What You Need to Know About the Tonga Seasons
The islands of Tonga experience two distinct seasons: the wet season and the dry season, otherwise known as summer and winter. However, with a tropical climate, the summer and winter in Tonga are vastly different from what’s experienced in countries further away from the Equator. The main thing you need to know about the seasons in Tonga is that it never really gets “cold” with temperatures rarely dropping below 19°C (66°F), while summer temperatures seldom go above 35°C (95°F). So take a look at the guide to the seasons in Tonga below to work out when is the best time for you to visit the islands!
Seasonal Activities in Tonga
While many travellers look for the best season for weather or the best season to avoid the tourist crowds, others might be more interested in seasonal activities. Although there’s plenty to do in Tonga for tourists all year round, there are a few seasonal activities that can only be done at certain times of the year.
The Best Time in Tonga for…
While snorkelling, scuba diving, fishing, hiking and beaching can all be enjoyed year-round these months typically tend to be the best for doing them. However, activities like whale swimming can only be done in certain months.
- Whale swimming – July to October
- Snorkelling and diving – June to October
- Sailing and kite-surfing – May to October
- Hiking – July to October
- Going to the beach – May to November
- Fishing – April to November
- Seeing flying foxes – October to February
Dry Season (Winter)
When: May to November
Temperature: 19-29°C (66-84°F)
Rainfall per month: 110mm (3.9″)
Although labelled the “winter season” in Tonga, May to November will not feel like winter to travellers coming from colder climates. Temperatures are consistently warm, only feeling cooler during the evenings. Humidity and rainfall rates are also low, especially in comparison to Tonga’s summer. Nevertheless, it still rains in the dry season in Tonga, so it’s always best to be prepared.
Months in the Dry Season
For a more detailed description of each month in the Tonga dry season, take a look at the following articles:
Wet Season (Summer)
When: December to April
Temperature: 23-31°C (74-88°F)
Rainfall per month: 210mm (8.3″)
Tonga’s summer season experiences the most rainfall in the year, the highest temperatures and high humidity. Cyclones also pose a small risk during this time of the year, so it’s best to be aware of cyclone warnings – take a look at How to Prepare for a Cyclone in Tonga for advice. During the wet season, Tonga’s northern island groups tend to experience more rain than the southern islands.
Months in the Wet Season
For a more detailed description of each month in the Tonga wet season, take a look at the following articles:
Tourist Seasons in Tonga
As well as seasons for the weather, Tonga experiences distinct tourist seasons. For travellers, this means there are some times of the year that are busier with tourists than others. It also means that some operators and accommodations close down for the off-peak season.
Peak Season in Tonga (High Season)
Tonga experiences the highest number of tourists between July and October. This is due to a combination of the more appealing weather of the dry season – usually when tourists are wanting to escape winter in their own country, and the allure of the whale swimming season, which is one of Tonga’s most popular attractions.
Shoulder Season in Tonga
A smaller number of tourists visit the islands of Tonga in the months of April, May and November when the weather is mild and not too rainy by being between the dry season and the wet season.
Off-Peak Season in Tonga (Low Season)
Between December and March is when Tonga experiences high rainfall, high humidity and has a risk of cyclones, making it the quietest time for travellers to visit the islands. However, flights become full around the Christmas and New Year period with locals travelling home for Christmas.