Averages for Sydney in May

Weather lowdown

Many people dream of visiting Australia to enjoy its amazing weather and laidback way of life. One of the country's most popular destinations is Sydney. Located on the east coast of Australia, this large city is the capital of New South Wales. Referred to as the Harbour City, Sydney is built around the Pacific Ocean and is home to many waterfront attractions including the Harbour Bridge and the instantly-recognisable Sydney Opera House.

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  • Temperature Temperature 16°C 61°F
  • High Temperature Holiday Weather 20°C 68°F
  • Low Temperature Holiday Weather 12°C 54°F
  • Sunshine Hours Sunshine Hours 7 hrs
  • Rainfall Rainfall 101 mm
  • Rainfall days Rainfall days 13 days
  • Sea Temperature Sea Temperature 20°C 68°F

Weather lowdown

Many people dream of visiting Australia to enjoy its amazing weather and laidback way of life. One of the country's most popular destinations is Sydney. Located on the east coast of Australia, this large city is the capital of New South Wales. Referred to as the Harbour City, Sydney is built around the Pacific Ocean and is home to many waterfront attractions including the Harbour Bridge and the instantly-recognisable Sydney Opera House.

Sydney has a subtropical climate and is located in the southern hemisphere, so its seasons are reversed. May in Sydney is still autumn, so holiday makers should expect warm days and mild nights. Many tourists find this to be one of the more favourable months for travel to Sydney, as the weather is sunny and pleasant, but not as hot as in the sweltering summer months. If you're not used to hot weather, you should find Sydney in May to be more than adequate in terms of its climate.  In May, the average daytime temperatures in Sydney are generally around 16°C and hardly fall below the average minimum temperatures of 12°C. The peak temperature of the month can reach a pleasant 20°C.

Sydney in May is generally sunny and perfect for hitting the beach. The city will usually experience 7 hours of sunshine per day and there's a 35% chance of a sunny day.

The temperature of the sea in May is cooler than at other times of the year but is still warm enough to swim if you do decide to visit the beach. The waters around the coast of Sydney are 20°C on average in May.

Try Climbing Harbour Bridge in Sydney

There is still a fair chance of rain in Sydney during the month of May. The average monthly precipitation is recorded to be around 101mm and rain or drizzle can be expected for about 13 days for the entire month. Rain should pass quickly though, making way for the sunshine to return.

Where to stay

Self-catering accommodation can be a great option if you're visiting Sydney on a budget. The ADGE Apartment Hotel offers contemporary rooms that are fully equipped with an en-suite bathroom, cable TV, a private balcony and a kitchen where guests can prepared meals with fresh produce from the market. Alternatively, the hotel has an onsite restaurant serving tapas style dishes. The ADGE Apartment Hotel is located on the edge of the Central Business District.

For a luxurious stay, check into the Harbour Rocks Hotel Sydney - MGallery Collection. This chic boutique style hotel is housed inside an old industrial building and has 59 beautifully decorated rooms and a hip bar and restaurant. Located in The Rocks District, it is just a 15 minute walk from Sydney's major attractions including the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge.

Things to do

Visitors to Sydney in May are unlimited in what they can do. Whilst the weather is not too hot, it is a perfect time to take part in outdoor activities, or simply explore the numerous attractions of the city. Dare devils can enjoy an once-in-a-lifetime experience by climbing the famous Sydney Harbour Bridge. The bridge spans the harbour and is one of the most famous and most photographed icons of the city. After a thrilling ascent to the top of the 141m high bridge, the panoramic views are amazing, overlooking the harbour and beyond.

Sydney Rocks area at dusk

For a tamer activity, take a walk around The Rocks, one of the most historic areas of the city and the birthplace of modern Sydney. Explore the cobbled lanes, eat dinner in charming cafés and drink in some of the oldest pubs in the country.

Australian Fashion Week takes place in Sydney in May and is a must-see event for any fashionistas visiting the city. Held at the Circular Quay, the event is a week of different fashion shows featuring collections by a number of designers, and is an important event in Australia's fashion industry calendar.

Another event hosted by the creative industries in May is the Sydney Writers' Festival which takes place at a number of venues across the city. Writers from across Australia and from other parts of the world travel to Sydney to take part in the festival, which includes panel discussions, lectures and readings. 

Hit the beach

No visit to the Australian coast would be complete without a few days on the beach. Luckily, Sydney combines a vibrant city scene with beautiful, world-class beaches that are perfect for sunbathing, swimming in the sea and, of course, surfing.

Stunning Shelley Beach, Sydney. Photo by FotoSleuth

The most famous beach in Sydney is Bondi Beach and is definitely worth a visit, although it can get busy. If you prefer a quieter beach scene, there are many peaceful spots just a short distance from the city. A short walk from Manly Beach, across the bay from downtown Sydney, is Shelley Beach. This golden beach is a great place to relax and sunbathe while the shallow waters are popular with snorkelers and scuba divers.

Eating and drinking

Whatever your taste or budget, Sydney is a city for food lovers and has something for everyone. If you're looking for dining with wow-factor, ARIA Restaurant is one of the most renowned restaurants in Sydney. A popular location with foodies and celebrities, this restaurant serves modern Australian cuisine by Chef Matt Moran in chic and stylish surroundings. The glass-walled dining room offers beautiful waterfront views.

If you take a trip to Coogee Beach on the eastern side of Sydney, be sure to check out Coogee Pavilion. This unique restaurant is located right on the beach and spread over 3 floors with a pizza oven, an oyster bar, a juice cart, a fresh flower stall and even a playground with giant games and ping pong! The rooftop bar is a great place to dine and enjoy wonderful beach views.

For travellers on a budget, or those who just love fresh produce, make time to visit the weekend markets around Sydney. Here, you will find local and organic fruit and vegetables as well as other delicious things to eat. One of the most popular city markets is Eveleigh Farmer's Market.

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