Arizona climate guide

Below are average maximum temperatures at popular destinations in Arizona for next month - December. Select a destination to see the climate guide for all months of the year.

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The climate guide for Arizona shows long term monthly weather averages processed from data supplied by CRU (University of East Anglia), the Met Office & the Netherlands Meteorological Institute. Find out more about our data sources.

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Metric (°C / mm)  |  Imperial (°F / inches)

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Arizona climate overview

Located in the southwest, Arizona is one of the largest US states. Famous for its clear, sunny skies and dry weather, and boasting spectacular, diverse scenery, the state is a major tourist magnet. Many Native Americans live in Arizona, and the Navajo Reservation in the north is the nation's largest.

Flat terrain and gently sloping valleys make up the southern and western third of the State, which is home to giant saguaro cacti with their trademark candelabra branches. In summer expect extreme heat and humidity in the south, with low rainfall in the sub-tropical southwest.

Other southern areas experience the 'summer monsoon', when moisture-laden air from the Gulf of Mexico brings thunderstorms in July and August. On occasions these can also penetrate far into the northern highlands. In winter temperatures in the south are mostly comfortable with no significant rain.

From Phoenix the ground rises steadily northwards towards Flagstaff and the highlands of the Colorado Plateau. Desert cacti give way to pine and fir trees as elevation increases. Temperatures in the north are cooler in all months, but rainfall levels still remain low.

The Grand Canyon slices into the flat, dry semi-desert of the north. Over millions of years, the Colorado and other rivers have carved deep canyons, revealing coloured rocks and soil now thousands of metres deep in places. Despite the increased elevation, the north of Arizona is still warm to hot in summer. However, winters are cold to below freezing with snows on the central peaks around Flagstaff.

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