What’s Climate Like in Brisbane?

Located on the Brisbane River in the southeast corner of Queensland, Brisbane boasts one of the sunniest and warmest climates in Australia.

Climate: humid subtropical

Sunshine

For the best representation of how sunny a given place is, we look at the number of clear days (defined as days with cloud cover below 20%), partly cloudy days (cloud cover between 20-80%) and overcast days (cloud cover over 80%). For more information check the first answer in FAQ.

Total clear days a year: 120.5

Total partly cloudy days a year: 200.2

Total overcast days a year: 44.3

Brisbane is a great place for everyone who enjoys plenty of sunshine. You get plenty of clear days and very few overcast days. This means that it’s very unlikely that you’ll go more than a couple of days without seeing at least some sunshine. Brisbane is also a good choice if you prefer to see some clouds because there are more partly cloudy days than clear days.

Moreover, cloudy days are almost equally distributed over an entire year, meaning that no single month features more than a few overcast days.

Day Length

Shortest day length: 10:24:13 (June 22, 6:37 am – 5:01 pm)

Longest day length: 13:52:54 (December 22, 4:49 am – 6:42 pm)

Latest sunrise: 6:38 am (June 24-July 11)

Earliest sunset: 5:41 pm (June 2-17)

Earliest sunrise: 4:44 am (November 28-December 7)

Latest sunset: 6:47 pm (January 3-19)

If you enjoy long summer evenings, Brisbane is not exactly the right destination for you. During the longest days, it’s already dark around 7 pm which might be a bit of a shock if you’re used to long summer days with sunset around 8-9 pm. This also means that if you finish work at 5 pm, you won’t be able to enjoy much sunshine during the winter weekdays.

However, shorter summer days means that winter days are longer. No matter the season, you always get at least over 10 hours of daylight which you might find more suitable than an imbalanced summer/winter day length in, for example, London, where you only get 8 daylight hours in the winter (and 16 and a half in the summer).

The ratio of daylight hours during winter and summer is important to those who suffer from SAD (seasonal affective disorder). 16-hour-long summer days are enjoyable and will definitely cure your SAD, but this means that your symptoms will be back with a vengeance once there are only 8 hours of daylight – particularly in a location where most winter days are overcast (as is the case with most cities that don’t get much sunlight). Ultimately, (arguably) it’s better to get fewer daylight hours during the summer in exchange for getting more daylight hours during the winter so that you never have to endure short days.

Brisbane is a good destination for early risers. Sun is up super early during the summer and in the winter, sunrise is never later than 6:38 am, so you never have to deal with those long, frustrating dark mornings, waiting for sunrise until 7-8 am (as is the case with Tenerife, Canary Islands, for example).

Average Temperatures

Mean daily maximum shows the maximum temperature of an average day, while mean daily minimum shows the minimum temperature of an average day. These are the temperatures you’re most likely to experience.

Hottest days and coldest nights show the average of the hottest days and coldest nights of each month of the last 30 years. If you don’t like what you’re seeing please be aware that the numbers here are the 30-year averages of the extremes of each month. You have to be prepared for such days to happen, but it doesn’t mean that they happen every day.

Brisbane features pleasant, warm winters, and hot summers. No matter the season, you can almost always expect at least 15-20 °C (59-68 °F) each day. Even on the coldest nights, it’s extremely unlikely that temperatures fall all the way down to 0 °C (32 °F), while on the hottest days temperatures shouldn’t exceed 40°C (104 °F).

Please note that nights can sometimes be relatively cold, so you’ll probably need long pants and a jacket if you’re heading out in the evening. Also, this means that you’ll need some kind of an indoor heating system for the coldest winter nights. Fortunately, winters don’t last long in Brisbane and are often still warmer than summers in northern Europe.

Maximum Temperatures

Maximum temperatures show how many days per month reach a certain temperature. This number is useful to determine how many warm and cold days there are in a given month.

During the summer, almost every single day comes with temperatures above 25 °C (77 °F), but rarely reaches unpleasant 35 °C (95 °F) or more. This makes Brisbane a good choice for everyone who likes high temperatures, but not necessarily super high temperatures that prevent you from spending time outdoors.

During the coldest months, the maximum temperature will almost always exceed 15 °C (59 °F), and be higher than 20 °C (68 °F) for at least 10 days each month. This means that even during winter, on many days you’ll be able to wear shorts and a t-shirt only.

Precipitation

Precipitation shows on how many days per month it rains – and if so, how much.

While sometimes (though very rarely) it does rain a lot in Brisbane (and causes floods), the good news is that no single month features fewer dry days than days with rain. Also, if it rains, it usually rains only a little.

On the month with most rainy days, February, it rains for only 9 days on average, meaning you still get 19 dry days. During the driest winter months you can expect 26-27 days without rain. You might get so much sunshine that you’ll be actually looking forward to some rain. How’s that for a pleasant winter?

Humidity

For the simplest indicator of how humid a given location is, we look at its average dew point temperature.

The higher the dew point is, the more moisture there is in the air. This affects how effectively your body can cool itself with perspiration and how sticky the weather feels. A lower dew point means that there’s less moisture in the air and your body can more effectively cool itself.

For the easiest explanation:

  • the greater the difference between current temperature and dew point, the drier the weather feels. Conversely, the lower the difference, the more humid it feels.
  • during summer, the higher the dew point is, the stickier the weather feels. Generally speaking, dew point temperature higher than 18 °C (65 °F) feels sticky for most people. 21-24 °C (70-75 °F) and higher dew point temperature is uncomfortably sticky or oppressive.
  • during winter, the lower the dew point is, the drier the weather feels and can lead to dry skin and cracked lips. If you know air temperature and dew point temperature, you can use a dew point calculator to calculate relative humidity. The air feels dry outside if relative humidity is below 40%. For example, if it’s 20 °C (68 °F) and dew point temperature is 5 °C (41 °F), relative humidity is 37.35% and the air feels dry.

With dew point temperature around 19 °C (66 °F) in January and February, the weather feels sticky and might be uncomfortable to people who aren’t used to such high dew point temperatures. During the remaining warm months, the weather should feel okay for most.

In May and September, for the weather to feel dry during the day, maximum temperatures have to be over 25 °C (77 °F) which happens on average two times in May and ten times in September.

In July and August, maximum temperatures have to be over 21 °C (70 °F) which happens during about 10 days in July and 15 days in August. In October, maximum temperatures have to cross 28 °C (84 °F) which happens during about 7 days.

The weather can also feel dry during November if the maximum temperatures cross 31 °C (88 °F) which happens about 7 times during the month. Some occasional dry days can also happen during December and March.

To sum up, the weather in Brisbane feels intermittently dry for about two months in total (mostly between May and August) and feels sticky – every day – for two months (January and February). During the rest of the year, the weather feels comfortable.

Wind Speed

Wind speed shows how many days are windy, and if so, how windy. A little breeze during a hot day can feel pleasant, while strong winds on colder days can make you feel even colder. A place can be sunny and warm, but if it’s often very windy, it might not be a particularly pleasant place to live (unless you’re into wind sports).

It’s never really super windy in Brisbane. Usually you won’t deal with anything stronger than a moderate breeze. If you dislike wind, please note that there’s some wind all of the time.

sources:

meteoblue, based on 30 years of data, retrieved April 1, 2018.

Australian Government. Bureau of Meteorology. Climate statistics for Australian locations, Brisbane, retrieved April 1, 2018.

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