This page presents Belize's climate context for the current climatology, 1991-2020, derived from observed, historical data. Information should be used to build a strong understanding of current climate conditions in order to appreciate future climate scenarios and projected change. You can visualize data for the current climatology through spatial variation, the seasonal cycle, or as a time series. Analysis is available for both annual and seasonal data. Data presentation defaults to national-scale aggregation, however sub-national data aggregations can be accessed by clicking within a country, on a sub-national unit. Other historical climatologies can be selected from the Time Period dropdown list. Data for specific coordinates can be downloaded for in the Data Download page.
Belize is characterized by a moist tropical climate with a seasonal variation slightly different than other Caribbean countries. Its wet season occurs during the months of May to October and its dry season occurs during the months of November to April. The mean annual temperature ranges from 23-27°C, providing some variation throughout the country, with the coast generally exhibiting hotter temperatures than the interior. The El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) heavily influences Belize’s climate, in addition to the intensification of the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). The El Niño phenomenon generally produces warmer conditions during the months of June to August, whereas La Niña produces wetter conditions typically associated with the tropical Atlantic cyclones. During the wet season, Belize usually receives mean monthly rainfall of 150-400 mm in the south of the country. The rest of the country receives less than 100 mm of rainfall per month, where precipitation is limited. Belize is prone to hurricane impacts since it lies in the direct path of the majority of Atlantic storms.
- Mean annual temperatures have increased by 0.45°C at an average rate of 0.10°C per decade since 1960.
- The frequency of hot days and hot nights has increased by 67 days per year, respectively, between 1960 and 2003.
- The frequency of cold days and cold nights has decreased by 21 days per year, respectively between 1960 and 2003.
- Mean annual rainfall over Belize has decreased at an average rate of 3.1 mm per month per decade since 1960, but this trend is not statistically significant. While all seasons appear to have shown decreasing precipitation trends since 1960, only February, March and April have a statistically significant trend.
- There is insufficient daily observational data to identify trends in all expects of rainfall extremes in Belize. The magnitude of maximum 5-day rainfall shows an increasing trend of 5.37 mm per decade over the period 1960 - 2006.