Visiting Russia is full of challenges, not least the weather. Winter stays around a long time, and it's not appealing for travelers. If you plan on ignoring that weather constraint in favor of likely cheaper flights and accommodations, you can expect temperatures to be cold but not unbearable in Moscow in March.
The beginning of the month has an average high of 28 F, with the average low falling to 16 miserable degrees. But by the end of the month, the temperature will, on average, rise to a relatively comfortable 41 F, with the low at 28 F. Quite an improvement. More good news: The length of the day increases by more than two hours from the beginning of March to the end.
But there is some bad news: It will be cloudy most of the time, and the chances of precipitation (probably snow) are high. Both of these negative situations improve as the month goes on. Suffice it to say, the weather in Moscow in March is a negative aspect. The flip side is that you will have the tourist attractions mostly to yourself and likely will pay less for flights and accommodations in this low tourist season. Big bonus: Moscow's landmarks look sparkling in the snow.
What to Pack
Pack for winter weather when you travel to Moscow in March, regardless of when in the month you plan to be there. In particularly cold years, snow might still be on the ground or it might arrive while you are there and hang around for a while, perhaps your entire stay. Include all your cold-weather accessories in your luggage—a warm scarf, gloves, and hat—so you'll have them if you need them, which is pretty much of a certainty.
It might be fun to buy a fur hat in Moscow, where the selection is no doubt terrific. So leave room in your bag if you're thinking of that as an apt souvenir. Take along heavy-weight jeans, pullover sweaters in lightweight and packable but warm cashmere, vests, and a warm winter coat. If you have one with a hood, that would be a smart choice. If you plan to do a lot of walking, you'll also want warm socks and shoes that will keep your feet warm. Flat knee-high boots or flat ankle boots with rubber or composition soles (not leather) are the shoes of choice.
Then no matter how much it snows, you'll be ready for non-slip walking.
There are many holidays and activities to enjoy when visiting Moscow in March. Plan ahead so you don't miss out.
- Maslenitsa—also known as Butter Week, Crepe week, or Cheesefare Week—is an Eastern Slavic religious and folk holiday that usually falls the last week before Lent. Head to Red Square to take part in this hugely popular farewell-to-winter festival.
- March 8th is International Women's Day in Russia. It's a celebration of sisters, wives, mothers, grandmothers, and other special women in your life.
- St. Patrick's Day in Moscow is celebrated the week of March 17th. Check ahead for scheduled events related to this fun-filled Irish holiday, which is a big deal in Russia where on this one day, everyone's wearing green.