Index


Introduction



The climate of Great Britain, influenced by the Atlantic Ocean, is temperate and humid, with relatively small temperature variations between winter and summer. The weather, however, is variable, with frequent changes from day to day or even in the same day.

The average temperatures at sea level are above freezing (0 °C or 32 °F) also in January, when they hover around 4/5 °C (39/41 °F) in the main cities, and reach 6 °C (43 °F) in the south-western tip of the country; in July, they range from 12 °C (53.5 °F) in northern Scotland to 18.5 °C (65.5 °F) in the London area.

Precipitation is frequent throughout the country, but it's more frequent and abundant in the north and in the west. For example, in western Scotland, rainfall reaches 1,500 millimeters (60 inches) per year, and there are about 200 days with rain (that is, more than one day out of two!), while in Manchester, in western England, 800 mm (31.5 in) of rain fall in 141 days, and in Plymouth, on the southwest coast, 1,000 mm (40 in) of rain fall in 142 days. The southeast is less rainy: in London, only 600 mm (23.5 in) of rain fall in a year, however, distributed in no less than 109 days.

See also



Scotland
Wales
England
Northern Ireland

Best Time



The best time to visit Britain is summer, from June to August: it's a very cool season in Scotland, and progressively warmer as you head south; it's quite rainy everywhere, but also relatively sunny.
In northern and western Scotland (see the islands and Glasgow), in July and August, there is an increase in rainfall and a decrease in sunshine: here, the sunniest month is June, which, however, is cooler than the two midsummer months.
In the whole of Britain, June is a good month: the days are very long, the country is in bloom, there's no shortage of rain and clouds, but they alternate with sunny spells. In the month of May too (which is very cool, and sometimes even cold, especially in the north and in Scotland), the weather is often acceptable, at least in the second half.
The mid-summer season (July-August) is pleasantly warm in the center and south, and between one shower and another, the sun can come out.
The sea is cold even in summer: in August, the temperature of the Atlantic Ocean reaches just 12 °C (53.5 °F) in the Shetlands, 13/14 °C (55/57 °F) in Scotland, and 17 °C (63 °F) in the English Channel and in Cornwall.
Since the climate of Great Britain is not characterized by weather extremes, there is no season to be absolutely avoided, although it must be said that from November to January, the days are very short and the sky is often gray or cloudy, moreover, in winter, from December to February, but sometimes also in November and March, there may be cold periods, with snow and frost.

What to pack



In winter: pack warm clothes, such as a sweater, a coat, a wind jacket, and a raincoat. For Scotland and the Highlands, and for cold periods: pack gloves, a hat, and a scarf.
In summer: pack clothes for spring and autumn, a jacket and a sweater, and a raincoat or umbrella. In the area of London, it's more likely that in some days you can wear light clothing, a T-shirt and shorts.

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