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October Weather in Amsterdam: ‘It Can Freeze, Or It Can Thaw’
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October Brings a Fair Share of Gorgeous Days
In ancient times the month of October was referred to in Holland as aarselmaand — ‘hesitation month,’ because the weather hesitates between fall and winter.
“Het kan vriezen of het kan dooien,” (literally, “It can freeze or it can thaw”) the Dutch say — in an expression that means the outcome is uncertain: anything is possible.
That is quite true for the weather in Amsterdam during the month of October. The weather in Holland in notorious for being consistently inconsistent at any time during the year, and October is no exception. The day can start out sunny, only to quickly give way to showers and occasional gusty storms.
That said, in recent years October has had a fair share of gorgeous days — sunny, blue skies, and often even warm enough to enjoy an outdoor café.
In Amsterdam we’ve learned to live with this kind of weather: bright and sunny one moment; cloudy and rain showers the next. It’s not for nothing we’ve got so many cafes to pop in to.
And no, it won’t actually ‘freeze’ in October.
Amsterdam Weather Forecast, October 2021
Updated October 21, 2021
We update this page with weather forecasts throughout October.
During the rest of the year see the general information on this page.
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Thursday, October 21, 2021 — Heavy rain from just after midnight through well into the late morning. Followed by light rain, which in late afternoon fizzles out to intermittent light showers. In between: sunny intervals. Very windy, though. The Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) has issued a Code Yellow alert: Between 9:00 and 21:00 (9 am and 9 pm) in the coastal areas, Amsterdam included, there is a risk of heavy wind gusts up to about 80-90 km/h (about 50-56 mph). Afternoon high 10° C | 50° F.
Friday, October 22, 2021 — Cloudy in the early morning. Mostly cloudy the rest of the day. Scattered light rain showers from late morning until mid-evening. Afternoon high 10° C | 50° F.
Saturday, October 23, 2021 — Overcast all day. No rain. Afternoon high 11° C | 51.8° F.
Sunday, October 24, 2021 — Cloudy, partly cloudy, and sunny intervals. Not necessarily in that order, but the sunny intervals will occur mostly in the afternoon. About 50% sunshine. No rain. Afternoon high temperature 12° C | 53.6° F.
Monday, October 25, 2021 — Light rain during the morning. Sunny intervals in t he afternoon (about 45% sunshine). And scattered light rain showers in the late afternoon and early evening. Late afternoon high 13° C | 55.4° F
Tuesday, October 26, 2021 — Scattered light rain showers from before daybreak until early evening. The sun may be able to peak through every now and then in the afternoon. Mid-afternoon high 12° C | 53.6° F.
Long Term Amsterdam Forecast
Wednesday, October 27 — Wednesday, November 3: There is a good chance that the changeable weather pattern will continue. There will be a 60-70% chance of precipitation every day. Temperatures (well) above normal. However, by the end of the period, there is a 30% chance of temperatures below normal for this time of the year.
Check our November weather information.
Normal High and Low Temperatures in September
1-10: 11.7/19.7° Celsius (53.06/67.4° Fahrenheit)
11-20: 10.8/18.6° Celsius (51.44/65.48° Fahrenheit)
21-31: 10.2/17.7° Celsius (50.36/63.86° Fahrenheit)
Amsterdam October weather: average temperatures
On average you can expect lots of grey days, some sunny days, and some rain. Guidebooks and websites can not seem to agree whether or not October is the wettest month, but you’ll want to use an umbrella on a regular basis.
The average high temperature is 13° Celsius (55.4° Fahrenheit), and the average night-time low is 4° Celsius (39.2° Fahrenheit) — while the average median temperature is 10.4° (50.72° Fahrenheit).
But note that on average the temperatures at the end of October are four degrees lower than at the beginning of the month. September is on average 4 degrees warmer than October, while November is on average four degrees colder.
The weather in the coastal regions of the country tends to be warmer and wetter than the weather further inland. Overall, October has some 60 hours of rain, and an average of 104 hours of sunshine.
Amsterdam Daylight Saving Time Ends October 31
At the start of October the sun rises at about 7:45 am, and sets at about 7:20 pm. At the end of the month, when the country has reverted to wintertime, sunrise starts at about 7:35 am and sunset occurs at about 5.15 pm.
In 2021 daylight saving time in the Netherlands started on Sunday, March 28. Daylight Saving Time ends at 3:00 a.m. on Sunday October 31, 2021.
That means you will get an extra hour of sleep (or, as the case may be, party time) since at 3:00 am the clock will be turned back to 2:00 am, Central European Time.
Remember: spring forward, fall back. Currently in Europe there is quite a bit of discussion about the possibility of ending the Daylight Saving Time switch since it no longer serves a clear purpose. Our guess: it will end, but not any time soon.
What to wear in Amsterdam in October
Humid air and strong wind can make the weather in Amsterdam feel colder than it actually is.
You’ll want pack a wind- and waterproof jacket, and it is a good idea to dress in layers, including a sweater or sweatshirt and jacket. Stores, pubs, cafes and restaurants as well as cinemas and theaters will be warm, so you’ll need to be able to take something off.
Wear water-tight shoes instead of sandals or flip-flops.
Inexpensive umbrellas are for sale all over downtown Amsterdam so you don’t need to worry about bringing one. You get what you pay for, but generally the wind is not yet strong enough to trash your umbrella.
Right now (2020), the month actually starts out with lots of rain. Overall we’ve been having lots of wet weather lately. Here in the Netherland the effects of global warming are quite noticeable.
And then there are days like this (October 28, 2013):
Things to do in Amsterdam in October
Amsterdam is at its prettiest when the sun in shining, but the city is beautiful any time of the year, come sunshine or rain.
Keep your schedule as flexible as possible so you can take advantage of good weather for outside activities, while you visit museums at other times.
If and when it rains you’ll likely want to pop into a pub for a coffee or a beer while you wait for the shower to end.
During this month the leaves on Amsterdam’s trees change their green color to hues of yellow, orange and red. Have your camera ready (with a camera rain cover, perhaps).
Don’t Spend Your Vacation Standing in Line
October is a good shoulder month in which to visit Amsterdam. It is less busy than during peak season. This year (2021) we do expect to see more visitors, given that COVID-19 travel restrictions for travellers from many countries are expected to be relaxed.
As always in Amsterdam, it’s a good idea to buy tickets for museums, tours, public transport ahead of time.
More weather information
We also have details about Amsterdam weather in other months. That page also includes a current rain radar.
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