World Climatic Types

By Hemant Kumar|Updated : February 15th, 2020

Savanna or Sudan Climate

A transitional type of climate found between the equatorial forests and the trade wind hot deserts. Confined within the tropics and is best developed in Sudan, where dry and wet seasons are most distinct.


  • In South America, two distinct regions of Savanna, North and South of the Equator, namely the Llanos and the Campos
  • Characterized by an Alternate hot and rainy season and cool, dry season.
  • Extreme Diurnal Range of temperature. Days are hot and nights are cold. Harmattan: Dry Dusty Local Wind.
  • Tallgrass and short trees. Trees are always present with luxuriant tall grass. Parkland or Bushveld use to describe the landscape.
  • Big Game Country (Home of Wild Animals), Masai and Hausa Tribes.

What is the reason for alternating wet and dry seasons in Savanna type climate?

  • On-shore winds are summer bring rains.
  • Off-shore winds in winter keep the climate dry.


  • As the rainfall diminishes towards the deserts the savanna merges into thorny scrub.


  1. The Hot-Wet Equatorial Climate.


5° and 10° North and South of the Equator. Lowlands of Amazon, Congo, Malaysia and Indonesia.

  • Great uniformity of temperature throughout the year.
  • There is no winter. Cloudiness and heavy precipitation help to moderate the daily temperature.
  • Regular land and sea breezes which assist in maintaining a truly equable temperature.
  • The diurnal range of temperature is small and so is the annual range.
  • In the Amazon lowlands, the forests are so dense and so complete in its vegetational extravagance that a special term “Selvas” is used.
  • The equatorial vegetation comprises a multitude of evergreen trees that yield tropical hardwood, e.g. mahogany, ebony, dyewoods etc.
  • The equatorial vegetation comprises a multitude of evergreen trees that yield tropical hardwood, e.g. mahogany, ebony, dyewoods etc.

Lalang = Tall Grass  Ladang = newly cleared land

Lianas = Climbing Plants   Belukar = Secondary forests (Short trees, very dense undergrowth)

  1. Desert Climate | Hot Deserts & Mid-Latitude Deserts


The major hot deserts of the World are located on the Western Coasts of continents between latitude 15° and 30° North and South.

  • The aridity of the hot desert is mainly due to the effects of the shore Trade Winds, hence they are called Trade Wind Deserts
  • The diurnal range of temperature in deserts is very great. Intense insolation by day in a region of dry air and no clouds cause the temperature to rise with the sun. As soon as the sun sets, the land loses heat very quickly by radiation.
  • The predominant vegetation of both hot and mid-latitude deserts is Xerophytic or drought-resistant scrub.
  • Long roots, no leaves, the foliage is either waxy leathery, hairy and needle-shaped. Bushmen Tribes of Kalahari, Bindibu or Aborigines of Australia.
  • A wall is usually constructed around the Oasis to keep out the violent dust storms called Simoons. Date palm, High Mineral Sources, Oil, etc.
  1. Mediterranean Climate (Western Margin Climate)


  • Entirely confined to the western portion of continental masses, between 30° and 45°north and south of the equator.
  • The basic cause of this type of climate is the shifting of the wind belts.
  • The Mediterranean Sea has the greatest extent of this type of ‘winter rain climate’, and gives rise to the name Mediterranean Climate.
  • The best-developed form of this climatic type is found in central Chile.
  • Other Mediterranean regions include California (around San Francisco), The south-western tip of Africa (around Cape Town), Southern Australia, and south-west Australia (Swanland).
  • A dry, warm summer with offshore trades.
  • A concentration of rainfall with onshore Westerlies.
  • The rainfall comes in heavy showers and only for few days with bright sunny periods between them.
  • Bright, Sunny weather with hot dry summers and mild, wet, winters.
  • The prominence of many local winds around the Mediterranean Sea.

 Hot Winds:    Sirocco which is known as Leveche (Spain), Chili (Tunisia), Ghibli (Libya), Khamsin( Egypt)  and Gharbi (Aegean and the Adriatic Sea)

 Cold Winds:      Mistral, Tramontana, Bora and Gregale.

  • Trees with small broad leaves are widely spaced and never very tall. The absence of shade is a distinct feature of Mediterranean lands.
  • Viticulture and Orchard Farming of a range of citrus fruits.
  1. Steppe Climate (Temperate Continental Grassland Climate)


  • Bordering the deserts, away from the Mediterranean regions and in the interiors of Continent are the temperate grasslands.
  • They are so much remote from the maritime influence that the grasslands are practically treeless.



North America




Isolated Sections in Hungary


South America




  • Their climate is continental with extremes of temperatures.
  • In contrast, the steppe type of climate in the southern hemisphere is never severe. The annual range of temperature is great.
  • In the northern hemisphere (that is; the continental position), the annual precipitation of the Steppe Climate can be expected to be light.
  • The Maritime influence in the steppe type of climate of the southern hemisphere is even better brought by the rainfall regime since warm ocean currents bring a large amount of rainfall.
  • On the eastern slopes of the Rockies in Canada and U.S.A. a local wind, similar to the Fohn in Switzerland, called the Chinook (means Mild Winter), comes in a south-westerly direction to the Prairies and has a considerable effect on the local pastures.
  • Extensive mechanized wheat cultivation. Major cattle farming grounds.
  1. Warm Temperate Eastern Margin ( China Type)


  • This type of climate is found on the eastern margins of continents in warm temperature latitudes, just outside the tropics.
  • More rainfall in summer even though its in the same latitude of Mediterranean Climate
  • It’s the climate in most part of China. Sometimes referred to as “Gulf Type” of Climate. In Southern Hemisphere sometimes referred to as the “Natal types of Climate”
  • Warm Moist Summer and a cool dry winter with strong modifications from Maritime influences.

China Type: Complete seasonal wind reversal. Monsoon type of climate very well established. Intense tropical cyclones (Typhoons)

Gulf Type: America of South East and  Mexico of North East. No complete seasonal reversal of winds. Monsoon is less developed. Heavy Annual Rainfall. Hurricanes and Thunderstorms. Tornadoes.

Natal Type: Evenly distributed rainfall throughout the year. The dominance of maritime influence.

  • Rain comes in the prolonged shower, much water seeps into the ground and there is little runoff so the regions are well suited for agriculture and are some of the best-settled parts of Southern continents (Sydney, Rio, Pretoria)
  • Small annual temperature range without any really cold month.

Pampero ( Wind in Argentina and Uruguay)

Berg Wind  (Hot dry wind in Africa)

  • Pines, Palms, Conifers, Eucalyptus (Eastern Australia), Quebracho (Axe breaker, extremely hardwood)
  • Agriculture farming – Corn, Tobacco, Rice, Cotton, Maize. Cattle and Sheep, Dairying.
  1. The Cool Temperate Western Margin (British Type)


  • They are in the permanent influence of Westerlies all round the year. They are also the regions of much cyclonic activity.
  • There are so many oceanic influences on both the temperature and the precipitation that climate is also referred to as the North-West European Maritime Climate.
  • The climatic belt stretches far inland into the lowlands of North-West Europe (northern and western France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, western Norway and also north-western Iberia).
  • In the southern hemisphere, the climate is experienced in Southern Chile, Tasmania, most parts of New Zealand.
  • The annual range of temperature is small. Summers are never very warm. Heat Waves (Short spell of warm summer) are a welcome feature in cool temperate latitude.
  • Winters are abnormally mild. This is attributed to the warming effect of the warm North Atlantic Drift and prevalence of South Westerlies. Some of the most advanced parts of the world are located in this zone.
  • Lack of continental landmasses in Tasmania, New Zealand and Southern Chile means that extremes of temperature are not likely at all.
  • Since the rain-bearing winds come from the west, the western margins have the highest rainfall. The amount decreases eastwards with increasing distance from the sea. Spring is the driest and most refreshing after the winters.
  • Trees shed their leaves in the cold season. Higher up the mountains, conifers. In Tasmania, temperate Eucalypts. A deciduous forest containing Oak, Elm, Beech, Birch, Maple, etc
  • A net importer of wheat, Industries are concerned with the production of machinery, chemicals, textiles. Fishing is important in Britain, Norway, etc. Horticulture Industries, Chocolate making, Pigs and Poultry, Sheep rearing, Woolen Textiles.
  1. The Cool Temperate Eastern Margin (Laurentian)


  • It is an intermediate type of climate between the British and the Siberian type of Climate. It has features both of the maritime and the continental climates.
  • Found in just two regions a) North Eastern North America, including eastern Canada, North East USA b) Eastern Coastlands of Asia, North China, Korea Manchuria and northern Japan.
  • It's absent in Southern Hemisphere. This is because only a small section of the southern continents extends south of the latitude of 40° S
  • In the southern hemisphere, the climate is so equable and the oceanic influence is so profound that neither the continental nor the eastern margin type of climate exists.
  • Offshore cold currents from the Arctic makes the summers mild which otherwise are warm.

North American Region: Uniformity in Precipitation. The meeting of warm Gulf Stream and Cold Labrador current on coastal waters produces dense mist and fog. Experience a large amount of drizzle. Prolong heat waves due to high temperature in summer.

Asiatic Region: Far less uniform rainfall. Winters are cold and very dry while summers are very warm and exceptionally wet. The climate of Japan is modified by its ‘insularity’ and also by a meeting of warm and cold currents.

  • The Laurentian type of climate is often described as Cool Temperate Monsoon Climate.
  • Cool temperate forests, Eastern Siberia and Korea have coniferous trees. Southwards, there are deciduous trees – Oak, Maple, Birch, Beech, etc.
  • Lumbering, Agriculture, Major Fishing Grounds due to a meeting of warm and cold ocean currents. Whaling, Pearl cultivation, Marine Agro Processing.
  • New York, Beijing and Japan.


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