Climate of Russia
Where is the country of Russia located? As the largest country in the world, Russia (officially: Russian Federation, Российская Федерация) has to deal with a large number of climate types. No country has as much temperature difference as this immense country, which stretches over two continents: Asia and Europe. In the winter months the thermometers can drop to minus fifty degrees Celsius and in the summer months it can just be between forty and fifty degrees. On an annual basis, the temperature differences are almost a hundred degrees, a phenomenon that you see in few places in the world.
The winter period in Russia is dark and cold. In the temperate areas it freezes slightly to moderate at night and the temperature can still rise above freezing during the day. The further you get from the Black Sea and Europe, the deeper temperatures can drop. The capital Moscow has average temperatures of minus twelve degrees at night and minus six degrees during the day in the coldest months. However, these are averages, where you have to take into account that the thermometers can fall far below the stated values. Freezing temperatures of minus twenty degrees during the day or even lower is quite possible in Moscow. In Siberia it gets even colder: Yakutskduring the month of January it measures an average of -37 degrees Celsius during the day and no less than 45 degrees below freezing at night. The thermometer does not rise above freezing again until April, eventually rising to summery to sometimes tropical values in the summer months.
Winters in Russia are not only cold, they are also dark. The number of hours of sunshine in December, January and February averages one hour of sunshine per day. In the far north of Russia you can’t manage that and it is really a dark and cold period because of the long nights. Also striking for the winter months are the low amounts of precipitation recorded throughout the country. More than 90% of Russia has less than thirty millimeters of precipitation per month in December, January and February. Most of it falls in the form of snow. Due to the low temperatures, the low rainfall in most places in Russia ultimately results in a fairly thick snow cover.
Due to the largely lack of a cooling effect of seawater, temperatures in Russia can rise considerably in summer. After a fairly long winter period, a short spring follows (April-May), in which the weather changes very quickly from cold winters to warm summers. In June, the average daytime temperature in many places is already above twenty degrees. Exceptions are the areas above the Arctic Circle and the mountain areas in eastern Russia. July and August are two months in which temperatures can rise a lot further. The European part of Russia is still fairly temperate, with average temperatures of 22-23 degrees Celsius as a maximum, but as you go a lot further east, the thermometer continues to rise. Precisely the areas that are so cold in winter, appear to regularly register tropical temperatures in summer. The summer months are also a bit wetter than the winter months. Despite the high temperatures, there is a very large area of land in Siberia, of which only the top layer of the ground thaws. The deeper part is so cold that a few months of summer weather is not enough to make the soil completely frost-free. Scientists predict that this so-called permafrost will continue to thaw as a result of global warming, with all kinds of harmful consequences for the environment and climate. The deeper part is so cold that a few months of summer weather is not enough to make the soil completely frost-free. Scientists predict that this so-called permafrost will continue to thaw as a result of global warming, with all kinds of harmful consequences for the environment and climate. The deeper part is so cold that a few months of summer weather is not enough to make the soil completely frost-free. Scientists predict that this so-called permafrost will continue to thaw as a result of global warming, with all kinds of harmful consequences for the environment and climate.
The part south of the Arctic Circle can count on an average of 40 to 80 millimeters of precipitation per month in the middle of summer. Thunderstorms don’t happen very often. On average, ten to twenty thunderstorm days are recorded in Russia.
Hurricanes and severe storms do not occur in Russia. Due to its northern location, the country is completely out of reach of hurricane activity. Because no strong wind supply currents pass over Russia, the country has to deal with relatively little wind. The greatest chance of strong winds is in the northwest – along the coastal areas – and the area bordering the Black Sea. Especially in the winter months, a cold wind blows here for relatively strong winds.
The figures below are based on long-term average climate statistics. The temperatures are displayed in degrees Celsius (°C).
|Maximum temperature||Minimum temperature||Hours of sunshine per day||Days of rainfall per month|
Best time to visit Russia
Do you want to know when is the best time to travel to Russia? You can determine the best time to travel to a destination based on the weather and climate. In addition, there are other factors that are not directly related to the weather and that can influence the best travel periods for a travel destination. Think, for example, of holidays or festive periods, which makes traveling more interesting or not, because daily life comes to a standstill as a result. If you know that Russia is the largest country in the world, you will realize that it is not so easy to determine the best travel time for all of Russia. In a country of such dimensions, different types of climate occur. Russia has a grim climate with many extremes. In the winter months it is cool (west) to very cold (Siberia) while in summer it is cool (polar region) to very warm (inland). Average values that apply to the climate of Russia are real averages. Outliers up and down are very possible. In the winter months you should always take extreme weather conditions into account. Even in the more temperate areas, it can freeze considerably, which quickly increases all kinds of risks. In addition to the direct danger to health (frostbite), the risk of a car breakdown s and other equipment due to the low temperatures is also very possible. In the spring and autumn you have to take into account the fact that the transition from winter to summer and vice versa is not as gradual as we are used to in the Netherlands. Temperature differences of tens of degrees can occur within a few weeks. Summers are warm in much of Russia. For almost the entire area south of the Arctic Circle, the daytime temperatures are between twenty and thirty degrees. This too, however, is again based on long-term averages, whereby significant upward outliers are very well possible. Especially in the lower areas in the interior of Russia it can get quite warm and heat waves are an almost annual phenomenon.
The best time to travel for a holiday in Russia is from May to September. This is the warmest and sunniest period in the country. The potential for serious heat in parts of Russia does not outweigh all the benefits of summer as a travel season. If you want to celebrate a holiday in Siberia, the best travel time is limited to the months of July and August. Especially if you want to visit the cooler areas of Siberia, these are the only two good months to travel.