When is the best time to go to South Africa?

The climate in South Africa is very mild throughout the entire year, with some regional variations. Thus, the west coast is enjoyable most of the time, but the best time to admire the nature awakening from its torpor in the Cape region is during the spring months from October to November. In addition, holiday tourists are still scarce and prices are reasonable.

The peak tourist season in South Africa is during the summer, between mid-December and March. Christmas festivities as well as those of the new year are very lively. If one prefers to avoid such enthusiastic crowds, this season is also conducive with the discovery of other facets in South Africa.

For safari passionists, the dry season which also coincides with the winter season, lends itself to the best time for the observation of animals that can no longer hide behind lush vegetation. In the end, the best time to visit Kruger Park is definitely from July to September.

So, when is the best time to go to South Africa? Here's some more information to help you in your decision:

  • In South Africa, the weather is good everywhere in February, March, April, May, September, October and November
  • The weather is good all year in Cape Town
  • On average, the warmest months in Cape Town are January, February, March and December, and the coldest months are June, July and August
  • June is the wettest month in this city
  • The cities with the best climate are Cape Town, Durban, Parc Kruger, Pretoria, Hermanus, Kimberley, Knysna, Nelspruit, Port Elizabeth (South Africa), Richards Bay, Sodwana Bay, East London, Harrismith, Jeffrey's Bay, Kathu, Louis Trichardt, Mmabatho, Modimolle, Mossel Bay, Phalaborwa, Plettenberg Bay, Polokwane, Port Alfred, Port Shepstone, Potchefstroom, Rustenburg, Thabazimbi, Thohoyandou, Upington, Vryheid and Welkom, with good weather at least 11 months a year
  • The best months for swimming in Cape Town are January, February, March, November and December

For information about the climate and the weather city by city in South Africa for a specific month, click on the corresponding line below:

Month
January 72°F to 90°F
40%
February 72°F to 88°F
38%
March 70°F to 86°F
31%
April 63°F to 79°F
25%
May 59°F to 76°F
15%
June 52°F to 74°F
15%
July 52°F to 72°F
13%
August 56°F to 77°F
13%
September 59°F to 81°F
16%
October 65°F to 83°F
26%
November 67°F to 85°F
33%
December 70°F to 88°F
40%
* weather varies across the country

Best time to travel to South Africa by cities

Cape Town

Best time to go to Cape Town

The best months to go to Cape Town are january, february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, october, november and december.

Durban

Best time to go to Durban

The best months to go to Durban are january, february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, october and november.

Johannesburg

Best time to go to Johannesburg

The best months to go to Johannesburg are february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, october and november.

Parc Kruger

Best time to go to Parc Kruger

The best months to go to Parc Kruger are january, february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, october, november and december.

Pretoria

Best time to go to Pretoria

The best months to go to Pretoria are february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, october, november and december.

Hermanus

Best time to go to Hermanus

The best months to go to Hermanus are january, february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, october, november and december.


Other cities and places in South Africa

See full list of cities

Tours and organised trips in South Africa


Climate and Weather in South Africa

As the name suggests, South Africa is in the southern hemisphere, which in turn creates seasons that are the complete opposite of France. In other words, when France is experiencing the summer season, South Africa is enduring the winter and vice versa. Due to the reason that South Africa extends so greatly, closing in on Namibia, Botswana, Mozambique and even Swaziland, it experiences great changes in climates depending on the region where one is located.

South Africa: Bolotwa, South Africa

The Climate in South Africa on the Coast of the Atlantic Ocean

On the shores of the Atlantic ocean, the climate in South Africa is generally warmer and becomes more and more dry when approaching the north, towards the deserts of Namibia. The seashores, on the other hand, remain pleasant.

The Climate Around the Cape Area

The Cape enjoys a pleasant, Mediterranean climate. In general, summers range from September to April due to the southern hemisphere and these months are rather hot and dry - the rain at this time of year being almost nonexistent. In terms of winter, this season offers a mild temperature that never drops into the negatives.

The Climate on the Indian Ocean Coast

While South Africa has a large coastline that extends along the Atlantic Ocean, it also has a large one extending along the Indian Ocean. In this part of the country, the climate passes from temperate on one side of the cape to subtropical on the next. For this reason, in cities such as Durban, it is quite warm but humid, especially between the months of January and February.

Th Climate around Johannesburg

The climate in South Africa around the area of Johannesburg offers dry but especially sunny winters. However, it is not uncommon in the summer to see torrential and very impressive downpours as well as early evening thunderstorms that punctuate the heat during the day! The climate is much like that of Gaborone in Botswana, their neighbor.

The Climate in Karoo

In Karoo, located west of the country, the inland area undergoes almost desert like climates. Thus, the heat is almost unbearable and one feels as though they are suffocating, due to lack of fresh air.


Temperatures and rainfall in South Africa

On these 3 graphs, we present the evolution of temperatures of South Africa and month-by-month rainfall for the cities of Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg, Parc Kruger and Pretoria, as well as the month-by-month sea temperature for coastal cities.

81°F
70°F
81°F
70°F
79°F
68°F
76°F
63°F
70°F
59°F
65°F
54°F
65°F
54°F
65°F
54°F
67°F
58°F
72°F
61°F
74°F
65°F
77°F
68°F
11% 11% 12% 19% 28% 39% 27% 33% 28% 18% 19% 9%
67°F 67°F 67°F 63°F 63°F 63°F 61°F 61°F 61°F 61°F 65°F 67°F
83°F
76°F
85°F
76°F
85°F
74°F
81°F
68°F
79°F
67°F
76°F
61°F
76°F
61°F
76°F
65°F
76°F
67°F
77°F
68°F
79°F
67°F
81°F
70°F
53% 44% 42% 33% 18% 12% 17% 19% 30% 44% 50% 59%
79°F 79°F 81°F 79°F 76°F 74°F 72°F 72°F 74°F 74°F 76°F 77°F
83°F
74°F
83°F
72°F
81°F
70°F
76°F
65°F
72°F
61°F
67°F
54°F
67°F
54°F
72°F
61°F
81°F
68°F
83°F
72°F
83°F
74°F
83°F
76°F
65% 54% 43% 27% 9% 3% 1% 3% 8% 30% 44% 65%
90°F
79°F
90°F
79°F
88°F
79°F
85°F
74°F
81°F
70°F
77°F
65°F
77°F
65°F
81°F
70°F
86°F
74°F
88°F
77°F
88°F
77°F
90°F
79°F
46% 44% 36% 21% 6% 3% 5% 2% 12% 21% 34% 49%
86°F
76°F
85°F
74°F
83°F
72°F
77°F
67°F
74°F
63°F
68°F
56°F
68°F
54°F
74°F
61°F
83°F
70°F
85°F
74°F
85°F
76°F
85°F
77°F
66% 50% 40% 25% 7% 3% 0% 2% 8% 30% 42% 63%
77°F
68°F
77°F
68°F
76°F
67°F
74°F
63°F
70°F
59°F
67°F
56°F
65°F
56°F
65°F
56°F
65°F
58°F
68°F
61°F
72°F
63°F
76°F
67°F
13% 18% 16% 21% 24% 31% 26% 25% 22% 18% 18% 16%
68°F 68°F 68°F 67°F 63°F 63°F 61°F 61°F 61°F 63°F 65°F 68°F
92°F
79°F
90°F
77°F
88°F
74°F
79°F
65°F
74°F
59°F
65°F
50°F
65°F
50°F
72°F
56°F
81°F
65°F
85°F
70°F
88°F
76°F
92°F
81°F
25% 31% 21% 18% 9% 9% 3% 4% 5% 11% 16% 22%
79°F
70°F
81°F
70°F
79°F
68°F
76°F
65°F
74°F
61°F
70°F
58°F
70°F
58°F
68°F
58°F
68°F
59°F
70°F
63°F
74°F
65°F
77°F
68°F
19% 22% 19% 26% 17% 28% 26% 21% 25% 22% 25% 19%
70°F 68°F 68°F 67°F 65°F 65°F 63°F 63°F 65°F 65°F 67°F 68°F
77°F
70°F
79°F
68°F
77°F
67°F
72°F
63°F
70°F
58°F
67°F
52°F
65°F
52°F
72°F
59°F
77°F
65°F
77°F
67°F
77°F
68°F
79°F
70°F
69% 62% 55% 35% 13% 4% 6% 6% 14% 42% 61% 74%
85°F
76°F
85°F
74°F
83°F
72°F
79°F
68°F
77°F
63°F
74°F
58°F
72°F
58°F
77°F
65°F
81°F
70°F
83°F
72°F
83°F
70°F
85°F
74°F
53% 46% 38% 28% 9% 5% 6% 7% 14% 33% 46% 53%
81°F
74°F
81°F
74°F
81°F
72°F
77°F
68°F
76°F
65°F
72°F
59°F
72°F
59°F
70°F
61°F
70°F
63°F
72°F
67°F
76°F
68°F
77°F
70°F
24% 31% 26% 28% 20% 24% 24% 21% 21% 28% 26% 26%
74°F 72°F 72°F 72°F 70°F 68°F 68°F 67°F 68°F 68°F 70°F 72°F
85°F
77°F
86°F
77°F
86°F
77°F
83°F
72°F
81°F
70°F
79°F
65°F
77°F
67°F
76°F
68°F
77°F
70°F
77°F
72°F
79°F
70°F
83°F
74°F
55% 50% 44% 36% 28% 22% 23% 22% 30% 50% 49% 55%
81°F 81°F 81°F 79°F 77°F 76°F 74°F 72°F 74°F 74°F 76°F 79°F
85°F
77°F
85°F
79°F
85°F
77°F
81°F
76°F
81°F
72°F
77°F
68°F
76°F
68°F
76°F
68°F
77°F
70°F
77°F
72°F
79°F
72°F
83°F
74°F
51% 48% 43% 39% 29% 26% 24% 21% 32% 48% 48% 52%
85°F
70°F
85°F
68°F
81°F
65°F
76°F
61°F
70°F
56°F
63°F
50°F
63°F
49°F
63°F
50°F
67°F
54°F
72°F
59°F
76°F
63°F
81°F
67°F
12% 13% 12% 18% 24% 39% 27% 33% 28% 18% 19% 11%

Where to go in South Africa?

This table allows you to see the maximum temperature for each city and our opinion on the weather month by month (see colour legend below the table).

Cities jan.feb.mar.apr.mayjun.jul.aug.sep.oct.nov.dec.
Cape Town81°F81°F79°F76°F70°F65°F65°F65°F67°F72°F74°F77°F
Durban83°F85°F85°F81°F79°F76°F76°F76°F76°F77°F79°F81°F
Johannesburg83°F83°F81°F76°F72°F67°F67°F72°F81°F83°F83°F83°F
Parc Kruger90°F90°F88°F85°F81°F77°F77°F81°F86°F88°F88°F90°F
Pretoria86°F85°F83°F77°F74°F68°F68°F74°F83°F85°F85°F85°F
Hermanus77°F77°F76°F74°F70°F67°F65°F65°F65°F68°F72°F76°F
Kimberley92°F90°F88°F79°F74°F65°F65°F72°F81°F85°F88°F92°F
Knysna79°F81°F79°F76°F74°F70°F70°F68°F68°F70°F74°F77°F
Long Tom Pas77°F79°F77°F72°F70°F67°F65°F72°F77°F77°F77°F79°F
Nelspruit85°F85°F83°F79°F77°F74°F72°F77°F81°F83°F83°F85°F
Port Elizabeth (South Africa)81°F81°F81°F77°F76°F72°F72°F70°F70°F72°F76°F77°F
Richards Bay85°F86°F86°F83°F81°F79°F77°F76°F77°F77°F79°F83°F
Sodwana Bay85°F85°F85°F81°F81°F77°F76°F76°F77°F77°F79°F83°F
Stellenbosch85°F85°F81°F76°F70°F63°F63°F63°F67°F72°F76°F81°F
Aliwal North86°F83°F81°F72°F65°F58°F58°F65°F72°F77°F79°F85°F
Atlantis81°F81°F79°F74°F68°F65°F63°F63°F67°F70°F74°F77°F
Butterworth77°F77°F77°F72°F70°F65°F65°F68°F72°F72°F74°F76°F
Cradock86°F86°F83°F76°F70°F63°F63°F67°F74°F77°F81°F85°F
East London81°F83°F81°F77°F76°F74°F72°F72°F72°F74°F76°F77°F
Ermelo81°F81°F79°F74°F68°F63°F63°F70°F79°F79°F79°F81°F

Legend:

perfect weather

good weather

tolerable weather


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Map of South Africa

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About South Africa

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Is this weather information for South Africa reliable?

Climate data for South Africa has been gathered every day since January 2009. The analysis of these meteorological data for South Africa allows us to determine the average for each month in Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg, Parc Kruger, Pretoria, Hermanus, Kimberley, Knysna, and 40 other cities.

So yes: this data is reliable except in cases of temporary climate disruption in the region.

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