What is the northernmost or southernmost city on Earth which receives no snow? The exact definitions are:

  • City means any settlement with more than 1000 people permanently residing there
  • "No snow" means the city receives less than 1cm of snow per year on average
  • Northernmost/southernmost refers to the absolute latitude of the city on either the Northern or Southern hemisphere

Related question.


On the North American west coast, Coos Bay, Oregon is the northernmost place I can find, of any significance, that gets no snow. Astoria, Oregon gets 2.5 cm of snow per year. Coos Bay is at 43.4 degrees north latitude.

On the east coast, Boston is of similar latitude and gets significant snow, so that coast is out.

In western Europe, A Coruna seems to be the best candidate, at 43.4 degrees north in Spain. I had originally thought Guernsey would be a good candidate but it gets a little too much snow, and cities in France seem to get regular snow too, even on the coast. Venice looks like a tempting alternative, but it seems to get snow consistently, if uncommonly.

So, so far, 43.4 N seems to be the answer on both the North American and European continents.

In the southern hemisphere, Comodoro Ravadavia, Argentina at 45.8 S gets snow, but Trelew, Argentina at 43.3 S does not, so the snow band in eastern South America seems to be quite close to the same latitude as we see in western North America. There are few significant communities on the western Chilean coast, but Puerto Montt, Chile is snow-free at 41.4 S. Southern New Zealand is at similar latitudes, but seems prone to heavy snowfalls at times, probably because of its proximity to Antarctic currents and the presence of tall mountains.

There are quite a few southern islands that are candidates, but most seem to get snow, and none have any significant settlements, short of the Falklands, which definitely do get snow.

If you get rid of the people requirement, the McMurdo Dry Valleys at 77.3 S are probably the answer. They are very cold, but so arid that they are largely snow-free all year long. Snow that does try to fall often sublimates directly into the atmosphere.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Definitely snows on Guernsey bbc.com/news/world-europe-guernsey-21754508 $\endgroup$ – David Marshall Jul 27 '18 at 19:47
  • $\begingroup$ @DavidMarshall But does it snow, on average, more than 1 cm a year? If so, we'll need to go south. $\endgroup$ – Jim MacKenzie Jul 27 '18 at 20:43
  • $\begingroup$ I updated my European answer. It became clear that Guernsey does get enough snowfall to be disqualified. $\endgroup$ – Jim MacKenzie Jul 27 '18 at 20:58
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ At the north coast of spain it is rare the year that snow falls, but when it does there is a snowfall with a bit more of 1cm. Maybe every 3-5 years. Maybe climate change will put out La Coruña from that list. At my city, 80 km from the coast but 400 m from sealevel, we have 3 or 4 snowfalls each year. Sometimes 50 cm or so. $\endgroup$ – user12525 Jul 29 '18 at 11:10
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ In NZ, Christchurch (43 deg 32') would be a very good candidate. Dunedin & Invercargill appear to get snow more often. In Australia, Hobart (42 deg 53'), being a coastal city does not get regular snow on an annual basis. It's airport has never been closed due to snow. $\endgroup$ – Fred Jul 29 '18 at 14:14

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.