The Best Time to Visit Australia

Australia is one of the largest countries in the world. It’s also one of the planet’s most popular tourist destinations.

Offering the rare combination of culture, shopping, nature, and, of course, beaches, the Land Down Under attracts more than 8 million tourists a year. 

Since you’re reading this article, it’s safe to say that you would at some point like to count yourself among those 8 million-plus tourists. But when you should take your trip? 

The answer to that question depends on what’s bringing you to the country in the first place.

Check out this comprehensive breakdown of the best times to visit Australia to find the date that’s right for you!

The Best Time To Visit Australia…

For Sightseeing

Sydney Opera House - Australia

Whether you’re in Sydney, Melbourne, or somewhere else in Australia, there’ll be dozens of sights for you to see.

Many of these are outdoors, so you obviously don’t want to visit during the country’s colder months. However, you should also try to avoid peak periods, as ticket prices and waiting periods tend to be much higher.

The best time to visit Australia on a sightseeing tour is just before the nation’s summer.

Spring occurs in Australia towards the end of the year, so you should plan your trip for October or November.

During these months, the weather is warm enough for walking tours and outdoor activities, while the abrasive summer sun won’t be there to wear you down. 

March and April constitute the beginning of Australia’s autumn, so these months are also a good time for a spot of sightseeing. However, you may have some large crowds and ticket prices rolling over from summer

For Culture

Australia's Culture Scene

One of Australia’s great cultural events is the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. It features the finest comics from Australia and abroad and attracts almost one million attendees each year.

It’s generally held throughout March and into April, but be sure to book well in advance if you want affordable accommodation.

If you’d rather a more varied mix of the arts, consider visiting Sydney during the eponymous Sydney Festival.

Running throughout the month of January, the Sydney Festival features everything from magic to opera.

For music fans, there is the Byron Bay Bluesfest. One of the world’s most beloved annual festivals, this event runs for five days over Easter week (so plan for a March or April visit).

For Sun

Wind Surfing on the Beach in Australia

Australia is famous for its warm weather. Some people make the mistake of believing the country exists in a state of perpetual sun. As many have learned the hard way, this is very much not the case. 

During winter months, temperatures in Australia can drop as low as 3 degrees Celsius, which is definitely not what you want for your sun holiday!

The best time to visit Australia for a sun holiday is, surprise, surprise, during summer. In the Land Down Under, that means December to February. During these months, temperatures can reach a sweltering 35 degrees Celsius.

If you’re not sure you can handle the extreme heat of an Australian summer, try visiting the country in late November or early March. The sun is milder at these times, but can rival even the height of summer back home!

For Shopping

Shopping Centre

Like much of the world, Australia celebrates Christmas as a national holiday. As such, most shops in the country drive their prices up as December 25th approaches.

However, once again like much of the world, stores across the country introduce massive sales in the days and weeks following Christmas.

From December 26th into January, you can score some major deals on Australia’s most popular brands. The Chadstone Shopping Centre in Melbourne has some particularly alluring offers around this time of year.

Of course, you’d expect no less from the country’s largest shopping mall!

For Savings

Australia City in Winter

If you pride yourself on being a thrifty traveller and strive to keep costs down on every trip you make, the best time to visit Australia is during the winter.

From July through to September, the country’s weather grows ever colder and tourists become fewer and fewer. You’ll still see them around, but in much smaller numbers than you would encounter during the summer months.

In winter, hotel prices drop drastically in Australia. As do costs of exhibits and other tourist activities.

Winter weekdays are particularly affordable, so if you’re planning a five day trip you could conceivably come in well under budget.

It’s important to remember, however, that for the sake of saving money, you’ll be sacrificing much of what makes Australia so unique.

You’ll still have a good time, but your choice of activities will be markedly reduced.

For Nightlife

Nightlife in Australia

Australia’s nightlife never really tones down at any point during the year, so you can visit whenever you want and still be certain of an exciting night on the town.

However, if you really want to immerse yourself in the country’s party atmosphere, we suggest planning your visit to coincide with Sydney Mardi Gras.

Sydney Mardi Gras is held every year, some time around late February and early March.

Although it began as an event tailored exclusively towards Australia’s LGBT community, it has become one of the country’s most popular celebrations. Every year, people travel from all over the world to partake in the festivities.

You might also want to check out the New Year’s Eve fireworks display in Sydney. The city rings in every new year with an extravagant fireworks display that is both preceded and preceded by much revelry in the streets. 

Chinese New Year is also a popular celebration in Australia. It’s marked throughout the country with parades, fireworks, and street parties.

In some of the nation’s cities, the residents are so successful in recreating the sights and sounds of China in honour of the event that they’ll leave you worrying you boarded the wrong flight when you left your home country!

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