Sunny Days: England Versus Australia Compared

It’s been an uncharacteristically miserable week here weatherwise in Brisbane considering it’s the middle of summer. It’s been dull, dreary, damp, rainy, grey and if I didn’t mention it already, dull.

Dull, dull, dull, dull, dull.

It has also been hot though, which is why I know it is not England. But Australia is supposed to be a sunny place, isn’t it? Here’s a really sunny day in Melbourne…

the-city-as-viewed-from-docklandsYes, they do get them, more on that in a minute.

But this dull weather we are experiencing at the moment has been going on and on for a while. I’m sure it’s been dull for at least a week now, it may even be 10 days or so. It starts to bring you down, that’s why I decided to do this today…

England Versus Australia: Sunny Days and Hours

That title is slightly misleading, because I don’t have any information on “sunny days” from England, but I do for Australia and that means we can put this country’s major cities into a league table and see who tops the sunny chart.

I found all this information on a fascinating weather website and I’ll give you a link to that later on. But first let’s find out which Australian cities are sunniest.

These statistics are based on information gathered from 1981 to 2010 and to clear things up, a ‘sunny day’ is where cloud cover is 25% or less when measured at 9 AM and 3 PM on the day, and a ‘partly sunny day” is where cloud cover is between 25% and 75% at those same two times.

Total sunny days are the two added together.

Australia’s capital cities:


Fascinating figures; Perth just pinches it from Brisbane at the top and despite Hobart’s miserable return of just 44 ‘sunny’ days in the year, Melbourne still manages to come bottom of our major cities in the sunny league.

For the record, the sunniest city in the whole list was Rockingham, Western Australia, with 286 total sunny days in the year; Rockhampton, in Queensland came second with 272.

Sunny hours

These are the total number of sunny hours per year in these cities for each country…


  • Perth – 3212
  • Townsville – 3139
  • Darwin – 3103
  • Brisbane – 2884
  • Canberra – 2811
  • Adelaide – 2774
  • Cairns – 2738
  • Sydney – 2592
  • Hobart – 2263
  • Melbourne – 2079


  • Eastbourne – 1888
  • Exeter – 1747
  • Newquay – 1743
  • Ipswich – 1682
  • Oxford – 1578
  • Blackpool – 1567
  • Lowestoft – 1559
  • Grimsby – 1540
  • Cambridge – 1495
  • London – 1481

That is the top 10 sunniest cities in England out of the 16 on their list. Bottom, for those who want to know, was a place called Malham Tarn in the Yorkshire Dales with just 1143 sunny hours a year. Manchester gets 1416 and Birmingham 1364 hours of sun per year.

As you can see, England’s sunniest place is quite a way behind Australia’s least sunniest.

There. That’s cheered me up.

As I mentioned before, I got these figures from a really interesting website. It has more information about worldwide weather than you can shake a stick at. It’s called and you can see the pages I got my information from here; UK sunshine and Australian sunshine, although they didn’t have any “sunny hours” figures for Melbourne, so I got the figure I used from

I’m off for a beachy weekend on Friday, this dull weather can’t continue for THAT long, can it? We shall see.

Visa Assessment Service
{ 39 comments… add one }
  • Steve August 17, 2022, 12:03 am |

    Yuma in Arizona gets 4100 hours of sun a year!! LOL

    • BobinOz August 17, 2022, 6:28 pm |

      Haha, yes, it wouldn’t surprise me. I’ve been to Arizona, my brother lives there, and I was up late one night, well it was about 2 o’clock in the morning, and his next-door neighbour was working on a car in his garage. I mentioned it to my brother the next morning, and he said people always do that sort of thing, too hot to work during the day.

  • k in wa October 21, 2021, 10:28 am |

    why didn’t i find your site decades ago? well, you know what I mean – not really ‘decades’.
    this is just the sort of ‘useless’ information I love to read/compile/collect….
    thank you, Bob in Oz – welcome to our great country down-under
    trust u n yours are not too greatly affected by Covid

    • BobinOz October 23, 2021, 9:07 pm |

      Well it was here one decade ago, I started it in 2009. Where have you been?

      You have some catching up to do, I have about 1500 pages of completely ‘useless’ stuff here, and some of it is even more useless now because it is out of date. Enjoy reading 🙂

      Oh, and I’m in Queensland. What Covid?

  • TFJ September 28, 2020, 3:29 pm |

    I know this page is a bit old, but your data on Melbourne sunny days cannot be correct.

    If Melbourne has 2300 sunshine hours in a year, then it cannot have as few as 46 sunny days. If you assume say 12 hours a day of sunshine in summer, then that only totals 552 sunshine hours. If you then add 139 partly sunny days to it, you can’t get to 2300. I would guess maybe 120-140 sunny days = approx 1400 + 140 partly sunny days (900 hours) = 2300 hours. What do you get if you do the maths?

    • BobinOz September 29, 2020, 6:38 pm |

      Well, I must say, you got me thinking there for a minute, but I think I know where the difference is.

      Firstly, have a read of the definitions of sunny days and partly sunny days in this article above one of the charts. When it comes to Melbourne, once we’ve dealt with those 46 sunny days and the 139 partly sunny days, we still have 180 days left in the year.

      So, for example, if there is 12 hours of sunshine for those 46 sunny days and eight hours for the 139 partly sunny days, then there only needs to be between three and four hours of sunshine on average for the other 180 days to get to the magical number of 2300.

      That would make sense to me, but I don’t know for sure, I got these stats from the climate website mentioned in a link above. For sure though, if you apply your formula to every city I think they would all fall well short of the suggested sunny hours for each of them.

    • Ged Mack December 6, 2020, 8:15 pm |

      Hi Bob

      Came across this page but it’s old now so maybe not being looked at but if it is I just would direct you to the Met Office official government website (equivalent of Australia’s BOM). Temperature and sunshine figures are 100% accurate there. Your London figure is very low (possibly using the Greenwich station which is in the shadow of a hill thereby depressing sunshine measurement, particularly in winter) Met office 1981-2010 station data has both Heathrow and Kew Gardens as recording in the 1650s not 1480s ( still low by Oz standards of course). I’ve been to Australia 3 times and enjoyed the weather (even roasting in 40 degrees in a Perth heatwave). However late Feb early March 1995 in Sydney it pissed down almost non stop for 10 days ( a run of wet weather in summer I have never experienced in the UK). January 1999 I gave Sydney another go and we had 10 dry days of glorious sun with low humidity. What’s my take overall? When it’s good there it’s absolutely wonderful but when bad weather sets in it really hangs around. Cairns in February poured constantly but in October there was barely a cloud in the sky. Finally the UK this May (during full Lockdown) had its sunniest month ever with parts of the south recording more than 11 hours a day ( but this autumn has been dull dull dull)

      • BobinOz December 9, 2020, 3:34 pm |

        Yes, this article is a bit old now, but when I wrote it I wanted to use the same source for my information from both countries, so that it compared like for like. So if you look at the links to where I got my information from, at the foot of the article, it’s the same website for both apart from the information for Melbourne, which for some reason wasn’t available on that website.

        Hopefully being the same website they use the same criteria for sunshine hours and therefore hopefully it is like for like, but I suppose I can’t guarantee that.

        I remember when my sister came to visit me from the UK in May 2010, it poured with rain for pretty much the entire three weeks she was here. The day she left, the sun came out again, and stayed out for weeks and weeks. So I get what you’re saying, but isn’t that just the wonder of weather?

        • Gerard Mackay December 9, 2020, 11:49 pm |

          Wow 3 wet weeks in May that IS unlucky. An ex colleague of mine was born and raised in Brisbane and didn’t miss the stickiness of Jan/Feb but reckoned that the best weather in the World was to be found in Brisbane August to October. Personally my Antipodean ideal would be your climate May to October and somewhere like Nelson NZ November to April. Anyway I’m glad I came across your cheery upbeat website it’s a lot of fun

          • BobinOz December 11, 2020, 6:21 pm |

            Yes, well the stickiness of January and February is as tough as it gets here in Brisbane, the rest of the year, for me anyway, I think the weather is just about perfect. Thanks for popping by, glad to hear you found it fun.

  • Travis April 13, 2020, 3:49 pm |

    I live in Townsville, I love it here, I lived in Brisbane and its not a really nice place.

    • BobinOz April 15, 2020, 6:51 pm |

      Well, I love Brisbane. I’ve travelled to loads of different towns and cities since I moved to Australia late 2007, including Townsville, and I’ve not yet been anywhere that I would swap for Brisbane.

  • Jim October 31, 2019, 6:04 am |

    We’re fried here in Oz. Too much sunshine. It’d be nice to get some consistent rain.
    Stop encouraging people to emigrate here, the population is already past maximum.

    • BobinOz November 1, 2019, 7:41 pm |

      Yes, regular rain would be nice, I’m sure it will come eventually.

      As for the population, the government controls immigration, but it’s a nice complement from you to suggest that little old me is influencing the numbers 🙂

  • Jim Bob April 18, 2019, 9:34 pm |

    Lived in Brissy for 4 years now from Auckland, NZ. Love the seemly eternal sunshine and I’d take hot and humid any day over dark, cold (defined as a high of 11 and lows of -1 in winter) … Xmas 2017 (I went back for a holiday) in Auckland had an overnight low of 9 (and that’s summer!), wet (7 days of rain is common both winter and summer), and windy (price of being a coastal city I guess). In one word … miserable.
    Brisbane is home now. The city is undering substantial gentrification and has a new skyscapers almost annually. Great place to raise a family … large number of well kept parks.

    • BobinOz April 23, 2019, 5:32 pm |

      Fully agree Jim Bob, 11 years in Brisbane now for me, I don’t think I could put up with the English climate, which is pretty similar to New Zealand, after this.

      With all the developments that have been done and are still going on, Brisbane just gets better and better.

  • joe December 23, 2017, 2:40 pm |

    what a load of aussie poo,one eyed thinking again

    • BobinOz December 24, 2017, 5:30 pm |

      And a Merry Christmas to you too Joe 🙂

  • Peter October 9, 2017, 2:34 pm |

    Hi, just wondering how places like Gold or Sunshine Coast compared to Brisbane. Are they just the same or is there significant difference? How’s the humidity in the summer?

  • Jordan April 8, 2017, 10:26 pm |

    Lived in Australia for a year and hated Brisbane. Your Summers suck. Rain, rain, rain but stupidly hot. No one wants to sweat in the rain. And what a boring city! Sydney, Melbourne and Perth are much more fun and the weather a lot better. Don’t know why anyone would choose to live in Brisbane or further north!! I experienced a lot more frequent rain in Brisbane than I did in London. The weather was surprisingly good when I lived there for a year although the winters were cold, it hardly rained and Christmas was so so so good!

    • BobinOz April 10, 2017, 7:28 pm |

      Well, everybody is entitled to their own opinions, but to hate on Brisbane in the way you have Jordan says more about you than it does about Queensland.

      You’ve lived in Brisbane for one year and London for one year, and you think you know it all. I lived within a stone’s throw of London for nearly 50 years and I’m now in my 10th year of living in Brisbane, and I can tell you with absolute certainty that Brisbane gets so many more sunny days per year than the UK capital.

      The above information is based on 29 years of weather data, yet you think you can override that with your one-year experience? The stats show Brisbane gets twice as many sunshine hours each year than London.

      Queensland is known as the Sunshine State, not the ‘rain, rain, rain’ state or the ‘stupidly hot state’, and that’s for a very good reason.

    • Shaun October 27, 2018, 7:54 pm |

      Clearly never lived in Brisbane during the winter/spring months when it’s just months and months of wall to wall sunshine and almost never rains.

      Sure, summer isn’t as sunny as many other places (although there’s still plenty of it) and it rains often, but I’d take a sunny warm winter any day as consolation for that.

  • Pam Maclean December 20, 2016, 4:36 pm |

    Just noticed this thread is nearly a year old but I just wanted to add that I have lived in Melbourne most of my life and the weather is mostly cool/cold for at least 6-7 months of the year and then it really fluctuates throughout the day and week from cold/cool/warm/hot /very hot. The sun is often covered by clouds at some point in the day. I am moving to the Gold Coast in a few months!!!

    • BobinOz December 20, 2016, 11:15 pm |

      Yes, the weather in Melbourne can be quite up-and-down in an unpredictable way. The Gold Coast will be very different; any coat, jumper, puffer jacket or woolly hat you own, give it to a friend or family member who will be staying in Melbourne.

      You won’t need them up here in Queensland. Hope the move goes well.

      • Pamela Maclean July 17, 2018, 5:27 pm |

        I made the move to the Gold Coast one year ago and we LOVE it ? The sun shines most of the time and the weather is incredibly stable compared to Melbourne. I don’t miss it at all…I visited Melbourne once during the year Melbourne cup weekend and froze ?

        • BobinOz July 17, 2018, 6:14 pm |

          Fantastic news, welcome to the Sunshine State 🙂

          I think Melbourne is great to visit for a holiday, in the summer of course, but for me personally, I don’t think I could live there all year round. I just don’t like cold anymore, Brisbane has spoiled me.

          Sounds like you are being spoiled too, and Melbourne is now history. Very pleased to hear it has worked out well for you Pamela.

  • Ozbloke36 November 4, 2016, 6:00 pm |

    Rockhampton is more a town than a city 😛

    Also Rockingham, Western Australia has 286 Total sunny days, beating Rockhampton 🙂

    • BobinOz November 4, 2016, 6:59 pm |

      I owe you an apology Ozbloke36, you are correct, Rockingham did come top with 286 hours. Not sure how I missed that and awarded the sunniest city to Rockhampton instead. I have now amended that line in the above post to reflect that, thanks for pointing out.

      And yes, Rockhampton is more like a town, but it does call itself a city as quite a few do. Brisbane was once referred to as more of a town than a city, but I think we are over that now 🙂

      Cheers, Bob

      • Ozbloke36 November 4, 2016, 11:11 pm |

        All good Bob, I spent a winter in Germany and had to come back early, couldn’t stand the lack of sunshine, got so depressed. Never had seasonal depression here in Australia lol

        Love the site, keep up the good work!

        • BobinOz November 7, 2016, 5:43 pm |

          Germany, I suspect, is not much different from the UK and I was the same, it was easy to be depressed back in England. I’m ok here though. Cheers, Bob

  • Lucas Arlidge October 16, 2016, 3:50 pm |

    If you want real figures please use the bureau of meteorology website.

    The only place in the Melbourne area that currently measures sunshine is the airport site. Average yearly amount is 2372 hrs.

  • Sash June 15, 2016, 3:44 pm |

    Great article but stretches of sun and the days they fall on is key here. Its not for lack of sun as Spring, Summer and Autumn have see lovely weather in the UK. Its the fact that most of these days seem to more often than not present themselves on weekdays rather than weekends !!!!

    Stats on what days and what hours are sunny. ie. useful sunshine (for the majority of us that work weekdays). That would be really interesting to compare to sunny downunder!

    • BobinOz June 15, 2016, 11:43 pm |

      Ah, yes, I’d kind of forgotten about that; it always seems to rain on the weekends in the UK doesn’t it? The fact that I’d forgotten may give you a clue that it doesn’t happen so often here in Australia.

  • djmcbell January 16, 2015, 12:55 am |

    Eastbourne – England’s sunniest place?

    Well that makes me want to top myself.

    • BobinOz January 21, 2015, 1:48 pm |

      Don’t do it djmcbell.

      Djmcbell? Hello?

      • Hilary February 9, 2015, 10:21 pm |

        Hey djmcbell, have to give a thumbs up for Eastbourne. It’s a great place, very sunny, the start of the beautiful South Downs, good property which is way cheaper than Brighton its close neighbour. Sussex by the Sea, take a look sometime!

Leave a Comment

If your comment doesn’t get answered, find out why…..
FAQs and Comment Policy.