Ireland is an island situated on the North Atlantic Ocean. It covers an estimated 84,420 square kilometers and is separated from Great Britain by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, and St. George’s Channel. It is the second-largest island of the British Isles. From the storm-lashed shorelines of the Atlantic Ocean to the low-lying mountains surrounding an undulating central plain covered with limestone, Ireland is a nature’s lover paradise.
Even though freezing temperatures are seldom experienced in Ireland, and a large chunk of the winter precipitation falls in the form of rainfall, the mountain regions receive about 30 days of snowfall per year. It may snow slightly or no snow at all in the low-lying areas of the island during winter. Cold winters are rare, with temperatures averaging about 83 degrees Fahrenheit (6 degrees Celsius) in January and February. During summer, temperatures averaging 59 degrees Fahrenheit (150 degrees Celsius) are recorded, though higher temperatures may be recorded from time to time.
When does it Snow in Ireland?
Ireland experiences a temperate, oceanic climate with plenty of rainfall and mild temperatures due to its location in the northeastern part of the Atlantic Ocean. The island gets warmed by the heat carried by North Atlantic Drift and Gulf Stream prevailing winds. This influence is most substantial near the coastline and decreases as you move inland.
A large area of Ireland experiences chilly but rarely freezing weather in winter. Rain is frequent, and the skies often cloudy. Temperatures rarely fall below zero degrees, and in winter, rain is converted into snow in altitudes of over 400 meters (1300 feet) above sea level. The number of days with snow cover increases with a decrease in air temperatures. During winter, Ireland experiences snow in the highlands while the coastal regions receive significant amounts of rainfall.
Here is a month-by-month breakdown of Ireland’s snowfall during winter.
Snow in December
As winter sets in, the average temperature recorded drops to an average temperature of 470 Fahrenheit (8.5 degrees Celsius). Ireland experiences 2-3 days of snow in December.
On average, snow accumulates to depths reaching 0.79 inches (19.81 millimeters) during this month.
Snow in January
As the winter period matures, average temperatures stabilize at around 47 degrees Fahrenheit (8.3 degrees Celsius). The precipitation intensifies with over 2.46 inches (62.6 millimeters) being recorded.
Snow in February
As Ireland prepares to switch seasons, the average temperature recorded drops to 44.6 degrees Fahrenheit (7 degrees Celsius). The amount of snow recorded reduces to 1.81 inches (46.1 millimeters).
Where does it Snow in Ireland?
Rain in Ireland comes in the form of rain though some parts, specifically the mountainous regions, receive more than 30 days of snow annually.
Here are some of the regions which may experience snowfall in Ireland.
Snow in Dublin
With over 1.3 million people, Dublin is the largest city in Ireland and serves as the capital. It is located at the outlet of the Liffey River and has an elevation of 279 feet (85 meters).
Dublin experiences an oceanic, cool and humid climate, with its temperature ranging from 41 degrees Fahrenheit (5 degrees Celsius) to 43.7 degrees Fahrenheit (6.50 degrees Celsius) during winter. Snowfall is rare in Dublin.
The sky is often overcast, and rainfall is frequent, with a 2.2 inches (55.88 millimeters) rain being recorded. This is little rainfall compared to other places, as Dublin’s location on the eastside shelters part of the moisture coming from the ocean, this moisture is released on the western side as rain.
Snow in Malin Head
Malin Head is a scenic town in the northern part of Ireland. It experiences a frosty winter with an average chilly temperature of 47.8 degrees Fahrenheit (8.8 degrees Celsius) being recorded. Snowfalls are experienced for 20.3 days from November through May.
Snow in Cork
Cork is located in southwest Ireland and experiences an oceanic climate with cold rainy winters. It experiences an average temperature of 42.98 Fahrenheit (6.1 degrees Celsius) through the winter period.
January is the region’s coldest month, with 42.08 degrees Fahrenheit (5.6 degrees Celsius) being recorded.
Ski Resorts in Ireland
Ireland is many a thing but not a winter sports nation. It may snow a couple of times a year, but there are no skiing infrastructures in place, such as ski lifts, but you may find people heading out to the hills to snowboard.
However, there are dry slopes in Kilternan made up of four primary slopes. The main slope covers 180 meters, while the intermediate slope covers 150 meters. There are two 50 meters slopes for children.
The landscape of Ireland may not favor winter sports, but that does not mean humans are limited. Creative Irish citizens have created a ski simulator where you can practice your snowboarding or skiing skills indoors. The simulator uses sophisticated revolving slope technology that reproduces real-life conditions found on the slopes.
The lack of alpine activities in Ireland should not discourage you from visiting Ireland. The country is laden with beautiful scenery and historical landmarks that tell of its glorious past and reminds us of why Ireland is the land it is today.
For instance, in Boyne Valley sits a 5200-year-old tomb called Newgrange Tomb built by stone age farmers. It measures 85 meters in diameter and 13.5 meters tall. While at the heart of Dublin city stands one of the most beautiful and largest Irish cathedrals, the St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
The cathedral offers visitors a rich and compelling cultural experience, and it is one of the remaining buildings from medieval Dublin. History records it to have been built between 1191 and 1270 at the exact location believed to be where St. Patrick himself was baptized in the 5th century.