Greece and Turkey travel warning as extreme rare weather sees holiday hotspots covered in SNOW and flights cancelled

BRITS heading to Greece and Turkey have faced huge travel disruption after a storm has caused heavy snowfall across the holiday islands.

Rare images show Mykonos coated in snow while passengers at Istanbul airport faced delayed and cancelled flights.

The UK Foreign Office warned of severe disruption to transport and public services due to “extreme weather” in parts of Greece.

The website says: "Due to extreme weather in parts of Greece, there is severe disruption to transport and public services.

"The Greek government has announced a national holiday in affected areas on 25 January.

"This means the British Embassy in Athens and Vice-Consulate in Crete will be closed."

A video shared on social media revealed a Mykonos resort coated in snow, with the sea completely blanketed by fog.

Some of the island’s most popular beaches were also forced to close.

One person tweeted: "Snow on the island of Mykonos. No wonder I've never seen this before: the last time it snowed in the Cyclades was half a century ago!"

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Other images show strong snowfall across Athens, with rescue crews, including the army, worked through the night to evacuate thousands of people stranded in their cars on a motorway.

As temperatures fell overnight, soldiers handed out food, water and blankets to drivers, some of whom were stranded in their cars for more than 10 hours

More than 3,500 people have been evacuated, some abandoning their cars on foot, but around 1,200 cars remained stuck on the Attiki Odos, the capital's main ring-road, government spokesperson Giannis Oikonomou said.

"We had a very difficult night and a superhuman evacuation effort is underway on Attiki Odos," he told Greek television.

"We are still in a very difficult phase, as the forecasts indicate that we will face (weather) difficulties again in a while," he said.

Nearly 1,000 flights have been cancelled across Greece and Turkey in the past two day, according to aviation analytics Cirium.

Most flights from Athens Airport have been cancelled, with Aegean and Olympic Air operating limited routes.

And in Turkey, Istanbul Airport has been forced to close, while Turkish Airlines suspended their flights due to the runways being covered in snow.

Passengers were stuck aboard stranded flights, and complained on social media that they were left without drinks or blankets while waiting for the next flight.

One woman wrote: "We’ve been stuck in #IST airport for 30 hours with no help or answers from Turkish Airlines. Passengers are starting to protest."

The airline posted on social media: "Upon the decisions of the authorities and for the safety of our valued passengers, our flights departing from Istanbul Airport will be operated in a limited number of times using a runway that is made ready for flights, due to adverse weather conditions in Istanbul."

Major highways were closed across both countries and basic services such as food delivery shut down.

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The island of Mykonos hasn't seen snow in decades
Istanbul Airport passengers had to sleep at the airport overnight
Lebanon, Israel, Turkey and Syria covered in SNOW thanks to a ‘wobbling’ polar vortex

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