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Greece: Climate & Weather

Climate and weather of Greece mainland

» Elevation has an appreciable effect on temperature and precipitation at all latitudes, however. At higher elevations in the interior, some rainfall occurs year-round, and higher mountains in the southern Peloponnesus and on Crete are snowcapped for several months of the year.


The mountains of Macedonia and Thrace have colder continental winters influenced by winds channeled through the river valleys from the north.

»
The foremost condition of Greece 's climate is the fluctuation between hot, dry summers and cold, damp winters typical of the Mediterranean . But significant local variation results from height and distance from the sea. Generally, continental influences are felt farther north and in the center of the mainland. The chief climatic regions of Greece are the mainland mountains, Attica and the Aegean and the continental northeast.


» In winter low-pressure systems reach Greece from the North Atlantic, bringing rain and moderating temperatures but also drawing cold winds from the eastern Balkans over Macedonia and Thrace as they pass into the Aegean Sea . The same low-pressure systems also draw warmer winds from the south, creating an average January temperature differential of 4° C between Thessaloniki (6° C) and Athens (10° C). Cyclonic depressions provide the lowlands of the west and the south with mild winters and little frost.

» In summer the influence of low-pressure systems is much less, allowing for hot, dry conditions and an average sea-level temperature of 27° C in July. Summer winds have a moderating effect along the coast, but very dry, hot winds have a parching effect that causes drought in the Aegean area. The Ionian and Aegean islands are especially warm in October and November.

 
 

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