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The climate of South Africa: when to go to South Africa

South Africa has a temperate type of climate. South Africa’s climate varies according to distance from the sea, altitude and the presence of hot and cold sea currents. These currents are cold, along the coast washed by the Atlantic ocean, and are warm, along the coast washed by the Indian ocean.

Most of the interior of the nation is made up of highlands, known in South Africa as a ‘veld’. These highlands have an altitude that varies between 900 m and 1,800 meters. The days are generally bright and shiny with high summer temperatures and lower temperatures in winter.

The Western Cape area of South Africa has a Mediterranean climate with hot and dry summers and cold and wet winters. The internal provinces of Gauteng, where the city of Johannesburg is located, the Mpumalanga and the Free State have a warm climate during the summer with frequent afternoon thunderstorms, while the winter days are warm, but the nights reach temperatures close to zero.

Cape Point, Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve, Table Mountain National Park, South Africa. Author and Copyright Marco Ramerini.

Cape Point, Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve, Table Mountain National Park, South Africa. Author Marco Ramerini.

The east coast of South Africa which includes the whole province of Kwa Zulu Natal and part of the Eastern Cape, has a sub-tropical climate, with a high humidity. The Northern Cape province is characterized by an arid semi-desert climate.

CLIMATE OF SOUTH AFRICA: CLIMATE OF GAUTENG

Pretoria: The climate of the capital of South Africa, Pretoria is characterized by dry winters with temperatures ranging between 22 ° C and 5 ° C. While summers are hot, with temperatures between 29 ° C and 17 ° C. Thunderstorms and rains are frequent during the months between November and January.

Climate of Pretoria.

PRETORIA (1339 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 18 29 136  14
February 17 28 75  11
March 16 27 82  10
April 12 24 51  7
May 8 22 13  3
June 5 19 7  1
July 5 20 3  1
August 8 22 6  2
September 12 26 22  3
October 14 27 71  9
November 16 27 98  12
December 17 28 110  15
YEAR 12 25 674  87

Johannesburg: Johannesburg’s climate has dry winters with maximum temperatures ranging between 24 ° C-16 ° C. During the summer, that is, the months from November to February, which represent the rainy season, temperatures often exceed 30 ° C and afternoon thunderstorms are common.

Climate of Johannesburg.

JOHANNESBURG (1753 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 15 26 125  16
February 14 25 90  11
March 13 24 91  12
April 10 21 54  9
May 7 19 13  3
June 4 16 9  2
July 4 17 4  1
August 6 19 6  2
September 9 23 27  4
October 11 24 72  10
November 13 24 117  15
December 14 25 105  15
YEAR 10 22 713  99

CLIMATE OF THE WESTERN CAPE

Cape Town: Cape Town has a pleasant Mediterranean climate with well defined seasons. The climate of this South African city has winter rains, between May and August, and temperatures around 18 ° C, and hot summers with temperatures ranging between 25-27 ° C.

Climate of Cape Town.

CAPE TOWN (44 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 16 26 15  6
February 16 27 17  5
March 14 25 20  5
April 12 23 41  8
May 9 20 69  11
June 8 18 93  13
July 7 18 82  12
August 8 18 77  14
September 9 19 40  10
October 11 21 30  9
November 13 24 14  5
December 15 25 17  6
YEAR 11 22 515  103
CAPE TOWN
Month Sea Water Temperature °C
January 20
February 20
March 20
April 18
May 17
June 16
July 16
August 16
September 16
October 16
November 18
December 19

CLIMATE OF THE NORTHERN CAPE

Upington: Upington is located near the Kalahari desert. This area of South Africa has a hot and dry climate. Little rain falls between December and April. The best time to visit the Upington region is the warm and sunny winter months between June and September.

UPINGTON (848 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 20 36 24  4
February 20 34 35  6
March 18 32 37  6
April 13 28 26  5
May 8 24 10  2
June 5 21 4  2
July 4 21 2  1
August 6 23 4  1
September 9 27 4  2
October 13 30 9  3
November 16 33 17  3
December 19 35 17  4
YEAR 13 29 189  37

CLIMATE OF THE EASTERN CAPE

Port Elizabeth: Port Elizabeth has a sub-tropical climate with rainfall spread throughout the year. The city has mild temperatures ranging between 20 ° C and 9 ° C during the winter and 25 ° C-17 ° C during the summer. Port Elizabeth has a pleasant climate which allows swimming all year round.

Climate of Port Elizabeth.

PORT ELIZABETH (15 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 18 25 36  9
February 18 25 40  9
March 17 25 54  10
April 14 23 58  9
May 12 22 59  9
June 9 20 62  8
July 9 20 47  8
August 10 20 64  10
September 11 20 62  9
October 13 21 59  11
November 15 22 49  11
December 16 24 34  9
YEAR 14 22 624  112
PORT ELIZABETH
Month Sea Water Temperature °C
January 23
February 23
March 23
April 22
May 21
June 20
July 19
August 19
September 19
October 20
November 21
December 22

CLIMATE OF KWAZULU-NATAL

Durban: Durban has a sub-tropical climate, with warm and sunny winters, and hot and humid summers. Average temperatures are around 16 ° C -25 ° C all year round. Rain is frequent during the summer months, between October and March, when it occurs in the form of afternoon thunderstorms.

Climate of Durban.

DURBAN (12 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 21 28 134  15
February 21 28 113  13
March 20 28 120  13
April 17 26 73  9
May 14 25 59  7
June 11 23 28  5
July 11 23 39  5
August 13 23 62  7
September 15 23 73  11
October 17 24 98  15
November 18 25 108  16
December 20 27 102  15
YEAR 17 25 1009  130
DURBAN
Month Sea Water Temperature °C
January 26
February 26
March 26
April 25
May 24
June 22
July 22
August 21
September 21
October 22
November 23
December 24

CLIMATE OF THE FREE STATE

Bloemfontein: The climate of Bloemfontein is characterized by dry winters from May to August with temperatures around 17 ° C during the day and even -2 ° C during the night. The summer from October to February has temperatures of around 30 ° C during the day and gusts of rain in the afternoon. The rainiest month is February. Snow is a rare occurrence.

Climate of Bloemfontein.

BLOEMFONTEIN / MANGAUNG (1395 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 15 31 83  11
February 15 29 111  11
March 12 27 72  11
April 8 23 56  9
May 3 20 17  4
June -2 17 12  3
July -2 17 8  2
August 1 20 15  3
September 5 24 24  4
October 9 26 43  7
November 12 28 58  9
December 14 30 60  10
YEAR 8 24 559  84

CLIMATE OF THE MPUMALANGA

Nelspruit: Nelspruit and the South African region of Mpumalanga have a sub-tropical climate with average maximum temperatures around 23 ° C during the winter and up to 29 ° C during the summer. In this area of the country the rainy season runs from November to March.

Climate of Nelspruit.

NELSPRUIT (689 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 19 29 127  14
February 19 29 108  12
March 18 28 90  12
April 14 27 51  7
May 10 25 15  4
June 6 23 9  2
July 6 23 10  2
August 9 25 10  3
September 12 27 26  5
October 14 27 75  11
November 17 27 115  15
December 18 28 131  14
YEAR 13 27 767  100

CLIMATE OF LIMPOPO

Polokwane: Polokwane and the province of Limpopo have a tropical climate with winter temperatures between 20 ° C and 4 ° C and summer temperatures between 28 ° C and 16 ° C. Despite its position on the Tropic of Capricorn, the city enjoys a pleasant climate thanks to the altitude at which it is located. The rainy season runs from November to March.

Climate of Polokwane.

POLOKWANE / PIETERSBURG (1310 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 17 28 82  10
February 17 28 60  8
March 15 27 52  8
April 12 24 33  6
May 8 22 11  2
June 5 20 5  1
July 4 20 3  1
August 7 22 6  1
September 10 25 17  2
October 13 26 43  7
November 15 27 85  10
December 16 27 81  11
YEAR 12 25 478  65

CLIMATE OF THE NORTH-WEST PROVINCE

Rustenburg: Rustenburg and the area of South Africa towards the border with Botswana has a sub-tropical climate with average temperatures ranging between 2º C and 20ºC during the winter and between 22º C and 35 ° C during the summer. The rains are concentrated in the months between September and April, the rainiest month is December.

Climate of Rustenburg.

RUSTENBURG (1170 meters)
Month Average low (°C) Average high (°C) Precip. (mm) Precip. days
January 19 32 78  10
February 18 31 71  8
March 16 30 58  8
April 12 27 38  6
May 7 25 6  1
June 3 22 12  2
July 2 22 3  1
August 6 26 5  1
September 11 28 25  4
October 15 30 57  7
November 16 31 61  10
December 18 31 105  12
YEAR 12 28 519  69

This post is also available in: German

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