The Maldives is considered one of the world’s most pristine island paradises, with white-sand beaches, coral reefs, turquoise lagoons, and more palm trees than you could count on a trip. One of the destination’s draws is the near constant hot and sunny weather. Temperatures in the jewel-like Indian Ocean archipelago average a tropical 83 degrees Fahrenheit (28 degrees Celsius) all year round, and even during the rainy season it’s usually only blighted with an afternoon downpour that refreshes the air before the sun peeks out once again.
The Maldives, like many tropical destinations, has two main seasons: dry and wet. The dry season comes in fall and winter, between approximately November through April, with temperatures ranging from 77 degrees Fahrenheit (25 degrees Celsius) to 89 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius). The low, monsoon season runs from May through October, with the wettest month usually falling in September. Temperatures in rainy season range from 77 degrees Fahrenheit (25 degrees Celsius) to 87 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius).
Fast Climate Facts
- Hottest Month: April (90 degrees F / 32 degrees C)
- Coldest Month: December (77 degrees F / 25 degrees C)
- Wettest Month: October (9.1 inches)
- Windiest Month: May (8.8 mph)
Urgent Seasonal Information
Keep in mind that in addition to being more humid than the dry season, May through October is monsoon season, with elevated rainfall and a chance of heavy storms. Often the rainy season only brings afternoon showers, but it has been known to occasionally rain all day for days on end making it a bit of a risk (but a relative bargain with discounted hotel rates) to visit during this time.
Additionally, the Maldives stretches north to south across 541 miles, meaning the rainy season hits the northern atolls from May through November, and the southern atolls from November through March. The southern atolls are also closer to the equator, and can be hotter and more humid than their northern counterparts.
Spring in the Maldives
March to May is largely one of the country’s shoulder seasons, spanning both dry and wet seasons. Temperatures are hot as usual, but with the advancing monsoon the weather can become windy and possibly wet the closer to May it gets.
What to pack: The year-round tropical weather calls for your typical resort wear; think swimsuits, sundresses, shorts, and tank tops. May is the beginning of the wet season, so packing an umbrella or light raincoat could be helpful, though many of the upscale resorts provide these items for guest’s convenience. Most resorts in the Maldives abide by a barefoot chic aesthetic, meaning shoes are optional at all times.
Summer sees high humidity, rainfall, and thunderstorms from June through September as a part of the larger Asian monsoon season. As a result, the resorts often provide umbrellas and raincoats, and many guests find themselves holed up in the hotels’ luxe spas, gyms, and bars.
June is the hottest summer month, where many Maldivians make good use of a cooling swim in the ubiquitous turquoise sea.
What to pack: Maldivian summers are so hot and sticky you won’t want to get dressed at all. Pack lightweight shorts, skirts, and tops. Although it’s a Muslim country, resort rules are relaxed and tank tops and crop tops are allowed. You may want to keep an umbrella close at hand in case of an impending shower.
Fall is another shoulder season in the Maldives. September is the end of the wet season, but it’s typically the Maldives’ wettest month (varying slightly depending on if you’re visiting the north or south). November brings the dry season, and more reliably sunny weather to the northern atolls.
What to pack: As with the rest of the seasons, fall is hot and humid, and clothes suitable for a tropical vacation should be packed.
Winter brings the true high season in the Maldives, which runs from December through March, with resorts generally operating at full occupancy over the Christmas and New Year's holidays. This time of year is known for the highest prices, but also the least chance of rain, the most comfortable temperatures, and lowest humidity. Since the country straddles the equator, there’s a reliable 12 hours of sunlight during which to bask on the beach each day.
What to pack: Vacation wear, vacation wear, and more vacation wear.
Maldives weather doesn't fluctuate much between the seasons, but here's what to expect in terms of average temperature, inches of rain, and daylight hours throughout the year.
|Average Monthly Temperature, Rainfall, and Daylight Hours Chart|
|Month||Avg. Temp.||Rainfall||Daylight Hours|
|January||82 F||3 inches||12|
|February||82 F||2 inches||12|
|March||84 F||2.9 inches||12|
|April||84 F||5.2 inches||12|
|May||84 F||8.5 inches||12|
|June||82 F||6.8 inches||12|
|July||82 F||5.8 inches||12|
|August||82 F||7.4 inches||12|
|September||82 F||9.6 inches||12|
|October||82 F||8.7 inches||12|
|November||82 F||7.9 inches||12|
|December||82 F||9.1 inches||12|
Climates to Travel. "Maldives climate: average weather." December 2020.