Wondering what Alice Springs weather is currently, or what the BEST time of the year to visit is? Find all that information on this page.
Below, you’ll find all the essential information on climate, temperatures and rainfall, along with our recommendations for when to visit one of Australia’s best known outback town.
And remember: unlike many other outback travel websites we actually LIVE in Alice Springs.
We can tell you first hand the best times to visit the Red Centre.
General Climate Information
Alice Springs’ climate can be described as ‘arid’. Rainfall is fairly low, averaging only 283 mm per year.
That said, sometimes we have years where very little rain falls at all, like in 2009 when we had the lowest recorded rainfall ever of 78 mm in a year.
Yet in 2010, we had a near record of 770 mm of rain!
Generally though, weather in Alice Springs is very hot in summer, temperate for most of the year, and cool and clear in winter.
People are often stunned to learn that winter nights fall below freezing and that we have frosts!
This is because the town is located in the middle of a semi-arid region.
°As there’s no nearby oceans, and not a lot of warm moist air, like there is in coastal regions, daily temperatures can vary dramatically.
IMPORTANT FACT: Seasons in Australia (and Alice Springs) are the opposite to those in the Northern Hemisphere.
Australia’s summers are from December to February, and winters are from June to August.
If you’re thinking about visiting, then don’t forget this important fact.
Alice Springs weather can be extreme.
Temperatures average 36-40°C in summer and 18-20°C in winter. However, summer temperatures of 45°C have been recorded.
I can tell you that I’ve lived through a very hot summer with 45°C days and it wasn’t nice. It even killed my geraniums! And if you’re a gardener, you know how hard that is…
As with most places in the Outback, January and February are the hottest months of the year in Alice Springs.
July is generally the coolest month that Alice Springs’s climate has to offer. The temperature can drop below freezing, and frosts occur on 50% of mornings.
This graph shows the average minimum and maximum Alice Springs temperatures for each month.
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Want to know what the temperature is now? Try this page!
Believe it or not, our weather is heavily influenced by tropical lows and cyclones (also called hurricanes in the US) that form in the Top End and Kimberly Regions.
In the summer, most of our weather comes from the north west, which is very different from other parts of Australia.
If there’s a cyclone up in the Kimberly region of Western Australia, we’ll most probably get rain.
Once a cyclone hits land, it often becomes a large, wet low pressure system.
Some of these low pressure systems can travel all the way down through the Red Centre to Uluru Kata Tjuta.
So tropical cyclones are the main influence upon Alice Spring’s rainfall.
Rainfall at Alice Springs averages 283 mm (about 11 inches) per each year. Like many other place in the Outback, rainfall is unpredictable, but spread evenly over the year.
Mostly, rain occurs during the summer, although rain can fall at any time of the year.
In some years, no rain falls at all, whilst in other years (like 2010 -2011), there is widespread flooding!
When to Visit
What time of year is best to visit Alice Springs?
That depends on what you want to do.
If you don’t mind flies, heat and want to swim in the waterholes, then you, you can visit at any time of the year, including summer.
If you want to get out and go camping, hike the Larapinta Trail or do a lot of sightseeing, then the cooler months of the year (May to September) are the best.
Personally, we think that May is the best weather in Alice Springs.
May is the best time to get out and do things like one of the many hikes around Alice Springs.
In May, we’ve usually had a frost or two, and most of the flies are gone. As well, it’s not yet freezing in the night time.
And, it’s not peak tourist season, nor are there any Australian school holidays.
So you’ll be able to get cheaper accommodation and hire cars.
Some people recommend April as the best time to visit Alice Springs, but as we live here and they don’t, we can tell you that in April it’s still pretty hot (in 2005 we had a week of 39°C days!) and the flies are still out in droves.
Our advice is to leave it until May.
That way, you’re guaranteed great weather.