Most overland trips cover long distances through many countries and also many different climates therefore there is no ‘best time to travel’. Any time is a good time!
Africa has diverse landscapes and the weather changes drastically from country to country, region to region – even sometimes within the same city.
Southern Africa consists of a many diverse countries and each has their own weather patterns. Southern Africa has two clear rainy seasons – summer and winter. Rains in the winter mainly occur in the south western part of South Africa. Most other countries receive rain during the summer months (October to March).
From beaches to mountains to vast plains, the region has a huge range of terrains and climates. The climate of East Africa is typically equatorial with mid to high temperatures year round and little seasonal variation, especially close to the equator. Large variations in temperature are caused by altitude; it is cooler the higher you get. There are two short rainy seasons in East Africa; one around April, and the other in October/November.
North Africa is mostly taken up by desert and semi arid climates. The Mediterranean also forms part of North Africa and the coastal regions receive hot, dry summers. Rainfall is minimal and usually comes in the form of short thunderstorms. Temperatures vary depending on the proximity to the coast.
West Africa sees a pretty varied climate across the year with 2 distinct wet seasons, high humidity and high temperatures. The humidity is of particular discomfort on the coast and when combined with high temperatures this can be very uncomfortable in some areas. The driest periods of the year fall between December and February, and then from July until September. Wetter periods are generally May/June and October.
Large parts of the Middle Eastern countries experience drought as water is a scare commodity. Most countries consist of mainly arid, desert areas although pockets of green, fertile valleys can be found along major rivers such as the Nile. Temperatures range from very hot in summer, to 15-25 degrees C in winter.
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