Pakistan lies in the monsoon region, yet its climate is mostly dry.There is a great variation in the patterns of rainfall in different climatic zones and regions of Pakistan.The average annual rainfall in Pakistan is 255 mm.
The climatic zones and regions of Pakistan with there representative cities are as under:
List of Climatic zones and Regions of Pakistan
Arid and Hyper Arid regions:
A large area of Pakistan possesses this type of climate and constitutes a major climatic region. The rainfall in these regions is less than about 250 mm or in other words 10 cm. An area is considered arid on the basis of the amount of rainfall it receives, irrespective of how much ground water is available. Examples are Layyah, Muzaffargarh, Mianwali, Lodhran, Vehari,Larkana,Hyderabad, Bannu etc.
Then there is another climate falling in this category which is even more extreme than the arid. It is the hyper arid climate characterized by less than 150 mm of annual rainfall. Other name of this climate is desert climate. Deserts make a large share in the climatic regions of Pakistan. Pakistan has some great desert areas. These include Thar desert in Sindh, Cholistan in Punjab, Bahawalpur,Rahim Yaar Khan, Jacobabad and central parts of Northern Areas.
Semi-Arid regions receive greater amount of rainfall than Arid areas. The annual precipitation here is 250-500 mm. A large amount of area of our country is under this climate. Cities are Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Lahore ,Sargodha, Sheikhupura, Peshawar, Mardan, Central and North Western Dir, Kohat etc.
There is abundant rainfall in these areas and most of the agriculture is possible without irrigation. These areas receive rainfall of about 500-1000 mm annually and sometimes more than 1000 mm. Examples of such areas are Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Chakwal, Sialkot, Abbotabad, Attock, Jhelum, Parachinar.
The areas like Gilgit, Baltistan in north posses very cool sub-humid and arid climate since rainfall is not much there and intense cold prevails in most of the year.
The North-east mountainous and sub-mountainous areas fall in this category.The rainfall here is very high. Among all the climatic regions of Pakistan, these areas receive highest rainfall. Usually these areas receive more than 1700 mm of rainfall annually, a major share of which is in monsoon (1000 mm). Cities of Swat, Murree and upper Hazara division comes under such area. The winters are extremely cold here.
The sub-tropical regions are present in the North-west of Pakistan.The rainfall average in summer is 95mm and in winter it is 63-95 mm. Examples of sub-tropical climate are the cities of Quetta, Kalat, Zhob, Pashin and Waziristan area.
These were the climatic regions of Pakistan. Pakistan has also been divided into different agro-ecological zones. These are based on topography, weather and many other factors.