It’s the most wonderful (read: least sweaty) time of the year…

Over the past few weeks, you’d be forgiven for thinking that winter had well and truly arrived in the UAE. First there was that freak storm, then we had more thunder, lightning and rain, and now temperatures are hovering comfortably below 30 degrees Celsius.

But the official start of winter doesn’t actually begin until tomorrow, December 7. Why? Because that is when the Antares star – the brightest star in the constellation of Scorpius – will be visible.

10 things to look forward to in Dubai this December
11 festive events coming up in Dubai to get you in the Christmas spirit

Sharjah-based astronomer and meteorologist Ebrahim Al Jarwan told Gulf News the sighting of this red supergiant star was traditionally used in the Arabian Peninsula to indicate a drop in temperature. The cold season will last until the middle of January.

You might recall that another star, the Suhail star in the Vela constellation, was used to mark the end of summer earlier this year.

What do the forecasters say? According to the National Centre of Meteorology, we can expect partly cloudy weather today, with light to moderate winds.

Temperatures are expected to drop a few degrees over the weekend, hitting a low of 19C to 21C on Saturday. However, a forecaster told Khaleej Times temperatures should return to the average 24C on Sunday.

— For the best of Dubai straight to your inbox, sign up for our newsletter.