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Climate / Map

Climate

Australia is a country that experiences a variety of climates due to its size.

The weather can range from below zero in the Snowy Mountains to blistering heat in the North and North West. It is considered to be one of the driest continents on earth.

The temperate south has cool, wet winters and warm, dry summers. In the north, a tropical climate prevails with a warm, dry season and a hot, wet season. The extreme North West experiences the ends of the monsoons while the mountains in the South East attract seasonal snow to form alpine snowfields.

Temperatures can vary from an average of over 30 degrees C in the Red Centre in midsummer to an average of only around 5 degrees C in the mountains in winter.

Interactive Map

Click a state on the map below for more detailed information on the geography and climate in that area.

Australia Capital Territory (ACT) & Canberra

The ACT lies in the southeast of New South Wales. It covers 2,366 sq km and features rugged blue-grey ranges in the south and west, with Canberra located in the northeast corner.

Summer days across the ACT range from warm to hot, though the temperature doesn't often get to 40ºC. Winter days are cool with little wind and often start with early morning frost and fog. Winter nights hover around 0ºC during July.

Canberra gets a lot of sunshine and receives an annual average rainfall of 630mm, most of it falling in the west of the territory. Snow in the city is rare, falling twice a year at most, but is more common in the ranges. new south wales (NSW) & sydney

New South Wales (NSW) & Sydney

NSW can be roughly divided into the following four regions: the coastal strip; the Great Dividing Range, about 100km inland from the coast; the Blue Mountains west of Sydney; and the Snowy Mountains in the south. West of the Great Dividing Range is farming country: dry plains that cover two-thirds of the state. The plains fade into the outback in the far west, where summer temperatures can soar to over 40ºC.

Sydney is blessed with a pleasant climate, rarely dropping below 10ºC at night and with average summer temperatures of around 25°C. Summer temperatures can reach 40°C and high humidity can make it oppressive, but heavy downpours often break the heat between October and March. Winters are cool rather than cold. The weather in March-April and October-November is delightful, with clear, warm days and mild nights. victoria (VIC) & melbourne

Victoria (VIC) & Melbourne

Victoria has a temperate four-seasons climate, although the distinctions between the seasons are often blurred by the unpredictability of the weather. There are three climatic regions: the southern and coastal areas, the alpine areas, and the areas north and west of the Great Dividing Range.

Melbourne's climate has an unfortunate reputation: wet, windy, unpredictable and liable to extremes – very hot or very cold and often both on the same day! In winter the average temperature ranges between 6°C and 13°C. Temperatures rise above 35°C only a few times each year, and despite its reputation for being wet, Melbourne actually receives only half the average rainfall of Sydney or Brisbane tasmania (TAS) & hobart

Tasmania (TAS) & Hobart

Tasmania's population is concentrated on the north and southeast coasts, where the undulating countryside is rich and fertile and the coast is accessible and inviting. By contrast, the southwest and west coasts are wild and remote. For much of the year, large seas pound the west coast and rainfall is high. Inland, the rich forests and mountains of Tasmania's west and southwest form one of the world's last great wilderness areas, almost all of it a World Heritage-listed region.

Tasmania (and Hobart) has four distinct seasons, although storms can bring wintry conditions at any time of year. In summer the days are generally warm rather than hot, while the nights are mild. Conditions are usually good up until March, when temperatures drop. The rest of autumn is generally characterised by cool, sunny days and occasional frosty nights. Winter is wet, cold and stormy, particularly in the west. Snow lies on the higher peaks but is usually only deep enough for the state's two ski resorts to operate occasionally. Spring is windy with some storms but in between the sun shines and gradually warmth returns. queensland (QLD) & brisbane

Queensland (QLD) & Brisbane

Queensland is dominated by the coast. It's no surprise that most of the settlements and tourist attractions are concentrated in this narrow coastal strip, which has some amazing natural features such as the Great Barrier Reef and lush rainforests. Inland is the Great Dividing Range and the tablelands, fertile areas of flat agricultural land that run to the west. Then there's the barren outback, which fades into the Northern Territory. In the far northern Gulf Country and Cape York Peninsula there are huge empty regions cut by countless dry riverbeds, which can become overflowing rivers in the wet season.

Northern Queensland seasons are more a case of hot and wet or cool and dry than of summer and winter. November/December to April/May is the wetter, hotter half of the year, while the real wet, particularly affecting northern coastal areas, is January to March. This is also the season for cyclones. Queensland doesn't really experience 'cold weather', except inland or upland at night from about May to September. Temperatures in Brisbane, in the south of the state, rarely drop below 20°C and, while it doesn't suffer the stifling humidity you'll find further north, the climate is still most pleasant in winter (June to August). south australia (SA) & adelaide

South Australia (SA) & Adelaide

SA is sparsely populated, with over 80% of its inhabitants living in Adelaide and a handful of major rural centres. The state's productive agricultural regions are clustered in the south and in the Murray River irrigation belt. As you travel further north or west the terrain becomes increasingly drier and more inhospitable; the outback, which takes up more than 75% of the state's area, is largely semi-desert. SA is by far the driest Australian state.

South Australia has a Mediterranean climate of hot, dry summers and cool winters, with most rain falling between May and August. Heat is the major climatic extreme, with daily maximums around 38°C common in the outback from October to April. Adelaide can also get very hot in summer, and if you don't have access to a pool or air-conditioner you'll find it unpleasant. Spring and autumn are generally the most pleasant times, with winter getting a bit cold and wet. northern territory (NT) & darwin

Norther Territory (NT) & Darwin

Although roughly 80% of the NT is in the tropics, only the northern 25%, known as the Top End, has anything that resembles the popular idea of a tropical climate. Much of the southern 75% of the Territory consists of desert or semi-arid plain.

Like Australia's other far north regions (in WA and Queensland), the Top End's climate is described in terms of the Dry and the Wet, with year-round maximum temperatures of 30°C to 34°C and minimums between 19°C and 26°C. In the centre, temperatures are much more variable, plummeting below freezing on winter nights and soaring above 40°C on summer days.

The most comfortable time to visit both the centre and the Top End is June and July, though the centre is pleasant as early as April. The Top End (including Darwin) has its good points during the Wet – everything is green, and there are spectacular electrical storms and relatively few tourists. However, the combination of heat and high humidity can be unbearable and some national parks are either partially or totally closed.

Western Australia (WA) & Perth

WA is the country's largest state, comprising one-third of its land mass. Interesting variations in landscape include the Kimberley, in the extreme north of the state, which is a wild and rugged area with interesting coastline and stunning inland gorges. The Pilbara, in the northwest of the region, is magnificent ancient-rock and gorge country. Away from the coast most of WA is a huge empty stretch of outback: along with the Nullarbor Plain and the Great Sandy Desert, the Gibson and Great Victoria Deserts cover much of the state. The south-western corner of the state is a fertile area of forest and vineyards, and is only small in comparison to the rest of WA.

WA is tropical in the north, where the dry and wet seasons replace winter and summer. Port Hedland experiences a cyclone at least every two years. In the interior the climate is semi-arid and arid. The southwest of WA is temperate: it's often above 25°C while the average temperature along the Kimberley Coast is 28°C. Up in the Pilbara temperatures can soar to 48°C.

Perth has a long and hot summer where little rain falls and the temperature can stay around 30°C, especially in January and February. Winds off the sea, known as the 'Fremantle Doctor' help cool the city. Winter brings coolish weather and rain, with an average temperature of 18°C.

Weather

For up to date weather information go to the Bureau of Meteorology website by clicking on the following link.
http://www.bom.gov.au/

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