When to visit - Thailand

Best times to visit Thailand

Best times to visit Thailand

The best time to visit Thailand is from late December to early April. During this period the country enjoys pleasant warm temperatures which gradually rise as one moves from December through to April. At this time of year there is little rain or humidity so it is a great time to hit the beach and undertake outdoor activities such as cycling and trekking.

Good times to visit Thailand

Good times to visit Thailand

Other than above, a good time to visit Thailand is either side of the green season during what is often called the shoulder seasons. This would be late April through to mid May which is a largely dry period but a time when temperatures are hot. For those who love the heat this represents a good time to be in Thailand as prices are cheaper than high season and the weather on the whole will be pretty decent. However it's worth noting that if the green season starts early there will be the odd thunderstorm in May. The other shoulder season is from late October through to early December. This is a nice time to travel as the rainy season has largely finished and the countryside benefits from newly sprung vegetation. It is now much less humid and the temperatures are relatively cool. However travel at this time does run the risk of some rainfall especially in the south of the country.

Thailand's Green Season

Thailand's Green Season

The green season in Thailand starts between mid-May and mid-June bringing frequent rain and lasts until October. That said it does not rain all day every day and quite often travelling at this time can be quite pleasant as there are less visitors and there is usually plenty of sunshine as well. The monsoon in Koh Samui tends to start a little later than other parts of the country and often extends into November. The infrastructure in Thailand is pretty good these days and transport remains largely unaffected by the monsoon. However, if it is dry sunny weather you are after it would be sensible to avoid this period.

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Central Thailand Weather Information (Bangkok)

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Green season
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Max Temp °C323334353433323232313131
Min Temp °C202224252524242424242220
Hours Daylight989886555689
Rainfall (mm)8203658198160160175305205665

January – April: The year in Bangkok begins with the driest month of the year with below 10mm of rain falling in January. February is also very dry however March and April sees a steady increase in rain with 110mm falling in April. Much like the rain, temperatures are also on the rise throughout this period with an average of 27°C in January growing to 31°C in April, where temperatures can often hit 35°C and sometimes even higher.

May – October: The rainy season in Thailand runs from May to October and sees consistently heavy rain throughout. The average rainfall per month sits at around 190mm with the exception of September which sees the most rain of the year with an average of 250mm. As well as this abnormally large amount of rain in September there is also quite often a dip in rainfall during August. Temperatures throughout this period stay roughly the same however there is a slight decline in temperatures from an average of 30°C in May to 29°C in October.

November – December: With the rainy season largely over by November, Bangkok is drying up with an average of 40mm of rain falling within the month. This figure continues to drop as the year enters December which has an average of just 10mm of rain making it the second driest month after January. Temperatures in this period are very pleasant with averages of 28°C and 26°C in November and December respectively. Although the difference in temperature is minimal reduced humidity means that the perceived temperature feels much lower than during the summer months.

Northern Thailand Weather Information (Chiang Mai)

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Max Temp °C293234363432313131313028
Min Temp °C13141722232323232321195
Hours Daylight999986546789
Rainfall (mm)181036122112213193249933113

January – April: The weather In January in northern Thailand is relatively cool with an average of 23°C, this cool weather does not however last long as temperatures rapidly rise to 36°C in April. Rain at the beginning of the year is also minimal with just 10mm falling in the months of January and February, rising to just 50mm in April. This dry weather also means that cloud cover is at an annual low throughout this period with an average of 9 hours of sunshine every day.

May- October: Rainy season in northern Thailand runs between May and October and, although it is by no means the heaviest monsoon season in ages, rain falls consistently throughout. Most months see an average of around 150mm with notable exceptions of August and September which receive around 200mm each. Temperatures within this period peak in May with an average of 30°C before steadily declining until October receives and average of 27°C. Cloud cover dominates the day to day weather throughout this period with August receiving just 4 hours of sunshine a day with an 80% chance of rain on any given day within the month.

November – December: November is the first dry month of the year since April with an average of just 60mm of rain, a figure which decreases in December which has just 20mm.l Along with the fall in levels of precipitation this period also sees a drop in temperature with December being the coldest month of the year with an average of just 22°C.

Thailand's Beaches Weather Information (Phuket)

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Max Temp °C303132323232313231313130
Min Temp °C222324242424232423232322
Hours Daylight999886555689
Rainfall (mm)35243913332421826326337430518152

January – April: The climate in Phuket during January is characterised by cool dry weather and clear blue skies. Average temperatures throughout this period begin at 27°C in January and grow steadily to 32°C in April. Although the average temperature in May and April sits below 30°C, in reality day time temperatures regularly exceed 35°C. Rain throughout this early period of the year is scarce with an average of just 40mm falling in the months of January, February and March. April however does receive a reasonable amount of rain with 150mm falling throughout the month.  This lack of rain at the beginning of the year also means that this period enjoys the lowest levels of humidity in the year.

May – October: The rainy season in southern Thailand receives a large amount of rain and runs between May and October. The month of May receives roughly 200mm and is the most humid month of the year with humidity levels up around 90%. Rainfall increases steadily between May and September which has roughly 400mm of rain fall within the month. There is one exception to this pattern of increasingly heavy rain throughout the period, and that is that levels of rain actually drop in August to 260mm from 300mm in July. Temperatures are fairly constant throughout the period with an average of around 28°C.

November –December: Although the worst of the summer monsoon rains have passed by the time the year reaches November, a large amount of rain still falls during the month with an average of 170mm. This figure drops to just 60mm in December. Temperatures throughout these months remain constant with an average of 27°C throughout.

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