When to visit - India

Best times to visit India

Best times to visit India

India is almost a continent in itself, and as such has a wide variety of regional climates. Broadly-speaking the best months to travel are in line with wider south and south-east Asia: October through to early April. During this time temperatures are pleasant across most of the country, and there is very little rainfall. This is a fine time to travel country-wide: the climate is ideal for outdoor activities, cultural exploration, and amenable whether you are up in the hills or sat on the beach. Wildlife sightings tend to be at their best in national parks at this time too. 

Good times to visit India

Good times to visit India

Heat begins to build up throughout April and May onwards, with extremes touching 50 degrees in rural Rajasthan. At this time Indians are quite literally praying for rain, and the monsoon becomes the number one topic of conversation! However, if you are happy with heat, this can still be an excellent time to travel as rates and tourist numbers are at their lowest. Rajasthan and the Gangetic plains of north India are scorched at this time, but the heat can still be bearable in the south and in any areas at elevation. These spring months are also a particularly excellent time to travel in the Himalayan regions in the far north, when temperatures are ideal for hiking and the valleys are carpeted in spring blossoms. 

India's Green Season

India's Green Season

India’s climate (not to mention its art, poetry, folklore...) is dominated by the monsoon. The southwest monsoon generally arrives first in Kerala at the beginning of June, then splits into two heading up the western and eastern coasts. The rains tend to arrive in Mumbai around 10 days later, in Delhi by the end of the month, and climax with intense downpours in the Kolkata and the far North-East in late summer. With such intense rainfall, most will see this as a time to completely avoid travel to India. However, for some the monsoon time can be a fine time to travel: a time of celebration, lush tropical landscapes, and low prices!

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Northern India Weather Information (Delhi)

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Max Temp °C182328363937343333312721
Min Temp °C7111522222727262419138
Hours Daylight91011121212889111010
Rainfall (mm)231813887418017311710310

Delhi, Rajasthan, and destinations throughout the wider north tend to be at lower elevations among plains or semi-desert. They become extremely hot in late Spring, with the monsoon breaking from May and lasting through until September. Outside of these months however, the climate tends to be settled with very little rainfall and ambient temperatures for exploring. Note that the whole region can be chilly in January and December, especially early morning and late at night, so a jumper or jacket will be required.

Kolkata & the North-East Weather Information (Darjeeling)

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
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Max Temp °C182026283130292828262418
Min Temp °C2381216181918171363
Hours Daylight778875445777
Rainfall (mm)1820427710125037937916982158

Travelling further north towards the Himalayas one find much cooler climes. Hill stations such as Shimla or Darjeeling, and trekking regions such as Ladakh, Himachal Pradesh, and Sikkim, are very cold in winter months. The best times to visit these regions are during Spring and the post-monsoon months of October and November; during these months temperature levels are low, there is little rainfall, and Himalayan views are at their best. April and May are especially popular, as both domestic and international tourists retreat to the hills to escape searing lowland heat.

Kerala Weather Information (Kochi)

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
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Max Temp °C323132333229292829303031
Min Temp °C222425262522232222232323
Hours Daylight898753456568
Rainfall (mm)20303612139570569333034027614035

As one travels further south the climate becomes distinctly tropical. Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and coastal resorts in in Kerala and Goa are warm year-round, consistently hovering around the high-twenties to low-thirties. There is however a marked increase in humidity around the wetter summer months (May-September), and it’s also worth noting hill station destinations in the Western Ghats can dip into chilly single figures during winter months.

Experiences to Inspire