Kunming Climate

Kunming has a pleasant spring-like climate, with no intense heat in summer and no severe cold in the winter, with a typical temperate climate characteristics. Its urban temperature is between 0-29℃, with the smallest annual temperature difference in the country. Such climate characteristics in Kunming are rare in the world as flowers bloom all year round and plants are always green. Kunming is the famous "spring city" and "flower city". 

Kunming Climate Features

Kunming is a low-latitude subtropical plateau mountain monsoon climate in the north latitude. Due to the influence of the warm and wet air flow in the southwest of the Indian Ocean, the sunshine is long, the frost period is short, and the annual average temperature is 15℃. The average annual sunshine is about 2200 hours, and the frost-free period is more than 240 days. Kunming has pleasant climate, like spring all the year round. Annual precipitation is of 1035 mm. Kunming features a typical temperate climate characteristics.

  • The temperature difference in Kunming is small throughout the year. The average annual temperature in the urban area is about 15℃, the average monthly temperature in the hottest month is about 19℃, and the average monthly temperature in the coldest month is about 8. In history, the highest extreme temperature was 31.2℃ and the lowest was -7.8℃. Appropriate temperature and humidity, long sunshine and short frost period make Kunming a place where flowers bloom all year round and plants are green in four seasons, hence Kunming gets its reputation of "spring city".
  • The annual precipitation is obviously divided into dry and wet seasons in time distribution. The rainy season lasts from May to October, and the precipitation accounts for about 85% of the whole year. The dry season from November to April accounts for only 15% of the annual rainfall. 
  • Kunming has a large daily temperature difference and a strong ultraviolet. During winter and spring, the daily temperature difference can reach 12-20℃ in winter and 4-10℃ in summer.

Kunming Weather and Climate by Month

Four Seasons of Kunming

  • Spring (March to May): Spring is warm and dry with less rain and vigorous evaporation. Daily temperature varies greatly, and the average monthly temperature is mostly below 20℃.
  • Summer (June -August): There is no severe heat in summer, and the rainfall is concentrated. There are many heavy rains and rainstorms. The precipitation in summer accounts for more than 60% of the year, so it is vulnerable to floods and waterlogging disasters. The average temperature is about 22℃.
  • Autumn (September to October): Autumn is warm and cool, and rain decreases. In autumn, the temperature drops rapidly and the weather is dry. The temperature in most areas is about 2℃ lower than that in spring. Precipitation is more than half less than that of summer, but more than winter and spring, so autumn drought is rare.
  • Winter (November to February): There is no severe cold in winter with abundant sunshine, sunny days and less rain. The average monthly sunny days are about 20 days, with about 230 hours of sunshine and 4 days of rain. The total monthly rainfall only accounts for 3-5% of the annual rainfall.

What to Pack

Kunming has a large temperature difference between day and night. There is a saying that "there are four seasons in a day". You should take thin clothes in spring and summer, and thick coat and sweater in autumn and winter. Those who are afraid of cold in winter can wear down jackets.

  • June-August: Kunming has strong ultraviolet rays and changeable weather. Umbrellas and sunshades can be used in Kunming all year round. Women should not forget to bring sunscreen. The temperature difference between morning and evening is large, so bring a thin coat to prevent a cold. 
  • December-February: Winter is dry and there is no heating, so visitors who are afraid of cold should remember to bring down jackets to keep warm.

Best Time to Visit Kunming

Flowers in Kunming bloom all the year round, and plants grow green in four seasons, therefore, all seasons are suitable for travel. But the best time to travel is from March to October, when there are most festivals celebrated by Yunnan's ethnic minorities and flowers are in full bloom. Kunming has the most beautiful scenery at this time.

  • March-May: At this time, the climate is mild, basically no sand wind. In March, you can also see snow mountains and flowers, red peach blossoms and green willows. Yuantong mountain is full of Cherry blossoms. During this period of time, there are many fruits, flowers and festivals of ethnic minorities in Kunming, and the scenery is the most beautiful. 
  • June-November: The climate is cool. Generally, the temperature in summer is not more than 30℃ in summer, and it rains a lot, which will slightly affect the travel schedule. However, this time is also a good time to visit kunming.
  • December-February: Winter comes and the temperature difference is quite large. Red-billed gulls fly from far away Siberian Lake Baikal and settle in Panlong river, Green lake and Dianchi lake in Kunming city. People come to watch these elves one after another, and the whole city looks peaceful. Hotel fees in this period of time also increase significantly.

Avoid Public Holidays in China

Try to avoid the public holidays of China, such as May Day Holiday(May 1-3), National Day Holiday(October 1-7), Spring Festival Holiday(Usually early February), Qingming Festival(in early April), Dragon Boat Festival(in June). Spring festival and national day festival are the most crowded time to travel. During these holidays, there will be a large crowd in the tourist attractions and you can't really enjoy yourself. Flights and hotels can cost three times as much than usual, and it's hard to get tickets during the Spring Festival.