Australian Seasons

The Opposite of Those in the Northern Hemisphere

Melbourne sunny afternoon
Steve Daggar Photography / Getty Images

When exploring the vast continent of Australia, it's always important to check not only where you’re going but also the time of year in which you are going. With vastly different climates, and seasons, occurring across the country, you’re bound to find yourself in a pickle if you don’t do your research.

For anybody in the northern hemisphere, it is essential to remember that Australia’s seasons are not in sync with yours. Australian seasons are typically the opposite of what the northern hemisphere experiences, so if it’s summer up there, it’s winter down here.

Australia's Weather by Season

TripSavvy / Ashley Nicole deLeon

The Basics

To break things down for you, each of Australia’s seasons comprise of three full months per season.

Each season begins on the first day of the calendar month, so summer in Australia is from December 1 to the end of February, autumn from March to May, winter from June to August, and spring from September to November.

When comparing things to the northern hemisphere, it is important to keep the first day of the month in mind, as opposed to the 20th or 21st. By doing this, you can be sure to traverse the globe with little to no hiccups, weather-wise.

So remember: each season in Australia comprises three full calendar months, rather than, say, starting on the 20th or 21st day of the first month and ending on the 20th or 21st of the fourth month.

Climate Variations Across Australia

When traveling to Australia it's important to remember that there are four official seasons within the Australian calendar. However, due to the large geographical size of Australia, the country has a wide amount of climate variations.

For instance, the southeast and west sides of the country have a comfortable climate that never really climbs to incredible extremes, though the northern parts of Australia are incredibly tropical.

The Northern parts of Australia tend to identify two well-defined, climate-based seasons: the wet (roughly from November to April) and the dry (April to November) with temperatures remaining tropical. It is also important to note that temperatures within warmer sections of Northern Australian can soar from 30 to 50 degrees Celcius (86 to 122 degrees Fahrenheit) during the wet season, particularly in the Australian outback, and dip to approximately 20 degrees Celcius (68 degrees Fahrenheit) during the dry season.

Which Season Gets The Most Rain?

Autumn is undoubtedly the season to receive the most rain. Autumn occurs begins on the 1st of March and carries on throughout the entity of April and May. Sydney’s waterfall happens to fall on an average of twelve days of the month throughout autumn and averages up to 5.3 inches per month. During the rest of the year, rain is pretty minimal and only falls on an average of eight days per month. When dealing with the rain, any umbrella should suffice, though for city travels make sure you pack a durable umbrella to deal with strong winds. For light drizzles, travelers should be more than comfortable in a coat or a jacket.

Which Season Are More Likely to Get Cyclones or Storms?

Cyclones are a weather phenomenon that occurs between the months of November and April. This occurrence is one that is more typical for the tropical regions within Australia. Every couple of years, a major cyclone tears through the region, though it doesn’t always make landfall and casualties are rare. If you’re ever concerned about unsure conditions such as cyclones, it is always a good idea to check with the Bureau of Meteorology.

When dealing with rain within the northern region of Australia it is important to remember that those cyclones and heavier storms are more likely to occur. With rains averaging a rainfall of 630mm (Around 24-inches) in recent years, it is crucial to know the region that you’re traveling to.