Weather, temperatures & climate in Crete
Jan 28, 2021
Crete is between two climatic zones, with the largest part of the island falling into the Mediterranean and the south coasts and Gavdos island falling to the North African.
It has one of the healthiest climates for humans to live in as it is quite humid near the sea, with short mild winters and cool summers.
While the far south has subtropical weather during summer, and inland alpine areas of the three major massifs can be as cold as -10°C (14°F) in winter, most of the inhabited areas lie close to the coast, which means mild temperatures.
The average Crete temperature decreases as you travel north. July and August are the warmest months, and January is the coldest month of the year. In summer, the average maximum temperature ranges between 20-30ºC (70-90°F) and in winter between 10-15ºC (50-60°F).
"Typical" weather month by month
Hottest months are usually July and August. Daytime high temperatures range from 29-38 degrees Centigrade (82-95F), a "normal" day would be in the middle of this range. By the sea, there is, of course, usually a breeze that moderates how this feels. Though it may be cooler in the mountains, especially at night, it can feel hotter in places sheltered from the sea breeze than at lower altitudes. Ultimate months for swimming, cooling down and using a plentiful strong sunscreen.
June and September normally deliver fine sunny days and moderate-to-hot temperatures. The water is warm enough for swimming and the best in September. Day time peaks between 23 and 29 degrees.
May - take an average of our comments for the months before and after! It is "normally" warm and sunny, much or most of the month.
March, April, October, and early November often provide warm and very enjoyable days - it gets a lot less predictable at these edge of season months, but you'll find it un-crowded, naturally Crete and for some the most enjoyable. We recommend a warm outdoor jacket and a favorite sweater for the odd chilly day and evenings. Day time peak temperatures range from 17 to 26 degrees.
December is often good, but it is winter, so warm outerwear and waterproof aids are essential - same for January and February. During these first two months of the year there "should" be some rain, but again, not every day. Winter (December to February) often feels cold - the island is equipped for summer. Of course, if you call Novosibirsk home, Crete might seem mild in the winter. The wind and sea combine on an island to produce some dramatic weather conditions at times. Day time peak temperatures range from 9 to 18 degrees (even colder in the mountains, warmer on a few days if you are lucky).
A note on "Typical Weather"
Everywhere we've visited for the last ten years we hear "it never used to be so hot/cold/dry/wet at this time of year" - weather worldwide is in a charging mode (this happens every 100 years approximately - do not panic!), so if you are wise you'll bring clothes to cater for the range of weather that may occur and take the idea of seasonal temperatures seriously - then you can only be pleasantly surprised!
Best advice, always bring a set of outer warm and wind-defeating clothes, just in case. We receive many questions about what the weather will be like in a particular month. One thing we realize: the weather is changeable from year to year, especially in the "shoulder" months April to June and October to November. The only remedy is to bring (heavier luggage!) a variety of clothing on your trips to Crete - or - be happy to shop locally!
Wish it were sunny where you are? It's not sunny every day in Crete, in the winter it does rain. Sometimes the rain seems like an eternal force, driving or dribbling, driven by occasionally ferocious winds. However, there are some sunny days and a few partly sunny days in winter - it really is a matter of luck. Summer - ranges from very warm and sunny to very hot and sunny! There's nowhere further south to go and still be in Europe - except for the sanctuary island (well almost!) of Gavdos. So if the weather's good somewhere, even in December - it's usually fine here.
One of our numbers was swimming daily in the sea quite happily until November 15th the other year and he hates cold water!
See Why Crete to why Crete travel tip is the place for you to visit.
So, here, to prove or disprove all our theories about seasonal temperatures, are the current readings: at Windy.com
Glad to help you with your activities, flights, car rental, and taxi transfers too.
All the best,