When traveling to Brazil it is important to anticipate and prepare for those climate conditions most likely to your specific destination. Several scenarios should be factored depending on several things. Brazil is a big country and though the average temperature for the entire country is 68F (20C) it does have five distinct climatic regions. The weather within each of theses regions is also affected by winds, altitude and polar fronts. Because both the equator and the Tropic of Cancer pass thru Brazil, the country is considered to be in the “inter-tropical zone” creating higher and wetter climates.
The five climatic regions in Brazil are, equatorial, tropical, semi-arid, highland tropical and sub-tropical.
Cities with some elevation typically expose a very mild climate averaging 66F. Sao Paulo, Brasilia and Belo Horizonte for example. Coastal cities such as Rio de Janeiro, Salvador and Recife are much warmer but offset by the sea breezes from the trade winds. Further to the south a sub-tropical climate prevails resembling many parts of the U.S. and Europe where winter temperatures can fall below the freezing level.
If visiting such areas as Porto Alegre, Curitiba or Florianopolis in the winter, prepare to pack a little warmer clothing.
Most people think of the Amazon region as year round sweltering furnace. The fact is it rarely gets above 90F (32C) and the swings in temperature between seasons is minimal. The average temperature throughout the year is a pleasant 72-79F (22-26C) in the Amazon. The leading candidate for the hottest and driest area of Brazil is unquestionably the Northeast where between May and November temperatures can and do exceed 100F (38C). There is also a much greater seasonal fluctuation in climate than is found in the Amazon.
Atlantic Coast – Rio de Janeiro to Recife
73F to 81F (23C to 27C)
Inland and higher elevations
64F to 70F (18C to 21C)
South of Rio de Janeiro
63F to 66F (17C to 19C)
72F to 79F (22C to 26C)
The good news is the Amazon area has a consistently moderate year round temperature of about 75F. The bad news is it gets more rainfall per year than any other part of Brazil, over 78 inches. The only other part of Brazil to receive substantial rainfall is along the great escarpment in the state of Sao Paulo. The remainder of the country sees a manageable 39 to 59 inches per year with lions share of that arriving in the summer between December and April. The winters can get a little chili but at least it stays dry.
When planning your vacation keep in mind that Brazil can be toured during any time of the year but the summers can be very hot and sun exposure prevalent. If you’re planning a trip to the Amazon, July and August are the driest months affording the greatest amount of time outdoors. What is most important to note however is that the seasons in the Southern Hemisphere are opposite those in the Northern Hemisphere countries. In Brazil, December thru February is summer. March thru June is fall. July thru September is winter. October and November is spring.