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Israel is a country in southwestern Asia It lies at the eastern edge of the Mediterranean Sea Egypt borders it on the southwest Jordan in the east Syria on the north The total area of Israel is about 20700 square kilometers about 8000 square miles Israel stretches north to south to a maximum length of about 420 kilometers from east to west it varies from 16 to 115 kilometers Encarta Israel has a diversity of landforms The highest areas are found in the mountainous regions in the north Har Meron at 3963 feet is the highest point in the country South of Gailee mountains are the Rocky limestone terraced hills and valley of Samaria and Judea by the Plain of Esdraelon The Negev a partly mountainous triangular desert makes up 60 of Israels land area Encarta Israel climate is Mediterranean It has mild moist rainy winters and hot dry summers Temperatures varies considerably with altitude exposure to the sea and predominant winds January is normally the coldest month and August the warmest In upland regions such as Jerusalem January temperatures average 9 degrees Celsius 48 Degrees Fahrenheit while August temperatures average 24 degrees Celsius 75 degrees Fahrenheit In coastal plains including Haifa and Tel Aviv Yafo January averages 12 degrees Celsius 54 degrees Fahrenheit and August averages 25 degrees Celsius 77 degrees Fahrenheit The highest and lowest elevations are subject to extremes frost occurs a few days a year in mountainous inland regions while summer temperatures can reach the upper 30 degrees Celsius lower 100degree Fahrenheit in the Jordan valley and in the southern desert regions Israel subtropical it borders the tropical zone desert is hot and dry year round The northern mountainous area has temperature variations with some freezing and even an occasional snow Parts of the south may receive but one inch of rain annually however the coastal and the Upper Galilee regions receive from twenty-five to forty five inches of rain
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