15 Best March destinations in Europe in 2022

If you are coming to Europe in March you are obviously not looking for sunbathing destinations. Still, many of Europe’s best and most popular cities have surprisingly decent weather in March, so it can be an excellent time for a city visit. More good news is that most of southern Europe is mostly dry in March, so a light jacket or sweater is probably all you’ll need most of the time.

If you are looking for a warm-weather destination in March you should probably think about Asia or perhaps the Caribbean. As long as you don’t need it to be actually hot, the Canary Islands are warm and pleasant enough that some people do sunbathe in March, so it’s the first place on the list below.

Notable March 2022 holidays in Europe

  • March 17 – St. Patrick’s Day (Mostly USA and Ireland)
  • March 19 – St. Joseph’s Day (public holiday in Switzerland, parts of Spain, and a few other places)

Europe's only March beach destination

Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

  • March avg high: 71F/22C
  • March avg low: 60F/16C
  • March avg precip: 1.1″/2.8cm

The only destination that is technically in Europe that has warm enough weather for sunbathing in March is the Canary Islands, just off the southern coast of Morocco. Since they are officially part of Spain they count as being in Europe, and they are quite popular this time of year because of that fact and how easy they are to reach from Britain and Scandinavia in particular.

Tenerife is the largest of the islands and the one that is most oriented towards English speakers, so it’s the first choice of many. You’ll be surprised at how many people are sunbathing in Tenerife when it’s just barely warm enough. Fortunately, the evenings don’t get cold and there usually isn’t much wind, so it feels quite nice. The best climate can be found in the southwest corner of the island near Los Cristianos.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €58 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €79 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €17 per person

>>>Check hotel deals for Tenerife
>>>Tenerife prices and travel tips

The destinations below at least have decent March weather, and plenty to see this month

Rome, Italy

  • March avg high: 60F/16C
  • March avg low: 42F/6C
  • March avg precip: 2.6″/6.5cm

Since Rome’s top attractions such as the Vatican Museum and Ancient Rome can be so insanely crowded during the warmer months, March is pretty much perfect for a visit for most people. The crowds are still far smaller than during summer and hotel prices are still way down as well. You can even wander a bit off the beaten track and feel like you are one of the only tourists in town.

Flights to Rome are also reasonably priced in March, so it’s a good month to begin a trip beginning here and heading up through Florence and Venice (mentioned below). Easter is April 17 in 2022 so March will be quieter than usual.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €52 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €59 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €23 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Rome
>>>Rome prices and travel tips

Florence, Italy

  • March avg high: 59F/15C
  • March avg low: 41F/5C
  • March avg precip: 3.2″/8.0cm

If you are going to be visiting Rome (above) you should also include Florence on that trip. The cities are only about 90 minutes apart by high-speed train, so you could technically visit Florence as a day trip. But really you are better off staying at least a few nights because Florence is more peaceful than Rome, and has a lot to offer.

Florence itself is filled with top museums and other sights such as the famous cathedral, but it also makes for an ideal base for day trips. Pisa is only an hour away, and Siena is only a bit farther, while there are several hill towns that make for wonderful excursions as well. Florence is the capital of Tuscany so it’s known as a food and wine center. Hotel prices are a bit lower than in Rome as well.

By the way, Venice is still a bit chilly in March, but it’s still worth a visit if you have an extra day or two. The Carnivale celebrations are huge here and they run from February 8 to February 25 in 2020, so you’d have to come earlier to get involved.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €52 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €74 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €23 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Florence
>>>Florence prices and travel tips

Paris, France

  • March avg high: 55F/13C
  • March avg low: 43F/6C
  • March avg precip: 2.1″/5.3cm

If you read our remarks about Rome above, and about how March is the last month before summer to avoid massive crowds, they apply equally to Paris as well. As you can see, it’s still a bit chilly in Paris in March, but that will also enable you to wear some of your more fashionable outfits that you could never wear on a summer visit.

As you’d expect, hotel rates in March are quite reasonable in Paris, and airfares are modest as well. This city just doesn’t get much rain at any time during the year, and March is yet another fairly dry month, so you can probably leave the umbrella at home. The most popular attractions such as the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower are less crowded as well. Consider a Paris Pass if you intend on hitting many of the top attractions in only a few days.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €85 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €98 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €31 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Paris
>>>Paris prices and travel tips

Nice, France

  • March avg high: 59F/15C
  • March avg low: 46F/8C
  • March avg precip: 2.4″/6.0cm

Nice is mostly known as a summer retreat for French and English people with means, but it’s also a lovely city on the Mediterranean and an ideal second city to visit in France after Paris. The March climate is warm enough to spend a fair amount of time out of doors, which is not something you can say about many other European cities. In fact, this area used to be more of a winter resort for people escaping the cold and snow to the north.

In addition to a pleasant historic town center, Nice is an ideal base for exploring the French Riviera. Cannes and Antibes are very short train rides away to the west, and Monaco is about 20 minutes by train to the east. If you want to do those day trips then getting a more affordable hotel in the area of the train station is wise.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €47 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €69 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €17 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Nice
>>>Nice prices and travel tips

London, England

  • March avg high: 51F/11C
  • March avg low: 39F/4C
  • March avg precip: 1.9″/4.8cm

Since London never really has reliably good weather, it can be worthwhile to visit in March when you know it’s going to be chilly but probably won’t rain much. At least the hotel rates are way down and the crowds are far smaller than during summer. London feels really overloaded from June through September so an off-season visit can be more enjoyable by comparison.

Being a city where most of the famous attractions are indoors and has an excellent public transport system, visiting in March won’t feel much different from visiting in July, except you won’t have a zillion other tourists to compete with at every turn.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €69 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €126 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €24 per person

>>Check hotel deals for London
>>>London prices and travel tips

Barcelona, Spain

  • March avg high: 61F/16C
  • March avg low: 44F/7C
  • March avg precip: 1.7″/4.3cm

It’s obviously still a bit cool in Barcelona in March, but it’s warm enough to stroll around and enjoy the fascinating architecture with very little chance of rain. Really the main feature of a March visit will be to be clear of the monstrous crowds that now take Barcelona over from May through September.

This is a city that can be too hot for many in July and August, so these shoulder-season visits will be more comfortable for anyone who doesn’t love sweating. Of course the hotel rates are still way down as well, just as you’d expect this time of year. You’ll definitely want to also visit Madrid, mentioned below, which is only 3 hours away on a high-speed train.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €55 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €77 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €27 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Barcelona
>>>Barcelona prices and travel tips

Madrid, Spain

  • March avg high: 60F/16C
  • March avg low: 42F/6C
  • March avg precip: 1.0″/2.5cm

You can see that Madrid has a similar climate to Barcelona in March, but it typically gets even less rainfall. It’s best to visit both cities on the same trip because they are both huge, filled with interesting sights, and surprisingly different from one another.

Madrid is where you’ll find the Royal Palace and the Prado Museum, and the city center is also more dense and more city-like than Barcelona. The famous nightlife goes pretty much all year round in both cities, so you can dress up a bit in the cooler weather but still leave your umbrella at home.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €45 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €69 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €18 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Madrid
>>>Madrid prices and travel tips

Malaga, Spain

  • March avg high: 64F/18C
  • March avg low: 46F/8C
  • March avg precip: 2.1″/5.3cm

The best March climate in Spain can be found in the historic city of Malaga along the Mediterranean coast. This is the gateway to the Costa del Sol resort towns, but those tend to be very quiet this time of year so staying in Malaga itself is probably a better idea.

It’s not quite warm enough for sunbathing in Malaga in March, though it can be close late in the month. Even so, this city has a proper downtown with shopping, restaurants, bars, and other attractions. Flights into Malaga are fairly cheap this time of year, and if you are coming from Madrid they can be even cheaper than the train, depending on when you buy.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €53 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €81 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €16 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Malaga
>>>Malaga prices and travel tips

Lisbon, Portugal

  • March avg high: 66F/19C
  • March avg low: 48F/9C
  • March avg precip: 1.9″/4.8cm

While Spain has the reputation for the sunniest and warmest part of Europe during winter, it’s really Portugal that deserves the crown more. Lisbon is a wonderful and historic city with a surprisingly good climate all year round. This city is also unusually cheap for Europe, especially for how posh the historic center feels. Hotel rates in March are even more reasonable, of course.

Some people start a Europe tour by flying into Lisbon and then taking the overnight train to Madrid, or flying to Madrid or somewhere else. If you are starting a Europe tour in March it can be good to start in a place like Lisbon with a nice climate, and then head north as temperatures climb a bit each week. Lisbon is actually known for excellent hostels, so even if you aren’t a backpacker you might consider a private room in a hostel because they also include something of a social life built in.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €39 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €58 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €18 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Lisbon
>>>Lisbon prices and travel tips

Split, Croatia

  • March avg high: 57F/14C
  • March avg low: 46F/8C
  • March avg precip: 2.5″/6.3cm

Most people are far more aware of Dubrovnik, which is a bit down the coast of Croatia from Split and just a bit warmer as well. But Dubrovnik’s historic center is also much smaller and far more expensive than Split’s, so many people prefer going here instead. The March weather is pleasant, even if you’ll need to wear a jacket or sweater still.

Split is actually even a bit older than Dubrovnik and the white-on-white marble city center is very similar. Better still, Split is a real city where tourists eat among locals and there is always something going on. Dubrovnik’s walled city is almost 100% tourists, so it feels more artificial even though it’s quite impressive. You can visit both if you are in the area, and hotel rates this time of year are very reasonable. Local apartment rentals called “sobes” are abundant and usually cheaper than hotels.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €31 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €36 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €24 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Split
>>>Split prices and travel tips

Athens, Greece

  • March avg high: 60F/16C
  • March avg low: 44F/7C
  • March avg precip: 1.6″/4.0cm

Many people visit Athens for a few days on their way to visit one of the islands, but the islands are virtually closed down until after Easter, so in March you’ll want to just focus on the mainland. Athens is one of Europe’s cheaper large cities, and it’s obviously one of the most historic cities in the world. Hotel rates in March are very reasonable, and the attractions such as the Acropolis and Archeological Museum are far less crowded.

If you really want to also visit an island you might consider SantoriniMykonos, or Rhodes. Those are the largest and most popular islands for tourists, and they have town centers that are going all year round.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €45 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €57 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €11 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Athens
>>>Athens prices and travel tips

Valletta, Malta

  • March avg high: 61F/16C
  • March avg low: 50F/10C
  • March avg precip: 1.9″/4.8cm

You’ll be excused if you only know Malta from the Maltese Falcon because this small island just south of Sicily is really only popular with Brits and some Scandinavians. But you can see above that its southern location gives is a very pleasant climate this time of year, and it’s a very friendly and easy to visit island as well. Since it was once run by Britain, English is one of the official languages and everyone in the tourism industry speaks it fluently.

It obviously won’t be warm enough for sunbathing, but it’ll be pleasant to spend a lot of time outdoors. The capital city of Valletta is quite small and compact, so most visitors will have a better time staying in Sliema, which is a short ferry ride across the bay from Valletta. There are many other villages along the waterfront, with plenty of good restaurants and nightlife never far away.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €61 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €68 for two people

>>Check hotel deals for Valletta
>>>Valletta prices and travel tips

Reykjavik, Iceland

  • March avg high: 38F/3C
  • March avg low: 28F/-2C
  • March avg precip: 3.2″/8.0cm

We’ve listed this suggestion as ‘Reykjavik,’ which is obviously the capital, but really you’ll probably only be visiting the city on your way in or out of the country. March is the last full month of the best Northern Lights viewing, which is best done in smaller towns and rural areas far away from Reykjavik itself. Some people visit Iceland in December, January, or February for the Northern Lights, but you can’t do much else in those months because the days are so short. In March the sun is out for around 12 hours each day, although it is low in the sky.

Another reason to visit Iceland in March is that it’s before the busy summer season begins so you won’t be competing with all of the other tourists. Hotel rates are more affordable, although prices have been going up so even the cheaper places may feel a bit expensive at this point. Still, this is an amazing island and it becomes the favorite destination in the world for many who visit, including yours truly.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €109 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €147 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €35 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Reykjavik
>>>Reykjavik prices and travel tips

Interlaken, Switzerland

  • March avg high: 50F/10C
  • March avg low: 33F/1C
  • March avg precip: 3.2″/8.0cm

If you are touring around Europe and you want to catch the most amazing Alpine views possible, you’ll want to head to the Interlaken area. There are observation decks such as Schilthorn and scenic railways such as Jungfraujoch with views that you will never forget if you catch them on a clear day.

The Interlaken area is also home to quite a few ski centers, and there should still be good snow in March. But it’s also an adventure and trekking area so there is something interesting to do all year round. Hotel rates near ski lifts can be pricey, but hotels in towns without ski lifts can be good bargains this time of year.

  • Good 3-star hotels in March from €76 for two people
  • Good 4-star hotels in March from €128 for two people
  • Hostel dorm beds in March from €23 per person

>>Check hotel deals for Interlaken
>>>Interlaken prices and travel tips

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All Comments

  1. Hemanshu says:

    Thank you for quick reply. I have made my mind to go to Italy.

    My itinerary (month: end of March)
    Flight from London to Rome
    Arrive in afternoon in Rome
    3 nights in Rome (leave late on 4th day)
    1 night in Pisa (arrive late from Rome, night stay and Pisa tower next morning)
    2 nights in Venice (arrive in evening, stroll nearby, 1 full day in Venice, half next day – may be do one of the small island Murano)
    2 nights in Lake Garda – may be south (arrive in evening, stroll nearby, 1 full day doing half boat ride, 1 or 2 towns to choose from Sirmione, Malcesine, Limone and Garda – which ones?)
    Next morning flight – return to London from Verona airport

    Is this too much for the first time visitor by a couple or doable – any other suggestion? Have planned this way to avoid backtracking. Not considering Florence for this time. Traveling to other cities is via fast trains only.

  2. Hemanshu says:

    Hi Roger, fantastic article and its really helpful. Can I consider Amsterdam and Brussels in March? Also should I prefer Rome-Florence-Venice over Amsterdam-Brussels? I am planning for 5-6 nights (for Ams-Brus I will choose less). I do not like wet and overcast weather. Thanks in advance.

    1. Roger Wade says:


      Especially if you don’t like wet or overcast weather, I’d definitely choose Italy. Amsterdam and Brussels are overcast often even in summer, and in March they will be chilly and possibly rainy as well. You might get a little rain and clouds in Italy, but it will definitely be warmer and more pleasant. I love Amsterdam and I even lived there for a while in 2005, so it’s mostly just about the lousy weather you’d probably get in March. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

  3. Georgen says:

    My husband and I only have a week in March, any recommendation on where in Europe to go? Florence 3 days is included as a destination any suggestions where to next we always prefer off the beaten path small towns when in Europe. Thank you!

    1. Roger Wade says:


      If you only have a week and you are definitely spending 3 days in Florence, I’d stay in Italy for the remaining 4 days. The obvious choices are Venice and Rome, but I have to assume that since you didn’t mention those that you’ve already been there. In March it might be good to go to Sicily, since it will be a bit warmer there. Palermo is the main town and it’s not nearly as touristy as Florence, Venice, and Rome.

      Another interesting choice in Italy is Sorrento, which is just south of Naples. It’s fairly touristy, but it’s a fantastic place to stay for a few days because it’s lovely and the ideal place to visit Naples, Pompeii, the Amalfi Coast, and the Isle of Capri. Those are my best options with the information you provided. Let me know if you have any questions. -Roger

  4. Jessica says:


    Thank you for this great article! My mother and I have secured flights to and from Munich, arriving on the 19th March and departing on the 29th March 2019. My brother will be joining us for the initial week or so if this trip and wishes to visit Geneva, for a visit to CERN. He will then depart on the 24th March from Munich. I am trying desperately to create an itinerary thereafter for my mother and I- and was hoping to visit Prague-Vienna-Budapest. I see now that this may not be possible unless I change my departure date, ir fly directly to Prague from Geneva. I’m also concerned that this may be too much activity for my mum, who is in her sixties. What are our other options from Geneva? Croatia, perhaps? She is more likely to be interested in culture and history, And loves visiting gardens- though it may not quite yet be the season for that.., I’m hesitant to take her to a bustling city like Rome..Perhaps it is also because I have travelled extensively in Italy, and wish to travel elsewhere. she has been to France and Greece before, and I would like her to experience something different- I doubt that Geneva will very affordable- and in addition to travel cost, I also want to consider shorter travel times on trains/ flights as these tire my mother tremendously.. please help!

    1. Roger Wade says:


      If you have a 10-day trip and are spending your first 5 days in Geneva, it would be impossible to squeeze those 3 other cities in. I should also mention that Geneva has a lovely location on a lake, but it’s not really much of a tourist city. You might have a quick look at my main article on where to go in Switzerland. With 5 days to spare I’d recommend choosing two cities, and hopefully ones that are less than 5 hours apart by train.

      I just checked quite a few train times from Geneva and the only city that can be reached in less than 5 hours or so is Paris, so if you don’t want to go to France it might be best to fly out of Geneva Airport. You could fly to Vienna and then two days later take a train to Prague for 3 days and then fly home from there? Croatia has limited train service that is also slow, so you’d have to fly into Split or Dubrovnik. This is a challenge. I think Vienna and perhaps Salzburg are probably great choices. I’m not sure how much help I’ve been, but I’m happy to answer other questions if you have them. -Roger

  5. Raja says:

    I am planning my honeymoon in April 2019 for 15 days. Have decided Paris and Rome for 11 days. Couldn’t decide on the third option for the remaining 4 days between Barcelona, Vienna and Amsterdam. We want something with museum, less touristy, easy accessibility and more walking. Kindly suggest.

    1. Roger Wade says:


      That should be an amazing honeymoon. Eleven days is actually a long time for Paris and Rome so you might want to move a bit more quickly. Paris is really gorgeous, but you can see all of the things that interest you in 4 days or maybe 5. Rome is also a fascinating place, but it’s also quite hectic and many people are happy to see the main sights in 3 or maybe 4 days and then move on. You could always go to Florence and/or Venice as well, as they are all connected by fast and short train rides.

      Barcelona, Vienna, and Amsterdam all have great museums, and I’d say Amsterdam is most famous for that. But they are all quite touristy (because they are so interesting). All three are all flat so walking is quite easy. Amsterdam is the most compact of the three, although the main sights in Vienna are all in a small area in the center as well. Barcelona is larger and more spread out. It’s hard to choose between them and you’d have to fly in and out, so I’d pick the one that interests you most. I think Amsterdam is the most interesting, but Barcelona will have nicer weather in April. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

  6. Julie says:

    Glad I found this site. My 2 kids (19, 20) and I are trying to decide between Iceland or Lisbon for early March 2019. I know Iceland will be colder, but I think the sites would be more spectacular. Any recommendations, comments would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

    1. Roger Wade says:


      That is a tough one. Iceland is literally my favorite destination in the world, but as you say, March is before even the shoulder season and it’ll be chilly. On the other hand, Lisbon has a fairly mild winter and it should be quite nice in March. I think I’d probably vote for Lisbon for this trip and then hopefully you can schedule an Iceland trip closer to summer. Let me know if you have any questions. -Roger

  7. Chett says:

    Sorry, quick follow up as an additional option to my questions above. I just checked one way tickets from Zurich to Madrid, Spain and we can fly one way to Madrid for about $50 per person. Another option would be to fly into Zurich and spend a couple days in Switzerland. We could fly out of Switzerland and spend a couple days in Madrid then catch a train to Barcelona for a couple days and fly back to Zurich for our flight home. Thoughts?

  8. Chett says:


    First, I want to thank you for your diligence in maintaining such a wonderful resource of information here on this site. I used your site, the comments from others, and some advice you shared after i asked questions a few years ago to plan a trip for my wife and I to visit Paris and various places in Italy for our first ever trip to Europe to celebrate our 20th anniversary. It was a fantastic trip and we want to take our teenage children (15 and 17) to Europe for spring break this year during mid March. I’ve found some fantastic prices for round trip tickets for around $500 from an airport a few hours from our house to the following European destinations:


    Here’s my question. We have about eight days to travel and I would like to visit a few different countries over the eight days. What would you recommend as a starting/finishing point (among the locations listed) and method to see as much as possible (without overwhelming ourselves) in the short time we have?

    1. Roger Wade says:


      I’m glad you find this site helpful, and I apologize for the slow reply this time, as I’m on a cruise and in Barbados at the moment.

      If you have 8 days to travel I’d recommend choosing 3 cities to visit and spending 3 days in two and 2 days in one. In March I don’t think I’d recommend northern Europe. I like the idea in your other comment about Switzerland and Spain. You could fly into Zurich and spend 2 or 3 days in the Interlaken area, and then fly to Madrid for 2 or 3 days and then a train to Barcelona for your remaining 2 or 3 days. Switzerland is amazing all year round, and Spain will have mild weather in March. Let me know if you have other questions and I’ll have more time to respond in a couple days. -Roger

  9. Nils says:

    I think you need to reconsider your pricing of Lisbon. A central 3 star hotel is consistently impossible to find for less than 60€, anf that the average price is 37€ now is way off!! It’s not that cheap anymore.

    1. Roger Wade says:


      Thank you for the comment and I really appreciate people caring about the accuracy of our information. Those hotel rates for Lisbon say:

      Good 3-star hotels in March from €37 for two people
      Good 4-star hotels in March from €57 for two people
      Hostel dorm beds in March from €19 per person

      In other words, the absolute cheapest 3-star hotel in Lisbon in the month of March that gets good reviews was €37 when we checked it. I just checked it again now and there are some places that are even lower. In summer those rates will be higher, of course, but March is a slow month so it’s not surprising that deals are available. And again, those aren’t AVERAGE room rates, they are the minimum, for comparison to other cities on the list. London, for example, starts at €67 for a 3-star in March, so that helps you know that Lisbon is cheaper, at least for hotels.

      It’s pretty much impossible to figure out an “average” price for hotel rooms, so at least telling readers the bottom of the market for price gives them something to compare cities with. -Roger

  10. Erin says:

    Greetings Roger- We are trying to decide where to take our 3 daughters (19, 15 and 12) for spring break, which is March 9th through the 17, 2019. My husband and I have both lived in London (which we love and would enjoy showing our girls) but I have several relatives living in Dublin and the surrounding area that might be happy to play “tour guides” for a bit. We also have relatives living in Lengwil, (Thurgau Canton, Switzerland) and also near split, Croatia. For which of these cities would you cast you vote? We are looking for an immersion in history, culture and nature. We don’t need beaches and warm weather. Cost is something to consider but we understand what we are getting into having lived in Europe previously. Your opinion is appreciated!

    1. Roger Wade says:


      It sounds like you’ve got some really nice options with some interesting base cities. Any of them would be a good choice, but for a mid March trip I’d worry that Ireland might be a bit gloomy. Personally, I like Dublin, but to me the real “magic” of a visit to Ireland is the small towns and castles and scenery and whatnot. In other words, if this was a May or September trip I might lean towards Ireland. In March I think Croatia might be a better choice and you can do Ireland another time. The weather in the Split area will be reasonably mild (at least compared to northern Europe) and the crowds will be small. If you go to Croatia you should try to make it to Plitvice Falls National Park if you can, and especially on a sunny day. It’s one of Europe’s best natural sights.

      Speaking of nature, you really can’t beat Switzerland for natural beauty and in March there will be snow on most of the mountains still. Have a look at my article on where to go in Switzerland for my advice about seeing the best in a short visit. You may know that Switzerland is very expensive, even compared to its neighbors, but if you have a place to stay near Zurich for at least part of your trip that would cut costs down. You could invest in either some Swiss Travel Passes or at least the Half Fare Cards to keep the train travel cheap. If you can pull off a Switzerland trip in an affordable way it would be my top pick. If not then I’d choose Croatia over Ireland at that time of year, although I’m sure you’d really enjoy any of them. Let me know if you have any other questions and I hope this helped. -Roger