This bustling urban port city on British Columbia's Pacific Coast has a reputation for being a chilly, rainy place to visit, but in fact, it is one of the warmest cities in Canada. Vancouver's weather is moderate because it's protected by mountain ranges and warmed by Pacific Ocean currents.
The weather in Vancouver is variable, with November typically being the rainiest month. Temperatures in the city can range from average highs around 61 degrees Fahrenheit to lows hovering in the mid-30s Fahrenheit.
Contrary to what many people think, Vancouver experiences a mild winter and is the only major Canadian city to not regularly drop below freezing. While the rare snowfall does occur, it's even rarer for it to linger. Vancouver experiences an average of 290 days a year with measurable sunshine, most of it in spring and summer. During winter, days are short, with the sun setting around 4:30 p.m.
If you're planning a trip, the best time to visit Vancouver is typically late May through September, especially in July and August when conditions are both dry and warm.
Fast Climate Facts
- Warmest Month: August (64 degrees Fahrenheit/18 degrees Celsius)
- Coldest Month: January (39 degrees Fahrenheit/4 degrees Celsius)
- Wettest Month: November (7.8 inches)
Spring in Vancouver
Vancouver's spring is cool and rainy, with March being the wettest month of the season. Snow will sometimes fall at the higher elevations. Temperatures warm up starting in April and you'll expect to see more people spending time outdoors. In May, the Asian-style night markets open up in Richmond.
What to pack: Bring layers that you can put on or take off depending on how warm it is. Overall, you'll still need to bundle up a bit, especially if you're visiting early on in the season. Sweaters, jeans, and closed-toe shoes like booties or loafers are a good idea.
Summer in Vancouver
Rain continues to taper off and temperatures continue to rise from June onward. Vancouver never gets too hot, which makes it a great place to enjoy outdoor activities. Vancouver's summers are among the coolest throughout the entire country and it is also the sunniest city during the summer months. Periods of clouds and rain are quite rare.
What to pack: Summer is cool in Vancouver, but not hot. During the day, you can wear T-shirts and long pants or shorts, depending on your preference, but at night you'll want to cover up a bit more. Pack a sweater or light jacket for those chilly evenings.
Fall in Vancouver
September is mild and pleasant, but temperatures gradually begin to drop and the chance of rain increases, from just a couple of inches in September to nearly eight inches in November. Days also get shorter during this month, dropping from seven hours of sunlight in September to just two hours by the time November rolls around.
What to pack: Fall in Vancouver is cool, but not cold. Pack jeans, long-sleeved T-shirts, cozy sweaters, and a light jacket. If you visit in November, when rainfall peaks, bring an umbrella and a waterproof jacket, preferably one with a hood.
Winter in Vancouver
Vancouver has surprisingly mild winters compared to many other cities in Canada. Temperatures don't often drop below freezing and you can still enjoy being outdoors on many of the warmer days. The city does receive significant amounts of rain during the winter and snowfall is not uncommon either. On average, it snows for 11 days per year, but the snowfall typically doesn't last very long.
What to pack: You'll never be too cold in Vancouver, but you should still pack warm layers that you can remove or put on as you go from indoors to outdoors. Given the high likelihood of precipitation, don't forget an umbrella, waterproof shoes, and other rain gear.
|Average Monthly Temperature, Rainfall, and Daylight Hours|
|Month||Avg. Temp.||Rainfall||Daylight Hours|
|January||39 F||5.5 inches||4 hours|
|February||41 F||5.9 inches||5 hours|
|March||45 F||4.3 inches||6 hours|
|April||48 F||3.9 inches||8 hours|
|May||55 F||2.7 inches||9 hours|
|June||59 F||2.3 inches||10 hours|
|July||63 F||1.5 inches||13 hours|
|August||64 F||1.9 inches||11 hours|
|September||59 F||2.7 inches||8 hours|
|October||50 F||3.9 inches||6 hours|
|November||43 F||7.8 inches||4 hours|
|December||39 F||6.3 inches||4 hours|