“Yerevan weather” is among the top search queries among people planning to visit Armenia. Well, if you’ve been one of them, you know that most search results are from forecast websites and don’t provide comprehensive information on what weather to expect in each season. That’s why I decided to fill the gap and write about Yerevan weather from the “end-user” perspective, so to say. So, how does the weather in Yerevan feel? Let’s see… If you find this post informative and engaging, ping me on Instagram or Twitter, with #ArmeniaTravelTips.
Understanding the geolocation
Yerevan is among the top 50 capital cities having above 1 million inhabitants and situated on an impressive height. The average elevation of Yerevan is 990 m (3,248.03 ft). The central part of Yerevan is lower, while the maximum height of some districts to the north can get to 1390 m (4,560.37 ft) above sea level. This, of course, also means that in different parts of Yerevan the weather is different.
What plays a major role in the formulation of the weather in different parts of Yerevan is the surroundings. Three upper sides of Yerevan are surrounded by mountains, while the lower side descends to Ararat valley along the Hrazdan river. This part is the hottest in general.
Yerevan: the climate and the seasons
Yerevan’s climate is determined by several major factors: where it is situated, how far it is from the sea. Scientifically it’s described as “continentally influenced steppe climate”. And with simpler words what this means is there can be extremely hot and long terribly dry summers along with snowy and cold winters.
As to me, Yerevan has just 3 seasons: summer, winter and something in the middle, always very short.
Summertime weather in Yerevan
Summers in Yerevan start in May and continue up to the end of September. The second half of this season is also the time when the city is overloaded with pollen and dust and becomes a terrible place for those who have allergies.
Meanwhile, Mays are comparatively pleasant and it’s at least possible to normally breathe and enjoy chilly evening walks. On average there can be up to 10 rainy days in May, so the humidity and pollen levels self-regulate somehow. However, starting from June the weather gets extremely hot and humidity goes down. July, August and September are the hottest months of the year when temperature can get to 42° C, no rain whatsoever, with humidity as low as 20-30%.
Just a note for comparison: Gyumri, situated 1500 m above sea level, has sharper summers, with the highest 32°C. So you’re likely to burn under direct sunlight very quickly. But as soon as you’re in shade, it’s heaven, because the air is mildly humid, fresh, just like in mountains.
In Yerevan you can walk in the sun for hours and not get burnt (well, if you don’t die of dehydration). And even in the shade, even late evenings, even when it’s windy, there is absolutely no air to breathe. That’s how hot it can get.
For those who have allergies, respiratory issues and can’t stand heat and dryness, choosing Yerevan as a travel destination during June-September is a terrible idea. Otherwise, if you’re among those loving very hot weather and escaping humidity, this is a go-to option!
How to survive the hot summer weather in Yerevan
If you happen to be in Yerevan during the summer and you find yourself unable to tolerate the heat and dryness, here are some tips for you.
- Carry water. Always. A lot. There are lots of free water fountains around, so take time to stop and refill it regularly. It will save you from dehydration and keep you from exhaustion.
- If you’re into exploring the city with a walking tour, start it around 6 a.m. or sometime at dawn. At that time the temperature is cooler, it feels fresher, and cleaner from vehicle exhaust gases. And of course the natural light is perfect for photography.
- Don’t forget about protection! The Sun is not merciful. So always wear a hat and use SPF 30 or more sunscreen, preferably mineral-based. This way you’ll avoid burns, sun marks, UV and unnecessary radiation.
The weather in winter
Winters in Yerevan can feel somewhat long, as sometimes it’s freezing already in November. But winters here do not really feel like winters for those living in snowier parts of Armenia. During some years there is enough snow, but most of the time not much of it. So don’t even think that you have a chance to feel like in a winter wonderland.
If it snows, the snow quickly turns into slush because of the traffic and quickly warming weather, and the city turns into a collection of gray masses.
December is comparatively warm, but during January and February there can periodically be severe frosts, so having nice warm jackets and boots is very much advised.
The most interesting entertainment activity in Yerevan during the wintertime is definitely ice skating. There is one small ice skating rink at Karapi Lich (Swan Lake) at the heart of Yerevan, right next to the Opera house. Throughout other months of the year it’s a lake, during winter it’s an ice rink. There is another large one at Yeraz winter park and many other winter activities.
Tips to stay comfortable during winter in Yerevan:
- Always dress in layers. Temperatures can quickly change: you can see sunshine after a cold morning, so it’s very easy to sweat and catch a cold, or underdress and catch a cold. The solution is dressing in layers some of which you’ll be able to take off easily and continue enjoying your activities more comfortably.
- Make sure to wear warm waterproof boots. As I said, in most parts of Yerevan there is more slush than snow, so if you want to have walks and tours and not get your feet wet, waterproofing is the key.
Spring-ish, autumn-ish weather in Yerevan
As I said earlier, this is the third “season” in Yerevan – something like spring, something like autumn. Divided and separated by summer and winter, neither spring nor autumn can be considered an independent season here.
Both spring and autumn last so short that the season change is hardly noticeable. For instance, this year, in 2021 March has been quite cold and windy, almost winterlike. And as it’s been almost every year, April is going to be the only month that makes it feel like spring. And from May on, the weather gets very warm, everything quickly greens and suddenly it’s a very hot summer. There is no actual feel of spring in Yerevan. The process is somehow not very noticeable.
It’s not raining very often in April, the weather is warm enough to lighten your clothing and it’s not yet hot. Everything is blooming, all green and fresh. So April is the perfect month to walk, breathe in fresh air and enjoy Yerevan without dust and pollen.
As to autumn, the situation is approximately the same: September is very hot and dry. So it’s more like summer than autumn. The only real autumn month is October when it’s still warm enough to have picnics and outdoor activities, but not so dry as in summer. So, it’s actually a pretty enjoyable time to be in Yerevan. Just imagine all the colorful trees around and leaves dramatically falling to the ground – instagrammable spots are on every corner. As we progress into November, everything changes into a gray mass that is typical of the winter in Yerevan.
My summary on Yerevan weather & when to visit it
In general, Yerevan has harshly hot summers and mildly cold winters in comparison to other cities of Armenia. For mild-weather lovers mid-April to mid-May, as well as October are great months to visit Yerevan.
For those eager to explore it at any weather, my advice is: pack and come anytime. Yerevan has so many things to offer at any season that you’ll just be surprised how diverse it can be! Tons of entertainment options and activities all year round – both indoors and outdoors. Festivals, celebrations, holidays and more waiting for you. Moreover, if you want to know how to choose the best time to visit Armenia, I have a dedicated post on that!
So if you happen to visit Yerevan, I’d really like to know what season it was and what was your experience with the weather, share your stories with me on Instagram or Twitter, with #ArmeniaTravelTips.
Featured image credits: Anthony Surace on Flickr (CC)