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Darwin Weather and Climate Information


Darwin Weather Overview

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Located in the far North of central Australia, it is no surprise that Darwin is a perennially hot climate akin to its semi-desert location; the maximum temperature varies very little year-round and is generally easily over 30 degrees celsius most days of the year.

With distinct wet and dry seasons, Darwin's climate will differ greatly depending on what time of the year you decide to visit; during the dry season, which runs from April/May to October, most days are sunny and warm, with low humidity in the afternoons. In direct contrast to that, the wet season is a lightning rod for monsoon rains and tropical cyclones which bring much-needed water to the often parched Northern Territory. Spectacular thunderstorms can often be seen during these cyclonic occurrences, and snapshots of amazing lightning strikes have become a staple of images regarding

Darwin's rugged climate.

Temperatures and Rainfall

The rainy/wet season, the bulk of which occurs between December and March, produces most of the city's rainfall as humidity levels climb and most days, if not raining, still have abundant cloud cover with little sunshine able to penetrate the thick cloud canopy. The dry season is typical of a semi-desert climate, with little, if any rainfall occurring in the months of June and July. Darwin's yearly average temperatures are 32°C (89.6°F) for the maximum, while the "minimum" average is approximately 23.2°C (73.8°F) - meaning that Darwin's minimum is often higher than the maximum of many other capital cities throughout Australia.

Seasons

Darwin Northern TerritoryAs mentioned, other than the determination between "when it's wet" and "when it's dry", there is little to distinguish Darwin's seasons into the typical "four season" category; half of Autumn mirrors Spring (and vice-versa), while Summer and Winter are polar opposites. It is interesting to note that Darwin has more in common climatically than a different country such as Singapore rather than, for example, Sydney, as it sits well inside the clearly-defined "tropical zone". The characteristics of Darwin's seasons are:

Summer

As expected, the weather and climate of Darwin during Summer can be extremely hot, as is the case throughout the rest of the Northern Territory. Maximum temperatures can often exceed 40 °C (104°F), although they are more likely to be in the mid-30's. You will encounter hot and steamy weather with the occasional awe-inspiring lightning storm and short but intense rainfall; incidentally, this is also the period of the year with the highest risk of floods and cyclones. In all, the wet season's weather can be highly unpredictable but also has marked spectacular effects on the local surrounds - waterfalls kick into high gear, the numerous wildlife species are mating and breeding, flora is blooming and the plants grow quickly and abundantly.

Autumn

Autumn in Darwin provides a happy medium between the extremes of heat that the city is prone to experiencing; temperatures are still hot (around 32 degrees celsius on average) but the humidity lowers and the rainfall decreases, which provides a pleasant atmosphere with generally sunny, clear skies for residents, visitors and tourists alike. Autumn kicks off the dry season, where the rainfall drops to just a few millimetres per month, making it the ideal time to get outdoors and experience all the tours, walks and water activities that the area has to offer - the relative lack of humidity makes physical activity much more manageable than in the hot, wet Summers.

Winter

Winters in Darwin, while still warm to hot by any standard, do provide much better sleeping conditions due to lower temperatures in the evenings coupled with a lack of humidity and very little, if any, rainfall throughout the entire June-July period. Many feel that these climate circumstances make Winter the ideal season to visit Darwin and truly enjoy what it has to offer without the consistent worry of dehydration or sunburn (although, of course, the sunshine around midday is still very strong, especially in comparison to some of the cities in Australia's Southern regions.) The "cooler" Winter nights mean you may want to pack a light cardigan or other covering, but you will rarely need to rare clothes such as a heavy jacket even in Darwin's coldest period - frost has never been recorded in the city's history.

Spring

Spring provides a smooth transition from Winter, with temperatures once again gradually increasing as the season starts off dry but gradually gets increasingly wetter. September is often labeled by Darwin locals as the "best month of the year" due to its continued low volume of rainfall and low humidity. Visitors and residents alike can enjoy many sunny days in the Spring, and Darwin's many unique and exotic flora species and varieties flourish during this season, giving sightseers the chance to witness unique plants that they would not see anywhere else in Australia. The region's national parks, the most famous of which is Kakadu, are a prime destination during the Spring, as their wide variety of ecosystems, rivers, forests and other plant life are all at their peak and make for some of the most enchanting and riveting nature walks our country has to offer.

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