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Tourist Wilting Time: Greece Gets Ready to Sizzle Again – 111 Degrees

ATHENS – Worries that climate change will make Greece too hot for tourists to visit will be tested with predictions that temperatures in some parts of the country could hit 111 degrees Fahrenheit, just as the hordes of foreign visitors have arrived.

The forecast for the two weeks through June 23 was for sunshine and daily temperatures generally from 34-39 degrees Celsius (93-102 Fahrenheit) but with some areas inland expected to bake.

Heat warnings were issued with little relief for Greeks trapped in the cities, few municipal swimming pools and much of Athens’ coast occupied by private businesses charging users for access to public beaches that are supposed to be open.

The National Meteorological Service sounded the heat alarm and meteorologist Yiannis Kallianos told the business newspaper Naftemporiki site that the thermometer will be near the top, above 109 degrees in some areas.

Tourists and residents in the cities will have few places to escape the broiling temperatures and there were no initial reports whether municipal buildings with air conditioning would be opened for those without it, especially the elderly.

To make it even worse, African dust that periodically settles over the country like a brown gritty shroud was also expected at the same time, coming from the Sahara and blowing across the sea, the Greek mainland and Ionian islands prime targets.

The brutal heat wave began in northern Africa, in Algeria, Tunisia and Libya and could last at least two weeks or more, ahead of the July-August summer months that are usually even hotter, bringing worries about wildfires too over drought.

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