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Athens Greece Weather and climate

Athens is located on a borderline between Mediterranean and Alpine climatic zones. The city enjoys a typical Mediterranean climate, rather hot, but soothes by the influence of the Saronic Gulf. Due to its location, enclosed by mountains on the continental part, and facing the sea, it is located in the temperature inversion zone, similar to that of Los Angeles, partly responsible for air pollution. The city’s mountainous suburbs have more moderate climate.

Because of location is a strong rain shadow, Athens is drier, than most Mediterranean cities. The greatest amount of precipitation occurs from mid-October to mid-April. Snowfalls occur in an almost yearly basis, though these do not normally lead to significant if any disruptions at all. Snowstorms are unlikely, but in recent years the city experienced some severe blizzards. Fog is unusual in the city centre, but can be expected in the eastern suburbs, in the direction of Hymettus. The city’s infamous smog (“nefos”), though occurs sometimes in summer, is not a problem any more due to the extensive air protection measures, taken by the government.

Summers can be particularly hot, with the average summer daytime maximum temperature is 32°C. Heat waves are not too common and mostly happen during the months of July and/or August, due to the transfer of hot air masses from south and southwest. These days the temperature can rise to 38°C. Average summer temperature is about 22-28°C.

Winter is mild, with average temperatures 6-12°C, and frequent precipitation. The temperature may sink below zero, with occasional snowfalls, but drastic changes are unlikely. January is characterized by very changeable, windy  weather. February can be cool, but there can also be “halcyones” – prolonged periods of spring-like weather.

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