Climate and Average Weather in France
France is divided into multiple climate zones. The majority of the country has a temperate maritime climate which means it is generally cold in winter, mild in summer and rainfall is spread throughout the year.
The South and South West of France has a Mediterranean climate which means mild winters and hot summers. The eastern part of the coastal area, the Cote D'Azur, is the sunniest part of France with more than 320 hours of sunshine in July. This month is the peak of summer and many tourists from all over Europe invade the south of France with caravans and tents.
The end of September is the start of autumn in the North of France, while in the south of France the temperatures remain pleasant. In October the average maximum daytime temperature lies around 16.0°C (60.8°F) in Paris and 20.7°C (69.26°F) in Cannes. December is winter with an average maximum daytime temperature of 7.0°C (44.6°F) in Paris and 14.0°C (57.2°F) in Cannes.
The climate of the Alps is strongly dependent on the elevation. This means the French Alps contain a number of different kinds of climate zones, by elevation. In general the Alps experience relatively high rainfall, colder winters and cool summers. You can expect lots of snowfall during winter.
What's the best time of year to visit France?
You can visit France all year round. It mainly depends on your travel purpose. If we need to chose an overall period as the best time to travel to France we would recommend May, June, September and October. These are the months when the weather is often pleasant, but when there is less chance of hot days like in July and August. During these hottest summer months, afternoon temperatures can often reach 35 to 40 degrees Celsius (95-104 degrees Fahrenheit).
Interested in more detailed Weather and Climate information?
Please select the city below you wish to travel to, or the one closest to your destination. Each selected city will show you the following graphs:
1. Average minimum and maximum temperature over the year
2. Average monthly precipitation over the year (rainfall, snow)
3. Average monthly hours of sunshine over the year
On certain pages we also offer other historical weather data like humidity, wind speed and water temperature.