With a highly developed cultural scene, Budapest attracts visitors throughout the year as it has so much to offer. Typical of a continental European city, summers are hot and sunny, whilst winters are cold with snow and frost.
Budapest weather averages and climate information
When is the best time to go to Budapest?
If you’re looking for a city break but still want a taste of Mediterranean heat then visit during the summer months of June to August. Whilst temperatures are not as hot as the likes of mainland Spain or Greece, daytime highs can still reach and average of 26-28 Celsius.
If you want to explore the historical sites with at a more comfortable temperature, then late spring or early autumn could be for you. There is still plenty of sunshine with around 7 hours per day, but temperatures average in the low twenties.
Perhaps a winter break is more your thing? Budapest still has plenty to offer if you don’t mind wrapping up as temperatures dramatically drop off from late October through until March. December and January are the coldest and cloudiest months with average daily highs of 3 Celsius and snow is possible too.
Springs in Budapest start cold and cloudy with early March still prone to snow. However temperatures take a sharp upturn through the season with average daily highs rising from 11.5 Celsius in March to 22.7 Celsius by May. Sunshine amounts increase through the season with an average of 7-9 hours per day in April and May. As temperatures rise though, watch out for an afternoon thunderstorm, especially so in May as average rainfall rises from 35mm in March to nearly double at 60mm in May.
Summer is by far the hottest season in Budapest with average daily highs peaking at 28.3 Celsius in July. It is also the sunniest time of year with an average of 10 hours of daily sunshine in June and July. However, as with May high temperatures can spark some heavy showers or thunderstorms, with summer technically the wettest season. Don’t let this put you off though as by nature than rainfall often falls in short sharp bursts so there are more dry days than wet. If the heat gets too much then why not take a trip to Margaret Island, where you can take a dip in the outdoor pools to cool off.
Temperatures begin to fall in autumn although September still sees an average of 22.3 Celsius by day, similar to what many parts of southern UK experience during July. As the month wears on, so the weather deteriorates with temperatures dropping to an average of just 9.3 Celsius by November. Although rainfall becomes less during autumn, so does the amount of sunshine with an average of 7 hours per day in September, 5 hours in October and 3 hours in November.
Winters in Budapest are much colder than the UK and more typical of what you would expect in continental Europe. It is also the driest season, but snow can be a possibility throughout the season. January is statistically the coldest and dullest month with average daily highs of 2.8 Celsius and a mere 2 hours of daily sunshine. If you need to warm up then try some traditional Hungarian Goulash soup.
Budapest tourist information
Budapest is divided into two parts by the majestic river Danube. On one side you have Buda: with its thermal baths from the Otterman Era situated at the foot of Gellert Hill, the royal palace and Matthias Church. This side of the city oozes peace and tranquillity. On the other side you have Pest: a vibrant and much livelier atmosphere with plenty of museums with rich cultural and historical heritage. Here you also have extraordinary architecture with the Parliament building considered to be one of the most magnificent in the world.
The city also has a highly developed cultural scene with festivals, theatres, concert halls, sporting events and museums. There are a number of events throughout the year, from spring and summer fairs and festivals, contemporary arts festivals as well as the Christmas Market, so plenty to keep everyone entertained.
Margaret Island is located in the city’s green heart and is considered to be one of the best city parks in the whole of Europe. It provides the perfect place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city, with a calming stroll or a swim in one of the outdoor pools. There are also thermal baths and spas, perfect to kick back and relax.
Food and drink
Hungarian cuisine is very much celebrated in Budapest with the traditional goulash soup and porkoit having well established reputations. I recent decades the culinary scene has taken over Budapest with an abundance of street-food made from local, natural ingredients to haute cuisine featured in the Michelin Guide.