic festivals like Burning Man and Bonnaroo and great beach weather on the West Coast in LA and San Francisco. It’s pretty hot and humid in Florida and the southern states at this time of year and of course, and Mexico is hot, hot, hot! While hurricanes are rare, the season in Hawaii runs from June to November.
Autumn: September to November
With milder temps across most of the continent, now is a good time to travel to the Grand Canyon or witness the awesome sight of Niagara Falls. Ever wanted to experience an American Halloween? Well, fall is the time of year to visit. It’s quite a pretty time to visit too with the leaves turning and dropping to the ground, particularly in the New England area and in Canada. Carry on the spooky celebrations in Mexico with the Dia de los Muertos (Day of the dead) festival in Mexico on October 31, November 1 and 2. September and October is one of the best times to visit Hawaii with lesser crowds and low-season rates.
Winter: December to February
Across most of the continent the winters are pretty freezing with temps dropping well below zero with shorter days, heavy snowfall and even blizzards that ground planes. It can be pretty miserable in the cities, although things cheer up when the festive season starts in the US. Like everything American, they go OTT with Christmas, not to mention the famous Ball Drop in Times Square on New Year’s Eve. It’s also the time of year to head up to Alaska to see the Northern Lights. And of course, if you’re a snowboarder or skier, it’s time to carve up the slopes in the States and Canada. The powder on Canadian mountains is off the hook! It’s also low season across most of the US and Canada, however it’s high season in Mexico until April as the northerners take advantage of the warmer temps. Don’t forget Mardi Gras in New Orleans before Lent!
Spring: March to May
Spring could just be the perfect time to visit North America. After the winter thaw, the greenery and parks start to fill with people, plants and animals again. Heard of spring break? Oh yes, it happens in spring, so be aware that this is one of the most expensive time to visit Mexico and Cancun in particular as you’ll be sharing it with heaps of American kids on college vacations. The weather is warm and lovely at this time of year, although you might get a few showers around this season in Mexico. If you’re in the States and Canada, don’t miss the epic celebrations for St Patrick’s Day – particularly in Chicago and New York. This is also one of the best times to visit Hawaii.