A Great Place
When should you visit very special and unique places in the world that touch you? Places with an atmosphere you can’t describe or where you even get overwhelmed with emotion.
It’s a great destination all year round, but it should be sunny or at least dry. The rocks are utterly exposed, it can be windy and it’s not pleasant with rain. In September and October, beautiful proteas and wildflowers are in bloom.
Paarl Rock is still a "hidden" gem and more known by the South Africans. Therefore, on weekends and public holidays, it’s a bit crowded especially the braai (BBQ) areas. At weekdays enjoy the tranquility on top of the rocks.
The “dry” season lasts from November to March. In summer it can get hot around midday. Bring a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Most rainfall from May to August with its peak in June. In winter temperatures range from 8 to about 16^C.
Opening Hours of the Paarl Rock Nature Reserve
- Summer: 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. (1 Oct – 31 March)
- Winter: 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. (1 April – 30 Sept)
- Last entry 1 hour before closure times.
Thanks to the good road, this place can be visited all year round. It is very popular and thus can become crowded with tourists. The summer months of July and August is always the busiest time of the year, as tour buses arrive during the day. The best time of day to visit the place and to avoid the crowds is early morning or in the evening. Being there at 9:00 AM, even in peak season, gives you enough time to enjoy the place without many other visitors. During off and shoulder season it's less busy. However, it's still a good idea to visit early and enjoy the place in solitude.
Highlights (Puffin Watching)
Puffins can be spotted from April until the end of August. Sometimes until early or even mid-September. To be on the safe side for Puffin viewing, visit between May and August. Usually, the best weather is a calm day. When it's very windy you'll have a hard time finding them.
Long, cold winters. Mild, but short summers. The warmest months are from June to August and a great time for hiking. In spring the weather is unpredictable: Cold and even snow can linger into April and May. A warm jacket and rain gears are a must-have in spring. Fall months, especially SEPTEMBER and early OCTOBER may be the best months with mild weather, fewer crowds and lots of wildlife. In winter heavy snowfall occurs from December to March.
Avoiding Tourist Crowds:
July and August are also the peak tourist months. Crowds start to thin out after Labor Day in September. In October it even gets much quieter. A perfect month to enjoy many places without many others. Just keep in mind that a lot of facilities close sometime in October and November: NPS Yellowstone - Operating Hours.
Please note, that September became busier in the recent years. It's less busy than in summer but not a super quiet shoulder month anymore. Follow our September Tips:
- Go mid-September, as it gets quieter. A great sweet spot week is the last week in September.
Go as early as possible. If you get up early you'll avoid heavy traffic at the busy areas like Old Faithful or elk rutting spots along the road.
Another great month is the first week of June with warm weather and fewer crowds before the peak summer season starts. Again, keep in mind that June became much busier recently: Go early in the morning and try to avoid weekends.
Best in the late afternoon - the crowds from the cruise ship may have left the gorge and the sunlight is shinning to the entrance of the gorge. Very early morning it is not crowded but it is not the best time of the day, the gorge is in shadow. It is very popular so if a cruise ship has docked in Roseau harbour it might be crowded the whole day same at weekends.
The dry season last from Dec. until April/May. This is also the peak tourist season. Anyway this is one of the wettest regions in the world with 7 liters of rain each year. The climate is humid tropical. The driest month is March and the wettest is August.
Best known for its fall season colors, the Parkway is beautiful and has treasures to offer ANY TIME of the YEAR. However, some sections get closed in winter during heavy snow. Check road conditions via the interactive map: Blue Ridge Parkway Real Time Status. Campgrounds are open from April/May until the end of October.
Highlight (Fall Colors):
Best time to catch the peak fall colors: Visit between MID-OCTOBER and LATE OCTOBER. Don't just visit one spot. Instead drive a while to be on different elevations. Some of the best spots to catch the fall colors: Fall Color Spots – Blue Ridge Mountains
Avoiding the Crowds:
It's busy on the road in fall. Especially mileposts can become crowded. Try to avoid weekends in autumn and get there early in the morning for an amazing experience. The morning light is also great for photos.