Longer Days, Snowdrops and Loads to Do
Between New Year's and Good Friday there is not a single Bank Holiday in the UK. People compensate by finding their own ways of having fun - and February is just crammed with festivals and special events.
UK Climate Averages for February
A bit dryer and about twice as much sunshine as January - not to mention significantly longer days - make up for the fact that the temperature is about the same - still wintry and windy.
Here are the 30 year averages, to 2000, from the UK Met Office to help you decide what to pack:
- High - 44°F (6.9°C)
- Low - 34°F (1C)
- Average daily hours of sunshine - 2.41
- Average monthly rainfall - 2.36" (60.1mm)
- High - 41°F (5.2°C)
- Low - 32°F (-0.1°C)
- Average daily hours of sunshine - 2.075
- Average monthly rainfall - 4.86" (123.6mm)
- High - 44°F (6.6°C)
- Low - 34°F (1.1°C)
- Average daily hours of sunshine - 2.26
- Average monthly rainfall - 4.48" (114mm)
All over the UK, the hours between sunrise and sunset grow by about two hours. More time to spend sightseeing out of doors.
Culture and Heritage
- Darwin Day and The Shrewsbury Darwin Festival Throughout February, Shrewsbury celebrates its famous native son with events, walks, lectures and workshops such as the Evolution Game and Monsters in Your Garden with a mini-beast safari. Toast the great man on Darwin Day, Feb. 12. In 2013, the Darwin Festival lasts from February 10 to 23.
- Bath Literature Festival best novelists and poets from the UK and abroad. Annual event at the end of February or beginning of March(March 1 to 10 in 2013)
- Jorvik Viking Festival Jorvik Viking Centre, York, England. Annual Viking celebration and the best way to get a hands-on experience of what it would have been like to be a Viking. Feb.16-24 in 2013.
- Cornish Hurling An ancient game now only played in St. Ives on Feast Monday (The first Monday after February 3) and St. Columb Major on Shrove Tuesday. The mayor throws a silver ball from a town wall. It is passed in a rough and tumble scrum through the village and whoever has possession at noon receives a traditional reward of five shillings from the mayor.
- Olney Pancake Race , Market place, Olney, Buckinghamshire, Shrove Tuesday, Feb. 12 2013. "Housewives" in aprons run a 400 meter dash.
- Scottish National Badminton Championships Beginning of Feb.
- English Badminton Nationals Beginning of Feb.
- Six Nations Rugby International Matches between England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Italy and France, From February through early March. UK events at Murrayfield, Edinburgh; Twickenham, London; and Millennium Stadium, Cardiff.
- Ski Touring Surgery Courses National Outdoor Training Centre, Aviemore, Scotland, February.
Music and Performing Arts
- Glasgow Film Festival
- Leicester Comedy Festival UK's longest running comedy festival. Annual event. Feb. 8-24, 2013
- Showzam Blackpool's half-term festival of circus, magic and new variety. Feb. 15-24, 2013.
Food and Drink
- Derby Winter Beer Festival February 20-23, 2013 in the The Roundhouse.
- Chelmsford Winter Beer Festival February 20 to 23, 2013
- Pendle Beer Festival January 31 to February 2 at the Muni, Colne Municipal Hall, Colne, Lancashire.
- Tewksbury and Chesterfield kick off a month of beer festivals all over the UK. Check the Campaign for Real Ales website for all of them.
- Kingussie Food on Film Festival Film, food and music are all part of the party from the end of January to early February at Kingussie on the edge of the Cairngorms in Scotland.
- Rye Bay Scallop Festival The Sussex town celebrates its catch of the finest scallops in the UK. Set for Feb.2 to 10 in 2013 but check the website as it changes every year.
Next: Exhibitions, antique shows and fun events for gardeners and pet lovers.
Gardens and Pets
- Snowdrops Bloom across the National Trust Estate in February.
- Scottish Snowdrop Festival All over Scotland, a celebration of the first sign of spring. Check the website for the latest details.
- Snowdrop Weekends Waterperry Gardens, near Wheatley, Oxfordshire, throughout February.
- Annual Orchid Festival Chester Zoo in Cheshire.
Exhibitions and Shows
- Newark International Antiques Fair The largest antiques event in Europe, 4,000 stalls, Newark & Nottinghamshire showground. This event takes place six times a year so check the website for future events.
- Footman James South& Western Mini Show and Great Western Autojumble Feb. 9-10 at the Royal Bath and West Showground. The Footman James Bristol Classic Car Show has been moved to April in 2013.
- Petersfield Antiques Fair, Feb. 1-3, Festival Hall, Petersfield, Hampshire.
- Chester Antiques and Fine Art Show Feb. 14-17 2013, Chester Racecourse.
- Scottish Caravan and Outdoor Leisure Show, Feb. 7-10, 2013, Glasgow .
- Brighton Modelworld Brighton Centre, Feb. 22-24 2013.
- Animex - International Festival of Animation and Computer Games University of Teesside, Middlesbrough, Feb.18-22 2013.