Venice: Live Weather Reports
- Sunrise 06:48
- Sunset 17:58
- Moonrise 15:06
- Moonset 04:47
|Temp feels like:||35°F (2°C)|
|Length of Day:||8h 46m|
|Pressure:||30.06" (1018 hpa)|
|Visiblity:||4 miles (7 km)|
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Weather Overview for Venice
Venice, ‘the city of water’, is located in the north of Italy upon the marshy Venetian Lagoon which lies adjacent to the Adriatic Sea in the northeast. Venice stretches across 118 small islands between the mouths of the Po and the Piave Rivers. Venice is most well known for its canals which weave through the shallow lagoon. The unique city is Europe's largest urban car free area- in the old part of town, the 150 canals replace roads, and every form of transport is on water or on foot. Because the city basically floats on a web of canals (much like Amsterdam) it is therefore subject to high humidity year round. When combined with the summer heat, this can lead to fairly uncomfortable weather conditions. Despite this, July and August are the peak tourist months and the city becomes almost entirely booked out. So if you choose to endure the heat, humidity and throngs of tourists, be sure to book ahead!
Summer in Venice begins in June which sees average highs of 25°C and lows of 16°C before the temperatre climbs to the summer highs in July and August when average maximums are in the high 20’s and the mercury can often rise above 30°C. Summer sees steady rainfall; the evening showers can come as a much needed relief from the heat. The high heat and humidity means there are frequent dramatic thunderstorms which crash in the skies above the canals. Thunderstorms may disrupt your plans but they could be said to add to the romantic ambience of the canal city. Storms usually leave a clear sky and sunshine levels are very good in summer. July is the sunniest month in the year with nine hours of sunshine per day.
Grand Canal and Basilica Santa Maria della Salute, Venice.
This is actually Venice’s driest season but rainfall tends to alter in type rather than frequency. Lighter showers that can last for hours and hours are characteristic of winter rain. January is the coldest month with an average high temperature of 6°C and average low -1°C. February and December are only just warmer. When the Adriatic winds blow they can be bitterly cold as they cross the waters of the canals and wash over the city. Come prepared with gloves, scarves and warm coat if you plan on cruising the town in the famous Venetian gondolas. There are many clear, sunny days throughout winter which are perfect for sightseeing. However, the sunshine averages at three hours per day so it is not to be relied upon.
Costumed women in the venetian sunrise on the Grand Canal.
Autumn and Spring
The shoulder seasons are periods of rapid change. Closer to summer, both seasons see pleasantly warm days with refreshingly cool nights. May sees an average high of 21°C and an average low of 12°C. October ranges from a high of 18°C and a low of 9°C. Both months see similar rainfall but late spring is much sunnier than early autumn. If you can avoid peak season in Venice, it is recommended that you do so. The best times to visit the city are April through until June, or September and October. During these times you will see plenty of clear days and sunshine whilst avoiding the peak tourist season, high humidity, and also the dreary winter conditions. Venice experiences unpredictable conditions all year round, one moment it will be sunny then suddenly the blue sky will be swaddled in grey. However, everyone knows that Venice isn’t a city you visit for the weather; it is a unique, historical city with endless sights – just being there is an unforgettable experience.
Venice canals, Italy
As expected of an island city, the main weather hazard in Venice is the water. Heavy rains, seasonal rising tides, climate changes and the more serious problem of a sinking city all are possible risks to locals and visitors. Venice has suffered high tides ever since it was founded. The term Acqua Alta (high water) is used to describe the phenomenon when the level of the lagoon rises above the level of squares and streets, causing flooding. This occurs irregularly every 4 years or so, but typically during high tide in November and December, and only lasts a few hours. The radio will issue warnings, sirens will sound, and puddles will begin to form in the center of paved squares. Acqua Alta is the combination of scirocco (strong south wind) and seiche (long Adratic waves). Officially, it happens when the waterline is equal to or more than 140 centimetres above street level.
San Marco during Aqua Alta. Photo by Andre Pipa.
Another major weather concern is that water levels in general are rising permanently. Venice, for all intensive purposes, is sinking. The city’s position has always been relatively insecure; it sits on watery sediments deposited at the mouth of the Po River. Nineteenth century projects such as the railroad bridge that was to connect the island with the mainland has damaged the sea floor irreversibly. Twentieth century industry only aggravated this problem by pumping out massive amounts of groundwater from the aquifer beneath the lagoon for about 50 years. In the last 100 years, Venice has sunk by about nine inches.
In 2003, a consortium of engineering firms began work on the MOSE Project (Modulo Sperimentale Elettromeccanico). The goal is to protect the lagoon and its towns by building underwater gates on the seafloor at the entrances of the three inlets that lead from the lagoon to the open sea. Under normal tides, the gates are full of water and dormant. When a high tide is forecast, compressed air will be pumped into the gates to empty them of water, causing them to rise up, stopping the tide from entering the lagoon. This project is scheduled to be completed by 2016. Hopefully this will be a long-term solution and flooding will be just another anecdote in the greater history of Venice.
Venice from above.