Which were the sunniest departments in France 2015?

The table below shows the number of sunshine hours in the top twenty sunniest mainland departments of France for 2014.

Not surprisingly, the region of Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur dominates at the top of the list, gaining the first five places. The sunniest department was the Bouches-du-Rhône, a consistent performer at the top of the table over successive years.

However, it is interesting this year to see such a varied range of regions appearing in the table. Somewhat unusually departments in the regions of Champagne-Ardenne and Burgundy scrape into the table. The west Alantic coast also had a good year, with a cluster of departments in Poitou-Charentes and Pays-de-la-Loire all present.

Flop of the year was the Midi-Pyrénées region, loosing three departments from the 2013 table – Tarn-et-Garonne, Lot and Aveyron, all departments that regularly feature in the list.

Perhaps the most significant change from previous years was the comparatively low level of sunshine in 2014. In general, the top places in the table normally receive over 3,000 hours of sunshine a year, and rarely are there departments in the top twenty with less than 2,000 hours per year.

The Pyrénées-Orientales (Languedoc-Roussillon) was the driest department in France last year, with a mere 349 millimetres of rainfall.

Many French departments are large, with different climate zones within them, so the table should be used only as a general guide.


Sunshine Hours By Department 2014
No Department/Region Hours
1 Bouches-du-Rhône (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur) 2,325
2 Var (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur) 2,251
3 Alpes-Maritimes (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur) 2,209
4 Vaucluse (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur) 2,118
5 Alpes-de-Haute-Provence (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur) 2,100
6 Gard (Languedoc-Roussillon) 2,080
7 Hérault (Languedoc-Roussillon) 2,015
8 Hautes-Alpes (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur) 1,992
9 Pyrénées-Orientales (Languedoc-Roussillon) 1,949
10 Drôme (Rhône-Alpes) 1,889
11 Ardèche (Rhône-Alpes) 1,885
12 Aude (Languedoc-Roussillon) 1,848
13 Charente-Maritime (Poitou-Charentes) 1,840
14 Vendée (Pay-de-la-Loire) 1,809
15 Loire-Atlantique (Pay-de-la-Loire) 1,780
16 Tarn (Midi-Pyrénées) 1,751
17 Deux-Sèvres (Poitou-Charentes) 1,750
18 Charente (Poitou-Charentes) 1,744
19 Saône-et-Loire (Burgundy) 1,740
20 Marne (Champagne-Ardenne) 1,738


Source : Météo France – Sunniest Departments in France 2014

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