Florida deserves its name as the Sunshine State. The southern tip of Florida is only 62 miles (100 km) from the Tropic of Cancer and this is reflected in Florida’s climate.
People don’t just come to Florida in their millions to visit all the beautiful beaches and have fun in the theme parks like Walt Disney World, SeaWorld and Universal Studios, they also come for the weather.
All parts of Florida are very hot in summer with temperatures in the high 80s to low 90s; it is only the winter temperatures which are distinctly different the further south you head.
Florida’s position sandwiched between the Gulf of Mexico to the west and the Atlantic Ocean to the east with the Caribbean to the south has a great influence on its weather patterns, resulting in plenty of sunshine but also high humidity. This also brings with it the risk of hurricanes and tornadoes.
In the winter months, many people from the Northern States migrate south to avoid the worst of the cold weather in the north and to take advantage of Florida’s mild winter weather.
The northern zone is temperate which means there can be rain all year round but the winters are mild by European standards with lows of 50°F (10°C) and with the possibility of frosts. Summers are hot and sunny.
The central band stretching from Tampa through Orlando to Daytona Beach and down to Fort Myers through Lake Okeechobee and West Palm Beach represents a transitional area dividing the northern and southern zones.
In many ways this gives you the best of both worlds, with mild winters and summers that are not as hot or humid as in the south.
Why do you think Walt Disney, SeaWorld, Universal Studios and NASA have all made Central Florida their home, following in the wake of the early parks like Cypress Gardens and Silver Springs.
As you move into the southern parts of Florida around Miami and then down into the Florida Keys, the climate becomes much more tropical with mild and warm winters and very hot, humid and sticky summers.
Expect temperatures around 95°F (35°C) in the height of summer.