Geographically, the city of Munich lies at the intersection of the humid Atlantic climate and dry continental air. The nearby Alps and the Danube river are further geological factors influencing the city’s frequent changes of weather conditions. A particular local phenomenon is the so-called Föhn. Most likely deriving from the Latin word favonius (balmy wind), Föhn describes warm air currents from Italy that have come across the Alps to Bavaria. During Föhn periods, the city shines brightly in a cloudless sky and the clear atmosphere allows a perfect view of the Alps from the city. Despite the beautiful weather, though, many Munich residents find Föhn a rather unpleasant climate. It is said that the low pressure of the warm air leads to headaches and cardiovascular problems.
Even though Munich is the southernmost major city in Germany, it experiences the heaviest snowfall due to its altitude: 500 meters above sea level. However, in general, the city is exposed to the common four-season climate of Central Europe.
Looking at the microclimate of Munich, statistics have shown that the southern part of the city is the sunniest, while the northern part of town has the most fog. Also, the western region has more dry periods than the eastern. These slight divergences can be explained by the difference in altitude within the city borders and the natural east-west division of Munich by the Isar river.