Fall is the best time to visit the Southeast. Temperatures and humidity are lower, there are no school breaks during these months, so crowds will be less, and the fiery-colored fall foliage will take your breath away.
The days will be mild, and you’ll want a layer for the mornings and evenings. If you’re in the mountains in late-October or November, you’ll need warmer layers for the whole day. Along the Gulf of Mexico or in Southern Florida, this will still be swimsuit weather, though the water will be cold.
Winter isn’t the best time to visit the Southeast. The temperature will be cold enough (with high chances of rain, but rarely snow) to make you want to stay indoors. But outdoor activities are what the Southeast is known for.
The two exceptions for visiting the Southeast in the Winter are:
Skiing in the higher elevations of Virginia and West Virginia
Miami and the Florida Keys. Temperatures will still be pleasant (almost warm) here.
This is a great season to visit because cultivated gardens and wildflowers will be in bloom, and lush foliage will have returned to the forests and National Parks. The weather can still be cold in the evenings and mornings in March and early April in the higher elevations, but for the most part, you’ll want shorts and short-sleeves during the day.
To steer clear of the increasing crowds, avoid popular Spring break weeks from mid-March to early April.
Prepare yourself, because Summer will be hot and humid, and you’ll need plenty of bug spray for the mosquitos. Because of school summer breaks, crowds will also be at their peak, especially the beaches.
But don’t let this scare you away from visiting in the summer. This is also when some of the best festivals in the Southeast take place, such as the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival, Key West Pride, Bonnaroo, Charleston Carifest, and the Beer, Bourbon & BBQ Festival in North Carolina.