Hottest Cities in United States

Two major cities contend for the title of hottest city in the United States. The city that comes out on top depends on how you measure heat.

Phoenix Arizona excels at extreme hot weather. It consistently ranks number one for the most days a year when temperatures rise above 89 °F or 99 °F.

Miami challenges Phoenix for top spot on hottest year-round temperatures. Miami doesn't get regular 100-degree weather. But the southern Florida city stays hot enough all year to run an average mean temperature that's a couple of degrees above Phoenix's.

For annual maximum temperatures, the rankings are flipped. Phoenix's daily high averages out to several degrees above Miami's.

Where the two cities stand closest is on the number of days a year with temperatures of at least 50 °F (10 °C). Miami and Phoenix, along with a few California cities, normally make at least 50 degrees every day.

Highest Temperatures

Large US cities where the temperature most often climbs to 100 °F (37.8 °C) or higher.
City Days a Year
Above 99 °F
Phoenix, Arizona 107
Las Vegas, Nevada 70
Riverside, California 24
Dallas, Texas 17
Austin, Texas 16
Sacramento, California 11
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 11
San Antonio, Texas 8
Salt Lake City, Utah 5
Houston, Texas 4
Kansas City, Missouri 3

These rankings of hottest cities use long-term temperature averages, based on weather data collected from 1981 to 2010 for the NOAA's National Climatic Data Center.

The major cities included in the weather rankings represent the 51 metropolitan areas in the United States with the most people, all those with over one million residents in 2010, according to the US Census Bureau. A complete list of America's largest urban centers is available here.

Warmest Climates

Twelve major US cities have a daily mean temperature above 65 °F (18 °C)
City Daily Average
°F °C
Miami, Florida 77 25
Phoenix, Arizona 75 24
Tampa, Florida 73 23
Orlando, Florida 73 23
Houston, Texas 70 21
New Orleans, Louisiana 70 21
San Antonio, Texas 70 21
Austin, Texas 69 21
Las Vegas, Nevada 69 21
Jacksonville, Florida 69 20
Dallas, Texas 67 20
Riverside, California 67 19
Cities with temperatures of at least 50 °F (10 °C) nearly every day
City Days a Year Above 49 °F
Los Angeles, California 365
Miami, Florida 365
San Diego, California 365
Riverside, California 365
Phoenix, Arizona 365
Orlando, Florida 364
Tampa, Florida 364
San Jose, California 362
Jacksonville, Florida 360
San Francisco, California 360

Hottest Days

Cities with the highest average daily maximum temperature
City Average High
°F °C
Phoenix, Arizona 87.2 30.7
Miami, Florida 84.3 29.1
Orlando, Florida 82.8 28.2
Tampa, Florida 81.7 27.6
Riverside, California 80.9 27.2
San Antonio, Texas 80.3 26.8
Las Vegas, Nevada 80.1 26.7
Austin, Texas 79.8 26.6
Houston, Texas 79.7 26.5
Jacksonville, Florida 79.3 26.3
New Orleans, Louisiana 78.2 25.7
Dallas, Texas 77.0 25.0
Los Angeles, California 75.2 24.0

National Climatic Data Center. NOAA's 1981-2010 Climate Normals.

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