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Caribbean Climate: Average Monthly Travel Weather

Caribbean climate is predictable with temperatures and unpredictable with rain.

Most Caribbean temperatures average from the low 80s Fahrenheit during the winter months to the mid- to upper-80s Fahrenheit during the summer, according to the World Meteorological Organization.

However, cooler ocean waters during the winter make December through February less popular for Caribbean visitors, especially in the northern locations.

Northern destinations such as the Bahamas have cooler temperatures during the winter, while southern islands such as Aruba have warmer temperatures because it is much closer to the equator.

Caribbean Climate Seasons

Monthly Climate Charts for Each Destination
AntiguaArubaBahamas
BarbadosBelizeBermuda
CancunCayman Is.Costa Rica
CozumelCuracaoDominica
Dominican Rep.JamaicaMartinique
PanamaSan JuanSt. Lucia
St. MaartenTrinidadSt. Thomas

Caribbean climate has distinct dry, rainy and transition seasons.

Dry Season

The dry season for many destinations last from January through April. An average rainfall of one to three inches a month is common.

The western Caribbean is especially popular during this time because the climate has such a low risk of rain. Popular destinations include Grand Cayman, Cozumel, Jamaica and Roatan.

Temperatures reach a low point of the year in January and February. Seawater is a bit cool at times, especially in northern locations. It is usually too cool for swimming in the Bahamas.

Ocean lovers will find that the best time for them to go is April. March is especially popular because of familes on break from schools.

Rainy Season / Hurricane Season

The Caribbean hurricane season officially goes from June 1 to Nov. 30. This perios is also known as the rainy season. Rainfall varies through the Caribbean depending on the destination. Aruba is an arid island and therefore has little plant vegetation, while Dominica receives a lot of rain and is lush.

Rain starts to climb during the summer as a result of the Caribbean hurricane season. It usually reaches a high point for most places in September and October and sometimes in November as well. September is the worst month of the year to visit the Caribbean because it historically has the most tropical storms and hurricanes. For that reason, it is the least popular month for Caribbean vacations.

Places that see especially high rainfall those months include:

  • Belize
  • Costa Rica
  • Cozumel

The Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico and North Atlantic face an average of 11 tropical storms or storms that become hurricanes each year, according to the National Hurricane Center at the National Weather Service.

Historically, August averages three tropical storms with two becoming hurricanes, September has four storms with two becoming hurricanes and October has two storms, of which one becomes a hurricane.

It’s important to know that a hurricane in the Caribbean doesn’t hit every island and ruin every vacation. June and July are usually safe months to visit.

Transition Months

May and December divide the dry and rainy seasons. They usually have rainfall above the averages in the dry season and below the averages in the rainy season.

May is a good month to visit the Caribbean for warm weather, especially among the southern islands such as Aruba and Curacao. December is one of the most popular months to visit the Caribbean, again because families are on break from schools, but also because northerners are fleeing cold weather.