Best Time to Visit

Seattle weather might have a reputation for rain, but once you dig a little deeper, you’ll find more complexity to local weather patterns. Seattle actually gets less rainfall—about 37 inches each year, on average—than cities such as New York, as it’s more prone to misty days with light rain and gray skies than to heavy storms.

Winter: While it doesn’t get as cold as cities in the northeast, the temperatures do allow for some snowfall. In Seattle, it is cloudy an average of 200 days per year, and the heaviest rainfall comes in the fall and the winter. Typically, winter days have highs in the low 40s, though they can dip into the 30s in some cases, and the low temperatures can hover around freezing. When it does snow in the city, however, it rarely sticks, so don’t expect much accumulation. The days are quite short, with less than 12 hours of daylight, so the sunshine never lasts long, even on clear days.

Spring: Seattle warms up in the spring, though consistent rain continues through April and the warmer temperatures may not arrive at the same time every year. It can be in the 60s and 70s around Memorial Day or remain in the 50s with a damp chill, so be sure to check the forecast before your trip. Regardless of temperatures, the tulips bloom around April and the landscape turns vibrant and green. The city's parks and waterfront get more popular as the weather heats up.

Summer: As most of the precipitation is in the fall and winter, the summer months are often sunny and beautiful. On hotter days, the temperatures can reach into the 80s, but highs are typically around 75 degrees, and the humidity is very low. Due to the northern latitude, it stays light until well after 9 pm, but Seattle summer evenings can be cool, typically dipping into the 60s or occasionally the high 50s, so be sure to bring a jacket even in July, which is typically the warmest month.

Fall: The temperatures cool in the fall, but days in September and October still have average highs above 60 degrees, which is perfect for walking around and enjoy the different neighborhoods. In November and December, the temperatures drop into the 50s and 40s, respectively, and as the year draws to a close, you’re much more likely to see rainy days than in September—on average, December is the wettest month. Being prepared with an umbrella or a rain jacket is always wise.

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