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Diego Suarez, Madagascar. Author Belgianchocolate. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution
Diego Suarez, Madagascar. Author Belgianchocolate

Madagascar climate: when to go to Madagascar

Madagascar may be divided, according to latitude and altitude, in three climate zones: along the coast is a strip of hot and humid tropical climate, in the interior highlands, the climate is temperate, while the southern region of the country has a semi-desertic climate, dry and arid.

The climate of the country is dominated and governed by the trade winds of the south-east and is divided into two seasons a hot and rainy season from November to April and a dry and cool season from May to October.

The interior highlands are hot and rainy between November and April, in the rest of the year the climate is fresh and windy, the capital Antananarivo, which is located in Highlands, has a pleasant temperate climate and an average of 1,400 mm rain a year that almost all fall during the rainy season between November and April. The maximum average temperatures in Antananarivo range from 27°C in January to 20°C in July and August, while the average minimum temperatures vary between 17°C in February to 10°C in July and August.

Isalo, Madagascar. Author Andrea Schieber. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution

Isalo, Madagascar. Author Andrea Schieber

The east coast is the most rainy region of Madagascar, in fact it has a sub-equatorial climate very rainy with yearly averages of 3,500 mm of rain, this area is also exposed during the monsoon, between December and March, to possible cyclones. Along the east coast the average maximum temperatures vary between 30°C in February to 25°C in July and August, while the average minimum temperatures vary between 22°C in January and 17°C in August.

The west coast is generally drier than the eastern coast and the highlands, along this coast the amount of precipitation decreases from north to south, the city of Antsiranana at the extreme north receives 1,200 mm of rainfall annually, while the town of Maintirano, located in the center of the west coast, receives about 1,000 mm of rain a year, further south, in Toliara for example, the average annual rainfall is around 410 mm. The south and south-west region of Madagascar have a semi-desert climate.

Morondava, Madagascar. Author Frank Vassen. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution

Morondava, Madagascar. Author Frank Vassen

The island of Nosy Be, which is located along the north west coast has a special microclimate influenced by the presence of the Tsaratanana massif and receives an average of 2,000 mm of rain per year, concentrated during the rainy season between November and April.

WHEN TO GO TO MADAGASCAR

The best time to visit Madagascar are the months between May and October, they have mild temperatures and little rain, to avoid the months from January to March.

MADAGASCAR CLIMATE TABLES

ANTANANARIVO (1276 metres)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 17,3 26,6 340  19
February 17,3 26,5 290  17
March 17,0 26,5 191  14
April 15,4 25,5 55  7
May 13,2 23,7 19  5
June 10,9 21,2 4  5
July 9,9 20,6 8  7
August 10,3 21,7 6  6
September 11,4 24,2 10  4
October 13,6 26,0 68  8
November 15,2 27,0 135  11
December 16,7 27,2 311  15
YEAR 14,0 24,7 1437  118
ANTSIRANANA (DIEGO SUAREZ) (13 metres)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 22,8 30,2 337,5  16
February 22,7 30,2 305,8  15
March 22,9 30,6 179,4  12
April 22,6 31,0 52,3  6
May 21,6 30,4 13,4  4
June 20,2 29,3 19,1  3
July 19,6 28,7 19,0  4
August 19,4 28,7 18,7  4
September 20,0 29,5 8,8  2
October 21,2 30,5 17,4  3
November 22,5 31,5 54,6  5
December 22,9 31,4 170,8  10
YEAR 21,5 30,2 1196,8  84
TOLIARA (TULÉAR) (8 metres)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 22,9 32,2 94,7  6
February 22,9 32,3 88,7  6
March 21,9 32,0 35,9  3
April 19,9 30,6 17,7  2
May 16,9 28,6 15,8  2
June 14,8 26,9 14,9  2
July 14,4 26,8 6,2  1
August 14,8 27,7 5,6  1
September 16,2 28,5 7,8  1
October 18,5 29,3 11,9  1
November 20,3 30,3 21,7  2
December 22,1 31,3 97,0  5
YEAR 18,8 29,8 417,9  32
NOSY BE
Month Sea Water Temperature °C
January 29
February 29
March 29
April 29
May 29
June 28
July 27
August 26
September 26
October 27
November 28
December 29
FORT DAUPHIN (TÔLANARO)
Month Sea Water Temperature °C
January 27
February 27
March 27
April 26
May 25
June 24
July 23
August 23
September 23
October 23
November 24
December 26
TOLIARA (TULÉAR)
Month Sea Water Temperature °C
January 28
February 29
March 28
April 27
May 26
June 24
July 23
August 23
September 24
October 25
November 26
December 27

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