Cruise and Beach Destinations
in the Caribbean, Mexico & Beyond

Caribbean Weather in August: Best Islands to Visit

This video explains Caribbean weather in August and which islands are the best and worst to visit for weather.

Full-Screen Version | YouTube Caribbean Channel
Caribbean weather in August has hotter temperatures and more rain than July for most major destinations.

Cruise and resort tourism starts to decline in response to the riskier weather. Still, August is part of summer, and summer remains a popular time to visit the Caribbean.

Heavier rainfall begins to show up in the Caribbean in August as the annual hurricane season gets more active.

On average, the Bahamas are especially hard hit. Other destinations that often get drenched include Dominica, Guadeloupe and Martinique as well as Belize and Costa Rica. Western Caribbean cruise ports such as Cozumel and Grand Cayman get more rain than usual.

The higher risk of rain doesn’t stop people from taking western Caribbean cruises or visiting destination resorts. Some travelers get lucky and don’t experience any rain at all. But the odds of rain do go up.

Caribbean weather in August historically averages three major storms with two that become hurricanes. The chart below shows figures from the Caribbean meteorological services that indicate August weather averages over various 30-year periods for 17 major Caribbean destinations.

The figures are averages and may vary from one year to the next. But they show trends that help travel planners know what kind of weather to expect and whether to go in June or July instead.

Best Caribbean Islands in August

The best Caribbean islands to visit in August include Aruba - Curacao - Jamaica (Montego Bay), St. Maarten - Antigua and St. Thomas. They all average four inches of rain or less. Aruba and Curacao average about one inch. They have the lowest risk of rain in the entire Caribbean.

Caribbean islands to avoid in August include the Bahamas, Barbados, Grand Cayman, Cozumel, Dominica, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Puerto Rico and St. Lucia. They all average at least five to six inches of rain historically and sometimes as much as 10 inches. The Central American countries of Belize, Costa Rica and Panama also have high levels of rain.

The longer list of Caribbean destinations to avoid is the result of the Caribbean hurricane season.

10-Day Weather Forecasts | See Caribbean monthly weather in: January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December

Caribbean Rain in August

Anyone wanting the lowest risk of rain will have an easy choice. Aruba and Curacao historically average about one inch of rain each August.

The ABC islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao lie off the coast of Venezuela and just on the edge of the Caribbean hurricane belt. They are the most arid islands in the region all year and see only slight increases of rain during the hurricane season.

But August is the end of their normal dry season. On average, their rainfall increases from about one to two inches each month during most of the year to about three inches in September, October and November, according to Netherland Antilles Meteorology.

August Rain and Temperature Chart
LocationAvg Daily Min TempAvg Daily Max TempAvg Monthly Rainfall InchesAverage Monthly Rain Days
Cayman Islands73.091.96.418.0
Costa Rica62.177.49.9
Dominican Republic76.687.34.110.0
San Juan76.688.75.314.9
St. Lucia77.487.46.221.0
St. Maarten79.289.13.9
St. Thomas78903.6

Several other destinations average about four inches of rain in August and also may have lower risk. They include Antigua, Cancun, Montego Bay, Punta Cana and St. Maarten.

Islands with a higher than normal risk of rain include Bahamas, Dominica and Martinique. Total rainfall in the Bahamas jumps by 50 percent versus July.

The popular Central American destinations of Belize and Costa Rica, which are famous for their rainforests, usually see high levels of rain as well.

Caribbean Temperatures in August

Staying warm in the Caribbean isn’t a problem in August. Places such as Cancun, Cayman Islands, Cozumel, Aruba and Curacao all see average high temperatures exceed 90 degrees Fahrenheit on many days.

Anyone who has visited those locations in the summer know that the heat can be unbearable at times, especially inland or walking on beach sand in the middle of the afternoon. Aruba and Curacao in particular have arid interiors with little to no shade. Visitors should try to do any shore excursions on land in the mornings when temperatures are lower.

Locations with more moderate temperatures include Antigua, St. Lucia and Dominican Republic.

Cruise Weather in August

Aruba monthly rainfall
The dry island of Aruba is usually a safe bet in August because of a low risk of rain. But the island also gets quite hot. © 2020 Scott S. Bateman

Higher rainfall and hot temperatures make western Caribbean cruises less appealing in August for Cancun, Cozumel, Grand Cayman and the Central American countries.

Eastern cruises are only slightly better, but travelers should avoid the Bahamas because of much higher than normal rainfall. San Juan and St. Lucia also have wet months.

Southern Caribbean weather makes cruises there a better choice, especially for ones that visit the dry islands of Aruba and Curacao.

Anyone who wants to take a Caribbean cruise during the summer and has some flexibility with their schedules may want to cruise during July and especially during June. The average rainfall is lower for most destinations.

But at least August is better than September. Historically, September is the worst month of the year for rain, storms and hurricanes in the Caribbean.