Does it snow in Afghanistan?

Does it snow in Afghanistan? The short answer is a resounding yes! Although we sure: you know more than that.

Known as The Graveyard of Empires, Afghanistan, the land that numerous empires, kingdoms, and nations managed to conquer but none knew how to maintain, is undoubtedly one of the modern States with the most warlike history of all.

From Alexander the Great, through the Maurya, the Muslim Arabs, the Mongols, and the Soviets, to the incursion of NATO allied countries, Afghanistan has repeatedly suffered from the invasion of foreign empires, kingdoms, and nations.

The troubled history of Afghanistan and its current socio-political instability makes it one of the least favorable countries for tourism. Although, this does not prevent us from scrutinizing the behavior of some meteorological phenomena (snow) in this country.


    🇦🇫 Snow in Afghanistan?

    Despite being considered one of the driest countries in the Middle East, and the characteristic aridity of its soils, Afghanistan has one of the climatological favors that most favor the appearance of snowfall: the altitude of its relief.

    Some of the most impressive mountain ranges in the world, the Hindu Kush and the Pamirs, are in Afghanistan, or at least a large part of them.

    Thanks to the considerable elevation of Afghanistan, which easily exceeds the climatic altitude limit of snow in more than a hundred peaks of the Hindu Kush, snowfall is not a weather phenomenon foreign to Afghanistan and rains are even more so in some regions of the country.

    Oddly enough, snow from the mountains is considered a real blessing in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, as it is one of the few water sources of the capital.

    In summary, it does snow in Afghanistan! Indeed, in those mountainous regions where the limit of climatic altitude of snow is exceeded, it can snow at any time of the year, just as it happens on the peak of Nowshak, the highest mountain in Afghanistan (24580.05 ft.) 

    The climate of Afghanistan


    General characteristics

    According to the Köppen climate classification, counting types and subtypes, Afghanistan exhibits up to twelve climate types throughout its territory, from hot desert climate (BWh) to ice cap climate (EF):

    Map of Afghanistan climate

    Due to such diversity, any general explication of the characteristics of Afghanistan's climate is useless since these aspects will depend exclusively on the prevailing climatological factors in each of the Afghanistan provinces.


    Technical characteristics

    Some of the following technical characteristics have been calculated by averaging climatological data for the following cities: Kabul, Kandahar, Mazar-e-Sharif, Herat, Jalalabad, and Kunduz. 

    • Climate types (Köppen climate classification):
      • Hot desert (BWh).
      • Cold desert (BWk).
      • Hot semi-arid (BSh).
      • Cold semi-arid (BSk).
      • Hot-summer Mediterranean (Csa).
      • Warm-summer Mediterranean (Csb).
      • Dry-winter humid subtropical (Cwa).
      • Hot-summer continental (Dsa).
      • Warm-summer Mediterranean continental (Dsb).
      • Dry-summer subarctic (Dsc).
      • Tundra (ET).
      • Ice Cap (EF).
    • Average maximum temperatures in winter: 55.58 °F (13.1 °C).
    • Average maximum temperatures in spring: 81.83 °F (27.6 °C).
    • Average maximum temperatures in fall: 71.38 °F (21.8 °C).
    • Average maximum temperatures in summer: 95.92 °F (35.5 °C).
    • Average minimum temperatures in winter: 36.63 °F (2.5 °C).
    • Average minimum temperatures in spring: 58.83 °F (14.9 °C).
    • Average minimum temperatures in fall: 48.38 °F (9.1 °C).
    • Average minimum temperatures in summer: 71.83 °F (22.1 °C).
    • Average monthly rainfall in winter: 0.95 inches (2.4 cm).
    • Average monthly rainfall in spring: 0.83 inches (2.1 cm).
    • Average monthly rainfall in fall: 0.39 inches (0.9 cm).
    • Average monthly rainfall in summer: 0.32 inches (0.8 cm).
    • Average monthly snowfall in winter: 1.03 inches (2.6 cm).
    • Average monthly snowfall in spring: 0.08 inches (0.2 cm).
    • Average monthly snowfall in fall: 0.34 inches (0.8 cm).
    • Average monthly snowfall in summer: 0.00 inches (0.00 cm).

    When does it snow in Afghanistan? 🌨

    Snow in Afghanistan

    Does it snow in Afghanistan in September?

    Yes, it might snow in September. Without counting the peaks of the Hindu Kush and the Pamir that easily exceed the limit of climatological altitude of the snow, it is possible to contemplate minor snowfalls in some inhabitable regions of the province of Badakhshan.

    Does it snow in Afghanistan in October?

    Yes, it might snow in October. As of this month, the provinces of Badakhshan, Bamyan, Ghor, Badghis, Jowzjan, Kunduz, and Balkh receive snowfall greater than 0.1 inches in accumulation.

    Does it snow in Afghanistan in November?

    Yes, it does! Oddly enough, it is possible to see snowfall in most of the Afghan provinces, except for the provinces of Laghman, Nangarhar, Uruzgan, Farah, Helmand, Khost, and Nimruz.

    Does it snow in Afghanistan in December?

    Yes, it does! Once winter sets in, snowfall is heavier across Afghanistan, reaching as much as four inches of accumulation in some inhabitable regions of Ghor province.

    Does it snow in Afghanistan in January?

    Yes, it does! Undoubtedly, January is one of the snowiest months in Afghanistan. Indeed, snowfall over 2 inches of accumulation is possible in 15 of the 34 Afghan provinces.

    Does it snow in Afghanistan in February?

    Yes, it does! February is the snowiest month in Afghanistan. Compared to January, during this month, the average snow accumulation increases by around 10%, reaching considerably high levels in cities such as Bāmyān, Dū Laīnah, and Gardez.

    Does it snow in Afghanistan in March?

    Yes, it does! Once spring begins, snowfall gradually begins to decrease in Afghanistan. Despite that, the snowfalls remain present in almost all Afghan provinces, exceeding 5 inches of accumulation in Badakhshan province.

    Does it snow in Afghanistan in April?

    Yes, it does! During this month, light snowfall can be seen in the provinces of Bamyan, Ghor, Badghis, Paktia, Ghazni, Daykundi, Paktika, Samangan, Parwan, and Faryab; and also, moderate snowfall in some regions of Badakhshan.

    Does it snow in Afghanistan in May?

    Yes, it might snow in May! Although, hopefully, only in those mountainous regions whose height easily exceeds the climatological altitude limit of snow.

    Where does it snow in Afghanistan? 🌨

    Below, we present a map of the territorial division of the state of Afghanistan in which the distribution of snowfall in the thirty-four provinces that make up the country is roughly exemplified:

    Map of the territorial division of the state of Afghanistan with distribution of snowfall

    1. In this case, the darker the blue color, the higher the average snow accumulation for the province in its snowiest month (February).
    2. This map is not an exact definition but rather an approximation of the behavior of snowfall in Afghanistan since during the creation of this map, only certain locations are considered, and not all the cities and towns that make up every one of the thirty-four Afghanistan provinces.
    3. For this map, the dark gray color represents the unknown behavior of snowfall in that region.

    How much does it snow in Afghanistan? 🌨

    Next, we expose a comparison chart of the average snow accumulation throughout a sliding 31-day period (centered on the day in question) in the thirty-four provinces of Afghanistan:

    ProvinceDistrict/ City/ LocationJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
    GhorDū Laīnah673,50,7000000,31,44
    BadghisQala i Naw3,12,91,30,3000000,10,72,3
    BaghlanPul-e Khumrī2,92,20,500000000,40,9
    LaghmanMehtar Lām0,61,10,2000000000,1
    BalkhMazār-e Sharīf1,310,20000000,10,70,9
    HelmandLashkar Gāh0,20,10000000000,2
    KapisaUnknown information
    Sar-e Pol

    The numbers shown in the table above represent inches.

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