UK to plunge back into winter as temperatures drop dramatically

Winter Weather - 16th Jan

Winter is set to return as weather forecasters have predicted wet, cold and miserable weather for the next week and into May.

Forecasters say an Arctic airmass, or a polar maritime mass, will blast over from Iceland bringing freezing overnight temperatures.

Britain will be colder than Moscow next week, with the Russian capital expecting highs of 22C.

Met Office spokeswoman Laura Young told the Daily Mail: "It is going to be increasingly unsettled and colder across the nation over the coming week."

Meanwhile, the Daily Mirror reports that icy winds from the North Pole will make Britain feel close to -10C in the North next week.

The RAC has warned Britons to "dig out the de-icer and scraper".

Leon Brown, Chief forecaster at The Weather Channel, tells AOL Travel: "So far this April temperatures and sunshine hours have been above average and rainfall is well below normal at only 20 to 30%. This will be offset to some degree though in the final week of April with wetter weather and colder weather.

"It looks like the next seven days will see around normal precipitation across northern Britain and perhaps a little above over parts of the south, so the month will be nowhere near as dry as 2011 when only 21% of normal precipitation fell, and 2007 when some areas of southern and eastern England had no measurable rainfall.

"Temperatures will be brought down to nearer normal after the cold spell next week, but sunshine hours will be above normal with some areas 130 to 150% of normal. So April 2015 has been a sunny month and the driest since 2011."

For this weekend, Leon says: "There will be a risk of some heavy showers over the South East on Sunday before the front passes over, and there will be quite a few wintry showers across the north with snow down to the 300m/1000ft level in Scotland, and even down to the surface inland by Monday.

"A big temperature contrast from Saturday to Sunday with temperatures reaching the high teens on Saturday and only the far South East managing to reach the teens on Sunday with the rest of the UK struggling to get to double figures. Some areas in the Midlands will only manage 7C and Northern Scotland only 4 to 5C.

Mr Brown says next week is looking cool with night frosts in the North and ground frosts in the South.

"Sunshine and showers with snow are expected over northern hills, but some uncertainty for next Wednesday to Thursday with the threat of more general rain crossing the South.

"The cool theme continues to early May with wetter weather over the south and drier in the North with sunshine and some wintry showers."

Places where it never gets cold
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UK to plunge back into winter as temperatures drop dramatically
Beautiful Hawaii boasts world-class surfing, spectacular waterfalls and active volcanoes, as well as a hot climate. Temperatures at sea level generally range from highs of 29 to 32C during the summer months to 26 to 28C during the winter months. Rarely does the temperature rise above 32C or drop below 18C. To see snow in winter, you will have to head for the islands' highest mountains.
You won’t get snow in Puerto Rico. Only palm trees, white sand, sunshine and year-round temperatures of 24 to 31C. The tropical climate can get humid in the summer months and Puerto Rico experiences the Atlantic hurricane season (June to November) with a hurricane passing the vicinity of the island on average every 11 years. Only one Category 5 hurricane has struck the island since 1851, the Lake Okeechobee Hurricane of September 1928.

Like the rest of the Caribbean, the tiny island of Saint Lucia boasts a warm, tropical climate all year round. Trade winds stop things becoming too hot with temperatures ranging from 21 to 32C. The wet season is generally at the same time as the Atlantic hurricane season (June to November). The most humid weather can be found in the rainforest in the centre of the island, while a hike to the Pitons will help you cool off. 

Sitting on the eastern coast of Central America, Belize enjoys a comfortable tropical climate with an average yearly temperature of 29C with only about 4C between the coolest (January) and warmest (May) part of the year. The coastal breezes help ease high humidity levels. With consistent temperatures all year round, Belize only has two seasons, the wet (from June to December) and the dry (February to May).

Separating the Caribbean Sea from the Gulf of Mexico, the Yucatan Peninsula enjoys warm weather all year round at a steady 27C and seasonal fluctuations of just 4 to 6C either side. It does lie within the Atlantic Hurricane Belt and with almost uniformly flat terrain is vulnerable to large storms coming from the east.

Lying just to the south of the Equator, this archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean stays warm and humid throughout the year with temperatures rarely dropping beneath 24C or rising above 32C. The seasons are controlled by trade winds and the Seychelles does not experience extreme weather conditions.

Durban, the largest city in KwaZulu Natal, boasts an average of 320 days of sunshine a year. Temperatures range from 16 to 25C in winter and from 23 to 33C in summer, with January the hottest and most humid month. The warm Mozambique current flowing along the coast means the water temperature rarely falls below 17C even in winter. The city is occasionally affected by tropical storms during the cyclone season (November to April).

These picturesque islands in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef enjoy a subtropical climate with an average annual temperature of 27C and lots of sunshine. Summer in January sees an average temperature of over 30C in Australia's Whitsunday Islands, with the water temperature not far off.

You’ll never see snow on the tropical island nation of Fiji in the South Pacific. Maximum temperatures rarely move out of the 26 to 31C range all year round. Southeast trade winds from March to November bring dry weather and the rainy season runs from December to April, which overlaps with the tropical cyclone season.

The temperature hardly ever changes in the Maldives, averaging a warm and humid 30C throughout the year. That’s thanks to their equatorial location, which also keeps them out of the firing line of cyclones. The tropical equatorial climate has two seasons, with the highest temperatures occurring during the dry season (November to March).


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The world's sunniest destinations
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UK to plunge back into winter as temperatures drop dramatically

The islands of Kiribati in the Pacific Ocean are some of the sunniest islands in the world. They straddle the Equator and are located close to the patch of the ocean that absorbs more rays than any other piece of water on Earth. Lie on the white sand beaches, try your hand at world-class fishing and visit the numerous WWII ruins, all while soaking up the sunshine, of course!

With over 300 sunny days per year, Andalucia in Spain is one of Europe's sunniest destinations and a centre for 'sun and sand' tourism. The region sees 12 hours of sunshine a day in July, its sunniest month. Ecija in Seville is known as 'The Frying Pan of Andalucia' as it records the highest summer temperatures in Spain. In the winter, Seville, Andalucia's capital, experiences just seven to eight days of rain too, leaving plenty of clear weather and around six hours of sunshine a day.

Looking to hit the ski slopes AND top up your tan? "One of the best places for sunny skiing in Europe is on the Sierra Nevada in southern Spain," says Leon Brown at The Weather Channel. "The resort is 3,400 metres high and often above the clouds! On a clear day you can see the Atlas Mountains to the south in Morocco." With the mountain range located in Andalusia, you can enjoy a high number of sunny days in the winter and ski under blue skies with warm temperatures in the morning, before heading for the beach and sunbathing in the afternoon. It's no wonder Sierra Nevada has been dubbed the world's sunniest ski resort.

With its vast desert landscapes, it's no surprise that the Middle East is a seriously sunny spot on Earth. The Weather Channel's Leon Brown says: "Globally the sunniest places and resorts all year are Dubai, Muscat and resorts in North East Oman, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain and Kuwait with 13 to 14 hours of sunshine in the summer and 10 hours in the winter." Abu Dhabi (pictured) sees 3,609 hours of sunshine a year.

Not only is Las Vegas one of America's sunniest spots, with the sun shining 85 per cent of daylight hours, it also has an average of 210 clear days in the year and sees little cloud, with only Phoenix and Yuma, both in Arizona, enjoying more clear days. Las Vegas has an annual average of 3,825 sunshine hours and when the sun finally goes down, there's the famous nightlife to enjoy and countless casinos to visit.

The sunniest month of the year worldwide is May and Eureka on Ellesmere Island, northern Canada sees the most of the sun, with an average of 16.5 hours of sunshine a day throughout May and 512 hours during the month. But you may not want to visit this icy destination for a summer getaway as the average temperature in May is -7C! Alert, also in Ellesmere, sees the most sun during April with 377 sunny hours a month and 12.6 hours a day. With it being so far north, the daily hours of bright sun account for just 55 per cent of Alert's daylight.

With up to 10 hours of sunshine a day and 3,863 hours a year, Aswan in Egypt is one of the planet's sunniest places. July is when you'll see the most sunshine in Aswan and there's 375 hours of it to enjoy. Set on the East Bank of the Nile, you can stroll along the Corniche, eat freshly-caught fish in one of the floating restaurants and visit ancient temples.

Alice Springs in Australia’s Northern Territory experiences an average of 146 sunny days a year, as well as 10 hours of sunshine a day during summer. The best part is that the Australian summer is our winter so you can enjoy temperatures of up to 36C in January while your friends at home are wearing their woollies! Leon Brown at The Weather Channel says Alice Springs sees up to 14 hours of sunshine in the summer months and up to 10 in the winter.

Ok, so we know the UK is nowhere near one of the world's sunniest places but we know you're wondering which part of the British Isles does see more sunshine than others. The Weather Channel's Leon Brown tells us the "sunniest places tend to be the south coast around the Isle of Wight to Eastbourne with 16 hours of sunshine in mid-summer." Not bad, eh? Leon adds: "Sometimes the Channels Islands are sunnier, plus in the spring the Western Isles of Scotland can be the sunniest."

Yuma in Arizona is the sunniest place in the world, according to Guinness World Records. The city enjoys sunshine 91 per cent of daylight hours and a mean of 4,055 hours per year. Yuma is also the sunniest city in America, as well as the driest and the least humid. The average rainfall is around three inches a year, but despite having the most sunshine, Yuma is not the hottest place in America and is beaten by Miami and Key West in Florida.


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