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Summerlike weather forecast for first half of Easter holidays
30 March 2021 @ 06:48

AN ATLANTIC front heading for mainland Spain is set to release a blast of warm air over Easter weekend, pushing temperatures up for the holidays – in fact, the mercury is expected to break the 30ºC barrier for the first time in 2021.

Benidorm beach (photo: Valencia regional tourism board)

This has already happened in the Canary Islands – at least, on the islands of Fuerteventura, Gran Canaria and Lanzarote, where the warm front arrived early last week.

Wednesday saw the highest temperature so far this year in La Aldea de San Nicolás (Gran Canaria), when thermometers reached 30.3ºC at 15.10 – which would have been at 16.10 mainland Spain and Balearic time – and the heat rose sharply on Thursday, hitting 34.2ºC in the same town, 31.4ºC in Arucas, 31.2ºC in Tasarte, 30.7ºC in Mogán, and 31.4ºC in Pájara (Fuerteventura) and exactly 30ºC in Teguise (Lanzarote).

The rest of the country will start to see similar figures from around Maundy Thursday – a bank holiday in some regions, but not in others.

But the latter part of Easter will see the reverse, according to Rubén del Campo, spokesman for the State meteorological agency, AEMET.

He says 'the presence of an anticyclone in inland continental Europe' combined with 'low pressure in the Atlantic' would be conducive to south and south-east winds, which typically result in higher temperatures.

It may not come with bright sunshine, clear skies and uninterrupted views out to sea and from hilltops, though: South winds mean the air flow crosses, or comes from, the Sahara desert, meaning red dust floating in the atmosphere.

It will not be enough to be seen by the naked eye, but will reduce visibility and air quality, Del Campo explains, and will be more prevalent in the southern half of the mainland and towards the west, particularly from around Wednesday or Thursday this week.

In the run-up to Easter Sunday from about tomorrow (Tuesday), temperatures will generally be around 5-10ºC higher than average for the time of year, except on the Mediterranean where they will be closer to the norm.

Elsewhere, thermometers will register figures 'closer to those of the second half of May or even the first half of June', explains Del Campo.

This rise in heat will be most felt in Galicia and the Cantabrian Sea strip across the north, which are normally still a little chilly at the end of March and beginning of April, but where the mercury is expected to break the 25ºC barrier in several cities and their surrounding areas – Lugo, Ourense (Galicia), Oviedo (Asturias), Santander (Cantabria) and Bilbao (Basque Country).

Madrid and Toledo will also see temperatures around the mid-upper 20s, and inland Andalucía will be at least five or 10 notches higher: In the Guadalquivir river valley, particularly in Sevilla city and its surrounding areas, it could even rise to 32ºC or more, the AEMET spokesman predicts.

By Good Friday, light rain is forecast across the northern half of the mainland in inland areas, but will not reach the Mediterranean or the south coast, and will 'not be persistent or generalised or last for very long', according to Del Campo.

Rain is not likely to reach the east coast and Balearic Islands until around Saturday or Sunday, when temperatures begin to fall to those more frequently seen at this time of year. 

In these areas, temperatures are likely to be at their highest on Thursday and Friday, just as the north and inland parts are cooling down.



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