The three warmest cities in North Carolina are Wilmington, Laurinburg, and Jacksonville.
In this article I’m going to share with you my ranking of the warmest places in North Carolina.
I created my list by researching data provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and other climate data providers.
Below I’m listing the top 10 warmest places in North Carolina that have the highest average yearly temperatures. Later in the article I share a table with 50 most populous cities in North Carolina.
Top 10 Warmest Cities in North Carolina
Here are the top 10 warmest places in North Carolina ranked by their daily mean temperature. While most cities share a similar climate, some places get higher temperatures than other parts of the state, offering the best weather for those who like warmth.
1. Wilmington – daily mean temperature of 64.4 °F
The warmest major city in North Carolina is Wilmington, a port city of 115,000 people located on the Atlantic Coast. Its humid subtropical climate, moderated by the Atlantic, gives it the best weather in the state, with very mild winters with daily highs of 57-60 °F and lows of 36-39 °F. Its average daily temperatures are above 70 °F between April and October. Combined with many sunny days year round, the city offers great beach weather for the majority of the year. As a side note, the warmest city overall in the state is located south of Wilmington town on the Atlantic coast called Southport, with a daily mean temperature of 65 °F.
2. Laurinburg – daily mean temperature of 63.7 °F
Laurinburg, a city of 16,000 people, is the second warmest town in North Carolina. It’s located in southern North Carolina, 45 miles southwest of Fayetteville. Its average annual high temperature is higher than in Wilmington but it has colder nights. It has summers with daytime temperatures higher by 2-3 degrees than in Wilmington and winters that are colder by about 2-3 degrees.
3. Jacksonville – daily mean temperature of 63.6 °F
Jacksonville is a city of 73,000 residents, located 53 miles northeast of Wilmington on the New River. It shares a very similar climate to Wilmington due to its proximity to the coast. Camp Lejeune is 18 miles southwest of the city. Jacksonville has a mild winter that is only a degree colder than in Wilmington.
4. Lumberton – daily mean temperature of 63.5 °F
Lumberton is a town south of Fayetteville, with a population of 19,000 residents. It has some of the mildest winters in North Carolina with average daily temperatures of 55-59 °F. In the summer, the average temperature reaches 89-91 °F.
5. Goldsboro – daily mean temperature of 63.35 °F
Goldsboro, a city of 34,000 residents, lies 59 miles northeast of Fayetteville. It has similar temperatures to Lumberton but gets much more precipitation (52 inches compared to 43 in Lumberton).
6. Fayetteville – daily mean temperature of 63 °F
Fayetteville is the largest city in this ranking, with about 208,000 people calling it home. Because it’s located inland, it has slightly hotter summers and colder winters than Wilmington. Out of the biggest cities in North Carolina, Fayetteville is only slightly warmer than Charlotte (by less than a degree). Compared to Raleigh and the entire Wake County, Fayetteville offers temperatures that are higher by about two degrees. Compared to Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and Durham, Fayetteville is 3-4 degrees warmer.
7. New Bern – daily mean temperature of 62.7 °F
New Bern is a city of 31,000 people, situated on the Neuse River, close to the Atlantic Ocean. It’s 40 miles northeast of Jacksonville. Like other cities in North Carolina that are on the Coastal Plain, it has slightly cooler summers and milder winters.
8. Elizabeth City – daily mean temperature of 62.3 °F
Elizabeth City is located in northeastern North Carolina, close to the border with Virginia. Despite being much further north than other cities in this ranking, it still offers some of the best weather in the state. The reason for that is its location close to the Albemarle Sound and the Atlantic Ocean. These bodies of water give it an average temperature that’s higher that one would expect based on its northerly location.
9. Greenville – daily mean temperature of 62.15 °F
Greenville is a city of 88,000 residents, situated 84 miles east of Raleigh. It has slightly cooler winters and slightly hotter summer than other cities on the Coastal Plain.
10. Gastonia – daily mean temperature of 62.15 °F
Gastonia is a city of 80,000 people, located about 23 miles west of Charlotte (which would place eleventh with an average annual temperature of 61.65 °F). It’s is the tenth city on this list but it actually has the same annual temperature as Greenville. The main difference is that Greenville gets more precipitation than Gastonia.
50 Biggest Cities in North Carolina Ranked by Daily Mean Temperature
I created the table below by researching data for the most populous municipalities in North Carolina. When I couldn’t find data for a given city, I moved on to another. While the list includes 50 cities, some of the bigger cities may be missing because there was no data for them. Please check the closest geographically city then.
|City||Average high temperature (°F)||Average low temperature (°F)||Daily mean temperature (°F)|
Check the Warmest Cities in Neighboring States
If you’re interested in learning about the warmest cities in states neighboring North Carolina, check out the following articles:
- What Are the Warmest Cities in Georgia?
- What Are the Warmest Cities in South Carolina?
- What Are the Warmest Cities in Tennessee?
- What Are the Warmest Cities in Virginia?
Also check my article on the warmest cities in the US in every state.
Frequently Asked Questions
South Carolina is warmer than North Carolina. The average annual temperature in South Carolina is 63.4 °F compared to 60 °F in North Carolina.
Coastal cities and cities close to the Atlantic Ocean like Wilmington, Jacksonville, and Elizabeth City offer the best weather with hot summers and the mildest winters.
The warmest major city in North Carolina is Wilmington. The warmest city overall is the small town of Southport located 32 miles south of Wilmington. Both offer enjoyable year round weather with hot summers and mild winters.
Due to the proximity of the Atlantic Ocean, Wilmington, Southport, and the neighboring area offer the warmest winters in North Carolina.
The coldest city in North Carolina is Boone in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Its average annual temperature is just 50.15 °F compared to 64.4 °F in Wilmington, the warmest city in the state.
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