Climate and monthly weather forecast

Flag of Mexico
Flag of Mexico

The climate of Mexico

Mexico has diverse climate types that range from arid and semi-arid in the north to humid and subtropical in the south. Much of the north exhibit desert (Köppen climate classification BWh, BWk) and semi-arid (Köppen BSh, BSk) climate. The southern coasts display tropical types (Köppen Af, Am, Aw), but turn into humid subtropical (Cfa, Cfb) in the southern interior regions. The extreme northwest and parts of the central region have a Mediterranean climate (Köppen Csa, Csb). Mexico lies in North America and has a large border with the United States in the north. The Pacific Ocean lies to the west and south, the Gulf of Mexico to the east, and the Caribbean Sea in the southeast. The subtropical latitudes and proximity to large water bodies mainly influence the climate.

The Tropic of Cancer divides Mexico into temperate and tropical zones. Temperatures gradually increase from north to south, except for the deserts of the north. The coastline consists of the Pacific Ocean, Gulf of California, Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean Sea. The Sierra Madres are two mountain ranges that run north-south and are an extension of the Rocky Mountains. The Sierra Nevada runs east to west in the central part of Mexico. The mountain ranges receive moderate precipitation, but the tropical southern coasts receive abundant rainfall. The Panuco, Grijalva, Papaloapan, Usumacinta, and Coatzacoalcos are five major rivers that flow eastwards into the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea. The west coast and north-central regions of Mexico are generally arid and semi-arid. Pico de Orizaba is the highest peak in Mexico at 5700 meters.

Mexico has hot summers and mild winters. Spring and autumn are short periods of mild temperatures. Late spring is prone to pre-monsoon showers. Autumn is at the receiving end of hurricanes, and post-monsoon rains. Summers are extremely hot in the Sonoran Desert in the northwest and the Yuma Desert in the northeast. Temperatures in the deserts reach an average high of 42.2°C (108°F) at the peak of summer. Mexico City, on the southern part of the central plateau, has comfortable summers and mild winters. The Yucatan Peninsula has high temperatures throughout the year, with hardly a -12.2°C (10°F) difference between mean temperatures in summer and winter. The coastal areas of Baja California in the north are temperate. The southern coasts are hot and humid in the summer. The high peaks of the Sierra Madres receive snowfall in the winter. Cold waves from the United States blow southwards to the north-central interior regions of Mexico. Temperatures above 4000 meters in the high mountains of the south-central region remain cold in the summer but are freezing in the winter.

The subtropical location of Mexico is the reason for the abundant sunshine in the country. The annual sunshine ranges from 2700 hours to 3500 hours, with the highest numbers in the northern deserts and the southern half. The annual rainfall ranges between a scanty 101.6mm (4") to 254mm (10") in the Baja California deserts and 1016mm (40") to 1524mm (60") along the Pacific coast and Yucatan Peninsula. Much of Mexico receives more than eighty% of annual precipitation in the rainy season from June to September. The relative humidity peaks in July and August at the peak of the rainy season.

San Luis Rio Colorado, Sonora, recorded the highest ever temperature of 52.5°C (126.5°F), on June 15, 1966, in Mexico. The coldest recorded temperature of -29°C (-20.2°F) occurred in Los Lamentos, Chihuahua, on January 11, 1962.

The best time to visit Mexico

The best time to visit Mexico is in the moderate seasons of spring and autumn. March to April in the spring is mild and dry in the northern regions. September to October is mild but relatively wet in the south. The northern coast of Baja California is ideal for sunbathing in late spring and early summer. The general idea is to avoid the hot and humid rainy season that brings monsoon rains to the country. The southern regions have pleasant winters so that December to February is much favorable in the absence of rain and severe cold. The seawaters in Acapulco are warm even in January, which makes it a popular tourist destination during Christmas and New Year.

The worst time to visit Mexico

The worst time to visit Mexico is during the summer season. Summer is hot, and the monsoon brings mugginess in the atmosphere. May is the peak of the summer and brings extreme temperatures in Mexico. The Sonoran Desert sees temperatures above 48.9°C (120°F) during the day. Peak temperatures often surpass the 37.8°C (100°F) mark in the arid northwest and the south. June to August is the period of the rainy season that brings heat, humidity, and wet conditions. The coasts see particularly heavy precipitation, and it is a time to avoid the beaches with cloudy conditions. Thunderstorms are active during the summer, and the coast is prone to hurricanes and cyclones.

Weather hazards

Mexico is vulnerable to wildfires, floods, droughts, earthquakes, volcanoes, thunderstorms, hurricanes, and cyclones in summer and autumn. The arid northwest is prone to droughts in the hot summer. The proximity to the Gulf of Mexico is a risk factor to the eastern coast of Mexico for tropical cyclones. The western coast is similarly prone to storms from the North Pacific Ocean. Cyclones often bring heavy rainfall that causes catastrophic floods. Hurricane Wilma brought a Western Hemisphere record 1633.2mm (64.3") of rainfall in 24 hours on October 21, 2005. Hurricane Patricia, the most intense tropical cyclone worldwide in terms of wind speed, occurred on October 23, 2015. Mexico is one of the most seismically active regions on earth, with a history of large magnitude earthquakes. The San Andreas Fault, which extends from California to Mexico in the south, is the cause of frequent seismic disturbances.

Weather in January

January is generally the coldest month of the year in Mexico, with little rain amid clear skies. Rainfall is negligible everywhere except for the Yucatan Peninsula, where it is moderate. Snowfall occurs only on the high slopes of the mountains. Nights are cold in the arid northern regions Central Mexico sees average temperatures in the 2.8°C (37°F) to 26.1°C (79°F) range, with the capital, Mexico City, between a cold 2.8°C (37°F) to warm 21.1°C (70°F). Weather in January »

Weather in February

February is mild in the winter of Mexico as the cold winds still hold sway over the northern part of the country. The average low temperatures in the north and central regions are between 4.4°C (39.9°F) to 11.1°C (52°F), with at least 7 hours of daily sunshine. Weather in February »

Weather in March

March is the beginning of the short and dry spring season in Mexico. The conditions are typically warm and sunny in the entire country. Temperatures in Cancun in the south usually range in the 21.1°C (70°F) to 30.6°C (87.1°F), and the mild seawaters offer the joy of swimming. The tourist hotspot of Guadalajara, on the Pacific Coast, has moderate temperatures between 13.3°C (55.9°F) to 28.3°C (82.9°F). Weather in March »

Weather in April

April pushes the mercury column in Mexico, as the majority of the country receives abundant sunshine. Roaring waterfalls, flowing streams, and gushing rivers offer a relaxing natural habitat. The days are warm to hot, with at least 8 hours of daily sunshine. The average high temperatures across the country are in the 23.9°C (75°F) to 35°C (95°F) zone, with moderate temperatures along the coasts, the extreme northwest, and the high mountains. Weather in April »

Weather in May

May is hot and sunny, with mostly clear skies in Mexico. Mexicali, in the Yuma Desert, registers average temperatures in the range of 17.2°C (63°F) to 35°C (95°F), with 12 hours of intense sunshine. Ciudad Juarez, in the Chihuahua Desert, has average highs above 32.2°C (90°F), and the days frequently register above 37.8°C (100°F). The second half of May brings pre-monsoon showers from south-central to southern parts of Mexico. Weather in May »

Weather in June

June is hot, humid, and wet in Mexico as the monsoon rains lash the country. The monsoon arrives from the south, which is rainier than the north. The Pacific Coast is the wettest region, with the monthly precipitation between 152.4mm (6") to 254mm (10"). Northern Mexico is hot, with average high temperatures in the 32.2°C (90°F) to 40.6°C (105.1°F) range. Weather in June »

Weather in July

July is the wettest month of the year in Mexico, as the monsoon advances northward in the country. Veracruz, in the central region, registers a hefty 391.2mm (15.4") of rainfall. Acapulco, Guadalajara, Puerto Vallarta, and San Blas on the Pacific Coast, receive between 254mm (10") to 355.6mm (14") of precipitation. Day temperatures are often in the hot range of 26.7°C (80.1°F) to 42.8°C (109°F) across the country, with the lower part of the range occurring in the central region. Weather in July »

Weather in August

August is a hot and wet month in the rainy season in Mexico. The northern region is still in the grip of high temperatures in the 32.2°C (90°F) to 42.2°C (108°F) range, even though the monsoon brings more rain as it moves northward. Hermosillo in the Sonoran Desert has average temperatures between 32.2°C (90°F) to 42.2°C (108°F) and registers up to 99.1mm (3.9") of precipitation. Weather in August »

Weather in September

September sees a gradual decrease in rainfall and temperatures in Mexico. The southern half is still susceptible to heavy showers, particularly on the coasts. The average high temperatures drop below 37.8°C (100°F) across the country except for a few arid places. Weather in September »

Weather in October

October lies in the short autumn season in Mexico, with mild temperatures and generally pleasant weather. The average high temperatures drop from the peak of summer and remain mostly below 37.8°C (100°F). Nights are pleasant in the 10°C (50°F) to 22.2°C (72°F) range. October skies are partly cloudy, as the monsoon rains taper off in the entire country. Weather in October »

Weather in November

November is a transitional month in Mexico as the short autumn season opens doors to the winter cold. The conditions are dry, the temperatures are moderate, and the lush greenery makes the atmosphere pleasant. Day temperatures between 21.1°C (70°F) to 32.2°C (90°F) and nights between 10°C (50°F) to 21.1°C (70°F) are great for visiting beaches, mountains, museums, city centers, or anything of interest. The end of the hurricane season is a bonus for sea lovers, with plenty of water activities, including swimming, surfing, sailing, and snorkeling packed in people's schedules. Weather in November »

Weather in December

December begins the winter in Mexico, with dryness in the air, clear skies, and generally comfortable conditions. Rosarito on the coast, in peninsular Baja California, has average temperatures in the 10°C (50°F) to 20°C (68°F) range. Weather in December »


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