It is officially the start of spring, and people are itching to experience some warm weather and sunshine. Florida offers visitors miles of coastline, and cities all over the state are filled with various attractions and events.
There is a lot to choose from in Florida, so it can be easy to avoid the crowds if you need to or be the life of the party if you are celebrating spring break.
Although not many, March has also a few drawbacks as well. That’s why we provide you with every essential tip, written by a local, you need to have an unforgettable trip to Florida in March.
Bonus: For more season tips, visit our guide to Florida in the spring.
Florida has the ideal weather for springtime; sunny skies, little rainfall, low humidity, and a crisp breeze. This time of year tends to give visitors a good glimpse of summer, without the unbearable high heat and humidity levels of the upcoming season.
In Florida, average high temperatures in March range from 70°F to 79°F (21-26°C), and average lows are 56°F to 70°F (13-21°C). It is the dry season with comfortable weather. Expect a lot of sunshine, but be prepared for windy days as well. Rainfall is unlikely with a monthly average of 2.5 inches.
Due to the mostly sunny and pleasant periods but also sometimes very windy and foggy days, this month can be a little dramatic at times when it comes to weather changes.
Average high temps across the state in March:
- Miami: 77°F (25°C)
- Tampa: 77°F (25°C)
- Orlando: 79°F (26°C)
- Jacksonville: 75°F (24°C)
- Destin: 70°F (21°C)
The temperatures aren’t that much different from region to region. However, the further south you are heading in Florida, the warmer the temperatures will be, especially noticeable during the nights and in the mornings.
The average low temperatures in March show the most notable difference across the state, with the lowest temps in Daytona Beach (56°F/13°C) and the highest in Key West (70°F/21°F).
March is one of the driest months of the year and is in the middle of the dry season. Expect little rainfall during this month. As rain showers are uncommon, Florida is known for unpredictable weather, and there can always be unexpected showers from time to time.
The average rainfall in March in Florida is 2.5 inches and very rarely exceeds 4.9 inches.
Winds: As March is one of the driest months, it is also one of the windiest months of the year. There tend to be higher and more frequent winds during this month in Florida. This causes humidity levels to not feel as high and gives kitesurfers, a popular sport in the Tampa Bay region, the perfect conditions for an afternoon of fun.
Humidity is constantly high in Florida. However, humidity shouldn’t be too much of a concern during the month of March.
March has high levels of humidity in Florida, but they are not too noticeable because of the high winds. The average humidity is between 60-78% and tends to be higher in the southern and western regions, as well as in the early morning hours.
Daily Weather Progression
March tends to have drastic or unpredictable changes in weather. Expect a lot of fog, wind, sun, and potentially some overcasts as well.
Mornings tend to be extremely foggy and have higher winds, usually, till around 10 am.
Evenings: It is again cooling off in the later evening and at night.
Daily temperature progression of a southern location, Miami:
- 8 AM: 68°F
- 11 AM: 75°F
- 2 PM: 77°F
- 9 PM: 70°F
Water temperatures in most of Florida’s regions during March are often still too cold to swim without a wetsuit. However, the ocean temperature in the south is already pleasant enough. Beaches in Key West and Miami have some of the warmest waters in the state with an average of 75°F.
Waters on the Treasure Coast have fairly warm water temperatures of 74 degrees Fahrenheit. The rest of the state has water temperatures that range from 64-68 on average. Keep in mind, the northern Atlantic, as well as the panhandle, tend to have the coolest temperatures throughout the whole year in general.
Is March a Good Month?
March is a very good time to visit Florida. It offers a lot of sunshine, little rain, low humidity, and a cool breeze. The weather conditions are typically great during this month, without the unbearable heat and humidity of the upcoming summer season.
The only downside is the crowds due to spring break and snowbirds, who are still present. More about that later.
What to Pack | What to Wear
Florida has dreamy weather all year long and is the only state staying subtropical the entire year as well. You definitely don’t need your winter jacket, and you can leave your boots at home too. Spring and summer attire is all you need this month.
March tends to be a lot cooler in the mornings and evenings in Florida, with heavier winds throughout the day. Bring a light jacket or sweater you can wear when it’s chilly. However, often shorts and t-shirts are suitable. Wear outfits that can be easily layered.
During the month of March, the clothing items for Florida in your suitcase should consist of:
- Capris or loose/light pants
- T-shirts & V-necks
- Sundresses (if in southern regions)
- Jeans (if in northern regions)
- A jacket or sweater (for mornings & evenings)
- Bathing suits/cover-up
- Swim Trunks
Comfortable shoes: Comfortable shoes are a must, no matter where you go. Don’t underestimate the amount of walking you will be doing. In particular, when going to Orlando and visiting Disney World or Universal. Without comfortable walking shoes, you might end up with blisters and hurting feet at the end of the day. Please don’t wear flip-flops when going to a theme park.
Sandals: In addition to comfortable shoes, sandals with support are a good idea. They are a must when going on one of the many water rides in the parks.
Light rain jacket: It rarely rains in March but it’s still a possibility. You might want to bring one light raincoat as a precaution.
Additional items to pack:
- Small backpack or fanny pack for day trips
- Comfy walking shoes (alternative: sandals with support)
- Beach bag (filled with spring break essentials if needed)
- Water shoes (for water sports or boating)
- Water bottle for hydration
- Small portable fan
- Mickey Mouse ears for Disney.
Restaurant tip: When staying in Florida, we always keep a sweater or light jacket handy throughout the day for dining out in indoor restaurants. Since the temperature outdoors is mainly hot, the air conditioners are on full blast. If you get cold easily, this is a great tip to keep in mind.
Medications: When traveling in Florida we suggest always bringing some medicine for a headache. The Florida heat is no joke and if you aren’t used to a warm climate, this could really bring a damper to your vacation.
March tends to have higher rates for most activities, and travelers will likely see an increase in price rates as well with accommodation. Prices will vary depending on what region you are traveling in. The highest rates will be in cities that attract a lot of spring breakers and snowbirds.
- 10 Best Hotels in Orlando (via booking.com)
- 10 Best Hotels in Sarasota
- 10 Best Tampa Hotels (via booking.com)
- 10 Best Hotels in Miami
Depending on your preference and budget, you can find hostels starting at around $45 a night. Staying in an Airbnb averages around $217 a night, hotels average $50 and up a night, and full home vacation rentals can be up to $650 per night.
March is the busiest month in Florida outside of summer. Many locals don’t like March, especially in busier cities that are attractive to spring breakers. Expect higher crowds for spring break, especially in the Panhandle region, as well as the Northern Atlantic coast, and southern Miami.
Snowbirds are still present in Florida this month as well, so there are still higher crowds in areas such as St. Pete, Clearwater, and Fort Myers.
St. Patrick’s Day: There will be various festivals and events happening around the state celebrating St. Patrick’s Day this month, the 17th. Expect higher crowds during this weekend.
Spring Break: Spring breakers tend to spend their week at beaches and theme parks. The entire month will be filled with visitors, due to schools having different spring break schedules.
Popular destinations for spring breakers are:
- Panama City Beach
- Daytona Beach
Beach crowds: Always remember, it is Florida, so beaches are always going to be relatively crowded. Florida is mostly surrounded by coastline. There are dozens of options for travelers wanting to relax, explore, and party.
Places to Visit / Things to Do in March
Heading to Florida doesn’t mean just visiting Orlando (Disney, Universal, Sea World) and the beaches across the state. Beaches and theme parks aren’t the only way to have fun in Florida in March. There are countless options to immerse yourself in nature and the outdoors in the sunshine state during this month.
Whether you are celebrating spring break, looking to let loose at a festival, relax on the beach, go hiking, or camping: Florida has something for everyone to enjoy this time of the year.
The coastline of Florida is a vacation hotspot all year round because of the gorgeous beaches. March attracts a lot of visitors due to spring break, and they tend to flock to the beaches. However, not all beaches are so popular with spring breakers, and the beach options are endless in the sunshine state.
The Florida Keys is one of our personal favorites this time of year. It also has some of the best snorkeling and diving spots in the country!
Anna Maria Island and the Cultural Coast will have a more relaxed atmosphere, and lower crowds. Expect higher winds, cooler water temperatures of 66 degrees Fahrenheit, and beautiful coastline sights.
Panhandle (Destin, Panama City) Panama city is one of the busiest beaches in the entire state when it comes to spring break. Expect high crowds of younger people, free concerts, and a lot of interesting nightlife.
Miami Beach/South Beach will always be rather busy due to its popularity, warm waters, and spring break during this month too. The waters here will be on average 74 degrees Fahrenheit.
Jacksonville and the Space Coast are the original ‘spring break’ spots. Up and Down the northern Atlantic Coast are popular hotspots for young vacationers, with cooler water temperatures ranging from 60-66 degrees Fahrenheit.
The average high temperatures in Orlando hover around 79°F (26.1°C) in March. Especially in the second half of the month, rainfall increases.
Crowds: Expect higher crowds this time of year. March is one of the busiest months for tourists and visitors in Orlando outside of summer. A high number of younger crowds will be present due to spring break.
Universal Studios | Orlando
Universal Studios is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Florida. March offers some of the best weather for a trip to Universal. This month the park hosts the Mardi Gras celebration, as well as spring breakers. Thus, expect higher crowds, especially on weekends.
- Tip: Hotels in Universal Studio Resort (stay there to save time)
Is the park-to-park ticket worth it? The park-to-park ticket allows you to roam between the three parks (see below) on the same day. You definitely should get it if you are a Harry Potter fan, as you can only ride the Hogwarts Express with this ticket.
Additionally, some visitors always get the park-to-park ticket as they love to move around, particularly if it’s too busy in one park (for example, if you visit on a weekend. It just gives you more flexibility.
Skip-the-line-ticket: The crowds in March are higher, so it might be wise to go to Universal Studios with the express/skip-the-line ticket.
Three parks: Universal Studios is not just one park. There are a total of three Universal parks, each with its own theme and unique attractions:
- Universal Studios Florida
- Islands of Adventure
- Volcano Bay Water Park
Walt Disney World | Orlando (Nearby)
Disney World is Florida’s most prominent attraction and perfect for a spring day in March. Temperatures are comfortable enough to enjoy the entire day without worrying about the weather. Conditions are almost perfect but expect higher crowds due to spring break and Mickey’s St. Patrick’s Day Festival.
While Disney World features multiple attractions, including water parks and golf courses, its main attractions are the four theme parks:
- Magic Kingdom
- Animal Kingdom
- Hollywood Studios
Tickets: For a hassle-free experience, get the base tickets in advance: Walt Disney World Orlando – Admission Base Tickets 2-7 days (mobile voucher or printed voucher)
How many days? 5-7 days are recommended for the best Disney World experience. If you only have two or three days in March, visit Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom or Epcot. Magic Kingdom is the best park as its rides and attractions have more magic than anything else.
In general, plan 1-2 days for each of the four parks in Disney World Orlando. Park experts recommend two days for each park, except Animal Kingdom, which can be easily done within a day.
SeaWorld | Orlando
When visiting SeaWorld in Orlando, you get the fantastic chance to see penguins, otters, dolphins, and other amazing sea creatures up close. The park, like most others this month, will have higher crowds. SeaWorld also hosts Bands, Brews, and BBQ, a festival filled with craft beer and live music.
5 tips for a perfect SeaWorld visit in March:
- Make reservations in advance: It’s not fun waiting in a long line, especially since March is a busy time. Save time and money by purchasing (mobile or printed voucher) tickets in advance: Park Admission Ticket Reservation
- Pack a light sweater: While March offers pleasant temperatures in Orlando, the animal exhibits and aquariums which are not outside can get quite chilly. A sweater helps if you get cold easily.
- Arrive early at the shows: As the number of daily shows is limited, they often fill up quickly. In particular, the dolphin show, Dolphin Adventures, and Shamu’s close-up, Orca Encounter. Try to arrive 20 to 30 minutes before showtime.
- Check the weather forecast: Check the forecast in the morning and prepare for your visit. March tends to be dry, but the weather fluctuates a lot this month, so it is best to be prepared.
- Bring rain gear: You can get wet easily during one of the water rides or in the splash zone of the shows. We recommend bringing some rain gear or wearing clothes that dry quickly.
Kennedy Space Center | Orlando (Nearby)
The Kennedy Space Center is worth visiting and is only a 50-minute-drive from Orlando. You can either buy the admission ticket (mobile or printed voucher) solo or one where you don’t have to worry about driving as it includes transport from and to Orlando (via GetYourGuide – safe booking)
March will see higher crowds due to an influx in visitors due to spring break, but it is always a great alternative for an indoor activity. The weather in March can be quite cool compared to the upcoming month and is often very windy.
- Watch a rocket launch
- See a real space shuttle
- Go behind the gates (NASA restricted areas)
- Take the bus tour to the Apollo/Saturn V Center
Guided tour: You can explore everything on your own, but a guided tour is highly recommended since the area is overwhelming in its size and scope.
Lake Whales | Bonus Location Tip
Between Orlando and Tampa, lies a small town named Lake Whales. This is home to the famous Bok Towers, and March is the best time of year to see the blooming of all the spring flowers. The towers offer gardens, a bird sanctuary, a singing tower, and it is usually not too busy compared to other attractions.
In March, the average high temperature in Tampa is 77°F (25°C). It’s about 10 to 15 degrees colder, filled with heavy fog, in the early mornings.
Tampa Bay’s Sun Coast offers some of Florida’s best beaches, including Clearwater Beach and St. Pete Beach. They are not a huge hotspot for spring breakers, but they are for snowbirds. So it is still common to see higher crowds this month.
Besides hitting the beaches, Tampa has some great activities to offer for the whole family. Our tips:
Busch Gardens: Tampa’s huge theme park features intriguing wildlife with more than 2000 animals from around the world, huge roller coasters, live shows, restaurants, and games. Spend a full day at Busch Gardens. Ticket reservations (mobile voucher or printed): Busch Gardens Tampa Bay Ticket & Multi-Park Options
Florida Aquarium: The Florida Aquarium is located on the southeastern edge of downtown Tampa. It’s truly fascinating and has a huge collection of marine life, with 14,000 animals, including stingrays, moray eels, and turtles. Consider 2-3 hours for your visit. If you plan to visit when it’s busier on a weekend, get a skip-the-line ticket: The Florida Aquarium Skip-the-Line Entrance
Sarasota is a city on Florida’s Gulf Coast south of Tampa that was originally the winter home of the Ringling Brothers Circus.
Average high temperature progression during March in Sarasota:
- Early March: 74°F (23.3°C)
- Mid-March: 75 (23.8°C)
- Late March: 78 (25.5°C)
Early Morning: It’s 10-15°F degrees cooler in the morning (around 8 AM) in March compared to the afternoon.
Sarasota is a vibrant place with plenty of great things to do in March. From the white sandy beaches to golfing and shopping or nightlife activities.
The Mote Marine Laboratory, which is ideal for small children, and the historical Marie Selby Botanical Gardens are two of Sarasota’s main attractions.
Tours by bike or bus are a fantastic way to experience the city, but you can also do it on your own.
- Ringling Museum: Perfect for a chilly afternoon in March.
Tip: To discover the main attractions as well as the hidden neighborhoods, book a Sarasota sightseeing tour. It covers the historic downtown neighborhoods of Gillespie Park, Burns Court, Laurel Park, St. Armands Circle, and the Rosemary Design District.
Another spot you shouldn’t miss: The Unconditional Surrender Statue, which recreates the famous World War II photograph of a sailor kissing a nurse after returning home.
Crystal River | Manatee Viewing & Swimming
If you haven’t been to Three Sisters Springs in Florida (Google Maps Location) to see the manatees, you’re missing out! You can either swim with these intriguing giants or observe them from a boardwalk.
As the manatee season in Florida is from November to March/late April, this is still an excellent time. In fact, early March is a fantastic time to swim with manatees in Florida. It’s amazing to observe these fascinating giants up close!
In March, the Everglades is comfortable, with an average high of 80°F (26°C) and an average low of 66°F (19°C). March is still the dry season, which is the more favorable time of year to visit the Everglades.
Please read our complete Everglades guide and find out why March can be a good month to visit.
March is mating season for a lot of animals, including alligators. Be cautious and safe while on your trip. The winds tend to be higher this month, which helps keep biting insects away!
We love to visit Miami in March. The average high temp is 77°F (25°C). This is a great time to visit as it’s almost perfect beach weather. However, except for higher crowds due to spring breakers and popularity.
Crowds: As mentioned above, this region is very populated throughout the whole year, especially during March. However, the spring breakers usually flock to South Beach. That means North Beach/Miami Beach is less busy during this month.
Activities: Keep in mind that there is more to experience than Miami Beach and South Beach. Our tips:
- Everglades National Park: Airboat Tour and Wildlife Show (starts in Gator Park)
- Miami: 45-Minute Sightseeing Speedboat Tour (mobile tickets): A thrilling ride through Miami with the best sights
- Miami: South Beach 30-Minute Plane Tour: Experience amazing views of South Miami with a terrific pilot
- Miami: City Cruise to Millionaire’s Homes & Venetian Islands (our tip!)
The Florida Keys is one of the best places to see when visiting Florida. It is one of our personal favorites and has the most tropical vibe all year long.
In March the average temperature for the Keys are 78°F (25.5°C), and enjoys the most sunshine in the whole state, perfect for sunsets on the beach.
March has ideal conditions for diving and snorkeling in some of the most famous spots in North America.
The Florida Keys cater to various types of travelers and there is something for everyone. This area is great for sportsmen, beach lovers, foodies, and history buffs of all ages.
Activities around the Keys
- Key West: The beach with the most sunshine in March and one of our favorites in all of Florida. It’s warm and ideal for living the island life at its best!
- Key Largo: Famous for being the Dive Capital of the world and being the site for the biggest artificial reef. Make sure to visit John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park during your visit.
- Dry Tortugas National Park: The most southern National Park in the country, is the perfect place to learn about history. Take a tour to the island and learn about legends of sunken treasures, pirates, and ghostly civil war stories. Divers will also love this place because it has some of the least disturbed reefs in the whole country.
- Snorkeling: There are countless world-class snorkeling spots all over the Florida Keys. You can take boat tours to various locations, or just walk right in the water and explore at Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park.
- Seven Mile Bridge: This is amongst the longest bridges in the world, connecting the Florida Keys islands. It was also featured in various television dramas such as Burn Notice. Drive down over the water for some of the most spectacular views of a lifetime!
- Bahia Honda State Park: Bahia Honda State Park offers visitors an award-winning beach, a historic bridge, snorkeling tours, kayak adventures, and the Looe Key National Marine Sanctuary. Keep in mind, this park will close if it gets too crowded, to protect the environment and assure visitors enjoy their time. The park is open daily from 8:00 am until sunset.
Florida is the host of various festivals during the month of March including the following:
- Florida Renaissance Festival
- Sarasota Jazz Fest
- Florida Strawberry Fest
Florida also will be filled with sporting events and spring training games throughout various cities all over the state.
March brings a lot of visitors to Florida, but because of a good reason! Florida is filled with fun and amazing events and things to do throughout the entire month. It has ideal weather for outdoor activities, beautiful beaches, and is a great place to kick off the spring season.