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Climate

 
 

Italy stretches from Mont Blanc, in the Alps mountain range, in the north, past the Dolomites mountain range, with the Adriatic Sea to the east, to the Mediterranean Sea in the south — this wide range of causes the weather to vary considerably, and Italy's climate varies from the cold in the northerly mountainous region to hot and dry in the hills and plains of the south. Local variations depend on altitude and distance from the sea.

The country's overall temperate climate is due to the protection by the mountain ranges from the cold winds from the north — although the temperatures in the north can still drop below zero centigrade. Towards the centre the fog is a constant factor in winter, while the winters are mild in the south.

In the mountains temperatures drop quickly, winters in the north are much colder with a January average temperature of -8oC for alpine ski resorts.

In much of Italy temperatures average 24oC all summer and heavy thunderstorms bring the only summer rain which evaporates rapidly.

In summer, the hot weather from Africa moves north to the whole country, carried by the Scirocco, Africa's hot dry wind but surrounded by warm seas and with mountains close by, the coast always has a breeze.

Mountain areas are cooler with clear sunny skies. Hot air rising from the coasts brings thunderstorms to the mountain areas, which experience the greatest change from summer to winter especially in the valleys of Tuscany and Umbria.





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