Tourist Tips


Karelia belongs to the Moscow standard time zone (MSK). The time zone is GMT +3 hours all the year round.


The climate of Karelia forms under North Arctic and Arctic impact. Air masses mostly travel in the westerly and easterly directions, with occasional interruptions by northerly and southerly winds. Cyclones cause thaw periods in winter, but reduce the temperature and bring abundant rainfall in summer. The gap between northern and southern parts of the republic in the arrival of natural phenomena is about a fortnight.

The coldest months are January and February. Although mean monthly air temperatures in this period are not so low – from -8 degrees сelsium in the south to -14 degrees celsium in circumpolar areas, the “breath of Arctic” may reduce them to minus 30-36 degrees, although thaw periods may also occur.

The warmest month is July, when the mean temperature is 13-14 degrees celsium, and the maximum is 30-36 degrees celsium. Like for northern regions in general, a typical feature of Karelia is annual change in daylight duration. It is the lowest in December – 6 hours southern parts, 4 hours in circumpolar areas. Starting mid-January however, the day rapidly grows longer and by June-July the sun shines almost around the clock. This is the time for romantics and poets – the famous white nights. Owing to the long day, Karelia gets nearly as much solar heat in summer as regions of Central Russia.

However, the sunniest month in Karelia is March. It is the best time for skiing trips and ice fishing.

Generally speaking, Karelian climate is rather unstable: one type of weather may replace another one abruptly. Owing to the impact of the Atlantic Ocean and its warm current Gulf Stream, mean annual air temperature in the republic is above zero (0…+1.5 degrees celsium in the north to +2…+3.6 degrees celsium in the south , and some 10 degrees higher than in more continental regions situated at the same latitude as Karelia. The weather is thus more or less comfortable throughout the year. A tourist must always remember however that there is no such thing as bad weather – there are only bad clothes.

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