May is a good time to visit Cairns, as it experiences a drop in temperature.
You can expect warm weather and sea breezes with around seven hours of sunshine daily interspersed by tropical downpours that mainly fall at night.
How hot is it in Cairns in May?
Daytime temperatures usually reach 27°C (81°F) in Cairns in May, with moderate heat and humidity, falling to 20°C (68°F) at night.
How sunny is it in Cairns in May?
There are normally seven hours of bright sunshine each day in Cairns in May – that's around 63% of daylight hours.
Sunrise & sunset in May?
Sunrise is around 6:30am with sunset around 5:50pm.
How warm is the sea around Cairns in May?
The average sea temperature around Cairns in May is 26°C (78°F).
Does it rain in Cairns in May?
There are usually 10 days with some rain in Cairns during May; the average rainfall is 78mm (3in).
How windy is it in Cairns in May?
May has an average hourly wind speed of 22 kilometres per hour (14 mph; 12 knots). The predominant wind direction is from the east.
What to do in Cairns in May?
Despite the occasional rain showers, May weather conditions are still fine for rainforest tours, white-water rafting, game fishing and diving the Great Barrier Reef.
This is also the whale season, so it’s a good time to watch minke and giant humpback whales on their annual migration.
Note: May falls within the so called ‘marine stinger season’. While it is rare for anyone to get badly stung, it’s probably advisable to swim on beaches with swimming enclosures; all beaches in and around Cairns have small, netted enclosures for swimming.
Labour Day – 1st May. Hotel rates rise in May as more visitors arrive in Cairns.
|High Temp: 27°C (81°F)|
|Low Temp: 20°C (68°F)|
|Sunshine: 7 hours per day|
|Daylight: 11 hours per day|
|Wind speed: 22 km/h (14 mph; 12 knots)|
|Rainfall: 78mm (3in) per month|
|Wet Days: 10 days with some rain|
|Comfort Level: Moderate heat & 76% humidity|
|UV Index: High|
|Sea Temp: 26°C (78°F)|
The best time to visit Cairns is during the winter dry season from June to November, when the skies are invariably blue and the days warm and sunny, with a gently breeze.
Note: Meteorological data for Cairns is based on weather statistics gathered for the 30-year period 1991 to 2020, and is sourced from the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) at the closest weather station, Cairns International Airport (CNS), which is located 7km (4mi) north of Cairns CBD. Additional climate data is sourced from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
Advice on the best time to visit a particular destination is based on average local weather statistics, when the weather conditions are generally better than at other times of the year. We consider high and low temperatures, risk of rain (and thunderstorms, etc.), amount of sunshine and sea temperature. For general outdoor activities we favour clear, rainless days with a temperature range between 18°C (64°F) and 27°C (80°F); and for hot-weather activities we favour clear, rainless days with a temperature range between 24°C (75°F) and 32°C (89°F). Often, the best times to visit correspond to high season and therefore involve higher prices.
Latest update: Cairns Weather in May: 29 September, 2023
Disclaimer: The information on this site is provided as is, without any assurances as to its accuracy or suitability for any purpose. Weather data and conditions at any given location and time are unpredictable and variable. We assume no responsibility and can not be held legally responsible for any decisions made on the basis of the information presented on this site.