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Why Visit Iowa?

Iowa, situated in the Midwestern United States, is celebrated for its fertile farmland, friendly communities, and a unique blend of rural charm and urban culture. It’s capital is Des Moines, while its landscapes are characterized by vast expanses of rolling plains and the winding course of the Mississippi River along its eastern border.

Iowa’s history is marked by the legacy of Native American tribes, French and Spanish explorations, and its pivotal role in American agriculture, often referred to as “Corn State.” The state is renowned for its strong agricultural sector, producing a significant share of the nation’s corn and soybeans.

a tower in the middle of the park surrounded by trees during the autumn season of the best time to visit Iowa.

Harris Dzulkarnain/Shutterstock

When Is the Best Time to Visit Iowa?

The best time to visit Iowa is during the shoulder seasons of April to June and September to October. During these months, the weather is generally mild and sunny, with fewer crowds and lower prices than during the peak summer season (July and August).

Here are some of the benefits of visiting Iowa during the shoulder seasons:

  • Mild weather: Iowa has a humid continental climate, with hot, humid summers and cold, snowy winters. The shoulder seasons offer pleasant temperatures, making them ideal for sightseeing, exploring, and enjoying the outdoors.
  • Smaller crowds: The shoulder seasons are less crowded than the peak summer season, so you’ll be able to enjoy Iowa’s popular tourist attractions without having to deal with large crowds. This is especially important if you’re visiting popular destinations like the Des Moines Botanical Garden, the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden, and the Blank Park Zoo.
  • Lower prices: Prices for flights, accommodation, and activities are generally lower during the shoulder seasons than during the peak summer season. This means you can save money on your trip without having to sacrifice quality.

Here are some specific examples of how you can enjoy the most of Iowa during the shoulder seasons:

  • Spring (April to June): The weather in spring is typically sunny and mild, with occasional showers. This is a great time to visit for hiking in the Loess Hills, visiting the state parks, and attending the many festivals that are held throughout the state.
  • Autumn (September to October): The weather in autumn is also typically sunny and mild, with occasional showers. This is a great time to visit for leaf peeping in the northeast part of the state, visiting the pumpkin patches, and attending the Iowa State Fair.

While there are many great times to visit Iowa, if you’re looking for the best weather and the most opportunities to enjoy the state’s outdoor activities and attractions, then we recommend visiting during the shoulder seasons of spring and autumn.

Average Temperatures by Month Average Temperatures by Month

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Celsius -5° -2° 13° 19° 24° 28° 27° 22° 15° -1°

Climate in Iowa

Summer Season Climate
Summer Season in Iowa

Iowa's summer season, from June to August, offers warm and sunny weather, with temperatures typically ranging from 75°F to 85°F. It's an ideal time for outdoor activities, exploring the state's parks and natural beauty, and enjoying local festivals. The warm and sunny weather is perfect for experiencing Iowa's rural charm.

Rainy Season Climate
Rainy Season in Iowa

Iowa experiences rainfall throughout the year, with slightly more precipitation in the late spring and early autumn months. While there isn't a distinct rainy season, visitors should be prepared for occasional showers, particularly in May and September.

Winter Season Climate
Winter Season in Iowa

Iowa's winter season, from December to February, is cold, with temperatures ranging from 15°F to 30°F. This period is great for winter sports, holiday festivities, and exploring the state's historic sites. It's a popular time for experiencing Iowa's unique culture and traditions.

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AI Disclaimer Disclaimer: This page was created with help from AI | Reviewed by: Andrew Helling, Editor-in-Chief