Climate of Kosovo

Kosovo is a relatively small territory. Because of the climatic position and complicated structure of the relief, the country has a variety of climate systems.

Kosovo lies in the south part of the middle geographical latitude of the northern hemisphere and it is affected by the Mediterranean Mild Climate and European Continental Climate. Important factors that affect Kosovo’s climate are: its position towards Eurasia and Africa, hydrographic masses (Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean sea), atmospheric masses (tropic, arctic and continental) and others. Minor factors are: relief, hydrography, plain and vegetation.

 

Climatic territorial differences

The climatic changes based on territories depend on various factors, such as: vegetation, humidity of the territory etc. Climate classifications are usually based on: wind exposure, mountain height and direction, climatic effects on vegetation and watercourses. From all the climatic classifications made in Kosovo, the most accurate one is the one provided by W. Köppen. According to this classification, Kosovo is part of C and D types of climate. Kosovo’s hot average climate during summer months is under 22 °C (72 °F) and the cold average is above −3 °C (27 °F). According to the thermal characteristics, amount of rainfall and their regime in low parts of Kosovo, we get two subtypes of climate:

Dukagjin subtype and
Kosovo subtype
The climatic sub-type of the western part has soft winters and a big amount of rainfall. These characteristics are inherited by the Mediterranean mild climate. The climatic sub-type of Kosovo has cold winters and lack of rainfall, characteristics inherited from the continental type of climate. Even though Kosovo has these climatic characteristics most of the time, there might be a major change in climate on certain years only. In 1992, Kosovo had a very hot and dry summer, which fits the B climatic type of Köppen. D-climatic type which is known for average temperatures of −3 °C (27 °F) during cold months and 15 °C (59 °F) during hot months can be found in high parts of Kosovo, such as Accursed Mountains (Alb. Bjeshkët e Nemuna), the Shar Mountains and Kopaonik. This type of climate is known by the name sub-alpine and alpine.