Weather Italy a guide to the Italian climate

Weather in Italy Italian Climate from North to South

For current weather condition consider the BBC.

Italy is famously shaped like a high heeled boot and the country's vast land mass means an extremely wide ranging climate. If you travel the boot top to toe you'll encounter everything from scorching dry spells to snow, and everything in between.

Generally the weather in Italy follows the pattern of traditional European climates, similar to other countries that open onto the Mediterranean and which also boast Alpine terrain.

The best time of the year to visit Italy tends to be when the weather isn't too hot or too cold. April to June and September to October are ideal times to visit weather wise with calm, mild temperatures and fewer crowds. In July and August temperatures can rise and cities can become stiflingly hot, coinciding with Italy's busiest time of the year for tourism. August can get so hot in fact that even city dwelling Italians pack up and head on holiday; and as a result hotels, restaurants and shops in cities may be closed over this period.

Luckily Italy isn't a particularly humid country which can make scorching summer days a bit more bearable and the nights are quite a lot cooler, too.

While snow is a rare event as far down as Rome, from December to March Italy's ski season is in full swing in the country's north. Snow falls on the Alps in November but can happen as early as September or October. Northern Italian winters can be very long and very cold. But this kind of weather isn't bestowed on the entire country; thankfully the Alps protect some regions from the harsh winters that more northern European countries receive.

Winters in Italy are cold with rain and snow, but in the south the weather is much milder. Sicily, for example, enjoys mild temperatures year round. Venice and Rome can be very hot in summer and in winter Venetian water levels can rise to very high levels, occasionally flooding low lying areas of the city.

Mild temperatures on the Italian coastline mean you can have idyllic summer holidays swimming, fishing, sailing and walking. The long sunny days are ideal for walking and wine tasting in Tuscany and Umbria.