Best Time to Visit Russia - Best Seasons and Average Temperatures

Sep 29, 2022

10 min read

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What Is The Best Time To Travel To Russia?

Russia is the world's largest country, spanning Europe and Asia and encompassing many cities and landscapes. Because of Russia's diversity, each new region you visit has something unique to offer.

Due to their western positions and vast cultural and historical depth, Moscow and St Petersburg are far the most popular tourist destinations. From Kazan to Samara and Rostov-on-Don, though, you'll find other fascinating cities if you travel east or south.

Remember that US citizens must apply for a Russia Visa before traveling. It's as easy as downloading the app and starting your application.

Russia Online Visa application process for US citizens on the Atlys app

When Should You Travel to Russia for Your Long-Awaited Vacation?

The best time to visit Russia is determined by some factors, including where you'll be going within the country, what you'll be doing when you are there (hiking around Lake Baikal or visiting museums in Moscow?), and your willingness to experience their seasonal weather.

Finding the best time to visit is one of the most crucial components of any vacation. This is especially true in a country like Russia, where high temperatures and harsh winters can be experienced depending on where you are in the country.

The months of May to October are the most popular for visiting Russia. This is the finest season to visit Russia and see its treasures, such as Peterhof's fountains, Pushkin's parks, and the Golden Ring's charming countryside.

During the summer, however, the main tourist routes become overcrowded and sometimes hard to navigate. Therefore, Inter-seasons, such as late spring and early fall, is the most fantastic times to visit Russia.

Furthermore, if you are bold enough, visiting Russia in the winter may be just as rewarding, if not more, than visiting in the summer.

To assist you, we've put up a quick guide that breaks down the best times to visit Russia so that you can make the most of your trip! If you need any other information, like what Visa would be best suited for your upcoming trip, check out our extensive guide on Russian visas.

Summer lasts from June to August, autumn lasts from September to October, and winter lasts from November to March (yeah, it's a long one!). The spring season runs from April to May.

Russia During Summer

The tourist season runs from May through October, and these months are widely regarded as the best time to visit Russia on a tourist Visa because the weather is milder than at other times of the year. If you need more info on the Russian Tourist Visa application process, this guide makes for great reading. However, during the peak of the summer season, cities like Moscow, which are packed on any given day of the year, become even more crowded as tourists from all over the world swarm to them.

Russia During Winter

The wettest months of the year are October and November, after which the country is enveloped in winter. We recommend avoiding these months because sub-zero temperatures are not conducive to tourist travel and activity. However, if you do decide to travel during the winter, make sure you have plenty of warm weather clothing on hand – you'll need it!

Russia's Shoulder Seasons

Late Spring or early autumn is, without a doubt, the ideal season to visit Russia. However, the best time to visit Russia is during the shoulder seasons, when you can enjoy the pleasant weather while avoiding the crowds at major tourist attractions and long lines to access and enjoy key sites. Furthermore, traveling during these months will result in lower airfare and accommodation expenses, allowing you to spend more of your budget on seeing and experiencing the Russian cities you visit.

Russia During End of Spring

If you visit Russia in the late Spring, make sure to get in Saint Petersburg by the end of May to witness the legendary "white evenings," which occur at the end of May and the first few days of June. The city is genuinely lovely during these "nights" – where the night never really happens – with inhabitants wandering the streets for late-night strolls and a slew of open-air music shows that are a riot in the greatest way conceivable. Because of the "white night" experience, the end of Spring is the greatest time to visit Russia if you want to see something you won't see anywhere else.


Traveling in Russia: A Month-by-Month Guide

Russia in January - February

The months of January and February are among Russia's coldest, but the scenery is beautiful, with snow blanketing much of the terrain and frozen streams. The hotels are always warm, the cuisine is hearty, and the hot chocolate in St Petersburg is incredibly delicious. Because Russian Christmas falls on the 7th of January, restaurants, and shops may be closed for a few days. This does, however, mean that you can still go to Christmas markets in January. Because it is 'the low season for tourists, attractions will be largely empty.

Russia in March

March is usually still snowy, with the snow melting toward the end of Moscow and St Petersburg. Though cold, temperatures are not as low as they are between November and February. Thus sleet or drizzle may fall instead of snow.

Russia in April - May

As the weather warms, the snow and ice melt, allowing boating to resume on the rivers and canals beginning in early April. Easter is significant to Russians, and religious and chocolate-based celebrations are widespread. In April and May, spring flowers bloom, transforming city parks and gardens into stunning displays. The fountains in Peterhof's grounds are open in May.

Russia in June - July

St Petersburg hosts a slew of cultural events and fireworks displays from June to July, making it a dazzlingly dynamic destination. Because it is also the busiest time of year, hotels raise their costs to reflect the increased demand, and availability is limited; you should book well in advance. In June, the weather is lovely, but in July, it can be reasonably hot. If you're visiting St Petersburg, mosquito repellant is a must, especially if you'll be near canals and rivers. The months of June through August are also the wettest of the year.

Russia in August

The weather in August is comparable to July's, but because you'll be out of the White Nights period, the city will be slightly less crowded. The Mariinsky Theatre is closed from mid-August through mid-September.

Russia in September - October

The autumn months in Russia are September and October when the leaves turn a beautiful rusty gold color. The cities are less crowded, which makes visiting museums more enjoyable. The fountains at Peterhof close around the end of September, and the first snowfall may occur toward the end of October.

Russia in November - December

November and December are typically chilly and snowy months in the United States. However, it is often sunny during daylight hours (which are restricted during the winter months), even if temperatures are likely to be far below freezing across the country.

What Is The Weather Like in Russia

The temperature is the next factor to consider while planning your trip to Russia. In the winter, Russia is at its most gorgeous. After all, it is a northern country (the coldest in the world) that experiences winter for 8/12 months and understands how to make the most of it. If you visit Russia in the winter, you may save a lot of money, receive better service, and enjoy many exciting things like troika rides. If you don't enjoy the cold, going to Russia next summer is a safer bet.

Don't try to beat the weather by visiting Russia during the off-season. You could be in for a pleasant surprise. Of course, you'll be visiting Russia for reasons other than Napoleon's, but you should be aware that snowfall occurs from October to April. Alternatively, you could ask your travel agency to assist you in planning your trip to Russia to make sure you spend as little time as possible in the country.

Weather Guide the Cities in Russia

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Average weather in Moscow, Russia

The average weather in Moscow varies greatly depending on the season. The months of July and August are the hottest in Moscow.

The average temperature is 19 degrees Celsius (65 degrees Fahrenheit), with highs of 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit). Peak temperatures are often scorching hot due to the continental climate and megapolis atmosphere. With an average temperature of -8°C (18°F), January is Moscow's coldest month.

Averages of the weather in Saint Petersburg, Russia

The average temperature in St Petersburg is cooler than in Russia's capital, Moscow. The hottest months of St Pete's are July and August, with the longest daily sunshine hours.

During the summer, the average temperature is around 18°C (64°F). However, it can get extremely hot at times, with temperatures reaching 30°C (86°F). January is the coldest month, with an average temperature of -6°C (22°F). October and November are the wettest months.

Best Time to Visit Russia

The best time to visit Russia is determined by several factors, including where you'll be going within the country, what you'll be doing when you are there (hiking around Lake Baikal or visiting museums in Moscow?), and your willingness to be exposed to harsh conditions.

November and early Spring (particularly March) are the cheapest months for saving money, but both are rainy and chilly, with November feeling more like winter than fall. The most expensive months to visit Russia are the summer months when hotels are fully booked, and airline prices increase. Unfortunately, summer also means scorching temperatures, crowds of people, and long queues to enter museums or board a boat to tour the canals of St. Petersburg.

If you want to spend time outside, early autumn is usually preferable to summer. In the fall, places like the Golden Ring (a region to the north-east of Moscow), Lake Baikal, and the Ural Mountains are breathtaking, as the trees change color and the region takes on a red color. In the autumn, most mountain trails are open, and the weather is ideal for extended excursions. Lake Baikal is as stunning in the winter, with the water becoming a deep navy blue beneath the ice, providing an incredible opportunity to ice skate straight over the world's largest freshwater lake.


The Best Time for Flying to Russia

Because there are few flights, prices vary depending on the season (flights from New York to Moscow range from $450 to $1200). Traveling to Russia is cheapest in November, March, and late August, and most expensive in the summer.


Overview of Russia's Travel Seasons

The months of May to October are the most popular for visiting Russia. This is the finest season to visit Russia and see its treasures, such as Peterhof's fountains, Pushkin's parks, and the Golden Ring's charming countryside.

During the summer, however, the main tourist routes become overcrowded and sometimes hard to navigate. Inter-seasons, such as late spring and early fall, are the greatest times to visit Russia.


Russia's school vacations

In Russia, state and private independent schools have varied holiday schedules. The Ministry of Education and Science establishes an annual timetable for state schools in Russia. This comprises vacations that span the four seasons: State and private independent schools in Russia have different holiday schedules. The Russian Ministry of Education and Science sets an annual schedule for state schools. This includes vacations during all four seasons:

  • Autumn has a 10-day vacation.
  • Winter has an 11-day break.
  • Spring has a nine-day break.

Summer has a three-month break (plus first graders get an extra 10-day break in February).

In Russia, child care is available throughout the school holidays.

You may need to make childcare arrangements if you work during the school holidays. There are both public and private kindergartens in Russia, some of which accept children as young as seven or eight years old. However, since the end of the Soviet era, public provision has dropped, and the busier cities tend to have more facilities.

Written By: Lamia Darwish
Fact Checked By: Jakus Eloff

Frequently Asked Questions

How is the weather in Russia these days?

May to September is the ideal season to visit Russia. The temperature ranges from 21 to 32 degrees Celsius during the day to 10 to 21 degrees Celsius at night. Spring and fall can be unpredictable, with snow flurries appearing in May and September, resulting in the muck. Bring a pair of waterproof shoes and a jacket with you.

Are tourist attractions in Russia closed on holidays?

In Russia, there are a total of nine official holidays. Of course, every country has its own set of holidays, but what sets Russia apart is that its holidays are longer.

Another distinctive element of Russian holidays is that all markets and public places remain open, and crowds swarm the streets. In addition, the entertainment centers and recreational activities are open until late in the evening, ensuring that Russians have a fun-filled vacation.

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