Turneffe weather is dominated by three distinct weather patterns: Easterly trade winds, cold fronts and tropical systems.

Trade Winds

Easterly trade winds dominate the weather at Turneffe in the absence of a cold front or a tropical system. The trade winds generally bring mild weather although Easterlies can be quite brisk occasionally approaching 30 MPH.  

Cold Fronts

Cold fronts, also called "Northers", tend to begin in October or November and generally last through March, although a cold fronts in April or even May is not uncommon. Cold fronts bring cool weather, strong Northerly winds, overcast skies and rough seas. Fronts generally last from 2 to 5 days. 

Weather Summaries (Turneffe Flats) 2010 - 2012

Mean Temperature (F)
Precipitation (inches)
Average Wind Speed (MPH)
Dominant Wind Direction 

Tropical Systems

Tropical systems can effect Turneffe's weather at any time during "Hurricane Season" which extends from June through November.  These systems typically develop in the Atlantic and move westward into the Caribbean, although some systems develop in the Caribbean.

Turneffe Atoll provides important that protection for mainland Belize and particularly Belize City. This significant value was quantified in the Economic Valuation of Turneffe Atoll (Felder, 201).

Records indicate that ten hurricanes and twelve tropical storms that have passed within a 50-km radius of Turneffe Atoll (Turneffe Atoll Management Plan, 2011). Other large storms, such as Hurricane Mitch in 1998, also caused significant damage to the atoll. The worst recorded storm to affect Turneffe was Hurricane Hattie in 1961 which passed directly over the atoll. Hurricane Hattie killed 27 people (Stoddart,1963).