How hot can it get in Australia


Note: Click on a place name for regional climate data
The colors have the following meanings:

Summer hot, winter cool
Transition zone
hot and tropical
hot and subtropical
always moist
moderate winter rain

North: tropical, hot and humid
South: subtropical to warm temperate.
Inner continent: dry like a desert

Sufficient precipitation in the north (monsoons), east (passatic stagnant precipitation) and in the south-west and south-east (cyclonic winter rains).

North of a line between Brisbane and Alice Springs, the country is roughly divided into two halves by the Tropic of Capricorn. In the north the Tropics, in the south the temperate climate zone.

The dry inland around Alice Springs and Ayers Rock ("Red Center") forms its own climatic zone. The seasons are shifted to the European by half a year.

There are two seasons in the Australian tropics:

  • The dry season from May to October - warm to hot and dry.
  • The Rainy season from November to April - muggy, it doesn't rain every day, but when it does, it is often very heavy.

Extreme values

The highest reliably measured temperature to date - 50.7 ° C - was reached on January 2nd, 1960 in Oodnadatta (South Australia), the lowest - -23 ° - in 1994 at the Charlotte Pass in the snow fields of Mount Kosciuszko.

Summer - in the north: rainy season

The form of the rainy season ("The Wet") is very different. Typically this phase is most pronounced between December and April. The much-cited information that a short shower comes down every day during the rainy season and then everything is fine again is by no means a reliable basic rule. The sun can shine for days without the rain falling and still a river floods vast areas due to heavy rain hundreds of kilometers away. The heavy rainfalls that can occur in the course of cyclones are particularly treacherous. 200 mm of precipitation within 24 hours is quite possible here.

During the rainy season there may be short-term road closures due to heavy rains. For example, there are only a few paved roads in the Kimberleys - particularly Highway 1 and the connections to the Derby communities. Heavy rains, especially in the Fitzroy, Ord and Victoria Rivers, can lead to longer closures of the Highwya, as bridges or fords (floodways) are flooded. So it cannot be ruled out that you might get stuck in Kununurra for 2 weeks during the rainy season, as the Victoria River Bridge to NT and Fitzroy Crossing or Willare Bridge and Ord River Floodway at Bedford Downs are flooded.

Current information on the road conditions and forecasts of the weather development can be obtained from the tour tool

Background information on cyclones

Summer - in the south: hot & dry

A heat wave characterizes the summer of 2013. The area around the town of Meekatharra in Western Australia is one of the places in which the heat cells arise, which then heat up and enlarge over the continent and lead to a heat wave in the southeast. In the language of the local indigenous people, Meekatharra means "place with little water." On January 8, the thermometer in the place at around 500 meters above sea level showed the record temperature of 47.1 degrees Celsuis. If the place were at sea level, this would correspond According to experts from the Australian Weather Service, the equivalent of around 51 to 52 degrees. For the weather experts, the measured values ​​from Meekatharra - together with the data from other weather stations inland - are early indicators on the basis of which they calculate possible heat waves. In this region, the air masses often get very, very hot If there is still strong wind from the north-westerly direction, such a heat bubble will be blown over the dry, hot land within a few days towards Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney.

The last big heat wave before was in 2009: In South Australia the thermometer in Adelaide at the end of January 2009 showed 46 degrees - 17 degrees more than usual for the daily maximum value. In Melbourne, on January 30th, 2009, the power grid for 600,000 residents allegedly collapsed due to excessive use of air conditioning.

The inhabitants of the fifth continent are used to extreme heat waves. There were great heat waves in Australia in 2000, 2003 and 2004, among others. Midsummer is also the time for bush fires in Australia.
Information on bush fires

Climate development

The "Greenhouse Office" presented a study in 2003, according to which the increasing global warming will heat up Australia. The average annual temperature on the fifth continent will increase by two degrees by 2030 and by six degrees by 2070. As a result, the number of days on which more than 35 degrees are measured in large cities could double. More and more farmers have to be prepared to leave their farms because of persistent periods of drought. The supply of drinking water could become even scarcer, especially on the coasts. The increasing global warming, for which greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide are held responsible, is already having an impact on the weather, according to the report of the "Greenhouse Office".

The government under John Howard, which was in office until 2007, long refused to sign the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change because it was not in the "national interest". The Labor Government finally signed the protocol in 2008. In terms of population, Australia is the world's largest polluter and is also the world's largest exporter of coal.

The Australian Greenhouse Office offers a unique overview of the renewable energy locations in Australia on its website. The overview maps are based on publicly available data and show the locations of renewable energy systems with capacities over 3 KW. The entire south-east coast of the continent is by far the strongest. There is some catching up to do in other regions.
Australian Greenhouse Office website

Current weather data
Long-term mean temperature distribution
Distribution of precipitation in Australia
Australia's vegetation zones and the drought problem
The most suitable travel times for the different regions of Australia

Regional climates in Adelaide, Alice Springs, Brisbane, Broome, Cairns, Canberra, Darwin, Exmouth, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney

Bureau of Meteorology (e)
Number one source for meteorological information. Current satellite images, weather forecasts (even in extreme weather conditions such as forest fires and heavy rainfall), climate overviews, tables, graphics and much more. more.

European Center for Medium Range Weather Forecasts (e)
Whether it will rain above or below average in Australia in the next 3 months is certainly not only of interest to the farmers, who are in some places heavily plagued by drought. The European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts dares to make the forecast using a complex mathematical model. The simple version of the current seasonal weather forecast can be accessed as a graphic on the Internet.

World Climate (s)
Very good source of information about various climate data. Very clearly laid out. Just enter the place name and the server will list the data sources.

We look forward to your suggestions for updates and enhancements to this page.
Our editorial team invests a lot of time in research to keep the contents of AUSTRALIEN-INFO.DE up-to-date, clear and correct. Nevertheless, it cannot be ruled out that the content of this page is not updated daily.

You can help us: Do you have any suggestions for updating or adding to the information on this page? Is there an important reference to other sources of information missing (Internet links, literature, etc.)? Please click here and send us your information. Many thanks in advance.