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Diani Beach, Mombasa, Kenya. Author Cristopher T Cooper. No Copyright
Diani Beach, Mombasa, Kenya. Author Cristopher T Cooper

Kenya climate: when to go to Kenya

Kenya’s climate is equatorial, but only the coastline affected by constant temperatures and high humidity associated with the equatorial climate.

The interior of Kenya climate varies with altitude change, the plains are dry and hot, while in the highlands the climate is more temperate with cool nights. The rainy season runs from March to May and from November to December.

In general, the warmer months are February and March, while the coolest are July and August.

Because of differences in altitude, Kenya climate can be divided into 4 major climatic zones:

Indian Ocean Coast: The coastal strip has a warm and humid climate throughout the year, but tempered by strong sea breezes, the average maximum temperature of Mombasa vary between 32°C in March and 28°C in July, the average minimum temperature vary between 20°C in August and 24°C in March. The average annual rainfall exceeds 1,000 mm, in this area the most rainy months are April and May, a second less intense rainy season is between October and November.

Tsavo East National Park, Kenya. Author Simone Roda. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution

Tsavo East National Park, Kenya. Author Simone Roda

Northern Kenya and internal plains: In this area of the country the climate is very dry and arid, with high temperatures, especially in the plains, with averages maximum ranging during the year between 36°C and 33°C and average minimum vary between 22°C and 25°C. Average annual rainfall varies between 500 mm and 200 mm of the extreme northern regions.

Kenya Highlands: This is the central and western area of the country, much of this area is located between 1200 and 2200 meters in height. The climate of this region is characterized by two rainy seasons with an average rainfall around 1000-1300 mm annually. The rain falls between April and May (the rainy months) and between November and December. The Lake Victoria region is the most rainy area of Kenya in particular the highlands to the north and south of Kisumu, registering an average annual rainfall ranging between 1700 mm and 1900 mm.

Mount Kenya, Kenya. Author Chris 73. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike

Mount Kenya, Kenya. Author Chris 73

The capital Nairobi, is located in this region, and has a temperate climate moderated by the altitude (1661 m), the summers are sunny and warm while winters are cool. The average maximum temperature in Nairobi vary between 25°C in February and March and 20°C in July, the average minimum temperatures vary between 10°C in July and 14°C in April. The rain falls between April and May (the rainy months) and between November and December, the dry months are those between June and September, the average annual rainfall is 1000 mm.

Mountains: The areas which have heights above the 2500 meters have a colder climate, with possible frosts and at higher altitude even snow.

WHEN TO GO TO KENIA

The best time to visit Kenya are the months between January and February and between June and September.

KENYA CLIMATE TABLES

NAIROBI (1661 metres)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 10,5 25,5 58,3  4
February 10,9 26,7 49,8  4
March 12,1 26,8 92,2  8
April 13,4 25,0 242,3  15
May 12,1 23,5 189,5  13
June 10,0 22,5 38,6  5
July 9,2 22,0 17,6  3
August 9,1 22,7 24,0  4
September 9,7 25,0 31,2  4
October 11,3 25,7 60,8  7
November 12,7 24,0 149,6  14
December 11,7 24,5 107,6  9
YEAR 11,1 24,5 1061,5  90
MOMBASA (50 metres)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 22,0 33,2 33,9  3
February 22,5 33,7 14,0  1
March 22,9 33,7 55,6  5
April 22,7 32,5 154,3  10
May 21,6 30,9 235,5  14
June 20,1 29,4 88,3  10
July 19,3 28,7 71,8  10
August 19,3 28,8 68,2  8
September 19,7 29,7 67,2  9
October 20,9 30,5 103,4  9
November 22,1 31,6 104,7  8
December 22,0 32,8 75,8  7
YEAR 21,3 31,3 1072,7  94
MALINDI
Month Sea Water Temperature °C
January 28
February 28
March 29
April 29
May 28
June 26
July 26
August 25
September 26
October 26
November 28
December 28

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