Climate in Bamako, Mali

by | October 3, 2023

According to andyeducation, Bamako, the capital city of Mali, is situated in the southwestern part of the country, along the Niger River. It experiences a hot desert climate with distinct wet and dry seasons, characteristic of the Sahelian region of West Africa. The climate in Bamako is influenced by its geographic location, proximity to the Sahara Desert, and the movement of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). In this comprehensive description, we will explore various aspects of Bamako’s climate, including temperature, precipitation, seasons, and notable climate-related characteristics.


Bamako’s hot desert climate results in high temperatures, especially during the dry season, with noticeable daily and seasonal variations.

  • Summer (March to May): The summer season in Bamako is characterized by scorching heat. Daytime temperatures typically range from 36°C to 40°C (97°F to 104°F), with occasional peaks surpassing 40°C (104°F). Nights remain warm, with temperatures rarely dropping below 20°C (68°F). The summer season is marked by relentless sunshine and dry conditions.
  • Rainy Season (June to September): During the rainy season, temperatures are slightly lower due to increased cloud cover and precipitation. Daytime highs typically range from 30°C to 34°C (86°F to 93°F), while nighttime lows hover around 20°C to 24°C (68°F to 75°F). The rainy season brings relief from the intense heat, albeit with increased humidity.
  • Dry Season (October to February): The dry season in Bamako is characterized by warm to hot temperatures. Daytime temperatures range from 33°C to 37°C (91°F to 99°F), with nighttime lows dropping to 15°C to 19°C (59°F to 66°F). This season is marked by clear skies, low humidity, and minimal rainfall.

The temperature variations between the seasons make proper adaptation and planning essential for residents and visitors alike.


Bamako experiences distinct wet and dry seasons, with a notable reduction in rainfall during the dry months.

  • Wet Season (June to September): The wet season in Bamako is marked by the arrival of the ITCZ, which brings significant rainfall, thunderstorms, and occasionally heavy downpours. Monthly rainfall totals can vary but often range from 50 to 200 millimeters (2 to 7.9 inches) per month. Flooding in low-lying areas can occur during intense rain events.
  • Dry Season (October to May): The dry season spans from October to May, with minimal rainfall. Occasional isolated showers may occur, but the months of December to February are particularly dry, with monthly rainfall totals typically below 5 millimeters (0.2 inches). Low humidity and clear skies are common during this period.

The seasonal variation in precipitation patterns has significant implications for agriculture, water resources, and daily life in Bamako.


Bamako’s climate can be broadly categorized into three main seasons, each with its unique characteristics:

  1. Hot Dry Season (March to May): The hot dry season is characterized by scorching heat and dry conditions, with little to no rainfall.
  2. Rainy Season (June to September): The rainy season brings relief from the heat, but it also includes increased humidity and frequent rainfall.
  3. Cool Dry Season (October to February): The cool dry season is marked by lower temperatures, clear skies, and minimal rainfall, making it a more comfortable time to visit the city.

Climate-Related Characteristics:

According to existingcountries, Bamako’s hot desert climate has some notable characteristics and considerations:

  1. Saharan Influence: The city’s climate is strongly influenced by its proximity to the Sahara Desert. The Harmattan winds, which originate in the Sahara, can occasionally bring dusty conditions to Bamako, particularly during the dry season.
  2. Agriculture: The seasonal rainfall is vital for agriculture in the region. Farmers rely on the rainy season to cultivate crops such as millet, sorghum, and rice.
  3. Water Management: Effective water management practices, including reservoirs and irrigation systems, are essential for ensuring a stable water supply for agriculture and daily life, especially during the dry season.
  4. Urbanization: Rapid urbanization has led to some localized weather effects, including the urban heat island (UHI) effect, which can result in slightly higher temperatures within the city compared to surrounding rural areas.
  5. Cultural Events: The city’s climate influences its cultural traditions and festivals, which often reflect the agricultural cycle and seasons.
  6. Tourism: While the hot dry season may be challenging for some tourists, the cool dry season is a popular time for visitors to explore Bamako’s cultural attractions and natural beauty.

In conclusion, Bamako, Mali, experiences a hot desert climate with high temperatures during the hot dry season, a distinct wet season with frequent rainfall, and a cool dry season with minimal precipitation. The city’s climate plays a significant role in agriculture, water resources, and daily life for its residents. Understanding and adapting to the seasonal variations are essential for both residents and visitors to make the most of Bamako’s unique climate and the cultural richness it offers throughout the year.