Climate and Weather in Ecuador: Know What To Expect on Your Trip

Different climate zones of Ecuador

Due to Ecuador’s location directly on the equator, the entire nation enjoys 12 hours of tropical daylight every day of the year. However, the weather might be unpredictable.

The rainy season and the dry season are Ecuador’s two main seasons, but they differ widely depending on things like height and distance from the equator. Even in the rainy season, Ecuador is a wonderful vacation location because most days are sunny until the afternoon.

More nature views of El Cajas National Park

Ecuador has four unique geographical regions:

The weather you will encounter greatly depends on the geographical area where you are.

Weather in Andean Highlands (Sierra)

Rainy and sunny at the same time in Cotopaxi National park

The Andes area of Ecuador divides the coast from the rainforest, running directly down the center of the nation. Four seasons can frequently be seen in a single day here because of the erratic and swift weather changes.

The main cities of this region are Quito, Otavalo, Ambato, Mindo, Baños, and Riobamba. The most popular destinations are Cotopaxi National Park and Quilotoa Crater Lake.

Quilotoa Lake viewpoint, Ecuador

Quilotoa Lake

Therefore, even though daily weather prediction is a fool’s errand, we may roughly classify the Andean climate into two seasons: rainy and dry.

View of the valley from Cotopaxi Volcano, Ecuador

June through September is considered to be the dry season. Generally speaking, these months bring clear skies and sparse clouds, but they also bring strong winds and freezing evenings.

The wet season, in comparison, lasts from October to May. Expect more showers, though they won’t always happen every day (particularly in March and April).

Kayking in Quilotoa Lake, Ecuador

Kayking in Quilotoa Lake

Take advantage of dry, sunny mornings because afternoon thunderstorms might arrive suddenly. Every now and then, strong hailstorms catch people off guard.

Weather in Coastal Region

One of the beaches in Puerto Lopez in Ecuador

The coastal lowlands on Ecuador’s west coast are characterized by a tropical climate with average temperatures ranging from 26°C in the north to 23°C in the south. Ecuadorian cities like Manta and Puerto Lopez are the most popular among travelers.

There are no significant seasonal temperature fluctuations, although February through April is the wettest month of the year.

Puerto Lopez Ecuador main viewpoint

The dry season (June to December) has cooler temperatures and is frequently cloudy and damp. The coolest months in the Guayaquil region are August and September.

Weather in Galapagos Islands

Panoramic View of Bartolome Island, Galapagos

The climate in the Galapagos Islands is subtropical, dry, and generally temperate. Due to the influence of the Peruvian Current, the weather on the islands has a pattern more similar to that of the Sierra and the Costa.

December to June are often the warmest months (high season). During these months, the weather is often brighter and warmer, and the water can get up to 24°C.

We have guides for each month if you are planning to visit Galapagos:

Weather in the Oriente and Amazon Rainforest

Hiking in Agua Blanca Commune

Three distinct seasons—wet, dry, and in-between—define the climate in Ecuador’s Amazon region. There is no “ideal” time to travel because there are advantages and disadvantages to any season.

It rains from March to July. Although it doesn’t literally rain all day every day, heavy rains are to be expected. The wet season offers the benefits of greater river levels and more pleasant temperatures of roughly 24 degrees Celsius for travel (75 Fahrenheit).

La Casona restaurant in Puyo, Ecuador

La Casona restaurant in Puyo, Ecuador

From December through March, there is no rain. Naturally, as this is a rainforest, some precipitation is still to be expected, albeit probably not as much as during the rainy season.

Although tourists will have to deal with a lower river level, which can make canoe navigation more challenging, rain is less likely to stop activities. Both the temperature and humidity are higher (38 degrees celsius/100 degrees Fahrenheit).

Bottom Line

Cascada Vida Natural in Amazon basic of Ecuador

Cascada Vida Natural

In summary, the weather in Ecuador differs from one region to the next. We hope this article made you understand the main differences in Ecuador’s weather.

The seasons in Ecuador are not the same as those at home so it is best to be prepared before your trip. Prepare your packing list for traveling in Ecuador based on the time of year and area you’ll be visiting.

Don’t let your reservations about the weather prevent you from traveling to Ecuador because it is accessible all year long. Just be prepared with appropriate clothing and you are ready to go.

About the author

Oleg Galeev

I'm Oleg, and together with my wife, we've explored Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, journeying through more than 20 cities (Quito, Cuenca, Banos, Tena, Puyo, Guayaquil, Riobamba, Otavalo, Mindo and more) and nearly every island in the Galapagos (including iconic ones such as Bartolome Island, San Cristobal Island, Isabela Island, Santa Cruz Island and more). In this blog, I give you my real thoughts about each place we visited. This info can help anyone planning a trip to the Galapagos Islands or mainland Ecuador. I'm just a traveler, not a tour company, so I'm not trying to sell anything. That means I'll tell you the truth—both the good and the bad — about traveling in Ecuador based on what we experienced.

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