It’s no secret that spring and autumn are my favourite seasons to be on the go. Several reasons explain this, from the smaller flocks of tourists to the warm-and-sunny-yet-not-scorching weather and the still very affordable prices. Elbow seasons are not only easy on the budget, but also on the eyes.
The only difficult thing about this is picking a place; while it’s so nice to see Nordic countries come out of permafrost, it’s also a great feeling to be able to visit southern Spain sans fear of passing out from insulation. Which is it going to be?
Spring Travel in Europe: A Best-Of
For the same reason that Rome is mostly enjoyable in the spring, Andalusia is also at its best when temperatures hover at around 20 degrees and where entire cities don’t shut down for the afternoon because it’s just too hot to get anything done. Cities like Sevilla, Ronda, Granada and Cordoba are particularly pretty and offer great insight into Moorish culture, which had a much stronger influence on the Iberian peninsula than most people know. Flamenco, tapas and tinto de verano await!
Not too far from London is Scotland, the land of kilts, haggis, lochs and some of the most welcoming people I’ve met in my travels. But one of Scotland’s biggest flaws, it there ever was one, is its weather. Notoriously impossible to predict accurately, the weather up north of Britain can go from hail to sunshine in less than an hour. True story! But springtime is a little more clement to tourists, and when I was there last April I was blessed with bright sunshine for the better part of the my five-day trip. Few things are more spectacular than Isle of Skye bathed in sunlight!
You guys already know that London is one of my favourite places in the world to start with, either in winter, autumn, summer (even British summer) or spring. Yet, the latter has something other seasons don’t have, a magical feeling of rebirth –almost literally, after spending several months under a thick, gray permacloud– that is only enhanced by the fragrance of the cherry blossoms and the sight of these bright, pink flowers everywhere in town. Scientists say that smell is the strongest trigger of memories, and every time I smell the sweet aroma of blossoms I can’t help but be reminded of springtime in London. It’s also the best time of the year to explore the city’s many royal parks!
On the other side of the weather spectrum is southern Europe, where winter only means a slight drop in temperatures and fewer al fresco meals. For someone like me, who would rather teleport to Antarctica than spend the summer in scorching, too-hot-to-go-out Italy, Rome in springtime is the perfect compromise. Not only are there much fewer crowds (by Rome standards anyway) but the temperatures are warm enough to leave the parka at home while not TOO hot that constant gelato breaks become mandatory in order to regulate inner body temperatures. Because of course that’s what gelato is for, right?
Proving to tourists from around the world that the country knows more to plants than just one green plant, the Dutch fields tend to be more reminiscent of a rainbow than anything else in April. Colourful tulip fields extend as far the eye can see, and the Keukenhof gardens, arguably one of the world’s most spectacular gardens, glossy up just in time for the tulip festival. A dream destination for photographers, green thumbs of this world and flora enthusiasts.