European city sweltering in 40C heatwave as tourist attractions forced to close for second

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun10,2024

Authorities in Greece have announced the closure of the Acropolis in Athens for the second consecutive afternoon on Thursday as the nation endures unseasonably high temperatures.

The Culture Ministry stated that the iconic hilltop citadel, Greece’s most popular ancient site, will be shut from midday to 5pm due to the extreme heat

This closure also applies to all other archaeological sites in the Greek capital during the same hours.

Visitors who have booked tours for the affected period can use their tickets later in the day, the ministry confirmed.

Temperatures across central and southern Greece, including greater Athens, the Cyclades islands, and Crete, are expected to exceed 40C on Thursday. 

This intense heat has put officials on heightened alert for wildfires, which are a frequent and devastating occurrence during Greek summers.

In response to the soaring temperatures, authorities in Athens have opened air-conditioned public areas and provided fans to secondary schools where end-of-year and university entrance exams are taking place.

The weather forecast indicates a slight reprieve, with cooler temperatures expected on Friday and Saturday.

According to the meteorologists, the high temperatures are being driven by southerly winds bringing hot air and dust from North Africa.

Red Cross medics distributed water bottles to tourists, and primary schools and nurseries in southern parts of the country remained closed until Friday, when cooler weather was expected.

This heatwave is the latest in a series of unprecedented weather events for Greece, one of Europe’s most climate-affected countries. Last August, Greece experienced its largest wildfire in 23 years at Dadia National Park in Evros, following wildfires on the island of Rhodes just a month earlier. 

In total, 28 people lost their lives and more than 80 blazes were recorded. Greece also endured its hottest winter on record, further exacerbating conditions conducive to wildfires this year. 

One such fire occurred in northern Athens this March.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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