The Climate of Kota Kinabalu

The climate of Kota Kinabalu (KK), a city in eastern Malaysia, is hot and humid throughout the year with plenty of rainfall recorded in each month of the year.

The following is a brief sketch of the city’s temperature and rainfall.


As the city is located in the equatorial region, so the temperature remains uniformly high throughout the year with very little change from month to month. The warmest month is May with an average temperature of 28.2 C (82.8 F) while the coolest month is January with an average temperature of 26.7 (80.1 F). Thus the temperature remains quite uniform as the difference between the average temperatures of warmest and coolest month is only 1.5 C. This type of temperature pattern is typical of equatorial regions. The temperature is so uniform that even the record high temperature rarely exceeds 35 C (95 F ) in each month and the record low temperature rarely falls below 16 C ( 61 F). The average high and the average low temperatures remain around 31 C (87.8 F) and 23.5 C (74.3 F) respectively in each month of the year.


As the city is located in the equatorial belt so it receives considerable amount of rain throughout the year. Two prevailing monsoons characterize the climate of this part of Sabah are the Northeast Monsoon and the Southwest Monsoon. The Northeast Monsoon occurs between November and March, while the Southwest Monsoon occurs between May and September. There are also two successive inter-monsoons from April to May and from September to October.

The total annual rainfall at KK is 2547 mm (100 inches). The wettest month is October with 345.8 mm ( 13.6 inches) of rainfall while the driest month is March with 50.5 mm (1.988 inches) of rainfall. The average number of rainy days vary from 06 in March to 16 in October. Due to frequent rain, the average relative humidity remains constantly high and remains around 80 percent throughout the year. The wind speed ranges from 5.5 to 7.9 m/s during the Northeast Monsoon but is significantly lower to 0.3 to 3.3 m/s during the Southwest Monsoon.

In short, the climate of Kota Kinabalu is warm, humid and rainy throughout the year. The best time to visit this city is in the month of March when the rainfall amount is a moderate one with 2 inches of rainfall recorded in the whole month.