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Eastern Europe Weather Overview

POLAND

Lying in the very north of Eastern Europe, sharing a land border with Czech Republic and Slovakia in the south and Ukraine, Belarus, Lithuania and Russia on the east side with the Baltic Sea in the north Poland experiences varying conditions relative to the specific regions proximity to the sea and mountain ranges.

Poland has mountain ranges which lie along its southern border but the country is largely made up of low lying regions and rolling plains. Other than the Sudeten mountain range in the southeast which sees elevations reach in excess of 6000 ft, the country as a whole sits predominately below 1000 ft.

Along the coast the weather is more mild than once you head further inland. The Baltic coast is home to summers which are cooled by the sea breezes, and the water also has a moderating effect on the winters, keeping them fairly mild. Once you head away from the coast and move toward the Sudeten and Carpathian mountain ranges, the weather is affected by the rising elevation. Winters are more extreme and summers are warmer.

The majority of rain that falls is in the summer months, as the precipitation that occurs in the winter months is mainly snowfall- especially in the Carpathian mountain range where snow lies for up to 100 days a year.Warsaw is the country’s capital and lies directly in the centre of Poland. Along with being the country’s capital it is also the largest city in Poland, home to nearly 2 million people. The climate in Warsaw is continental humid, with an average daily temperature in January of -2 and 18 degrees in July, which is also the city’s rainiest month.


Warsaw lies in the heart of the Masovian Plain, which its self is located in the valleys of three large rivers: Vistula, Bug and Narew. This contributes to Warsaw’s higher levels of relative humidity.

See here for the average weather conditions for Warsaw If you look at the average conditions for Krakow (here) you can see the colder conditions that prevail in the south of Poland.

Compare this also to the conditions in Gdynia which lies on Polands Baltic coast. Here conditions are much milder than inland Poland.

CZECH REPUBLIC

Adjacent to Poland and completely landlocked within Central Europe, the Czech Republic lies amongst Germany, AustrIa and Slovakia.

The Czech Republic is made up of two main regions, lying in the west is Bohemia which is home to rolling plains, hills and plateaus amongst low lying mountains. Moravia lies in the east of the country, is much hillier than the east. T

the weather varies across the country solely due to the varied elevation, however in areas of similar altitude the conditions are hardly different at all- mainly because the small country is surrounded by land at all borders so there are no moderating coastal influences nearby.

The climate in the country is best described as temperate continental that is characterized by four distinct seasons- hot summers, cold cloudy winters that are cold enough to sustain snowfall.

Due to the lack of coastal influences, there is a large annual range in temperature between summer and winter. At low altitudes the summers are warmer and drier and the winters more mild, however as you head into the mountain ranges nearing the German border and the Karkonosze range you will find winters can get much bitterer and precipitation on the whole is higher. These mountain ranges are popular skiing resorts as they sustain snow cover for much of winter.

The coldest months in the Czech Republic is usually January followed by February and December. During the height of winter there is normally snow in the mountains and occasionally throughout the major cities. Prague does witness snowfall however the urban warming effect that is present in the capital city has the effect of melting a lot of the snow that settles.

There isn’t really a bad time of the year to visit the Czech republic as each season has something different to offer. The capital city of Prague can be enjoyed year round as the sights are no overly weather specific, the castles and historic buildings are just as beautiful in the bright summer days as they are covered in snow in the midst of winter.

Spring sees the country side come alive with colour and this is a great time to head into the outer towns near Prague. Cesky Krumlov, (Český Krumlov) for example, is a small town that lies in the south east of the country that is built upon the Vltava river which winds throughout the picturesque village.

Český has an amazing 13th century castle which sits high upon a hill overlooking the city like something straight out of a fairy tale. In the summer months visitors to the town can float around the town on rubber tubes as the river winds around, encircling the quaint village.

The Šumava National Park lies in the west of Czech along the borders of Austria and Germany and is covered by the most extensive forest in Central Europe, this area can be subject to a slightly more harsh climate then the majority of the Czech Republic and has often been subjected to strong winds which have proved to be destructive.

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