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Most Comfortable Summer Cities

Most and Least Comfortable Summer Cities 2017

When it comes to summer and its accompanying hot weather, there are so many beautiful things - beach days, barbecues, revealing swimsuits, Slip n' Slides, squirt gun fights, an excuse to drink watery beer all day at baseball games - the list goes on.

But there are also downsides to summer weather - some not so beautiful things like sleepless nights in sweltering apartments, sweating through your work clothes before 10am, and depending on your stance on Dad-Bods, revealing swimsuits. In short (pun intended), summer weather can get uncomfortable.

So, let's have a look at which cities are comfortable during the summer, and which will make you want to move to The North Pole for an internship in Santa's workshop or curl up naked under a crudely made blanket of ice packs and frozen peas.

Sperling's BestPlaces' newly created Summer Comfort Index considers seven climate variables, including total precipitation, daily minimum and maximum temperatures, extreme high and low temperatures, average dew points, and precipitation days. Baseline scores are based on high and low temperatures outside of a "comfort" range of 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit and are then penalized by the other variables such as humidity.

Without further ado, here are Sperling's BestPlaces' Ten Most Comfortable Summer Cities. If you live in one of these, crack another shandy and post an Instagram pic of you outside with your feet up and a sarcastic caption like "Tough life" or "This place is terrible." And, of course, a non-sarcastic "#blessed."

The Most Comfortable Cities of the Summer

1. Honolulu, HI

- Daily high: 86.2 deg
- Nighttime low: 71.4 deg
- Rainy days: 17 days
- Humidity: 64. deg.2
- Days too hot: 87 days
- Nights too cool (or not cool enough): 0 days

Honolulu has zero days during summer which get too cool or stay too hot at night, and the surrounding Pacific Ocean keeps the daytime high temperatures from getting too extreme. The cool Pacific keeps the humidity low too. In short, it's just about perfect. What else would you expect from an island paradise?

2. Los Angeles, CA

- Daily high: 86 deg.
- Nighttime low: 61.6 deg.
- Rainy days: 0 days
- Humidity: 57.7 deg.
- Days too hot: 61 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 20 days

While LA is known to be fairly hot and usually necessitates some sort of air conditioning during the summer, its low humidity translates to high overall comfort.

3. San Diego, CA

- Average daily high : 83.3 deg.
- Nighttime low: 60.2 deg.
- Rainy days: 1 days
- Humidity: 59.1 deg.
- Days too hot: 47 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 28 days

Another Southern California city with low humidity, San Diego is generally cooler than LA with 47 "Days too hot," compared to 61 in the Angel City.

4. San Jose, CA

- Average daily high: 82.3 deg.
- Nighttime low: 56.2 deg.
- Rainy days: 1 days
- Humidity: 52.2 deg.
- Days too hot: 53 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 88 days

NorCal makes its first appearance in the Top Ten, thanks to it being one of the least humid cities in the United States.

5. Oxnard, CA

- Average daily high: 81.9 deg.
- Nighttime low: 57.9 deg.
- Rainy days: 0 days
- Humidity: 55.8 deg.
- Days too hot: 49 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 79 days

Situated near the Pacific Coast, just north of Malibu, Oxnard overcomes its awkward-sounding name with an Average Daily High of an oh-so-comfy 82 degrees F.

6. San Francisco, CA

- Average daily high: 77.9 deg.
- Nighttime low: 54.7 deg.
- Rainy days: 1 days
- Humidity: 53.1 deg.
- Days too hot: 47 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 90 days

San Francisco generally has low humidity, and only has 47 days in the "Too hot" range.

7. Cleveland, OH

- Average daily high: 82.4 deg.
- Nighttime low: 62.7 deg.
- Rainy days: 21 days
- Humidity: 62 deg.
- Days too hot: 56 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 27 days

Once known to its detractors as "The Mistake by The Lake," there's no mistaking Cleveland's Summer Comfort. Although it has a somewhat high number of Rainy Days, its average low is 63 degrees F and its average high is 82 degrees F.

8. Buffalo, NY

- Average daily high: 80.7 deg.
- Nighttime low: 59.1 deg.
- Rainy days: 21 days
- Humidity: 59.7 deg.
- Days too hot: 33 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 58 days

Also situated near air-cooling Lake Erie, Bison Town, as it is known to absolutely nobody except this writer, boasts an average low of 59 degrees F and an average high of 81 degrees. Which is a boring way of saying the temperature is pretty much always in the sweet spot.

9. Rochester, NY

- Average daily high: 81.4 deg.
- Nighttime low: 59.5 deg.
- Rainy days: 21 days
- Humidity: 60.1 deg.
- Days too hot: 43 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 56 days

Another win for the Great Lakes. They're great. Right below Lake Ontario, Rochester's average highs and lows are right between 60 and 80 degrees - generally considered the most comfortable zone for homo sapiens. Science.

10. Seattle, WA

- Average daily high: 77.4 deg.
- Nighttime low: 53.2 deg.
- Rainy days: 11 days
- Humidity: 53 deg.
- Days too hot: 5 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 92 days

Known for good music, coffee, and rain, it's not actually that rainy here during the summer - only 11 Rainy Days. It's also not very humid and neither gets too cold nor too hot. Cool beans.

The Most Uncomfortable Cities in the Summer.

If you live in one of these, you already know you're suffering and the only respite you'll feel is seeing it on this list and knowing your plight is being documented. That said, you probably have really comfortable Falls, Winters, and Springs. So, in a few months post a revenge pic of you outside in a t-shirt while your friends up North are trudging through three feet of snow.

For the purposes of this study, we looked at the Summer Comfort Indexes of the Top 100 Largest Metro Areas. If you'd like to know where your smaller-sized city stacks up, shoot us an email and we'll send you its Summer Comfort Index Score and Ranking.

1. McAllen, TX

- Average daily high: 98 deg.
- Nighttime low: 75.5 deg.
- Rainy days: 9 days
- Humidity: 72.3 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

McAllen is officially the most uncomfortable summer city, thanks to an average of 92 Days Too Hot and an Average Daily High of 98 Degrees - not the excellent boy band anchored by the Lachey brothers. The temperature. That is too hot.

2. Houston, TX

- Average daily high: 93.9 deg.
- Nighttime low: 74.3 deg.
- Rainy days: 19 days
- Humidity: 73.7 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

Houston, we have a Summer Comfort problem. It's too hot and humid. The Humidity, measured in Average Dew Point Temperature, is a stickier-than-barbecue sauce 73.7 Degrees F. Good brisket, though.

3. Lakeland, FL

- Average daily high: 93 deg.
- Nighttime low: 72.4 deg.
- Rainy days: 34 days
- Humidity: 73.3 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

Like every city in our Bottom Ten, Lakeland-Winter Haven has an Average of 92 "Days Too Hot."

4. Cape Coral, FL

- Average daily high: 92.2 deg.
- Nighttime low: 74 deg.
- Rainy days: 37 days
- Humidity: 74.2 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

Located on the same Gulf that likely plays a part in Houston, Baton Rouge, and New Orleans' summer discomfort, suffice it to say that the Cape Coral-Fort Myers area is both hot and humid.

5. Orlando, FL

- Average daily high: 92.2 deg.
- Nighttime low: 73.2 deg.
- Rainy days: 32 days
- Humidity: 73.3 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

Smack dab in the middle of Florida and home to a theme park very similar to Disneyland, Orlando has an average of 32 Rainy Days and an Average High of 92 degrees F.

6. Baton Rouge, LA

- Average daily high: 92.2 deg.
- Nighttime low: 72.4 deg.
- Rainy days: 24 days
- Humidity: 73.3 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

Baton Rouge suffers from an imperfect storm of high humidity, a high average daily temperature, and uncomfortably high humidity.

7. Jackson, MS

- Average daily high: 92 deg.
- Nighttime low: 70.5 deg.
- Rainy days: 19 days
- Humidity: 72 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

Jackson's Nighttime low of 70.5 degrees F is actually cool compared to the other Least Comfortable Summer Cities. But its Average daily high is still 92 Degrees F.

8. New Orleans, LA

- Average daily high: 91.5 deg.
- Nighttime low: 74.3 deg.
- Rainy days: 27 days
- Humidity: 73.9 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

The Big Easy could also be known as The Big Sticky, as the Humidity of 73.9 is the second highest in this study, with only Cape Coral-Fort Myers barely beating it with 74.2.

9. San Antonio, TX

- Average daily high: 96.5 deg.
- Nighttime low: 72.6 deg.
- Rainy days: 12 days
- Humidity: 69.3 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

Alamo City (not nicknamed after the rental car company) is significantly less humid than the Bottom 8, but it is plenty hot with an Average daily high of 96.5 degrees F.

10. Austin, TX

- Average daily high: 96.7 deg.
- Nighttime low: 72 deg.
- Rainy days: 12 days
- Humidity: 69 deg.
- Days too hot: 92 days
- Nights too cool or warm: 0 days

Located about 80 miles Northeast of San Antonio, Austin has a slightly higher Average daily high, yet lower Nighttime low and Humidity. Ranking the tenth least comfortable Summer city, Austinites can boast that they're "The Best of The Worst" in this particular study.

Complete Rankings 1-100, in order of Most Comfortable to Least Comfortable. Scoring - 10 is perfect, 1 is unbearable.

Rank City State Summer Comfort Index
1 Honolulu HI 8.2
2 Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim CA 8.1
3 San Diego-Carlsbad CA 8.0
4 San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara CA 7.8
5 Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura CA 7.7
6 San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward CA 7.6
7 Cleveland-Elyria OH 7.5
8 Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls NY 7.4
9 Rochester NY 7.4
10 Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue WA 7.3
11 Detroit-Warren-Dearborn MI 7.2
12 Akron OH 7.2
13 Syracuse NY 7.2
14 Worcester MA 7.1
15 Salt Lake City UT 7.0
16 Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis WI 7.0
17 Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington MN 7.0
18 Grand Rapids-Wyoming MI 7.0
19 New York-Newark-Jersey City NY 6.9
20 Boston-Cambridge-Newton MA 6.9
21 Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford CT 6.9
22 Providence-Warwick RI 6.9
23 Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro OR 6.9
24 Toledo OH 6.9
25 Albany-Schenectady-Troy NY 6.9
26 Scranton--Wilkes-Barre--Hazleton PA 6.8
27 Chicago-Naperville-Elgin IL 6.7
28 Fresno CA 6.7
29 El Paso TX 6.6
30 Springfield MA 6.6
31 New Haven-Milford CT 6.5
32 Pittsburgh PA 6.5
33 Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade CA 6.5
34 Youngstown-Warren-Boardman OH 6.5
35 Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk CT 6.4
36 Bakersfield CA 6.4
37 Madison WI 6.3
38 Ogden-Clearfield UT 6.3
39 Dayton OH 6.3
40 Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington PA 6.3
41 Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise NV 6.2
42 Stockton-Lodi CA 6.2
43 Harrisburg-Carlisle PA 6.1
44 Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario CA 6.1
45 Washington-Arlington-Alexandria DC 6.1
46 Provo-Orem UT 6.1
47 Spokane-Spokane Valley WA 6.1
48 Baltimore-Columbia-Towson MD 6.0
49 Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson IN 6.0
50 Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News VA 5.9
51 Albuquerque NM 5.9
52 Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton PA 5.8
53 Boise City ID 5.8
54 Des Moines-West Des Moines IA 5.8
55 Colorado Springs CO 5.8
56 Denver-Aurora-Lakewood CO 5.8
57 Columbus OH 5.8
58 Kansas City MO 5.7
59 Greensboro-High Point NC 5.7
60 Omaha-Council Bluffs NE 5.6
61 Tucson AZ 5.4
62 Cincinnati OH 5.3
63 St. Louis MO 5.3
64 Winston-Salem NC 5.3
65 Louisville/Jefferson County KY 5.2
66 Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin SC 5.2
67 Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell GA 5.2
68 Durham-Chapel Hill NC 5.1
69 Raleigh NC 5.1
70 Wichita KS 4.9
71 Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia NC 4.9
72 Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale AZ 4.9
73 Knoxville TN 4.8
74 Oklahoma City OK 4.7
75 Charleston-North Charleston SC 4.5
76 Nashville-Davidson--Murfreesboro--Franklin TN 4.4
77 Richmond VA 4.4
78 Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach FL 4.3
79 Memphis TN 4.3
80 Tulsa OK 4.2
81 Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach FL 4.2
82 Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington TX 4.1
83 Birmingham-Hoover AL 4.1
84 Augusta-Richmond County GA 4.0
85 Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville FL 4.0
86 Jacksonville FL 4.0
87 Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway AR 4.0
88 North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton FL 3.9
89 Columbia SC 3.9
90 Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater FL 3.8
91 Austin-Round Rock TX 3.8
92 San Antonio-New Braunfels TX 3.8
93 New Orleans-Metairie LA 3.7
94 Jackson MS 3.6
95 Baton Rouge LA 3.3
96 Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford FL 3.3
97 Cape Coral-Fort Myers FL 2.9
98 Lakeland-Winter Haven FL 2.8
99 Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land TX 2.7
100 McAllen-Edinburg-Mission TX 2.2

Initial scores are based on daily high and low temperatures, where the total number of degrees outside of a "comfort" range (60-80 degrees Fahrenheit) is tallied. Initial scores are then penalized by the total number of days per month with high and low temperatures outside the comfort range and are also penalized based on extremely high and/or low values. The resulting scores are further adjusted by average dew point values for each Summer month.

Other factors for comfort are precipitation totals and number of precipitation days. Scores are penalized based on total precipitation in the summer months as well as the number of days with measurable precipitation.

In the quick reference tables above, the metrics were abbreviated. The full metrics are listed below.

Daily high temp: Average maximum daily high temperature (deg F)
Nighttime low temp: Average minimum daily low temperature (deg F)
Rainy days: Precipitation days (days with measurable rainfall)
Humidity: Average maximum dew point temperature
Days too hot: Number of days with high temperatures outside comfortable range (70-80 deg F)
Nights too cool: Number of days with low temperatures outside comfortable range (60-80 or warm deg F)

Dew Point is a better measure of humidity than Relative humidity, because it doesn't vary as the temperature changes. You can have a 70% relative humidity at 90 degrees (which would be extremely uncomfortable) but a 70% relative humidity at 70 degrees is quite comfortable. It's all "relative." The Dew Point is constant. Below 60 is comfortable, 60-65 is getting 'sticky', 70 is very humid, and over 75 is very unpleasant.


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