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What to expect from the Weather in Cape Town
You may encounter four seasons in one day in Cape Town and Surrounds
Nothing is as changeable as the weather in Cape Town. The winter season can feel like spring, whereas autumn might feel like summer. When it rains in the morning, the sun might pop out in the afternoon. You might even see snow on Matroosberg and be wearing shorts in town. The wind will blow your perfectly styled hair totally out of order, while you won’t even feel a breeze the next day.
Weather Forecast Cape Town
Do you have a one day forecast, three day forecast or seven day forecast where you come from? Forget about them when you arrive in Cape Town!
If you’re a local you might remember weatherman Pete from The Weekend Times. His typical weather forecast for the weekend for Cape Town and the peninsula? “It might rain and then again it might not”. Pete’s weather forecast couldn’t have been more correct.
The climate and weather in Cape Town is as changeable as a weathercock. The weathercocks in Cape Town must be working overtime with all the different temperatures, weather conditions and the four seasons in one day. And at the end of the day – if you want to know the weather for Cape Town for tomorrow – simply wake up tomorrow morning and take a look outside! It’s as easy as that...
For Cape Town, climate charts are just predictions. The South African city does whatever she pleases. If Cape Town was a person she would have a multiple personality disorder. But sometimes the normal rules of weather prediction do work. Let’s try to untangle those personalities: climate in Cape Town, the seaons in Cape Town and the Cape Doctor.
Climate in Cape Town
Cape Town has a Mediterranean-style climate: wet and cool winters, dry and warm summers. The annual average temperature in Cape Town is a delightful 17 degrees and the temperatures can vary throughout Cape Town and surrounds. For example, the sun might shine in Tamboerskloof, but in Camps Bay you won’t be able to see the sea because of thick mist. Newlands is the wettest suburb of Cape Town. When it rains in Newlands, the sun might shine in nearby Rondebosch.
Read more in our extensive review Climate in Cape Town and Surrounds.
Seasons in Cape Town
Cape Town really can have four seasons in one day. But what characterizes the different seasons in the Mother City?
Winter – if you can really call it winter - has started in Cape Town as soon as the colder front from the Atlantic ocean rolls in. Locally, or in the tourism industry also known as the green season, winter in Cape Town is a nice distraction from the long season of beach weather.
Spring is in the air when the temperatures in Cape Town start rising above 20 degrees more frequently. Cape Town bursts into bloom. The West Coast is world famous for it’s flower season. The colourful display of flowers north of Cape Town is a major spring attraction which you should not miss if you love flora and fauna.
The summer in Cape Town is warm and dry. Officially the warm season starts at the end of December. However, the unofficial Capetononian summer begins in November and lasts until January, February, and the end of March. A strong south-easterly wind called the Cape Doctor visits the Cape Peninsula during summer. When the Berg Wind - a wind blowing in from the Karoo - hits Cape Town you’ll be feeling pleasantly hot.
Autumn in Cape Town (end of March and April) is one of the most beautiful seasonal periods. Green turns into bright red, brown, orange and yellow. The slopes on the countryside transform into fields of gold and scarlet. Some would even say autumn is the best time to visit Cape Town.
Read more in our precise review Four Seasons in Cape Town.
The Cape Doctor in Cape Town
Everyone will hear it on their first stay in Cape Town on a hot day; “Time for the Cape Doctor to come through”. From spring (August and September) to late summer (March and April) the Doctor works his magic. The Cape Doctor is the local name for the strong south-easterly wind – also known as the South-Easter - that blows in from False Bay and funnels through to Cape Town and Blouberg.
For more information, be sure to read Climate in Cape Town, The Cape Doctor, Four Seasons in One Day, our Weather Forecast and Top Ten Reasons to Love the Weather.
By Elske van der Velden