Turkey has a unique location between Asia and Europe. It is bordered by many countries and is surrounded by the Black Sea, the Aegean Sea and the Mediterranean Sea. Located in the north-east of the Mediterranean, Turkey's coastline has the climate of the same name. This means winters are mild, wetter on the coasts and hot and dry summers. However, Turkey's topography means there are significant variations in climate, and inland weather is a much more complex picture, so there is more than one best time to visit Turkey. Central Turkey is cooler in winter with little rainfall, except in spring when it increases slightly. Summers are very hot. Conversely, in the Pontus region in the north of the country, rainfall is much higher. May and June, as well as September and October are best for the Anatolian plateau. Temperatures are warm but tolerable, ideal for a good blast of clean, fresh air before returning home. For Istanbul and the Mediterranean coast, the best time to visit is from March to October. For the Black Sea region, we recommend between April and September when the rainfall is lighter, Finally, in the eastern part of the country, the best time to travel is between June and September.
Turkey's capital is sandwiched between the Mediterranean climate and the climate affecting the Pontic Mountains Summers are hot and dry and can also be windy. Istanbul has a Mediterranean climate but has oceanic variations due to moisture from the Black Sea. There are hot (but bearable) and dry summers. Expect temperatures of around 28°C in July. Autumn and spring are very mild and pleasant, cooled by the odd light drizzle. Winter in Istanbul is quite cold and snow and ice are not uncommon. Temperatures average 8°C in January, which can drop down to 3°C. During winter and along the Bosphorus, there is morning haze due to the humidity. Rainfall decreases between April and September and becomes more intense from October to March in Istanbul. Given the huge size of the capital that straddles two continents, some parts of the city are wetter than others. As mentioned earlier, Istanbul does see some snow. There are an average of 19 snowy days a year, especially during winter. To enjoy the city to the fullest, spring and summer are the best times when the temperatures are warm and pleasant.
Anatolia is the largest part of the country and also part of Asia. In central Anatolia, there is a unique climate: it can be described as continental or even semi-arid. At altitude, in this region of Anatolia, summers are hot (temperatures up to 45 °C) but nights are cooler. Winters are very cold. To the east of the Anatolia region, winters are especially harsh and long. Conversely, the summers are shorter. It should be noted that temperatures can reach as low as -30°C, and snow can fall from October to May. The further east, the harsher the climate. Winters are longer and colder and summers are milder. Rainfall is more common in winter and spring.
In the south-eastern Anatolian plateau, winters are much milder and even warmer with higher humidity. Spring and autumn are the best times to visit the plateau, when temperatures are milder (avoiding the cold temperatures in winter and heat waves in summer).
The west coast of Turkey
Lying on the coasts of the Aegean Sea, the Mediterranean Sea and the Sea of Marmara, the area has an identical climate to Greece. It's a Mediterranean climate with low rainfall. Summers are hot and dry, and slightly hotter in the south. Summers north of the coast can be rainier, especially towards the straits. Along the Mediterranean coast, Turkey is blessed with an average of 300 sunny days a year. Overall, the climate along the west coast is considered to be very mild and pleasant, except during spring and autumn, when rain is fairly common. Overall, temperatures along the Turkish coast average 30°C in summer, and winters are fairly mild at around 15°C. Winter lows are close to 5°C.
Mount Taurus and the Pontic Mountains
The best time to visit this mountainous part of Turkey is between May and the end of September. Summers are very hot and, conversely, winters are harsh, with heavy snowfall. Unlike Mount Taurus, the Pontic Mountains are the wettest part of the country, which is why the climate is more tropical there. There is a good spread of rain throughout the year, with significant rainfall of about 80 inches a year.