Best time to visit Loyalty Islands

The best time to visit the Loyalty Islands, New Caledonia is during September, October and November, when the weather is pleasantly warm and sunny, with little rainfall.

However, anytime from July to early-December is good for a range of outdoor actvities.

The Loyalty Islands are considered a year-round destination.

Loyalty Islands weather

The Loyalty Islands experience a tropical climate, with a hot, rainy season from late-December to mid-April, and a cool, drier season from July to September; as well as two short transitional seasons.

The transitional seasons – April through May, and October through November – are characterized by comfortable temperatures around 26°C (78°F) during the day, with some rainfall.

The hot summer season includes the wet cyclone season from January through March, which usually brings torrential downpours at anytime of the day, but especially during the hottest months of February and March.

New Caledonia comprises the main island of Grande Terre plus several smaller islands. To the north-east of Grande Terre lie the Loyalty Islands of Lifou, Maré and Ouvéa; while to the south-east lies the Isle of Pines.

Here are the weather averages in Lifou, the main island of the Loyalty Islands…

What is the best month to visit the Loyalty Islands?
September, October and November are the best months to visit Loyalty Islands – the climate is pleasant with warm sunny weather, mainly clear blue skies and rainfall is at its lowest.

Which is the hottest month in the Loyalty Islands?
The hottest month in Lifou is usually February, with an average high of 29°C (84°F) with high heat and humidity, and a low of 23°C (73°F).

The hot season lasts from mid-December to late-March, with an average daily high temperature above 28°C (82°F).

However, on the warmest days of the hot season, the temperature may climb to around 35°C (95°F).

Which is the coldest month in the Loyalty Islands?
August is usually the coldest month in Lifou, with an average high temperature of 24°C (75°F) and an average low temperature of 17°C (62°F).

The cool season lasts from mid-June to mid-September, with an average daily high temperature below 25°C (77°F).

When is it sunniest in the Loyalty Islands?
The sunniest time of year in Lifou is normally October, with more than eight hours of sunshine per day; that's an average of around 61% of daylight hours.

The amount of sunshine in Lifou is good from September to December, when the sun shines about 65% of the time.

What is the humidity in the Loyalty Islands?
Lifou experiences little seasonal variation in perceived humidity, with approximate average relative humidity calculated at between 75% – 85% over the course of the year. Typically, it's humid all year round.

The more humid time of year lasts from mid-October to mid-June, when you can expect the comfort level to be muggy at least 35% of the time.

The months with the most muggy days in Lifou are January, February and March, when almost every day in each month is muggy.

We derive the humidity comfort level from the dew point temperature, which measures moisture content in the air. A higher dew point feels muggy and uncomfortable.

July and August are generally more comfortable, with around six days in each month that are muggy.

When is the sea warmest in the Loyalty Islands?
The sea is usually at its warmest in the Loyalty Islands in February when the water temperature averages a high of 28°C (82°F), which is pleasant for swimming.

You can expect warmer water from early-January to mid-April, with an average temperature above 27°C (80°F).

From July through to mid-October, the water is cooler, with an average temperature below 24°C (75°F), which is quite acceptable for swimming.

Which month has the most rain in the Loyalty Islands?
March is usually the wettest month in Lifou, Loyalty Islands with 265mm (10in) of rainfall distributed across 14 days on average.

The wet season lasts from late-December to mid-April, with a greater than 27% chance of a given day being a wet day.

The drier season lasts from mid-April to late-December.

You can expect rainfall anytime in Loyalty Islands, with bright sunshine between showers.

The months of September and October are typically the driest months in New Caledonia.

Which is the windiest month in the Loyalty Islands?
April is the windiest month in Lifou, Loyalty Islands, with an average hourly wind speed of 24 kilometres per hour (15 mph; 13 knots).

The windier part of the year lasts from late-February to mid-June, with average wind speeds of more than 23 kilometres per hour (14 mph; 12 knots).

The less windy time of year lasts from mid-June to late-February. September is the calmest month of the year, with an average hourly wind speed of 21 kilometres per hour (13 mph; 11 knots).

The predominant average wind direction in Lifou is from the east throughout the year.

What's the likelihood of a storm in the Loyalty Islands?
Lifou is susceptible to tropical cyclones and summer thunderstorms. There's a 4.6% likelihood of a tropical storm in the Loyalty Islands during the month of March.

The storm season lasts from January through March.

What are the best months for activities in the Loyalty Islands?
The cooler months between May and August are best for hiking, climbing, cycling and horseback riding; while May to September is best for surfing; and October to January is best for swimming, snorkelling, diving and sunbathing.

April to November offers the best time for sailing, with southeasterly trade winds providing a regular 15-20 knots of wind daily. The tidal range in New Caledonia is only half a metre and currents are negligible.

Loyalty Islands Weather Averages

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Average high temperature (°C)
29 29 29 28 26 24 24 24 25 26 27 28
Average low temperature (°C)
23 23 23 21 19 17 16 15 16 19 20 22
Average daily sunshine (hrs)
7 7 6 6 5 5 6 6 7 8 8 8
Average daily daylight (hrs)
13 13 12 12 11 11 11 11 12 12 13 13
Comfort level
Moderately warm icon Moderately warm icon Moderately warm icon Moderately warm icon Low heat & humidity icon Low heat & humidity icon Low heat & humidity icon Low heat & humidity icon Low heat & humidity icon Low heat & humidity icon Moderately warm icon Moderately warm icon
Average relative humidity (%)
80 80 85 80 80 80 75 75 75 75 75 75
UV Index (max)
11+ 11+ 11+ 10 7 6 6 8 10 11 11+ 11+
Average days of rainfall (≥1mm)
10 13 14 12 11 10 8 9 9 8 8 10
Average monthly rainfall (mm)
155 205 265 175 155 120 90 75 80 80 75 125
Average wind speed (km/h)
22 22 23 24 24 23 23 23 22 22 22 22
Average sea temperature (°C)
27 28 28 27 26 25 24 23 24 24 25 26
Wé, Lifou, Loyalty Islands, New Caledonia

New Caledonia weather by month

Source: Meteorological data for the Loyalty Islands, New Caledonia is based on weather statistics gathered for the 30-year period 1991 to 2020 by Météo France en Nouvelle-Calédonie at the closest weather station: Ouanaham Airport (LIF), located 16km (9mi) north of Wé, Lifou Island.

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: Best time to visit Loyalty Islands, New Caledonia: 10 May, 2024

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.