Travel Alert Status
Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution
UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
In Algeria, the climate varies. Coastal areas, including Algiers, are hot in summer and chilly and rainy for several months in winter. Inland mountain regions between the coast and the desert have cooler weather; temperatures are below freezing for long periods of winter. Spring and fall in the "Tell" (a part of northern Algeria in which the average annual rainfall is 16 inches or more, making it usable for agriculture), are mild and enjoyable. The Tell and the Sahara have climate extremes, although in different ways. The Tell is very cold in winter and very hot in summer. The Sahara's extremes are between daytime (warm in winter; hot in late spring, summer, early fall) and nighttime (cold year-round).
Algiers has four distinct seasons, with temperature variations ranging normally between 40-110°F. It tends to be extremely hot during the month of August, and some winters can be cold and rainy. In general, however, the weather is quite pleasant, but mold and mildew can be a real problem.
Despite its warm summer, Algiers has what is often described as a "cold climate with a hot sun." Winter temperatures rarely fall below freezing. Cool-weather generally begins in November and lasts into March. The rainy season spans about five months.
Arabic is the official language of Algeria. French was the primary language of business before 1992 but is now only rarely used in the country. Various Berber dialects are spoken in Berber homes and in remote areas but most Berbers also speak Arabic. Arabic speakers constitute 75% of the population, while Berber speakers make up 25% approximately, with French speakers reduced to less than 50,000.
Arabic (official), French, Berber dialects
Arab-Berber 99%, European less than 1%
Revolution Day, 1 November (1954)
28 00 N, 3 00 E
Northern Africa, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Morocco and Tunisia