Best times to visit Thailand depending on weather

Spur-of-the-moment vacations are easy when you live in Southeast Asia and happen to be in close proximity to some of the world’s most coveted destinations. Thailand is especially popular for Malaysians, what with its affordability and myriad of unique experiences. But if you plan ahead, you may just be able to make the most out of your time there, without having to worry about ill-weather. Here’s a curated month-by-month guide on the best times to visit Thailand and the ideal destination to visit within the country, based on the weather. 

Whilst the Land of Smiles is recognised and revered for its balmy beaches, idyllic islands, ravishing resorts, stunning scenery, and crave-worthy cuisine, it isn’t known for having four distinct seasons. Technically, Thailand’s weather encompasses three seasons: summer, monsoon, and the cool season. In actuality, the country experiences three main conditions: hot, hot and wet, and very hot. Which is a sentiment that most Malaysians are likely to be familiar with. 

Whether you’re a local or a foreigner looking to traverse the spice-endorsing, street food haven of the Southeast Asian country, we’ve consulted with mother nature to curate a month-by-month guide on the best time to visit Thailand according to the weather. Plus, we recommend the best place to visit in Thailand for each month. Happy travelling! 

In a nutshell: January emerges as the optimal time to visit Thailand, with subsiding heat and humidity, minimal rainfall, and cooler temperatures prevalent across much of the country. October also stands out as an ideal month to traverse to and within Thailand, marking the conclusion of the monsoon season in numerous regions, offering a window to explore before the peak tourist influx begins. 

[Hero image credit: Miltiadis Fragkidis/Unsplash; featured image credit: Tan Kaninthanond/Unsplash]’

The best time to visit Thailand and the best places to visit in the country, based on the weather 

January

The weather: January is an ideal time to visit Thailand, as the heat and intense humidity have subsided. The weather is generally delightful across the country at this time of year, with minimal chances of rain and cooler temperatures, especially in the Northern region. The only exceptions are islands on the east coast, such as Koh Samui and Koh Phangan, which often experience high levels of rainfall during this season. The temperature ranges between 15°C and 32°C, depending on the region. 

Best place to visit: Phuket is one of the best destinations to visit in January. The southeast island enjoys plenty of sunshine with minimal rainfall, making it ideal for beach activities, snorkelling, diving, and exploring the island’s numerous attractions. 

[Image credit: @phuketist/Instagram]

 

February

The weather: The majority of the country experiences dry conditions with warmer temperatures compared to the North, with occasional showers anticipated on the east coast at the beginning of the month. As for the west coast, expect excellent diving conditions with good underwater visibility and water temperatures around 27°C.

Best place to visit: The capital city of Bangkok is enjoyable in February, with manageable temperatures and less humidity, making the bustling metropolis an ideal time to explore the city’s vibrant street life, historical sites, markets, as well as the Chinese New Year festival that is celebrated extravagantly in the capital city’s Chinatown. 

[Image credit: Waranont (Joe)/Unsplash]

March

The weather: As the hotter season begins in March, the cooler weather in the north dissipates and temperatures start their annual climb to mid 30°C. From now until June, temperatures continue to rise, and crowds generally thin out. Expect dry, sunny weather with clear skies and little chance of rain in the south. 

Best place to visit: The favourable diving conditions off the western coast make the Similan Islands a good option to travel to in March, especially for island hoppers and beach lovers. Situated in the Andaman Sea and off the coast of Phang Nga Province in southern Thailand, the continental archipelago is renowned for its rich marine life, offering wonderful opportunities to encounter both manta rays and whale sharks, especially around sites like Richelieu Rock. 

[Image credit: Subtle Cinematics/Unsplash]

April

The weather: Hot, hot, hot! Brace yourself for scorching temperatures soaring into the high 30°C, with ‘feels like’ temperatures reaching the sweltering mid to high 40°C. April takes the crown as arguably the hottest month in Thailand, where humidity adds to the sultry atmosphere. Essentially, it’s giving human barbecue. 

Best place to visit: Given the oppressive, unbearable heat in April, we recommend you head to Koh Samui since the island experiences less intense heat compared to mainland destinations, thanks to its coastal location and sea breezes. Plus, April also marks the beginning of the low tourist season here, meaning fewer crowds and potentially better deals on accommodation. 

[Image credit: Yavor Punchev/Unsplash]

May

The weather: Perhaps we’ve stepped out of the human barbecue but the heat and humidity is still conspicuous in May. This month marks the gradual transition from the hot and dry season to the hot and rainy season. 

Best place to visit: One of the big four of the Isan region, Ubon Ratchathani offers a tranquil setting with a strong emphasis on nature and spirituality. Pay a visit to Wat Nong Pah Pong, a renowned forest monastery, and explore the city’s silk villages to immerse yourself in the traditional craftsmanship Ubon is cherished for. 

[Image credit: Suwit_Luangpipatsorn/Pixabay]

June

The weather: In June, temperatures remain high and Thailand experiences the transition to the rainy season, bringing varying weather conditions across the country. Northern and central regions witness the onset of frequent rain showers and thunderstorms, accompanied by high humidity levels. Southern destinations face heavy rainfall and eastern destinations experience increased precipitation. 

Best place to visit: Historical parks, indoor museums, natural scenery, and cultural experiences, Sukhothai is a great destination to visit in June. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the province offers a blend of historical and natural attractions that can be enjoyed even during the rainy season. 

[Image credit: Alberto Capparelli/Pexels]

July

The weather: Thailand experiences the height of the rainy season in July. As the month progresses, temperatures gradually decrease while winds pick up and rainfall becomes more frequent. Additionally, the increased humidity levels contribute to a muggy atmosphere. 

Best place to visit: If you’re traveling Thailand in the month of July, head to the mountainous province of Loei for a unique cultural experience. The Phi Ta Khon festival is a three-day festival that is known for its spirited, polychromatic parades; traditional performances; and the idiosyncratic masks. The fete is held in the Dan Sai district and takes place either in June or July, depending on the lunar calendar. 

[Image credit: Nopparuj Lamaikul/Unsplash]

August

The weather: August continues the rainy season, with weather patterns similar to July. Expect high humidity and consistently warm temperatures, with evenings slightly cooler than earlier in the season. All in all, anticipate a mix of tropical downpours and intermittent sunshine. 

Best place to visit: Hua Hin is a great destination in August due to its drier conditions and abundant sunshine compared to other regions. From balmy beaches and night markets to cultural sites, the coastal town offers a myriad of attractions to enjoy despite occasional rain. 

[Image credit: Yannick Apollon/Unsplash]

September

The weather: September is considered to be the wettest month of the year throughout Thailand, with frequent and often heavy rainfall across the country. The persistent rain brings high humidity and temperatures continue to be warm. Silver lining: the precipitation brings lush landscapes and fewer tourists, offering a more serene travel experience. 

Best place to visit: Whilst the constant showers make September a less-than-ideal month to visit the Land of Smiles, we suggest traveling to Ayutthaya since the city offers a variety of indoor activities such as visiting museums, touring the Royal Palace, and exploring ancient ruins.  

[Image credit: WikiImages/Pixabay]

October

The weather: Thailand begins to transition from the rainy season to the cool season in October, particularly towards to the end of the month. While the country still experiences some rainfall, it generally decreases as the month progresses and temperatures gradually become more moderate, offering relief from the heat and humidity. 

Best place to visit: We highly recommend travellers to visit Pai, a charming town revered for its picturesque scenery, laid-back atmosphere, and vibrant arts scene. Nestled in the mountains, the endearing destination experiences cooler temperatures and drier weather compared to monsoon season, making it an ideal time to embark on scenic hikes, waterfalls, hot springs, and explore the natural beauty of the area. 

[Image credit: @tiago_c_albuquerque/Instagram]

November

The weather: With the monsoon rains subsiding, November brings pleasantly mild temperatures and lower humidity levels, creating ideal conditions for outdoor activities and sightseeing. Coastal areas like Phuket and Koh Samui enjoy sunny days and clear skies, whereas inland destinations like Chiang Mai and Bangkok also experience comfortable weather. 

Best place to visit: Boasting alluring natural landscapes in the form of limestone cliffs, turquoise waters, and pristine beaches, Krabi is an ideal place to visit in November. The pleasant weather conditions serve as the perfect atmosphere for visitors to go island hopping, embark on boat tours, and discover hidden lagoons and caves. Plus, the province is also a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, with opportunities for hiking and rock climbing. 

[Image credit: Miltiadis Fragkidis/Unsplash]

December

The weather: December is one of Thailand’s coolest months, making it one of the best months to visit the country. Expect dry, pleasant weather conditions and and humidity levels with the average daily temperatures ranging from the low 20°C to mid-30°C. 

Best place to visit: The mountainous, cultural northern city of Chiang Mai is certainly the best place to visit in December. With its delightful weather, rich cultural heritage, and abundance of festive events, it offers a glorious experience for travellers during this time of year. Also, this way, you avoid the infamous burning season that takes place from January-March of every year. 

[Image credit: Bharath Mohan/Unsplash]


(The information in this article is accurate as on the date of publication.)


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