Colombo: Live Weather

Live weather in Colombo

The latest and today's weather in Colombo, Sri Lanka updated regularly

Monday 19 March
05:08 GMT | 10:38 +0530

Last updated:

19 Mar
UK Time: 04:20 GMT
Local Time: 09:50 +0530
Partly Sunny
84°F (29°C)
6mph (9kmh)
  • Sunrise 06:16
  • Sunset 18:22
Temp feels like: 90°F (32°C)
Length of Day: 12h 6m
Pressure: 29.89" (1012 hpa)
Visiblity: 10 miles (16 km)
Average for March 82°F (28°C)
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Historic Temperatures for 19th March in Colombo

Average High 88°F (31°C)
Record High 91°F (33°C) (2006)
Average Low 73°F (23°C)
Record Low 70°F (21°C) (2002)

Weather in Colombo

Colombo is located in the south west of the Sri Lanka, which is a large island located directly south of India in the Indian Ocean. The island as a whole has a varied topography, with lowland regions around its coast and large mountainous regions in the interior with the highest peaks on the island reaching 8000ft. 

The country observes a fairly typical tropical climate which is affected to an extent by the seasonal wind reversal of the Asiatic monsoon. The Asiatic monsoon is the great wind system that has a major affect on India's climate, and due to its proximity to India, Sri Lanka's weather conditions are mildly affected by this. The Asiatic monsoon is dissimilar to any prevailing wind systems worldwide in that while other wind systems prevail from the same direction year round, the Asiatic monsoon switches direction at certain points in the year- switching from southwest to northeast depending on the month.

Colombo, the country's capital, is located in the south west so is therefore affected by the Yala monsoon which hits the areas from May through until August. However, on the whole Colombo's climate is fairly temperate all throughout the year and throughout December to March the city remains fairly dry. The climate overall in Sri Lanka is fairly similar that seen in southern India, in that it experiences two monsoons and a dry season. Basically, year round Colombo records and average temperature of 28 ÂșC to 28 ÂșC, with annual average highs of 31 ÂșC and average lows if 22 to 26 ÂșC across the year. November to March sees average lows of 22 ÂșC to 23 ÂșC, whereas April to October sees lows of 25 ÂșC to 26 ÂșC. So as you can see there is very little range in temperature both across the day and across the year. There is high humidity year round, and rainfall fluctuates depending on whether you are in the wet or dry season. 

2004 saw Colombo rocked by the devastating Boxing Day tsunamiwhich resulted in 35,322 people killed across Sri Lanka and 516,150 reported missing. The tsunami hit Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, and Thailand the worst and killed more than 225,000 people across eleven countries with Sri Lanka being the second worst hit. The tsunami ravaged coastal communities with waves reaching up to 100 feet in some parts. The train which runs between Colombo and Galle, namely the "Sea Queen" was struck by the deadly waves, resulting in 1,300 of the 1,600 passengers killed.

Monsoon Seasons

May to August / October to January

The occurrence and prediction of monsoons play a very important role in the economy of Sri Lanka as the wind and rain affects the farming and crops. Though the island is not as affected by monsoon winds as neighbouring India, it is still important to have an understanding of their cycles and visitors should be aware that if they are to get caught up in the monsoon rains in Colombo, flooding is common and the roads can become highly dangerous. Monsoons are basically seasonal reversals of wind direction and operate in a similar (yet larger scale) manor to a coastal sea breeze. To put it simply, the land warms up more quickly than the ocean and as the hot air rises over the land it is replaced by the cool air from above the water, so as a result of the temperature difference between land and sea winds are created. Because Sri Lanka is a large land mass surrounded by a large water mass it is subject to seasonal winds.

May generally sees Colombo experience its highest level of recorded precipitation, though this is closely followed by October. Some years will see October record higher rainfall than May. The whole period sees an average temperature of about 28 ÂșC, which is in fact the average temperature across the whole year. This 'summer' period is only fractionally warmer than the rest of the year. While the average daytime temperature sits at 28 ÂșC to 29 ÂșC, the average daily minimum only falls to 25 ÂșC to 26 ÂșC where as November to February sees average minimums fall to 22 ÂșC or 23 ÂșC. Rainfall during this period is highest in May and June and begins to die down in the middle months of July and August. May and October typically average in excess of 350mm precipitation per month, whereas July and August see between 110 and 130mm precipitation.

These weather conditions are significantly different from the north side of the island, which remains relatively dry from May to September, and its wet season begins in October. October through until January is the country's other monsoon season, which sees fairly similar conditions to May through until August. The average daily temperature remains at 27 to 28 ÂșC, and rainfall is at its highest during October and November- recording 369mm and 310mm respectively.

December to March

This period is generally viewed as the best time to visit Colombo, though it should be kept in mind that it can get very hot and humid so sight seeing is best done in the morning or evenings. February sees the lowest rainfall for the year, averaging 60mm of precipitation, with the months either side January and March recording 80mm and 110mm respectively.  Average temperature continues to sit at 27 ÂșC. The highest temperatures ever recorded in Colombo have occurred in February and again March which the mercury rises to 36ÂșC. 

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