Weather in Australia in February

Is February a good time to visit Australia?

The summer season has wound down in Australia come February, but the weather is still warm and sunny in New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia, with the beaches waiting to welcome foreign visitors, now that Australians themselves have finished their summer break. February is not the best time to visit the north of Queensland, the Great Barrier Reef or the “Top End” around Darwin, which receive torrential tropical rainstorms at this time of year, the middle of the wet season. The Northern Territory is subject to flooding – be wary of the Kakadu National Park especially during February.

Climate in Australia in February

February is the last month of Australia’s summer, with temperatures in the south of the continent gradually sliding down the scale as the month progresses. The weather in  Sydney (average maximum of 26°C/79°F) and Melbourne (27°C/81°F) becomes comfortably warm as opposed to scorching hot, while across in Perth in Western Australia conditions become more bearable with temperatures tapering to an average maximum of 32°C (90°F).  The weather in these popular holiday hotspots is also relatively dry. Sydney has seven hours of sunshine a day during February, with an average of 20 sunny days during the month and 111mm of rain. Melbourne’s weather data for February is similar to that of Sydney, while across to the west Perth has no rain at all to speak of and luscious long days with 11 hours of sunshine.
In the north of Australia the weather picture is not so pretty for February. In Cairns, North Queensland (and the Great Barrier Reef) you’ll be lucky to see the sun on only around eight days during the month, for six hours a day, while the coast is deluged with an average 457mm of rain. High temperatures prevail, made unpleasant by high humidity – likewise in Darwin where temperatures range from a maximum of 31°C (88°F) to a minimum of 25°C (77°F), giving little relief from the damp, sticky conditions even at night.


What’s on in Australia in February

One of the wildest events on the Australian calendar takes place in February. The Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras turns the city streets into a colourful fiesta from mid-month through to early March. Many cities in Australia, including Sydney, also have vibrant celebrations for the Chinese New Year in February. The Adelaide Fringe Festival (South Australia) is world renowned.


What to pack

If you are heading for Tasmania in the cooler south of the Australian continent you may need a light jacket or pull-over in February, but elsewhere in Australia summer gear, a swimsuit, sunblock and flip-flops are all that is required. Those braving the Top End or north Queensland coast during the notorious wet season will need some stout waterproof boots and a rain slicker.