Sydney Weather


The Aussies, on the whole, seem to fancy themselves as meteorological experts, and this is reflected in their TV weather forecasts. They seem to concentrate mainly on incomprehensible synoptic charts with maybe a quick sop to the uninitiated in the final few seconds, when they reluctantly broadcast a written summary.

This may be because the majority of Aussies live near the sea and so have a long history of marine pursuits, ranging from fishing to surfing which lend themselves to the synoptics, rather than smiley sunshine graphics. Alternately, it may be because the Sydneysiders enjoy looking at the low fronts moving from the Antarctic toward their Victorian rival, Melbourne.


The two cities have a long running rivalry which saw the federal capital Canberra having to be placed almost exactly the same distance between the two, so bitter was the one-upmanship that prevailed at the time. The weather is not immune from this sibling feud.


Sydneysiders will have you believe that Melbourne is stuck in a perpetual ice-age; "cold down there. Mate" they will tell you if you plan to head south after Sydney. Meanwhile, Melbourninans will tell you through their eight layers of warm clothes that Sydney has hopelessly unpredictable weather and that whilst it will be hot (too hot) and sunny one minute, it will be nigh on monsoonal the next. Well, the southerners have got a point here.


It is true to say that the weather in Sydney is a little difficult to forecast. On the whole, summer can be said to last from December to March and at it's height it is not so unusual for the temperature to nudge the low 40 degrees Celsius (105 F) mark. However, if you take the whole Sydney area, you can expect the popular Blue Mountains area to be considerably cooler than the city, and if you do intend to head that way it is worth packing some warm, waterproof clothes just in case.


In the city itself, it would be a foolish person that handed over their waterproofs in a fit of summer madness, and the wind that blows off the Tasman can make things cooler than the sun overhead would suggest.


That said, it is safe to assume that the highest temperatures (between 20 and 35 degrees Celsius, 68 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit), and the least rain can be had during January and February, whilst the cooler months with more rain (though many fine days too) and temperatures (15C / 55F) fall around June and July.


This is, obviously, the best time to visit the New South Wales ski centres of Thredbo and Persisher Blue in the Snowy Mountains. If you are visiting the city in winter, you are likely to benefit from seasonal specials from hoteliers and the key attractions, as well as seeing Sydney in it's more natural state.


The popular areas of Bondi and Manly get very busy during the summer, and you may find a genuine Aussie accent a bit harder to pick amongst the Pommie and Scandinavian tongues. Accommodation can be a little hard to come by around Christmas and New Year, and prices tend to sky-rocket.


The other thing to remember about the summer months is the strength of the sun in Australia. Not helped by the fact that there is a huge hole in the ozone layer above your head as you lie on the beach at Bondi, burn times are a lot shorter than many people imagine. It is all too easy to nod off for a couple of hours in the heat and wake up with a cheerful fisherman standing over you thinking that he has just caught the biggest crayfish of his life. The supermarkets aren't filled with factor 15 sunscreen for nothing, and you would do well to don a hat when in the sun too. Corks are optional, but unadvisable.








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