Mercury to hit 22C as sunshine finally arrives after dull April
Temperatures are set to reach into the 20s this weekend and the warm weather could last a week, forecasters say.
The best of the hot weather will be in the west and north-west from Sunday, bringing some early summer joy after one of the coldest Aprils in decades.
Temperatures are expected to get progressively warmer over the coming days and could reach 22C early next week. However, not all parts of the country will be basking in the welcome heat.
"It will be cooler in the east because of the onshore south-easterly winds, so the warmest places will be in the midlands and the west," said Met Éireann forecaster Deirdre Lowe.
"It's going to be a gorgeous summer day in Donegal this Sunday," she predicted.
She said a slow warming effect would start from today, but eastern areas would see some heavy, thundery downpours over the next two days.
There will be widespread rain and showers on Saturday before Mediterranean-like weather arrives.
"We are looking at temperatures for most of next week into the high teens in the east and low 20s in the west," said Ms Lowe.
Met Éireann says April was one of the dullest on record, especially for Dublin.
Official figures just released by Met Éireann confirmed parts of the country suffered their coldest and dullest April for decades.
Air temperatures sank as low as minus 3C in Sligo last month. Dublin wrapped up against its coldest April in 27 years - with ground frost recorded in the capital on 23 days of the month.
The city also endured its dullest April since 1998, according to records from the weather station at Casement Aerodrome.