New Zealand climate

New Zealand mountain scenery
New Zealand is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts but it's famous for having weather that changes several times during the day. The temperature can fluctuate and the rain can come and go. So you'll definitely need to know what type of weather to expect when you're there.

New Zealand climate

The climate in the north of New Zealand is subtropical and temperate in the south. Summer is December-February with an average temperature range from 68 - 86º F, and the winter is June-August when the temperature drops to 50º F or below depending on the region.  For up-to-the-minute weather information to go the World Weather website.

Keep in mind that while these temperatures are the norm, the weather in New Zealand can change unexpectedly as cold fronts or tropical cyclones quickly blow in – hence the phrase "four seasons in one day." Be prepared for sudden changes in weather and temperature, especially if you’re going hiking or doing other outdoor activities.

When to go

New Zealand is ideal all year round but most popular during summer (December to February), when there's plenty of sunshine and you can make the most of swimming, rafting, snorkeling, diving, kayaking, etc.

If you’re a ski bunny, then winter will be more your thing and you’ll find plenty of snow on the mountains to satisfy your sport of choice.  Away from the mountains, New Zealand winters are mild and temperatures generally do not fall below freezing, however they can be quite wet.

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