Heat transfer enhancement in horizontal annuli using variable thermal conductivity and variable viscosity of CuO-water nanofluid is investigated numerically. The base case of simulation used thermal conductivity and viscosity data that consider temperature property dependence and nanoparticle size. It was observed that for $Ra\u2265104$, the average Nusselt number was deteriorated by increasing the volume fraction of nanoparticles. However, for $Ra=103$, the average Nusselt number enhancement depends on aspect ratio of the annulus as well as volume fraction of nanoparticles. Also, for $Ra=103$, the average Nusselt number was less sensitive to volume fraction of nanoparticles at high aspect ratio and the average Nusselt number increased by increasing the volume fraction of nanoaprticles for aspect ratios $\u22640.4$. For $Ra\u2265104$, the Nusselt number was deteriorated everywhere around the cylinder surface especially at high aspect ratio. However, this reduction is only restricted to certain regions around the cylinder surface for $Ra=103$. For $Ra\u2265104$, the Maxwell–Garnett and the Chon et al. conductivity models demonstrated similar results. But, there was a deviation in the prediction at $Ra=103$ and this deviation becomes more significant at high volume fraction of nanoparticles. The Nguyen et al. data and the Brinkman model give completely different predictions for $Ra\u2265104$, where the difference in prediction of the Nusselt number reached 50%. However, this difference was less than 10% at $Ra=103$.