The long Atlantic coastline is the factor which has the greatest influence on the country’s climate. In coastal regions it may rain a lot in winter although the temperatures do not drop too much. The exception to this is the Algarve which, despite its Atlantic coastline, faces south and is protected from the north winds by mountains, making it the only region that has pleasant temperatures all year round. The remaining coastal areas tend to have hot or very hot summers, with cool breezes at night. The interior of the country is subject to more extreme conditions, with very cold winters, even in the Alentejo (where it sometimes snows in winter, although this is rare) and hotter summers, even in Trás-os-Montes (where temperatures can rise to 47 degrees). Spring and autumn are good times to visit the country, as the climate is less extreme and it is not so crowded as in July and August. Each season, however, has its own particular beauty throughout the country.