Does it snow in Germany? German winter weather guide

Are you wondering does it snow in Germany? I’ve put together a full blog post to answer just that question!

Germany stretches from the windy coastal plains of the North and Baltic Sea, across the agricultural fields and rugged highlands in the centre, and ends at the snowy peaks of the Alps in the south.

Its geographical diversity means that the weather’s – in a word – varied.

So, let’s answer the question, does it snow in Germany? Yes, it indeed does.

But it depends on where in Germany you’re going, when you’ll be there and a range of other factors!

I’ve been to Germany dozens of times throughout my life, visiting places like Munich, Berlin, Hamburg, Nuremberg and the Black Forest.

So I know what to expect when it comes to winter weather in Germany!

Here’s a full explanation of what to expect when it comes to snow in Germany.

Does it Snow in Germany?

Few tourist crowds at Brandenburg Gate in Berlin at dusk.

Yes, Germany gets snow.

Winter in Germany runs from November to March and can transform parts of the country into snowy wonderlands, but it’s not uniform everywhere.

Unlike many countries in the Northern Hemisphere, the south of Germany is actually the snowiest – this is because it’s closest to the Alps, whereas the north has less altitude

We’ll dig a bit more into the likelihood of snow across German regions in this article!

When does it snow in Germany?

Snowfall in Germany typically begins in late autumn and continues throughout the winter season.

However, the timing and extent of the snowfall can differ across the country due to geographical variations and weather patterns.

Here’s a month-by-month breakdown of when it typically snows in Germany.

Does it snow in Germany in October?

October in Germany is generally associated with autumn rather than winter, with leaves changing color and crisp weather setting in.

The majority of the country typically does not see snowfall during this month, although in the high-altitude regions of the German Alps, light snowfall can happen towards the end of the month.

Does it snow in Germany in November?

As Germany progresses into late autumn, November brings colder temperatures, particularly in the northern and central regions.

While you may see occasional snowfall in these areas, it is typically not substantial or widespread.

In the southern regions and Alpine areas, however, snowfall becomes more frequent and heavier towards the end of the month.

Does it snow in Germany in December?

December marks the official arrival of winter in Germany.

Temperatures drop significantly across the country, creating conditions conducive to snowfall.

While the northern and coastal regions see sporadic snow interspersed with rainfall, the central and southern regions often experience regular snowfall.

Does it snow in Germany in January?

January is usually the coldest month of the year in Germany and hence sees the most consistent and widespread snowfall.

From the low-lying northern plains to the towering Alps in the south, snow can happen across the country during this month. 

Does it snow in Germany in February?

February continues the trend of winter weather, with regular snowfall across the central and southern regions of Germany.

The northern regions may see a mix of snow and rain, with snowfall generally becoming less frequent towards the end of the month.

Does it snow in Germany in March?

March signals the arrival of spring in Germany, and while the weather starts to warm up gradually, some snowfall can still be expected, especially in the first half of the month and in the higher altitude regions.

However, by the end of March, most regions start seeing a decline in snowfall as temperatures rise.

Does it snow in Germany in April?

April typically marks the onset of spring in Germany – but occasional snowfall can still occur, especially in the higher-altitude regions and the south.

But it’s generally less frequent and the snow doesn’t tend to stick around for long, often melting shortly after it lands due to the warming temperatures.

April in Germany is characterized by a mix of sun, clouds, and rain, with temperatures steadily rising throughout the month.

Why does it snow in Germany?

Snowfall in Germany is primarily the result of certain scientific factors and climatic conditions coming together.

Germany’s geographical location and varied topography play significant roles in its climatic conditions and therefore, its snowfall.

Situated in Central Europe, Germany lies at the crossroads of several major weather systems, including cold air masses from the northern Polar regions and warmer Mediterranean air from the south.

When these air masses meet, particularly over Germany’s central upland region, they can lead to precipitation, which falls as snow when temperatures are low enough.

Germany’s varied topography, from its low-lying coastal regions in the north to the mountainous southern areas, contributes to differences in temperature and moisture levels across the country.

In the flat northern regions, the influence of the North and Baltic seas leads to milder winters with less frequent snowfall.

In contrast, the mountainous regions of the Central Uplands and the Alps in the south have higher altitudes, which leads to colder temperatures and, consequently, more frequent and heavier snowfall.

Where does it snow in Germany?

Snowfall in Germany isn’t uniform, with some regions seeing more snow than others due to their geographical characteristics and climatic conditions.

Nowhere experiences warm winters, but generally, the northern, flatter areas see milder weather throughout winter time. 

Here’s an overview of how snowfall varies across the country.

The North and Baltic Sea Coast and the North German Plain

The coastal regions of the North and Baltic Seas along with the North German Plain experience milder winters compared to the rest of the country.

While they do see some snowfall, it’s typically less frequent and not as heavy.

The snow also tends not to stick around for long, often melting soon after it falls due to the moderating influence of the nearby seas.

The Central Uplands

Moving inland, the Central Uplands, encompassing regions like the Harz Mountains and the Thuringian Forest, receive more substantial snowfall due to their higher altitudes.

Winters here are colder, and the snow typically lasts longer, often providing perfect conditions for winter sports activities.

The South German Scarplands and the Upper Rhine Plain

In the South German Scarplands and the Upper Rhine Plain, winters can be quite cold, leading to a decent amount of snowfall.

While these regions do not get as much snow as the Alpine areas, they still see a fair share, particularly in the higher-altitude parts.

The Alpine Foreland

The Alpine Foreland, which stretches along the northern edge of the Alps, sees significant snowfall, especially in its higher-altitude areas.

Towns like Garmisch-Partenkirchen are popular winter sports destinations due to their reliable snowfall.

The German Alps

The Bavarian Alps, unsurprisingly, receive the most snowfall and coldest winters in the country.

The high altitudes and cold temperatures create ideal conditions for heavy snowfall, which can start as early as October and last until April.

Skiing destinations like Zugspitze, Germany’s highest peak, are blanketed in snow for a large part of the year.

Ski destinations in Germany

Thanks to its mountains in the south, Germany’s an underrated skiing destination! 

Below are a few choice locations:


Garmisch-Partenkirchen, located in the Alpine Foreland, is a well-known winter sports destination.

Thanks to the town’s proximity to Zugspitze, Germany’s highest peak, it sees a consistent amount of snowfall, ideal for skiing, snowboarding, and other winter activities.


Zugspitze is also home to three impressive glaciers and several ski areas.

From the plateau, winter sports enthusiasts can descend down various slopes, with stunning alpine panoramas as their backdrop.


Located in the Central Uplands, Winterberg is another popular destination for winter sports enthusiasts.

Its ski resort features a network of ski slopes suitable for different skill levels and a reliable snow cover.


Feldberg, located in the Black Forest, is the highest peak in the region and hosts the largest ski resort in the area.

Snow blankets Feldberg from December to March, making it a great destination for winter activities.

Does it snow in Berlin?

Grey building with German flag flying

The German capital of Berlin (in northeastern Gemany) does experience some snowfall during the winter months.

However, the amount and frequency of snow can vary each year.

Snowfall is a possibility in Berlin from November, but it’s more likely to happen in January or February. It could occur any time in the winter though!

Check out my full blog post about the likelihood of snow in Berlin!

Does it snow in Munich?

As Munich is closer to the Alps, it sees more snowfall than Berlin.

You might experience a brilliant white blanket of snow covering the Marienplatz or dusting the city’s famous Christmas market (one of Europe’s best!). 

Just like in Berlin, though, the amount of snow can vary from year to year.

Does it snow in Hamburg?

Hamburg, located near the North Sea coast, has cool winters compared to Munich or Berlin.

It does get some snow, but it’s usually less frequent and doesn’t stick around for long – a bit like what we get in England

Again, the actual snowfall can be quite variable, so it’s always a good idea to check the forecast ahead of your trip.

Tips for a snowy trip to Germany 

Here are some tips for a trip to Germany in the snow!

Pack wisely

Germany’s winter can be quite cold, especially in regions closer to the Alps.

Pack warm clothing like thermal layers, waterproof outer layers, sturdy boots, hats, gloves, and scarves.

Even in urban areas, pathways can get slippery, so shoes with good traction are a must!

Monitor weather updates

Keep an eye on the weather forecast, especially if you’re spending a lot of time outdoors. 

Sudden weather changes can occur, and it’s essential to be prepared.

Understand public transport

Germany’s public transport system is typically very efficient, even in winter.

However, heavy snowfall can lead to delays or cancellations.

Familiarize yourself with the local transport network and have alternative travel plans ready, just in case! 

Winter sports

If you’re heading to the slopes, know your limits and stay within marked ski runs.

Beginner skiers and snowboarders could consider taking lessons. 

Embrace the season

Christmasmarket Stall Sale

Winter in Germany means Christmas markets, ice skating rinks, and hearty food.

Take full advantage of these offerings, and you’ll have a wonderful time! 

A mug of hot Glühwein at a Christmas market or a walk through a snow-covered park is what winter in Germany is all about!

Stay safe on the road

Winter tyres are mandatory in Germany during cold weather conditions.

Always drive cautiously, considering the possibility of icy roads.

FAQs about snow in Germany

Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about Germany’s cold winter weather. 

What month does it snow in Germany?

Snowfall in some parts of Germany typically starts in December and can last until March.

However, it’s more frequent and heavier during the peak winter months of January and February, there’s are cooler temperatures and more precipitation. 

Which parts of Germany does it snow?

Snow is common across all parts of Germany but is more frequent and abundant in the Central Uplands, the Alpine Foreland, and the German Alps.

Regions like the North and Baltic Sea coast and the North German Plain see less snow and have warmer temperatures. 

Does Germany have snow at Christmas?

While snowfall in Germany varies by region and year, it’s possible to experience a white Christmas, especially in regions with higher altitudes like the Alps and the Central Uplands.

Cities, however, may not always have snow on Christmas Day; but they remain perfect winter wonderlands due to their atmospheric Christmas markets!

Does it snow bad in Germany?

Germany experiences regular snowfall during winter, but in many places it’s not too heavy. 

While heavy snow can disrupt travel and daily routines, the country is well-prepared for winter weather, with robust infrastructure and systems in place to manage snowfall.

Is Germany colder than the UK?

In the winter, it generally is.

Germany experiences lower winter temperatures and more days of snow compared to the UK due to its more continental climate and higher altitudes, particularly in regions near the Alps.

However, warm summers are more common in parts of Germany – again, thanks to its contiental location. 

Which part of Germany is coldest?

The coldest regions of Germany are typically the German Alps and the Central Uplands, where winter temperatures can drop significantly and chances of snow are much higher. 

Is Germany very cold in winter?

Winter in Germany can indeed be cold, particularly in January, the coldest month. Temperatures can frequently drop below freezing, especially in the more elevated regions.

How cold is Germany in winter?

Winter temperatures in Germany vary by region.

In lower-lying areas, such as Berlin, average winter temperatures hover around 0°C.

However, in regions with higher altitudes like the German Alps, temperatures can drop well below freezing, with averages around -10°C.

Are you ready for a snowy trip to Germany? 

While snow’s not guaranteed, German weather generally dictates you’ll see at least a bit of the white stuff during a winter try to Germany. 

Cold snaps can make the weather last longer, and in the depths of winter (think mid-January!), you’re more likely to see heavier snow. 

But there’s plenty to enjoy throughout the towns and cities of Germany in the winter period; just make sure you’re prepared for the climate conditions, and head out to enjoy skiing, Christmas markets and a warming atmosphere! 

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