Weather in March

   
 
 

The best holiday weather in March is found in the Caribbean, Indian Ocean and Africa. Nowhere on the European mainland is the weather at its best in March, however the region with the most sunshine is likely to be in the Algarve in Portugal, or if you are prepared to travel for an hour or so longer, it is a little sunnier and warmer in the Canary Islands particularly in Fuerteventura and Lanzarote.

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In Albufeira on the Algarve coast in March the average maximum daytime temperature just about reaches 20°C and there are usually 7 hours of sunshine. In Fuerteventura, 1000 kilometres to the south, it is about 3°C warmer with 8 hours of sunshine.

March is probably the best month of the year to visit the Maldives in the Indian Ocean. It is the time of year when monsoon winds shift from north-east to south-west, producing doldrum conditions with very calm seas, light winds and hardly any rain; this is perfect desert island weather. The Maldives has a tropical climate with high temperatures in every month - no less so in March. During the day heat and humidity is very high but it does cool down a little after sunset.

March is also a great month to visit Morocco mainly because it is spring-time. This is the greenest time of the year in terms of vegetation and, depending on how much rain has fallen during the winter, highland meadows can be beautifully carpeted in wild flowers. Daytime temperatures at Marrakech are in the low 20s Celsius, perfect for trekking in the Atlas Mountains, though at higher elevations it can become quite chilly at night.

Egypt has long been a popular winter destination for visitors cruising on the Nile. Between November and April it is sunny and warm during the day with no heat and humidity; it can even turn cold at night. But by the time March arrives the weather becomes pleasantly warm; indeed this is probably the best time of year for sightseeing along the Nile. Expect 10 hours of sunshine in both Luxor and Aswan and daytime temperature in the high 20s Celsius.

Many holiday destinations in the Caribbean are at their best at this time of year, and one that is easy to get to is the Dominican Republic. A number of UK tour operators have direct flights to Puerto Plata and Punta Cana, where in March temperatures range from a very pleasant 20°C at night to 29°C during the day. The sea temperature is around 26°C and there are usually 9 hours of sunshine a day. For those who like the idea of a holiday in the tropics but who feel they may not be able to cope with high levels of heat and humidity March is an excellent time to go to the Dominican Republic.

Cancun and the Riviera Maya are part of Mexico on the western shores of the Caribbean. Here too the weather is excellent in March, the driest and sunniest time of year, and there are direct flights from a number of UK airports. The sea is not as warm as it becomes later in the summer but it is still warmer than the sea in Majorca at the height of summer so visitors from Europe will probably not complain. The weather is also nothing like as hot and humid as it becomes from May to September. Expect 8 hours of sunshine each day on average in March and daytime temperatures that will probably reach into the 30s Celsius on some days.

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