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Climate and Weather

Mexico - Climate and Weather


The climate in Mexico varies considerably depending upon the location as well as the time of year. The Tropic of Cancer divides this country into tropical south and temperate north. The southern region is usually warm throughout the year and experiences some seasonal variation while the northern part of the nation has cooler winters. In fact, Northern Mexico is more like a place of extreme climates with its hot summers and cold winters. The diverse topography and factors like the altitude ranges also affect the weather in this country. Each region on Mexico’s coastline has its own distinct weather pattern too. Apart from being warm and humid most of the time, the coastal areas often face a hurricane threat during certain parts of the year (around June to November).

Typically, Mexican summers are hot and humid around the country, though the warmest parts of the year may vary from one region to the next. For example, the hottest months in the Southern part of Mexico last from June to August, while the Pacific Coast experiences its highest temperatures in April and May. Summers last a bit longer in Yucatan, from May to September. In Northern Mexico, summer temperatures touch around 100ᵒ F (38ᵒ Celsius) especially in Baja California, Chihuahua, and other states that border the US. Summers around Coastal Mexico are only slightly cooler as the temperatures range between 80ᵒ F (27ᵒ C) and 90ᵒ F (32ᵒ C). Most parts of Central and Southern Mexico are hot and mostly dry. However, these places often get rains even in the summer months. Cancun, Riviera Maya and Mexico City get at least 10 hours of sunshine per day during summer.

The dry season in Mexico varies by location, though it generally starts in September and goes on until May. September also brings about an ease in high temperatures, especially in the highlands. The coastal areas remain warm during the days and become cool at night. The northern region is the coldest part of the country in winter. The temperature in the mountain area can drop down to 40ᵒ F (4ᵒ C) at night. The temperature across most places is at the lowest during the months of December and January. Winters generally last until February.

Northern Mexico

Since Northern Mexico is mostly a desert, summers in states like Chihuahua, Durango, Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, Sonora, Sinaloa, and Tamaulipas are dry and severely hot. Winters in the north are equally harsh; the temperature can drop to freezing point at night as waves of air off the Canadian Arctic are swept down. These extremities are mainly observed in the low-lying areas of Northern Mexico. The elevated places such as Guadalajara enjoy a fairly mild climate all year long.

Central Mexico

The majority of the states in Central Mexico, which include Mexico State, Hidalgo, Morelos, Tlaxcala, Puebla, and Veracruz, remain hot and dry through most part of the year. In some of the cities, winters bring about cool spells and there is a significant drop in the temperature, especially during the evenings and early mornings. People living in these areas are often seen sporting pullovers during winters. The plateaus and mountains of this region protect the Western part of the country from cold spells.

Southern Mexico

Southern Mexico, which includes the states of Chiapas, Oaxaca, and Guerrero, experiences a climate quite similar to that of Central Mexico, where the elevated places are much cooler than the lowlands. Summers in the southern region are extremely hot and temperatures drop only slightly during the winter months.

Yucatan Peninsula

The Yucatan Peninsula separates the Gulf of Mexico from the Caribbean Sea. This peninsula lies in Southeastern Mexico and comprises the states of Quintana Roo, Campeche and Yucatan along with some parts of Belize and Guatemala. This area is mostly swelteringly hot and humid from June to August, with bursts of rainfall during the evenings. The hurricane season is from June to October, during which time the weather is cooler and wetter. The weather gets dry and cool from December to May. Since the Yucatan Peninsula lies on the Atlantic Hurricane Belt and has flat terrain, it is quite vulnerable to major storms that travel from the East. Strong storms or “Nortes” can descend at any time, pummeling the terrain with strong winds and heavy rains. Fortunately, they are short-lived and usually clear up in an hour or so. In 2005 this region was hit by two forceful, category-5 storms known as Hurricane Emily and Hurricane Wilma. In 2007 Hurricane Dean, which was also a category-5 storm, caused some damage to this peninsula.


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