Your Best Time to Cruise the Mediterranean May Differ from Others – Find Out Why and When You Should Go
The best time to cruise the Mediterranean varies depending on your interests and schedule. For families the optimal time might be different than for budget travelers, and wine enthusiasts may prefer a different time of the Mediterranean cruise season to go than beach seekers.
Here are some guidelines to keep in mind when planning your Mediterranean cruise and trying to decide on the best time to go.
First, Know the Mediterranean Cruise Season
The Mediterranean cruise season runs from April through November each year. These are the prime months to go because in winter the weather isn’t as conducive to exploring ports, and some popular ports of call are very limited in things to do as many restaurants and shops close down for the winter months due to not enough visitors during that time.
The Best Time to Visit the Mediterranean to Avoid Crowds
Summer is the high season for travelers to the Mediterranean. The months of July and August get especially busy at popular tourist hot spots. If you want to avoid crowds as much as possible, opt for a cruise that departs in shoulder season – April through May and September through November.
If you want to increase your chances of having hot, sunny weather, while still trying to avoid huge crowds at attractions, June is also a best time to cruise the Mediterranean. June is usually less crowded than July and August since school is just getting out and many families haven’t started their summer travels yet.
The Best Time to Cruise the Mediterranean for Budget Travelers
Similar to crowd avoiders, budget travelers will also find that the best time to visit the Mediterranean is during shoulder season. Since not as many people can travel then or don’t want to due to an increased chance of rainy or cool weather, prices are often lower to entice people to book.
Budget travelers who are flexible can also try to wait for last minute Mediterranean cruises to pop up with discounted fares. This can be risky if you have your heart set on a certain date and itinerary since the sailing may sell out in advance – or the category of stateroom you want may sell out – but if it doesn’t you might just get a budget-friendly deal on your Mediterranean cruise.
The Best Time to Visit the Mediterranean for Wine Enthusiasts
If you want to enjoy wine tasting during applicable ports of call on your Mediterranean cruise, tasting rooms are generally open the whole season. However, for a truly special time to visit, go during harvest time in September and October.
If you arrange for a wine-focused group shore excursion or Private Journeys, you’ll be able to tour the winery and get an in-depth look at what happens during harvest time, which includes picking the grapes from the vines and getting them ready to be fermented and turned into wine.
The Best Time to Visit the Mediterranean for Beach Lovers
If you are all about finding the best European beaches to lie on during your days in port on your Mediterranean cruise, you’ll want to go when the weather is hot and you can soak in endless sunshine and blissfully relax in the refreshing sea.
That means July and August are your best bets for perfect hot, sunny days. Yes, this is a more crowded time of year to visit as well, but if you’re spending your days in port lounging on a beach chair next to gorgeous turquoise water, will you care?
The Best Time of Year to Visit the Mediterranean for Families with Kids
For families, the best time of year to visit the Mediterranean if you don’t want to have to pull your kids out of school is during summer break.
For most schools in the United States, summer break runs from the middle of June until the end of August or beginning of September. This makes July and the first half of August an ideal time to visit since most families like a couple weeks right after school ends and right before the new school year begins to ease into changing schedules or prepare supplies.
However, if you want to do a family cruise in the Mediterranean while your kids are on summer break, but aren’t thrilled about having to go during high season, try to travel in that buffer time right after school gets out in June or right before the school year begins in August or September since not as many families will be wanting to travel then so you may find fewer crowds.
The Best Time of Year to Visit the Mediterranean for Optimal Weather
If you’re looking to go on a Mediterranean cruise vacation when it’s not too hot and not too cold, plan on avoiding the last half of July and the month of August.
Of course, weather can never be completely determined in advance and is always a hit or miss gamble when planning travel, but in general July and August are very hot throughout the Mediterranean, though the beginning of July isn’t quite as hot in some parts.
If you’re someone who doesn’t like the heat, then be aware that many places in the Mediterranean don’t have air conditioning. However, there will be air conditioning back on the ship, so be glad you’re cruising at sea and not staying the night in a hot hotel room!
The Best Time to Cruise the Mediterranean is NOW with Celebrity Cruises
Book your Mediterranean cruise today! Celebrity Cruises makes it easy to find the right itinerary for you in your ideal timeframe with its #BookItList platform. Book your stateroom, find airfare using Flights by Celebrity (which comes with added protection for your vacation investment and a Lowest Airfare Guarantee), and reserve shore excursions and other onboard activities all in one convenient place.