The average temperature is 9.4 °C (49 °F), the average annual precipitation is about 505 mm (19.88 in), the average number of precipitation days is 150, the average annual sunshine is 1,771 hours, and the prevailing wind direction is northwest. Its elevation above the sea level varies from 190 m (623.36 ft) to 425 m (1,394.36 ft), and the highest point in the area is the Kopecek Hill. There are dozens of legally protected areas which are protected because of their ecological and/or natural values, like the Moravian Karst, Stranska Skala, and others.
Brno is the former capital city of Moravia and the political and cultural hub of the South Moravian Region. The city has over 400 thousand residents. Its urban agglomeration has approximately 450 thousand residents. Its larger urban zone had a population of about 730 thousand in 2004 while its greater metropolitan area is home to more than 800 thousand people,. The estimated population of the South Moravian Region is 1.2 million people. According to the Eurostat population estimate from the year 2004 Brno had 367,729 inhabitants, which ranks it among the 100 largest cities of the EU. Brno is situated at the crossroads of ancient trade routes which have joined northern and southern European civilizations for centuries, and as a part of the Danube basin region. The city is historically connected with Vienna which lies a mere 110 km (68.35 mi) to the south