The Best Time to Visit Medellín, Colombia

City view of beautiful Medellin Colombia
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The best times to visit Medellín are in the summer from June to August, and during the month of December. With less rain and more festivals than the rest of the year, it's easy to spend time outdoors enjoying the blooming flowers, groups of dancers in the park, and events ranging from fashion shows to world-famous light displays. Though hotel prices and flights jump during these times, you can save money by booking ahead or arriving at the end of November to avoid December price hikes. If you want to save the most money and don’t mind light rain daily, come in the wetter months of May and September to secure lower hotel and flight prices.

Weather

Known as the “City of the Eternal Spring," Medellín has agreeable weather year-round: warm days and cool nights, temperatures in the high 50s to low 80s, and air made cool by light winds blowing through the Aburrá Valley.

Rather than four distinct seasons, Medellín has two wet seasons, a dry season, and a somewhat dry season. Spring and fall are the wet seasons: Rain falls almost every day from April to May and from September to November. Even so, showers typically last only a few hours and are scattered throughout the city. Winter is the dry season, with both the frequency and quantity of rain reduced between December and February. In the summer, June to August, the quantity of the rain decreases, making it a somewhat dry season; however, the frequency of precipitation can still remain relatively high, with rain falling anywhere from 17 to 28 days a month.

Popular Events and Festivals

Colombia ranks fifth in the world for having the most national holidays. In all, the country has 18 national holidays, mostly Catholic in nature. If they fall in the middle of the week or during a weekend, they are legally required to be celebrated on the following Monday, meaning Medellín has many three-day weekends.

The two most famous festivals in Medellín are the Feria de las Flores (Flower Festival) and the Festival de las Luces y Alumbrados Navideños. Medellín’s incredible flower diversity and celebration of its rural workers come together during the Flower Festival’s Desfile de Silleteros parade, while its gleeful Christmas spirit manifests in massive light displays downtown and in Parque del Río during the month-long Alumbrados Navideños.

Peak Season

Spring and part of winter are the peak tourism seasons in Medellín (January, April, and May). Flight prices begin to go up in mid-March and last until the first week of August. December and January see a bump in flights, too. Prices for hotel rooms also rise during these popular times, ranging from about $14 to $37 a night in the spring, and $15 to $40 in December and January. Be aware of the Semana Santa (Holy Week) in March or April, as most businesses shut down during the whole week, and Paisas (the name for people from Medellín) stay home to celebrate with their families. While prices might be lower in general in the winter and fall, avoid traveling on a national holiday then, as they are big domestic travel days.

Winter

In December, the days are short and the average temperature is 72.6 degrees Fahrenheit (22.5 degrees Celsius)—perfect weather for being outside to enjoy the Christmas cheer. New Year's Eve is celebrated with traditions such as people wearing yellow underwear and rolling suitcases around the block. Though January is the driest month in Medellín, rain still falls an average of 25 days out of the month. Flight prices are slightly lower than in December, but they remain high. During February, many Paisas leave the city and head out of town to visit family or party on the coast. The weather is some of the best all year, with the dry season continuing and temperatures ranging from 64 to 83 degrees Fahrenheit (18 to 28 degrees Celsius).

Events to check out:

  • Festival de las Luces y Alumbrados Navideños, the month-long Christmas celebration in Medellín, transforms the parks, squares, and river walks into massive Christmas light displays.
  • Trails of candles light windows, porches, and parks on December 7 for the Día de las Velitas (Day of Candles).
  • Medellín hosts the Hay Festival the second to last weekend of January. A festival of ideas, it features lectures by international and national authors, concerts, and film screenings.

Spring

March temperatures are about the same as February's, but rain begins to increase. April is the wettest month in Medellin; thankfully, showers are short-lived and the sun shines for more than seven hours a day. The rain continues into May, with the city experiencing a shower nearly every day. Both April and May see average temperatures in the early 70s.

Event to check out:

  • Large processions walk through the city for Semana Santa (Holy week) to places of worship to celebrate Easter.
  • The Living Legends of Salsa (Las Leyendas Vivas de la Salsa) concert happens in the first week of April, bringing salsa musicians from around the world for a night of music and dancing in La Macarena.
  • In May, celebrate the biodiversity of Colombia at the ColomBIOdiversity Festival, which features an environmental film fest, children’s workshops, and fantastical flower sculptures.

Summer

June sees a decrease in rainfall as well as the longest days of the year. Meanwhile, temps mirror those of May. In July, the humidity dips slightly, though daylight hours remain long. The average temperature, like June, continues to hover at around 73 degrees Fahrenheit (22.7 degrees Celsius). Days stay long in August, and the sun shines for just over 10 hours a day, making August Medellin’s sunniest month. Humidity remains at its lowest all year, at 79 percent, and evenings are pleasantly cool.

Events to check out:

  • Slide across the dance floor at Medellin’s International Tango Festival and World Championships. Free tango concerts and milongas spring up throughout the city, and attendees explore the historic Tango Route.
  • The International Poetry Festival takes place from the last few days of June through the first week of July. National and international poets read their works in public spaces.
  • During the last week of July, Colombia’s Fashion Week, Colombiamoda, hosts an exhibition, runway shows, and after-parties with the country’s up-and-coming designers and producers.
  • Buy flowers, see singing competitions, and attend the parades of flower growers and pickers at the Feria de las Flores (Flower Festival) for 10 days in August.

Fall

In September, rainfall increases slightly, although the temperature continues to hover around 73 degrees Fahrenheit (22.7 degrees Celsius). The sun shines less, but the days stay long, with the city seeing more than 12 hours of daylight on average. Come October, the temperature stays almost the same as September, and the sun shines about an hour less. The rain also increases in October, with showers occurring about 24 days out of the month. The coldest and most humid month, November has some of the shortest days of the year, seeing 11.8 hours of daylight.

Events to check out:

  • Local and international musicians play jazz, salsa, and more at the Festival Internacional de Jazz (Medellin International Jazz Festival), a 10-day event at the beginning of September. Catch the main acts at El Club de Jazz del Parque Comercial El Tesoro.
  • The Medellín Book and Culture Festival comes to the Botanical Garden over 10 days in September. The flurry of 2,000 events includes book releases, storytelling, and illustration workshops.
  • In the first week of October, the Bird Festival celebrates the city's fine feathered friends with bird watching, movie screenings, and workshops.
  • Plaza Mayor hosts the Colombia Salsa Festival the last week of November.
Article Sources
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  1. Time and Date. "Climate & Weather Averages in Medellin, Colombia." Retrieved on January 28, 2022.

  2. Time and Date. "Holidays and Observances in Colombia in 2022." Retrieved on January 28, 2022.

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