Israel and Palestine
Israel has a Mediterranean climate characterized by long, hot, dry summers and short, cool, rainy winters, as modified locally by altitude and latitude. The climate is determined by Israel's location between the subtropical aridity characteristic of Egypt and the subtropical humidity of the eastern Mediterranean area. January is the coldest month, with temperatures from 5°C to 10°C, and August is the hottest month at 18°C to 38°C.
About 70 percent of the average rainfall in the country falls between November and March; June through August are often rainless. Rainfall is unevenly distributed, decreasing sharply as one moves southward. In the extreme south, rainfall averages less than 100 mm annually; in the north, average annual rainfall is about 1,100 mm. Rainfall varies from season to season and from year to year, particularly in the Negev Desert. Precipitation is often concentrated in violent storms, causing erosion and flooding.
During January and February, precipitation may take the form of snow at the higher elevations of Israels central highlands, especially in the Golan heights, but also around Jerusalem. In some Winters snowfall can be quite heavy, but never lasts very long. The areas of the country most cultivated are those that receive more than 300 millimeters of rainfall annually; only about one-third of the country is cultivable.