Holidaymakers facing searing heat in Europe this week

Temperatures could hit record highs in Spain and Portugal

Holidaymakers facing searing heat in Europe this week

File photo of the Algarve Coast, Portugal. Image: 22-02-2014

Holidaymakers are being urged to prepare for potentially record-breaking heat across Europe later this week.

Southwest France, Spain and Portugal and Italy are most at risk.

Inland parts of the Algarve could hit 48C - a temperature last reached in Europe back in 1977 in Athens.

Met Éireann forecaster Harm Luijkx said the stifling heat will peak in inland areas.

“The temperatures will be highest for inland parts of Portugal and Spain,” he said.

“Most people who go on holidays will go to coastal areas and temperatures will be a bit less hot there - between 30C and 35C.

“It might be best to avoid inland areas of Portugal and Spain for the next week or so.”

He said the heat will hang around until next week at the earliest.

“From what we can here, there seems to be no end for the foreseeable future – maybe there is a bit of cooling later next week, but that is far away on in the meantime it will be very hot.”

The last time Iberia hit 47C, was in August 1964.

Temperatures in France will get up to 40C in the south and southwest of the country.

Highs of 34-37C are possible over central areas or France with 32-35C in the north under stagnant high pressure.

Italy will see temperatures of 37C or 38C in Tuscany and the north of the country.