Position of Athens

In Athens, capital of Greece, the climate is Mediterranean, with mild and moderately rainy winters, and hot and sunny summers. The city is located near the 38th parallel, but in winter, from December to mid-March, it's sometimes subject to outbreaks of cold air from the Balkan Peninsula, which can bring cold and rain for some days, and sometimes even snow. Snowfalls occur more easily in the northern part of the city; at the centre, the Acropolis is whitened with snow more easily than the lower surrounding areas; a particularly abundant snowfall, which affected also the southern and coastal areas, occurred in February 2008.
Summer is hot and sunny; in summer, Athens is the hottest capital of Europe; in July and August the temperature reaches quite easily 35/36 °C (95/97 °F), but sometimes even 40 °C (104 °F).
Precipitation is not abundant, since it amounts to about 400 millimetres (16 inches) per year, and follows the Mediterranean pattern, with a maximum from November to February, and a minimum in summer, when clear skies prevail and there are occasional thunderstorms.
Here is the average precipitation at the Ellinikon Airport.
Ellinikon - Average precipitation

The city covers a wide area in the plain of Attica, and is surrounded by mountains on three sides, and open to the sea to the south. Thus, there are slight differences that are worth considering, looking at the data of four stations, from north to south.

Athens, weather stations position

Let's start from the Tatoi Airport, located in Decelea, at 240 metres (790 feet) above sea level, on the northern outskirts of the city, close to the foothills of Mount Parnitha. Here the average temperature of January is 7.5 °C (45.5 °F), that of July is 25.7 °C (78.3 °F); precipitation amounts to 450 mm (17.7 in) per year, with a maximum of 85 mm (3.3 in) in December and a minimum of 6 mm (0.2 in) in August. Here are the average temperatures.
Tatoi Airport - Average temperatures
Min (°C)345812161919161285
Max (°C)121315192530323228231713
Min (°F)373941465461666661544641
Max (°F)545559667786909082736355

Further south, near the park of Nea Filadelfia, in the north-central part of the city, 6 km (3.5 miles) away from the centre and 135 metres (440 feet) above sea level, the average temperature ranges from 9 °C (48 °F) in January, to 27 °C (81 °F) in July. Here rainfall is slightly scarcer, 415 mm (16.5 in) per year, being a bit less abundant in winter.
Nea Filadelfia - Average temperatures
Min (°C)55710141821211713107
Max (°C)131416202631343329231814
Min (°F)414145505764707063555045
Max (°F)555761687988939184736457

In the National Observatory, at the city centre and not far from the Acropolis, 100 metres (330 feet) above sea level, the temperature is higher, almost 10 °C (50 °F) in January and 28 °C (82 °F) in July, also because the area is affected by the urban heat island effect. Here the rainfall amounts to 375 millimetres (14.8 inches) per year, so it's even lower, and it does not go above the 67 mm (2.6 in) of December.
Athens - Average temperatures
Min (°C)77812162023231915118
Max (°C)131416212631333329241814
Min (°F)454546546168737366595246
Max (°F)555761707988919184756457

Going further south, we arrive in the old Ellinikon Airport, located on the coast, in the extreme southern edge of the city. The temperature goes from 10.3 °C (50.5 °F) in January, to 27.3 °C (81 °F) in July and August. Rainfall is very similar to that of the centre, and as we have seen in the table above it amounts to 368 mm (14.5 in) per year.
Ellinikon - Average temperatures
Min (°C)77811162023232016129
Max (°C)141416192429323228231915
Min (°F)454546526168737368615448
Max (°F)575761667584909082736659

The amount of sunshine in Athens is great in summer, when clear skies prevail, while it's not so high from November to February, when the sky is often cloudy, although there may be sunny days also in midwinter.
Athens - Sunshine

The sea in Athens is warm enough for swimming from July to September, when the temperature is 24 °C (75 °F); in June it's still a bit cool, about 21 °C (70 °F).
Here are the average sea temperatures.
Athens - Sea temperature
Temp (°C)161515161821242424211917
Temp (°F)615959616470757575706663

When to go

The best times to visit Athens are spring and autumn, especially from mid-April to late May, and from mid-September to early October; from mid-October the likelihood of rainfall increases, and sometimes it can be violent and concentrated in time. Those who can stand the heat, can also choose the summer.