The three warmest cities in Washington are Kennewick, Walla Walla, and Richland.
In this article I’m going to share with you my ranking of the warmest places in Washington state.
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 Washington that have the highest average yearly temperatures. Later in the article I share a table with 50 most populous cities in Washington.
Top 10 Warmest Cities in Washington
Here are the top 10 warmest places in Washington state ranked by their daily mean temperature. The differences between various top10 warmest cities in the state are small but they may still be helpful if you’re looking for the best weather possible.
1. Kennewick – daily mean temperature of 55.2 °F
Kennewick has a semi-arid climate. It’s the warmest city in Washington state if we consider annual daily mean temperature. While it has colder winters than Western Washington, the rest of the year is much warmer, with average July max temperature reaching over 90 °F. Kennewick, Pasco and Richland form an area called Tri-Cities. They’re one of the sunniest cities in Washington state because of their close location east of the Cascade Range. Due to a so-called rain shadow effect, the mountains block the precipitation. As a result, these cities (along with several other in the region, including Wenatchee and Ellensburg) enjoy way more sunny days than Western Washington.
2. Walla Walla – daily mean temperature of 54.35 °F
Walla Walla is a city of about 34,000 residents, located about 46 miles east of Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland. Similar to these cities, it benefits from the rain shadow effect and has much lower precipitation than the wet, western side of the state. Walla Walla is one of the northernmost locations in North America to have a hot-summer Mediterranean climate. Like Kennewick, it’s a very sunny city with hot summers.
3. Richland – daily mean temperature of 54.1 °F
Richland has a population of about 60,000 residents. It’s situated in a contiguous urban area shared between Kennewick, Richland, and Pasco, forming an uninterrupted city with over 300,000 residents. Due to proximity, all three cities share the same sunny and dry climate with less than ten inches of precipitation a year. Any slight differences in temperature are caused by various climate data providers.
4. Vancouver – daily mean temperature of 53.95 °F
Vancouver is located on the border with Oregon, a few miles north of Portland. Due to its nearby location, it’s considered a suburb of the city. Unlike the previous cities, Vancouver (and the rest of Western Washington) has much more precipitation. The other difference is that it has warmer winters with highs of 47 °F compared to 42 °F in the previous cities. It also doesn’t have such a blistering summer (highs reach 82 °F compared to 91 °F).
5. Pasco – daily mean temperature of 53.85 °F
Richland has a population of about 77,000 inhabitants. Along with Kennewick and Richland, the city forms a metropolitan area the size of a mid-sized city. Pasco has the same climate as Kennewick and Richland, making it one of the sunniest cities in Washington. For the Washington state standards, Pasco has burning hot summers and cool winters.
6. Kent – daily mean temperature of 53.75 °F
Kent (and Seattle, which is immediately north) enjoys some of the mildest winters in Washington with daytime highs between 47-51 °F. Its summer high temperatures reach 78 °F which is much more pleasant than the temperatures of the sunniest cities of the state. While Kent doesn’t get as many sunny days, it offers a mild year round weather that may be preferable over colder winters and much hotter summers of the sunniest places.
7. Seattle – daily mean temperature of 53.7 °F
Seattle, by far the most populous city of Washington state, ranks seventh. But as you can see, its daily mean temperature is virtually identical to Kent, Tacoma, Newcastle and Auburn. Consequently, we can consider these cities to have the same climate. While there hasn’t been much difference temperature-wise in this top10 ranking, the coldest cities of Washington state are much colder. For example, Ellensburg’s annual daily mean temperature is 47.65 °F which is a noticeable 6 degree difference. And to compare Seattle with Spokane, the second most populous city of the state, Seattle is 5 degrees warmer.
8. Tacoma – daily mean temperature of 53.65 °F
Tacoma is located about 30 miles south of Seattle. With over 220,000 inhabitants, it’s the third most populous city in Washington state. Like Seattle, it has mild weather year round.
9. Newcastle – daily mean temperature of 53.5 °F
Newcastle is situated about 12 miles east of Seattle, right by the Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park. It’s a small town of about 13,000 residents.
10. Auburn – daily mean temperature of 53 °F
Auburn is yet another Seattle suburb on this list, though it’s also near Tacoma. Like the other cities in this metropolitan area, it doesn’t have freezing winters and enjoys mild winters, making it one of the places with the best year round weather in the state.
50 Biggest Cities in Washington Ranked by Daily Mean Temperature
I created the table below by researching data for the most populous municipalities in Washington state. When I couldn’t find data for a given municipality, 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 Washington, check out the following articles:
Also check my article on the warmest cities in the US in every state.
Frequently Asked Questions
Kennewick has the highest average annual temperature while the cities of Kent, Newcastle, Tacoma, and Seattle enjoy the mildest weather in the winter.
Due to the rain shadow effect, cities located in Eastern Washington east of the Cascade Mountains such as Kennewick, Pasco and Richland have the sunniest semi-arid climate. They have levels of precipitation more similar to Arizona than other cities in Washington state (primarily in western Washington).
If you define best weather as the sunniest weather combined with hot summers, Kennewick, Pasco, or Richland in Eastern Washington is your best option. If you define best weather as the mildest weather year round, the best options are Kent, Newcastle, Tacoma, and Seattle. All these cities get at least 48 °F during an average winter day and don’t go above 78 °F during the summer. They aren’t anywhere close to being as sunny as Kennewick, though.
Washington is relatively warm most of the year, but not the entire year. In cities that get the warmest weather in the state, daytime highs are above 60 °F between March/April and October. Cities that benefit from the rain shadow effect of the Cascade Mountains (for example the Tri-Cities) are in addition sunny year round.
We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!
Let us improve this post!
Tell us how we can improve this post?