Halkidiki weather and the Climate of Chalkidiki
Halkidiki is one of the 7 areas of Central Macedonia of Greece. It has 2 large mountains Holomontas in the north and Mount Athos to the southeast. With the exception of the North it is surrounded by the sea and has 3 large peninsulas Kassandra, Sithonia and Athos. Halkidiki weather and climate has large differences between mountainous north and the seaside south that create a lot of micro-climate areas. These micro-climate areas are subject mostly to altitude and from distance from the coast. Generally winter has moderate low temperatures with moderate rains and snowfalls (in the mountainous center north) from Late November to early April. Summer is warm with few showers.
Halkidiki weather tempratures Jan-Dec
In the beginning of winter a combination of high pressure in the Balkans with low pressure in West Aegean and later South Aegean, The result of these conditions is substantial rain or snow depending on temperatures. North winds especially north west effect mostly west coast and west Kassandra and much less the west coast of the other two peninsulas. Waves at the west are substantial but less between the peninsulas.
While the winter is progressing and at the beginning of the spring the barometric combinations are replaced by cold air masses moving from the north east, rains and snow is far less and East side is greatly affected. Waves on the Est side of Mount Athos and the South east of Sithonia is substantial.
Between the peninsulas in the North of the bays waves are not really a problem.
In the spring cold air mass invasions gradually stop and when we have low pressure in the Aegean Southerlies affect almost all of Halkidiki coastline. The waves are much larger that the actual wind. Rains are much less and gradually the first thermal clouds start to appear over mountain mass.
While Spring is progressing the weather is generally excellent and a sea breeze starts to appear mainly in the afternoon hours. This sea breeze is a local wind and depends on the characteristics of each area. Some general properties are:
- its maximum is in midday – early afternoon
- it stops with sunset
- when it starts its vertical to the shore and then turns towards the direction of the sun.
- when we see the first thermal clouds over the mountains its an indication a sea breeze is coming.
- Depending on the area it usually can be felt up to 3 miles from the shore.
The wind during the Spring are weak, near the shoreline breeze is happening almost every day, while over land, especially when there is atmospheric instability we have local storms that can even produce some hail.
In the Summer high barometric pressure systems prevail. These systems don’t create winds but, mostly early in the season, because of atmospheric instability may produce local brief squalls over land. Maximum temperature is affected greatly by the sea breeze which is stronger as the difference between sea and land surface temperature becomes larger.
Halkidiki weather data for travelers.
The Aegean Meltemi
Gradually the famous Aegean Meltemi winds pick up strength and start to affect Chalkidiki while in the morning hours there is a light wind going from land to the sea. The Meltemi or “Etisies” are North East winds in North Aegean that pick up strength after sunrise and slow down after sunset. Their maximum comes in August (and may locally reach gale force in the south Aegean). They greatly affect Halkidiki especially the east peninsula coasts.
In these areas the wind will pick up in the afternoon right before sundown. In areas that the terrain morphology makes it possible they may cross to the west affecting the local sea breeze. At the East side of the South of Sithonia the more south we go the larger the waves. North areas of the golfs there is no waves problem from the Meltemi.
At the end of the Summer and beginning of Autumn the Meltemi and the sea breezes become weaker. But when there is instability local storms are created over the sea and the cost that continue to the early evening. Gradually Both Meltemi and breeze stop entirely, low winds, good temperature is standard until the first cold winds start coming from the North. Generally the first sustained rains are an indication that winter is close.
Halkidiki Weather rainfall Jan-Dec
|Temperature in Halkidiki (°C)||Jan||Feb||Mar||Apr||May||Jun||Jul||Aug||Sep||Oct||Nov||Dec|
|Max temperature (daytime)||9||11||13||18||23||27||30||29||25||20||15||11|
|Min temperature (night-time)||2||3||5||8||12||16||18||18||15||11||8||4|
|Sunshine & Daylight in Halkidiki||Jan||Feb||Mar||Apr||May||Jun||Jul||Aug||Sep||Oct||Nov||Dec|
|Daily hours of sunshine||4||5||6||8||9||11||12||11||9||6||5||4|
|Daily hours of daylight||10||11||12||13||14||15||15||14||12||11||10||9|
|Number of days with some rain||9||9||8||8||8||5||4||4||4||7||9||9|
|Average monthly rainfall (mm)||78||63||52||37||40||28||25||27||38||63||63||87|
|UV Index (Maximum)||2||3||4||6||8||9||9||8||6||4||2||2|
|Heat & Humidity||M||H||H||L|
Note:L = Low, M = Moderate, H = High
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Categorised in: Weather in Greece
This post was written by Christoforos Karydis