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Now that the kids are settled back at school, we’re hurtling towards autumn in Australia. Autumn season in Australia is a beautiful time for so many reasons. I thought it would be a fun to write a post about why I love an Australian autumn and to share a bit about my experience of autumn in Australia (and specifically autumn in Brisbane which is where I live).

When is autumn in Australia?

First, let’s cover some off some of the basics about when is autumn in Australia. 

When does autumn start in Australia? The first day of autumn in Australia is 1st March. The autumn months in Australia are March, April and May. 

The Australian autumn holidays for schools are over the Easter period, the dates of which vary a little from year to year. If you’re looking to travel to Australia and wondering whether autumn is the best time to visit, it’s worth avoiding school holiday dates if you can as everywhere will be busier. You can find the state school holidays dates here.

Autumn season in Australia is a lovely time to get out on holiday. Weather-wise it’s a great time to explore as we have plenty of warm days with low humidity compared with summer time. 

Enjoying this post about autumn Australia and want more Australia weather info? Find out about winterspring and summer in Australia here! 

Weather in Australia during autumn months

Unlike in the northern hemisphere where I used to find the weather quickly cooled as soon as autumn arrived, autumn season in Australia takes a little longer for the cooler weather to filter through. It can actually still be very hot in the early autumn months in Australia (so don’t go expecting lots of cool autumn air, hot chocolate and log fires!) but it’s a great time as the slightly cooler temperatures and the lower humidity rates and less rainfall make it a lovely time of the year. It gives us a bit of a breather after the extremely hot summer temperatures! 

Temperature range during Australia’s autumn

Temperatures in autumn around Australia can vary quite a bit: 

  • Brisbane in autumn can be 15 – 25 degrees
  • Melbourne in autumn can be 10.9 – 20.3 degrees
  • Sydney in autumn can be 14.6 – 22.2 degrees
  • Adelaide in autumn can be 12.7 – 22.7 degrees
  • Perth in autumn can be 13.7 – 26 degrees
  • Darwin in autumn can be 22.1 – 32.7 degrees
  • Canberra in autumn can be 3.2 – 24.5
  • Hobart in autumn can be 7 – 20.1 degrees

(Data from Australia.com)

The Top End’s wet season runs through til April, meaning some attractions may be closed during the first part of autumn (dry season in the Northern Territory there is May til October). Far North Queensland can be hit with tropical storms at this time of year too so autumn in Australia isn’t always calm and mild! 

As you can see, autumn weather in Australia can be mixed and it really varies from the beginning of the autumn season to the end of it when temperatures begin to drop, as well as varying depending on where in the country you are. 

I usually tell our UK family members that the ideal time to come out for a visit is spring or autumn because you can expect warm weather, you get cooler nights than in peak summer time (when it can be super hot and sticky) and you get to skip the summer crowds.

It’s the perfect time of the year to visit the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast which are our closest big beach towns! While I really love summer in Queensland, I can appreciate that the warmer weather, crazy temperatures and humidity, and extreme weather conditions can make summer a bit much for people travelling to the southern hemisphere from a cooler climate and it can feel especially challenging when they come from the middle of their winter right into out summer!. At least if people come to visit during the shoulder seasons of spring or autumn, they’re coming from milder temperatures so it isn’t as big a shock to the system!

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Things I love about autumn in Australia

An autumn flower blooming in Australia

Here are some of the reasons why I love the autumn season in Australia (of course, these are more about why I love autumn in Brisbane as that’s where I live!)

  1. In autumn, I love that the ocean is still warm. The hot summer sun has spent the last few months heating the water, so when autumn arrives in Australia, it holds onto those temperatures. The ocean temperature does drop a little, but through most of autumn the ocean still feels warm.
  2. After a long, baking hot summer, autumn in Australia gives us a bit of respite. The humidity drops. The stifling temperatures ease. It still feels hot and sunny but without the uncomfortable crazy-hot feeling. (You still need to wear sunscreen and a hat and take your beach shelter to the beach though, so don’t get caught out!)
  3. Autumn in Australia feels like part of a long summer season. In the UK, I used to feel like autumn, winter and spring all rolled into one to make what felt like an endless cold season (yuck!) leaving us with a short summer lasting just a few weeks. Here, it feels like spring, summer and autumn roll into one long summer season. I prefer a longer summer to a longer winter any day! 
  4. Although I dislike truly cold weather (I don’t miss snow or the crunching of frozen leaves underfoot during a cold winter!), autumn in Australia hints that things are cooling down slightly without actually feeling too cold. In autumn, I like thinking about digging my jeans and Converse out of storage (so comfy!) and towards the end of autumn in Australia I like to begin cooking roasts and stews again (things we tend to avoid during peak summer months as it’s just too hot). I miss the idea of those wintery things after such a long, hot summer. In autumn, I can begin to enjoy them without actually having to feel too cold with it as we still have pretty warm temperatures! 
  5. Autumn in Brisbane is an exciting time with lots of events and autumn festivals. As the more unpredictable summer season weather is over (storm season in Brisbane!), it’s the perfect time to be outdoors enjoying this beautiful country. 

What to wear in autumn in Australia

If you’ve been wondering what do Australian’s wear in different seasons, here’s a guide about what to wear for autumn in Australia. This might also help you decide what to pack for Australia or what things to ship to Australia.

From the first day of autumn in Australia up until mid-May I usually wear the same sort of clothes I’ve worn all summer – dresses, skirts and t-shirts, shorts and sandals. There is no big season change in Queensland that means you suddenly need to grab a coat (I’ve only worn a coat a handful of times since moving here and that was only in the hinterland when going out at night between late May – August). 

Sometimes in the last week or two of May, things can start to feel cooler. That’s when I start to dig out my jeans, socks, pyjamas, Converse and hoodies which I’ll wear sporadically until winter properly sets in. (Remember, winter in Queensland is very different from winter in the UK – it’s still very mild and sunny. You do adjust to it though and start to feel the cold after a year or two!)  

My kids have a winter uniform option at school (with trousers and jumpers) but, I have to say, the only piece of official winter uniform attire that gets worn right at the end of autumn when the temperature begins to drop is my daughter’s zip-up jumper. None of them wear their track pants (tracksuit bottoms) or trousers. My sons both wear shorts and short sleeves all year round without any complaint.  

When you’re considering what to wear this autumn, you still need to wear a hat and sunscreen! That is a non-negotiable in Australia all year round!

Remember: I live in Brisbane which is much warmer than some other parts of Australia. Autumn in Victoria and New South Wales, for instance, will definitely feel much cooler! 

What fruits and vegetables are ready in autumn in Australia? 

Autumn in Australia is harvest time with many fruits and vegetables being ripe for picking. These include apples, pears, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, quinces and chestnuts. 

It’s useful to shop in season in Australia as out-of-season products cost a lot more and it can add a lot to your cost of living

Things to do in autumn in Australia 

A view of trees during autumn in Australia

There are plenty of things to do in Australia in autumn. You can…

Nature lovers can catch the end of the turtle season at Mon Repos in Bundaberg in Queensland. This is a chance to see the tiny baby hatchlings at the Southern Great Barrier Reef scuttling off the sand into the ocean. (I’ve seen turtles coming in to lay their eggs a couple of times now and I really need to go back to see them hatching – it looks so cute!) You can visit on a day trip from Brisbane, although it is best if you’re able to stay overnight as the tour ends late. 

Go to see Vivid Sydney, the incredible festival of light, music and ideas. It’s an unforgettable experience seeing iconic sights like the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge lit up in colours. 

Visit the Sydney Royal easter show to enjoy 12 days of non-stop fun and entertainment!

Go along to Parrtjima, the authentic annual Aboriginal light festival held in Alice Springs. (Don’t forget, you can get cool nights at this time of year which feel even cooler after the warm sunny days.)

Have fun at WOMADelaide in South Australia, the iconic open-air festival and enjoy music, art and dance. 

Watch the Canberra Balloon Spectacular @Enlighten Festival. Over 25 colourful hot air balloons take to the skies creating a beautiful spectacle. 

Commemorate ANZAC Day on 25th April at one of the dawn services to pay your respects to those who lost their lives in conflicts. 

Go along and have fun at the World Science Festival Brisbane – it’s one of our favourite things to do in autumn! There are a range of outdoor activities, stage shows and events to enjoy. 

Visit the whale sharks at Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia. It’s one of the best places in the world to see and experience these majestic creatures in the wild.

Go along to Kalbar Sunflower Festival and get your photo taken in amongst a beautiful field of vibrant sunflowers. 

And so much more! 

Autumn season is coming…

Autumn in Australia is a fantastic time to visit, or if you live here it’s an amazing time to explore! 

Where are you planning on going in autumn? 

>> Shop for accommodation in Australia this autumn on Booking.com

If you’re looking for more travel inspiration visit Discover Australia or for information about Australia check out this Australia overview for more travel information. 

I’d love to hear about any incredible autumn events in the comments below.