Southern France and Corsica climate

Areas around the Mediterranean generally have a milder winter than further north. It is often pleasantly warm, but cold spells can occur for instance when the 'Mistral' (a cold blustery wind) blows down the Rhone Valley to the French Riviera. At Nice, average daily maximum temperatures reach 13 °C (56 °F), some 5 hours of sunshine can be expected, and there are about 22 dry days on average. Corsica's temperatures will be 2 or 3 °C higher, but it has only 18 or 19 dry days an average.

A steady warming-up process takes place during the spring months, although the 'Mistral' can still sometimes make its presence felt. Average daily maximum temperatures have risen to about 20 °C (68 °F) by May, daily sunshine hours will have increased to about 9 or 10, and there are approximately 23 dry days.

The Mediterranean coastline and Corsica have plenty of sunshine during the summer months, and refreshing sea breezes make sunbathing very pleasant indeed. Average daily maximum temperatures reach a warm 27 °C (81 °F) in August, and an average of 12 hours of sunshine per day is on the cards. On average, 25-30 dry days per month can be expected during the summer season.

Autumn sees the end of the longer days and the gradual return to longer nights. However, the south of France retains warm conditions through September and October (daily average maxima still in the mid-twenties Celsius), although by November, that figure has fallen to 17 °C (63 °F). About 22 dry days can be expected on average, but daily sunshine hours will have fallen to 5 by November.

Last updated: 17 December 2013