Rainy season in the caribbean: The Best Time to Visit the Caribbean

The Best Time to Visit the Caribbean

Guides & Tours

Famed for its brilliant blue skies, hours of sunshine and pleasantly warm temperatures, the Caribbean’s climate is one of its most attractive features. And while it is true that the Caribbean offers year round great weather, there is some slight variation in the climate which can mean certain times are better to visit than others. Thankfully the weather across the Caribbean is fairly consistent, so if you’re planning an island hopping holiday you should find the weather to be similar across the islands. Read on to find out when the perfect time to visit the Caribbean is for you.

Best Time
The best time to visit the islands of the Caribbean is in the UK’s cooler months, making this a great destination for those seeking some winter sun. Between December and April you can expect to see the driest weather along with pleasant temperatures that are neither too hot nor too cold, averaging around 25-30°C, and low humidity. Of course, this great weather can also mean that this is a busier period and prices may be slightly higher.

Good Time
May, June and November tend to be good times to visit the Caribbean. Falling just outside the rainy season, these months still enjoy great weather, but tend to be quieter and cost less than the peak winter months. While there may be the risk of the odd shower you can expect plenty of sunshine too.

Rainy Season
The rainy season in the Caribbean typically falls between June and November however there can be some slight variation in this. Typically this season is characterised by showers and short heavy downpours rather than constant rainfall throughout the day, so this shouldn’t put you off visiting during this time as you will still get sunshine! It’s worth bearing in mind that travel does tend to be cheapest at this time of year and the islands are generally not as busy either.

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Average Caribbean Rainfall by Month

By Scott S. Bateman © Caribeez.com

© 2020 Scott S. Bateman

The Caribbean clearly has a dominant rainy season for almost the entire region, but it also has several smaller rainy seasons for individual destinations.

That’s why it makes sense for anyone planning a Caribbean vacation to look at the monthly rainfall averages not only for the entire region but for individual destinations as well.

When is the Caribbean Rainy Season?

The Caribbean rainy season goes from June 1 through Nov. 30, which is the same time period of the official Caribbean hurricane season. But it doesn’t mean that heavy rains fall throughout the region and on every island each month.

The chart to the right shows average rainfall for nearly 20 destinations with an average for each month at the bottom. The information comes from 30 years of historical data from the World Weather Organization and individual meteorological services for each of the countries.

It clearly shows that September and October have the highest amounts of rain for the year, followed by August and November.

But individual destinations such as Aruba and Curacao barely average one to two inches in August and September, which proves that not every island gets hit the same.

The average for all destinations for the entire year is four inches a month. That’s another reason why the Caribbean hurricane and rainy seasons have about the same timeframes—June through November when each month averages five or more inches.

Note that some destinations have a second brief rainy season in May when the average rainfall spikes a bit.

10-Day Weather Forecasts | See Caribbean monthly weather in: January
— February
— March
— April
— May
— June
— July
— August
— September
— October
— November
— December

6 Destinations with Long Rainy Seasons

If five or more inches is the starting point, the place with the longest rainy season is Dominica—lasting 10 months from March through December.

Martinique goes nine months from May through January.

San Juan goes eight months from May through December. Belize also goes eight months from June through January.

Costa Rica and the Cayman Islands go seven months from May through November.

2 Destinations with No Rainy Seasons

Tropical storm Emily passes over the Caribbean in early August.

Aruba and Curacao on average don’t see more than three inches of rain in any single month and more often than not see only one or two inches.

The ABC islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao are located off the Venezuelan coasts and are known as the most arid islands in the Caribbean.

Aruba in particular is popular both for its low risk of rain and other attractions such as great beaches, shopping and dining.

Although the odds of good weather are high throughout the entire year, the ABC islands do occasionally feel the effects of storms and hurricanes that pass through the Caribbean. So it is wise to use some caution if considering a vacation there in September or October.

Brief Wet Season in May

Some destinations see a brief jump in rain during May, which may discourage some visitors from going there at that time of the year.

May is often a great month to go to the Caribbean because children are still in school, crowds are fewer and temperatures are warm but not too hot.

However, it is worth keeping in mind that Antigua, Cancun, Dominica, Dominican Republic, San Juan and St. Maarten all experience higher rainfall on average in May than they do in April or June.

The amount of visitors to the Caribbean drops steeply during September and October because it is well-known that rainfall climbs during those months.

But it is not as well-known that individual destinations can vary quite a bit from month to month. So researching the weather averages by month will improve the chances of getting good weather.

Caribbean Islands: how to choose the time for vacation taking into account the weather


June 13, 2017, 17:35


Caribbean Islands: vacation in Cuba or the Dominican Republic

Vysotskaya Life ∙ 9002 Moscow,
June 2017, 15:08

Holidays in the Caribbean are a pleasure that one can only dream of! A trip to Cuba or the Dominican Republic is ideal for a romantic trip, for holidays with children and fun adventures with friends. But sometimes it is difficult to make a choice, because, despite the close location and similarity of the islands, they are still slightly different from each other. Therefore, it is difficult to say where the best vacation is in the Dominican Republic or in Cuba, it all depends on your personal tastes and preferences.


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Climate and weather in the Caribbean

Everyone knows where the Caribbean Islands are located — in the tropics, between North and South America. Cuba is located closer to the USA, so the sun is not so hot here, and cool cyclones come from the north at times. It turns out that because of the more pleasant weather, holidays in Cuba are easier to bear for those who do not like the heat. But due to the rapid development of industry, the air and water here are not very clean, but nature and the ocean are insanely beautiful.

The Dominican Republic has a very active sun and a completely unpredictable climate — clear days are easily replaced by showers, and vice versa. The rainy season in the Caribbean lasts from May to October, but warm tropical downpours last for 15 minutes, bringing relief to vacationers, yet the air temperature in the summer months here reaches +35 ° C.

The hurricane season is from August to October, and many hotels and restaurants even close during this time.

Oleg Yarovoy

Travel Agency Manager

“The holiday season in the Caribbean starts in December and lasts until the end of April. At this time, there is a very comfortable climate and optimal humidity, there are no rains and hurricanes, therefore prices in hotels are 20–50% higher than in summer. The peak of the season is the New Year, Christmas and the February carnival. The holiday season for months in Cuba and in the Dominican Republic is approximately the same. The most budget holiday is in May, since the rainy season has not yet begun, but prices have already decreased.”

Cuba and the Dominican Republic: a few differences

If you like a comfortable and relaxing holiday with a high level of service and you have an unlimited budget, go to the Dominican Republic. This country has a very developed tourism industry, which, combined with a high economic level, creates a special atmosphere of luxury, which is so attractive to many tourists. Naturally, the prices here are much higher. But this money justifies itself, because you will live in comfortable hotels with well-trained staff, surrounded by incredibly beautiful landscapes, spas, gourmet restaurants and marine entertainment will always be at your service. On the cleanest Dominican beaches, there are many cozy lagoons where you can retire for romance or meditation. In the Dominican Republic, most of the attractions are natural sites. For example, Bounty Island with white sand and clear water, as well as many other picturesque islands, national parks, waterfalls and mountains.

Cuba is a socialist country, you will not find luxury and high service here. On the other hand, the prices here are quite affordable. The spirit of the USSR of the 1980s reigns in the country, so if you are interested in unusual and colorful Cuban history, a trip to Freedom Island will definitely interest you. Soviet cars drive along the streets of Havana, many shops resemble pre-perestroika department stores, and socialist posters hang on the walls of houses. All this revolutionary entourage, combined with the most beautiful nature and incendiary Latin American dances, is a real exotic. Cuba is a party place where fun always reigns, many incendiary festivals take place, for example, the Havana Rum Festival.

Cuban beaches are clean and picturesque, with less algae compared to the Dominican coast. In both countries, they are well fed in cafes and restaurants and treat small tourists with warmth.

Cuba’s most striking sights

If you find yourself in Havana, be sure to visit Plaza Vieja — the Old Square with the Arab Market located on it — and admire the ancient architecture of the 18th century. Sit in the evening on the Malecon, watching old people with fishing rods, listening to the sound of the surf and salsa tunes. Check out the famous Bodeguita del Medio where Hemingway, Marquez and Fidel Castro have been. Here you can smoke a cigar, try Cuban rum and see unusual photographs on the walls that tell about the history of Cuba.

Off the south coast of the island is the Jardines de la Reina archipelago, the world’s third largest coral reef, where tourists come to dive and see sea turtles.

Popular attractions in Cuba include the Hemingway House Museum with preserved furnishings, one of the largest cemeteries in America with over 500 beautiful sculptures, monuments and memorials, as well as the Havana Club Rum Museum, where you can learn about the history of the legendary drink and buy a bottle of real rum.

Cuba is also a sugar cane plantation, where excursions are constantly organized, while tourists are additionally taken to sugar factories and a sugar cane juice production workshop with a tasting of the drink. Also, take a look at the Tropicana show, which is held in the Botanical Garden under the starry sky. Salsa, rumba, cha-cha-cha, colorful costumes, laughter, sunny beaches, warm ocean, rum, cigars — this is a vacation in Cuba!

Holidays in the Dominican Republic: what you need to see

One of the best areas in the Dominican Republic is Punta Cana, where the most picturesque beaches, luxury hotels and huge golf courses are located. The province of Samana is known for its rainforests, national parks, coconut groves and cozy little beaches, many of which tourists don’t know about. Here, humpback whales swim up to the shores, and special sea excursions are organized for daredevils who want to swim with whales. Nacional del Este Park is interesting for its coral reefs, rich marine life, rare birds, tropical forests, beaches and rock paintings of the indigenous inhabitants of the Caribbean.

And don’t forget to take a walk in Zona Colonial — this is an old district of Santo Domingo with paved cobblestones, old buildings in pastel colors and cozy family coffee shops. Visit the fishing village on Saona Island, relax on the planet’s most beautiful beach, «Baia de las Aguilas», accessible only by boat, and swim in the Damayaqua waterfalls in the hills of the Northern Corridor.

In addition, excursions are organized from the capital of the Dominican Republic in Constanta — in the mountains with green forests and statues left from an ancient civilization, trips to Lake Enriquillo, where crocodiles and iguanas live, as well as to the desert island of Paradise Island and Mangrouse, where you can go diving or fishing. By the way, the caught fish will be cooked right there in front of you in a fishing cafe.

Beach holidays in the Dominican Republic, sea activities, luxurious restaurants and romantic walks on the ocean bring joy and peace. Tourists who have visited the Caribbean claim that if there is a paradise on earth, it is here, in the Dominican Republic…

What to bring from Cuba

the question of souvenirs, — an avid traveler Oksana Lyutova shares her experience. And here I want to say one important thing right away. Souvenirs bought in the Caribbean must have an export license, so you need to purchase them either in large shopping centers or in specialized shops at hotels. Otherwise, you will have to part with these wonderful things at customs.

Cigars and rum are usually brought from Cuba, the Havana Club brand of rum is especially popular, many varieties of which are aged for 25 years. Remember that you can take out no more than two liters of drink and no more than 50 cigars per person. Jewelry made of black coral is highly valued, since this stone, according to Cubans, has magical properties. However, when buying on the market, gullible tourists are sometimes sold instead of coral a corallin stone similar to it or an artificial fake. Remember that natural coral shimmers red in the light.
Cuba produces good natural cosmetics, nutritional supplements from shark cartilage and sugar cane, high-quality coffee, spices and delicious marmalade from exotic fruits. And from Cuba, original musical instruments, sombreros and images of Che Guevara are usually brought as souvenirs.

Best Souvenirs from the Dominican Republic

It is worth bringing Dominican Brugal or Barcelo rum of all sorts from the Dominican Republic, the most popular of which are drinks with various spices and fruit additives. They also grow excellent coffee here, so you can take a couple of packs of Santo Dominigo with you with an exquisite taste and incomparable aroma.

Lime souvenir dolls without a face, made of ceramics or fabric, are a symbol of the country and a wonderful souvenir, as are amber jewelry made from petrified carob resin. Interestingly, Dominican amber is not only golden and orange, but also red, blue and green.

Many tourists buy the Mamajuana elixir, made from herbs and tree bark, which, according to the locals, cures all diseases. Dominican coconut oil is highly valued, as are snail face creams, fluffy woven carpets, hand-painted tableware, and jewelry with a beautiful blue larimar stone. And of course, no less popular are starfish, shells and sea corals, which can be given to friends and acquaintances.

The most important thing is that Cuba and the Dominican Republic do not need visas, although the visa-free period for holidays in Cuba in 2017 lasts only a month. We wish you a happy trip to the Caribbean Islands, which will give you a holiday for the whole vacation and make you return to your childhood, when the world seemed colorful and magical… . Only 12% of Cubans have access to the Internet, and even then this is access to Cuban sites, there are no advertisements on local television, and you rarely see drunks on the streets — a high culture of drinking alcohol does not allow you to drink to such a state. It’s a paradox, but in the Dominican Republic, many locals do not know how to swim, and mostly tourists swim in the ocean.

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When is the best time to go on vacation to the Dominican Republic? Holiday season in the Dominican Republic by months

The Dominican Republic is a paradise on Earth, with coconut palms, clean sandy beaches, warm sea water and fabulous coral reefs. A Caribbean country, remembered for its exotic landscapes, numerous attractions, comfort and hospitality of the locals, and, of course, sensual salsa and bachata music.

Peculiarities of holidays in the Dominican Republic by months

«High» and therefore the most comfortable and expensive tourist season is the period from November to March. But you can relax in the Dominican resorts all year round.

Dominican Republic in the winter months

The average air temperature in the Dominican Republic in December is +29°C. The temperature of sea water is around +27°C, in the Atlantic Ocean the water is a couple of degrees cooler. Rains are possible in the northern part of the coast, but they are extremely rare and short-lived. After the rain, the sun immediately appears, and everything around instantly dries up.

January also pleases with dry and warm weather. There are many vacationers at this time. In January, you can enjoy not only a beach holiday, but also the exotic Dominican culture. Tourists tend to visit many local holidays that surprise with their bright colors, temperament and diversity.

The cost of the tour during this period is high. The reason for this is not only comfortable weather, but also the Christmas and New Year holidays.

In February, the weather becomes milder, the thermometer drops to 27°C, still calm, almost no rain. Clean beaches and warm Caribbean Sea attract diving enthusiasts. In February, colorful traditional Dominican carnivals begin, which attract a huge number of tourists.

Spring in the Dominican Republic

There are no fewer vacationers in March. A large number of American students come to the Republic who love to spend their holidays here.

March is perfect for a lazy beach holiday. Rain is unlikely, and if it does occur, it is usually short-lived. The sea is calm and warm. The water temperature in the Caribbean Sea is very comfortable — + 26 ° C, in the ocean, as always, a couple of degrees lower.

Tourists can witness an amazing and rare spectacle. Humpback whales come from Scandinavia for a wedding celebration. Animals swim close to the shore and allow themselves to be seen.

In the Dominican Republic, March 8th is celebrated with great pomp. Luxurious festivals and concerts are held in honor of women. The first month of spring does not let tourists get bored.

In April, the noise subsides, there are noticeably fewer vacationers, although the rainy season is still far away, and the sun is still gentle, not scorching. In April, you can feel the approach of rains, the humidity rises. The water temperature is around +27 °C.

Airfare is starting to decline, all services are falling in price. The beaches are much freer, the excursions are calmer, while a rich selection of fruits — all this contributes to a pleasant and deep relaxation.

April is no less rich in colorful events. At this time, the bright carnival ends. Locals organize festivities in national costumes. After this, general preparations for Passion Week begin, which ends with a procession. Tourists try not to miss this event. And finally, Easter with music and dancing, national flavor and an abundance of free treats.

Holidays in the Dominican Republic are cheaper in May, because it starts to rain this month. It is worth noting that they go mainly at night, and do not interfere with rest at all. The air temperature is not higher than +30°C. And at the same time, the level of service remains the same.

However, not everyone will be comfortable here in May. If there are problems with the heart or respiratory organs, it is better to choose another option for relaxation. High humidity can exacerbate health problems. Those who tolerate humidity well can see how Dominicans celebrate Labor Day. Everywhere they arrange beach parties with dances, sailing.

And on the last Sunday of the month, the Republic celebrates Mother’s Day. Celebrations are also bright, fun and musical. All selflessly dance Latin American dances.

Dominican Republic in summer

During the summer months there are few tourists, the rainy season is gaining momentum. Frequent precipitation, sometimes with thunderstorms, humid heavy air is not suitable for everyone to relax.

June heat, algae season on the Atlantic coast, sharp gusty winds and downpours, significantly reduce prices. However, not everything is so bad, there are also enough sunny days here, and many experienced tourists take advantage of this.

The unpredictability of the weather, stormy winds and frequent showers frighten tourists, the beaches are empty. However, this is a good time to explore the country, see the sights, visit museums, and try the national cuisine.

For those who are going to fly to the Dominican Republic in summer to relax on the beach, it is better to choose the south or east coast for relaxation, here the humidity is lower. The average temperature is kept at +31°C, the water temperature is slightly lower — +26°C. To the delight of surfers, the sea wave rises.

August hurricanes and abundance of rains make the local rivers full-flowing and stormy. It is suitable for kayaking and rafting. Those who are able to endure the tropical heat and high humidity come here. There are few of them, although the prices for tours at this time of the year are very attractive.

Should I fly to the Dominican Republic in autumn?

In September prices are still low. You can rent a hotel room at half price, air carriers provide pleasant discounts. There are even fewer tourists. Lovers of a secluded and relaxing holiday come, they admire the beauties, travel around the country, study history and culture.

In September, the humidity is still high, which at 30-degree heat sometimes becomes unbearable. At night, the temperature drops to +22°C, the water warms up to +29°C It rains almost every night. If you decide to go to the Dominican Republic in September, choose the northern part of the country for your vacation, there will be less rain. The heat is easier to perceive on the Atlantic coast, cool winds save. In September, not only rains can spoil the rest, hurricanes are possible here. But meteorologists predict their approach and tourists can always make sure in advance and change their plans.

In October, there are fewer tropical rains. There is a chance that you will not notice precipitation at all, mostly warm rains come at night, and by morning everything is already dry. But people with a sick heart should not come to the Dominican Republic yet, high humidity enhanced by heat can be dangerous. If everything is in order with health, then in a couple of days you can get used to such weather. Gusts of wind can upset, but these are short-term weather manifestations. If the ocean or the sea is calm, then a beach holiday will bring great pleasure.

In November, prices in hotels begin to rise, there is practically no rain and wind, beach holidays are gaining momentum. The water temperature is around +28°C. At this time of the year, there are a lot of outdoor enthusiasts on the beaches of the Dominican Republic. Beginners patiently master the basics of windsurfing, and experienced athletes amaze tourists with bold tricks on the sea waves. Rains are possible during the day, but you can always hide from them in cozy restaurants.

So that bad weather does not spoil your mood, you should combine a lazy beach holiday with bright national festivities. At the beginning of the month, Dominicans celebrate All Saints’ Day. During the holiday, young people dress up in incredible costumes. From 18 to 22 November, the Santa Domingo Botanical Garden organizes a flower festival. And on November 30, St. Andrew’s Day is celebrated, a fun carnival is held in the village of Boca Chica.

When is the best time to visit the Dominican Republic?

So when is the best time to fly to the Dominican Republic for a vacation? It all depends on personal preference. On the beach in the Dominican Republic, you can have a great time almost all year round, if your health allows and you are not afraid of tropical showers.

Active recreation will be more enjoyable in the low season, when the influx of tourists is not so great, when the tour groups are small, and the guides are more attentive. Diving and windsurfing enthusiasts should choose a time to relax when the ocean wave is ideal.

In November, the rains subside, the sea water becomes calm and the most comfortable period for a beach holiday begins. But the high season dictates its own laws, prices for literally everything reach a maximum. New Year and Christmas holidays are the peak of the «high season».

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