The Adriatic is a relatively self-contained branch of the Mediterranean Sea, with many climatic features in common and yet plenty of its own characteristics
Because the Adriatic almost reaches to the Alps in the north, there are specific differences in climate between its northern and southern parts. These are less noticeable in summer, but in winter they can differ quite sharply. The line drawn between the two faces of the same sea is easily discerned – Ploča promontory – also known to sailors as Planka promontory, two miles south of Rogoznica, on the route between Šibenik and Split.
Weather conditions on the Adriatic are determined by the interchange of cyclones and anticyclones over central and southern Europe. The usual direction of cyclone movement over the Adriatic is west to east. These fronts brings southerly winds (this is when the jugo or south wind blows all along the Adriatic), warm, moist air, and often clouds and rain. Behind these cyclones, as anticyclones build up and spread across the European mainland towards the east, the wind turns northeasterly, bringing cold, dry air. The bura clears away the cloud cover and this is followed by a temporary drop in temperature, then stable weather. Clear, calm weather, with moderate, daily maestral winds, will prevail until the next cyclone.
The bura and the jugo are the best known Adriatic winds, though within the spectrum of winds there are many more, and many synonyms for the same wind. These include the grega, levanat, šiloko (other names for the south wind), oštro, garbin, ponente, pulenat, tramontana… to mention but a few. But the bura and the jugo are the basic winds, which denote two basic types of weather, so we talk about “bura weather” or “jugo weather”. The third wind, which characteristically blows during the summer, is the maestral, a sign of stable weather between two cyclones.