The best time to visit Thailand

When is the best time to visit Thailand?

The best time to visit Thailand is from December to March – though, as with any tropical destination, a short and ridiculously torrential burst of rain is unpredictably possible, even on the sunniest of days.

When’s Thailand’s rainy season?

The time to not go to Thailand is the rainy season, from May to October, when monsoons blow in from all directions. The rain is heavy but sporadic in the first few months, while in the final months of the rainy season, it’s more persistent.

Koh Tao Thailand

Koh Tao, ThailandiStock Photo

When is Thailand’s shoulder season?

Thailand’s shoulder season lasts from April to June and then again from September to October. Temperatures will peak country-wide around April, but this also means you don’t have to compete for a prime spot on the best beaches in Thailand, and hotel rates will be lower. However, business and ferry services on the smaller islands (especially on the Andaman Sea side) will shut down as the low season approaches. The period from September to October sees more rain but fewer crowds.

What is the cheapest time to visit Thailand?

Unsurprisingly, the cheapest time to visit Thailand coincides with the rainy season. If you’re willing to deal with unpredictable weather, then you could bag a few hotel deals visiting Thailand during this time. We recommend going during the shoulder season.

Catch Beach Club Phuket

Catch Beach Club, Phuket

When is the best time to visit the islands?

East coast islands

The best Thai islands in the Gulf of Thailand – Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, Koh Tao – tend to get less rain than the rest of the country (even in the rainy season) and are at their best from the end of January until mid-March. January is the freshest month – great for after the Christmas and NYE party chaos. February is the driest month, one of the sunniest, and the heat is still bearable; March is sunny and dry, too. The European and American summer break crowds hit the Gulf islands (Koh Samui, Koh Pha-Ngan and Koh Tao) during July/August, so heading here in September usually hits the sweet spot for both crowds and weather.

West coast islands

Over on Thailand’s west coast and the Andaman Sea – where you’ll find the Thai islands of Phuket, Krabi, Koh Lanta, Koh Phi Phi – the optimum time for a beach holiday is slightly earlier, in December and January, when fresher weather, maximum sunshine and minimum rainfall combine to create the best climate for a beach holiday.

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