The landscapes in Peak District change quite dramatically from season to season, and the best time to visit really depends on what you want to see and do. Weather-wise, summer is the best time to visit as the days are long and filled with plenty of daylight to make the most of the great outdoors. The only thing is that it'll be much busier due to kids being off for the summer holidays.

The sweet spot is the shoulder season in late spring or early autumn as the weather should be fairly good, and you'll avoid the big crowds. Just remember, there's always a chance of rain in England! You can still have an amazing time in the colder months, and if you’re looking for a cosy winter getaway, the snow-topped moors and mystical winter landscapes in Peak District won’t disappoint.

What is the weather like in the Peak District?

Just like the rest of the UK, Peak District experiences four distinct seasons. The weather is never extreme with average summer highs of 18°C and winter highs of 5°C. Peak District experiences more rainfall than in most other parts of England as it’s located 300 metres above sea level, so don't forget to pack an umbrella.

MONTH

AVERAGE HIGH (°C)  

AVERAGE LOW (°C)  

January 

5

0

February

5

-1

March

7

1

April

10

2

May 14 5
June  16 8
July 18 10
August  18 10
September 15 8
October  11 5
November  7 2
December  5 0

Spring (March-May)

Best for: wildflowers, waterfalls

Spring weather is unpredictable and wet. The rain often comes and goes very quickly and ‘April showers’ can appear out of nowhere. It starts to warm up from mid to late spring when the dales (valleys) and woodlands turn lush shades of green and trees begin to sprout leaves. Daffodils, bluebells and other wildflowers shoot up and a pop of colour to the landscapes and wild garlic adds a pungent (but pleasant) scent to the air throughout the woodlands. It’s a great time to go walking and enjoy the sights and smells of spring and see the park's many waterfalls in their full glory. Just make sure you bring a waterproof jacket… you’ll need one!

Summer (June-August)

Best for: heather, walking, cycling

As you probably know, summer in the UK is never consistently warm and sunny. But, summer is when you have the best chance of experiencing good weather. Sunlight is plentiful and the days are long, especially around the time of the solstice, so it’s a great time to hike the moors and dales. Just note that the summer sunlight can sometimes create a haze which can limit visibility at higher elevations, so you might want to set off for hikes as early as possible to get the best views. After a long hike, head to one of the villages to enjoy a pint in a beer garden. 

One of the most special things about summer is the heather. For three weeks (usually at the end of August) heather covers the hills and turns the landscapes gorgeous shades of dark pink and purple. If you're out walking during golden hour when the sunlight hits the purple, boy are you in for a treat. 

Autumn (September-November)

Best for: hiking, autumn foliage 

Mother Nature puts on quite the show in autumn when the woodlands and landscapes turn eye-popping shades of yellow, orange and red. The days start to draw in from late September and the weather turns chilly from early to mid-October. Mist and fog often roll into the valleys, especially in the early morning, and make the landscapes feel mysterious and eerie. As we mentioned earlier, you'll beat the big summer crowds so it can be a great time for hiking and cycling in solitude. 

Winter (December-February)

Best for: photography, cosy winter getaways, festive markets 

High rainfall means snow is common during the winter months, particularly at higher elevations. Snowfall turns certain areas of Peak District into a gorgeous winter wonderland and crisp winter days with clear skies and sunshine make for an excellent walk in the countryside. The weather is unpredictable during winter, so make sure you bring plenty of warm layers and a windproof/waterproof coat.

It might be cold and grey, but there's plenty going on in Peak District during winter, especially during the festive season with Christmas markets popping up in the villages and towns. It's also one of the best times of the year for photography thanks to the low level of the sun. The cold weather also makes the cosy pubs with their roaring log fires even more inviting. 

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