Annual Great Barrier Reef Weather Overview

The Great Barrier Reef is set in North Queensland, which boasts a tropical climate that’s hard to beat anywhere else in the country. There is plenty of sunshine throughout the year, which is paired with refreshing sea breezes. Unlike other parts of Australia which have the typical four seasons, the Great Barrier Reef really only has two distinct seasons: summer and winter. Both seasons host lush, warm temperatures, but the rainfall and sea temperatures can vary greatly from each season.

Temperatures are pretty steady throughout the year, with an average maximum temperature of 30°C (though this can rise much higher in the warmer months), and an average minimum temperature of 21°C. Because of its tropical climate, the Great Barrier Reef is party to plenty of rain throughout the year, with an average of 2010mm falling during the year.

Winter in the Great Barrier Reef

Winter spans between May and October and is characterised by warm weather. It’s the typical climate you’d expect of the region, highlighting the crystal clear waters of the ocean and the seemingly endless blue skies.

Winter is also the dry season in the Great Barrier Reef, which means that barely any rainfall takes place during these months. Instead, you can expect fresh coastal breezes and low humidity. It’s also the traditional swimming season in this part of Australia, and water temperatures bask at a very pleasant 23°C.

Summer in the Great Barrier Reef

On the flipside, summer is also the wet season in the Great Barrier Reef. The temperatures are still very high, but there are a slew of tropical downpours that hit the region between November and April. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The refreshing rainfall is often a welcome release from the hot temperatures that otherwise characterise the season. Often, the storms happen in the afternoon and leave glorious blue skies and sunshine in their wake, and there are a number of electrical storms that take place during the summer months.

Whilst summer is the warmest time of year in the Great Barrier Reef, with sea temperatures hitting a very pleasant 29°C, swimming proves to be slightly more difficult thanks to the box jellyfish that come out to play during these months. Because of this, visitors are asked to stick to the special swimming enclosures that are set up along the most popular beaches to avoid any encounters with the sea creatures.

Book a Great Barrier Reef Tour with us today, to experience this beautiful reef for yourself!

Language »