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Florida - The Sunshine State

The sun shines in Florida on almost every single day of the year: indeed in Orlando the sun is shining for around 70% of every hour of daylight throughout the year. It is for this reason that Florida is aptly nicknamed "The Sunshine State".

As shown in the graph below, the sunniest month is usually May when on average each day receives around 10 hours of sunshine. However, even the least sunny months during the winter receive on average 7 hours of sunshine each day, which is still a very large number considering the days are shorter during the winter – if the fluctuation in the length of the day is taken into account, the fraction of available hours of daytime for which the sun is shining is relatively constant throughout the year.

Graph showing the average number of hours of sunshine in Orlando by month

Strength of the Sun

Florida is located in the subtropics – Orlando is only only 28.5° north of the equator – so during the months around midsummer the midday sun rises extremely high in the sky.

As shown in the graph below, at its highest point in the middle of June, the sun rises to around 85° above the horizon – almost directly overhead – resulting in extremely powerful ultraviolet radiation. It is therefore particularly important to protect yourself from the harmful effects of the sun during the summer – sunburn can occur much more quickly than during the summer further from the equator.

Graph showing the average maximum angle of the sun in Orlando above the horizon by month

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