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8 Surprising Places You’d Never Believe It’s Snowed

Updated: Sep. 01, 2023

Venturing down south to escape the cold? Think again.

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When the weather outside is frightful, there’s nothing most of us want more than to be, well, anywhere else. But even these places with a reputation for having warm weather have seen snow, too. We reached out to Jonathan Belles and Linda Lam, digital meteorologists at The Weather Channel, to find out when the last time that twinkling snowflakes have graced these surprising places with their presence.

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The Sonoran Desert

Yes, believe it or not, it has snowed in the desert. Since the Sonoran Desert is so vast, we used data based in a city called Yuma, which is about 1 hour and 45 minutes away from Phoenix, Arizona. The last time the Sonoran Desert saw snow was in 1967, which only accumulated to a dusting. Before that, it snowed 1.5 inches in 1932.

These stunning photos of National Parks covered in snow will take your breath away.

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Las Vegas, Nevada

Ah, Las Vegas. It might be best known for its casinos and incredible attractions, but it’s definitely not the first place you’d think of when someone says “snow.” Then again, Sin City never fails to surprise its visitors. The last time it snowed here was in 2008, when the city accumulated 3.6 inches. (As beautiful as snow may be, it can be dangerous. Here’s how to keep yourself safe and healthy during the colder months.)

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Courtesy Domoina, via SEED Madagascar

Antsirabe, Madagascar

How surprising is it that it has actually snowed in Madagascar? Fortunately, SEED Madagascar, an NGO working in southeast Madagascar, managed to produce a photo of snow covering the ground of the city of Antsirabe in 1900, which is located about three and a half hours from the capital city of Antananarivo. (Do you live in one of America’s prettiest winter towns?)

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Houston, Texas

“Houston, we have a problem,” and it’s… snow? Yes, it has snowed in Houston, too. In January of 2018, there was a trace (less than 0.1 inches) of snow. In December of 2017, there were 0.7 inches. But before that, it hadn’t snowed since 2009, when the city had 1 inch of snow.

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Sydney, Australia

Even the “land down under” gets hit with snow. “Snow in Sydney is extremely rare,” according to Belles and Lam. “Some records point to the last snow in the city being 180 years ago, but even this may have been hail.” It’s been so long since Sydney has seen snow that when it did, it had only been ten years since the first photograph was taken with a camera—ever. So, unfortunately, there aren’t any photos of this rare phenomenon.

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Courtesy Brennan Juhan

Tallahassee, Florida

During the “bomb cyclone” winter storm that hit the east coast in early 2018, Tallahassee welcomed its first snowfall since 1989, which accumulated 0.1 inches of snow. In 1989, the Floridian city received 1 inch.

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Via University of Southern California California Historical Society

Los Angeles, California

You might think you’re escaping the cold by visiting the sun-kissed streets of LA, but even the city of angels gets its fair share of snow. “Snow in Los Angeles is extremely rare,” says Belles. Unsurprisingly, it’s been a while since LA’s last snowfall, which was in 1954 and accumulated 0.3 inches.

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Charleston, South Carolina

Before 2018’s “bomb cyclone,” winter storm, which brought a whopping 5.3 inches to Charleston, the last time it snowed in this part of South Carolina was in 2010. That storm brought a mere 0.2 inches.