Australasia & Pacific
About French Polynesia
Sara and John say...
Although these remote islands are dotted across a huge area of the world’s largest ocean, the climate can reliably be described either as warm or hot, depending on your comfort threshold and the time of year.
For many, the most comfortable period is from May to October. Humidity is lowest at this time, ensuring largely sunny skies and only occasional showers. Temperatures by day reach the mid to high 20s Celsius, with the trade winds providing refreshing relief, whether you’re lying on a beach or exploring the beauty and magnificence of the wildlife and scenery. Nights are pleasantly cool, too. Be aware, though, that temperatures are markedly lower at altitude - so if you’re heading up the mountains, remember some extra layers.
From October, humidity and cloud-cover start to rise. The wet season arrives at the more northern islands first - such as The Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Papua New Guinea. But it’s often not until November that the rains begin further south across Tahiti, the Cook Islands, Fiji and Vanuatu.
The following few months are the wettest and muggiest, with temperatures in the low 30s providing a steamy heat. Having said that, the rainfall normally comes in short, sharp bursts, meaning there are still plentiful dry periods.
This is the peak of the cyclone season, but it’s worth remembering that the chances of any one island being hit by these violent winds and flooding rains is still low. So don’t let the hype over-influence your holiday planning decisions.
The rains retreat northwards through April and May, allowing the South Pacific Islands to emerge into verdant and sunny splendour through the months ahead.
Easter Island in the eastern Pacific sees rainfall more evenly spread through the year, although even in the wettest months, more than half the days are usually dry. It’s sunniest here between October and March.