Traveling to Thailand is a unique experience. It is one of the greatest tourist destinations of the planet and attracts diverse types of travelers. There is no best time to travel to Thailand for everyone, it is such a big and diverse country that you will always find a good reason to visit! However, don’t forget that it has incredible beaches, so you better make sure you have good time to enjoy them. Do you want to know when is the best time to visit Thailand? In this guide we analyze it month by month.
Any time of the year is a good time to visit its temples and swim in its beaches. But if you want to avoid rain, heat or crowds, it is worth seeing when it is best to travel to Thailand according to your preferences. Below we will analyze the main characteristics of the climate in Thailand for you to understand it better.
Characteristics of the climate in Thailand
Thailand’s climate is tropical and has three distinct seasons, although they do not affect the country in the same way. So while the Gulf of Thailand is dry, the Andaman Sea can get a lot of rain – let’s discover Thailand’s climate!
Three different seasons, but they do not affect the whole country equally
As we said, Thailand has three different seasons: cool, hot and rainy – in our order of preference! While we have winter, spring, summer and autumn, they only have three. But you should know that the seasons vary for different parts of the country. Basically, the variations are not very big in most cases, they just get longer or shorter.
In fact, in southern Thailand, they basically have two: dry and rainy. And depending on the coast, the seasons vary. So below we are going to see when it is the cool, hot and rainy season in each of the areas of Thailand.
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Cool season (November to February)
In general, the cool one is characterized by milder temperatures and absence of rain. It normally lasts from November to February when the northeast monsoon prevails. However, cool temperatures are felt only in the north and inland, as the coasts and south are hot even in this season.
Hot season (March to mid-May)
The hot one, normally brings high temperatures, much humidity and some precipitation. It goes from March to mid-May approximately. So, if you are a cigar aficionado you will need the best travel humidor if you want to keep your cigars fresh and in a perfect condition.
Rainy season (mid-May to October)
And of course, the rain, of course, constant rain. And it extends from mid-May to October.
Variations according to the area of Thailand
In the following map you can see the different climatic zones of Thailand and their characteristics, explained below.
In the north of Thailand you can visit interesting cities such as Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai or Pai.
Cool season: from October to March
Hot season: February to April
Rainy season: May to September
Center of Thailand
It would include destinations like Bangkok or Ayutthaya.
Cool season: from November to January
Hot season: February to June
Rainy season: from June to October
As we have said, in the south of Thailand there are only two seasons: rainy and dry and there are seasonal variations according to the coast, either in the Gulf of Thailand or in the Andaman Sea. The Gulf coast is dry between January and August. The dry season on the Andaman coast is from November to March.
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Best time to go to the Andaman Sea islands
There you will find islands like Phuket, Phi Phi or the wonders of Krabi.
Dry season: from November to March
Rainy season: April to October
Best time to go to the islands in the Gulf of Thailand
This affects you if you want to visit Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao, among others. It is one of the great destinations during the European summer, as there are few places in Thailand that do not receive rain in the months of July and August.
Dry season: from January to August
Rainy season: from September to December
Which month is better to travel to Thailand?
Now you know the characteristics of the climate in Thailand, so it’s time to answer the million dollar question! What is the best month to travel to Thailand? Below we analyze one by one so that you can choose the one that best suits you.
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January, one of the best months to travel to Thailand
Best time to travel to Thailand and visit: Bangkok and all the country except the Gulf
January is probably the best time to visit Thailand, or one of the best. Why? Basically because the climate is good in almost all the country during this time of the year. It is one of the driest months. Perhaps the only exception is Koh Samui and the rest of the islands in the Gulf of Thailand, which still get a lot of rain, but from February onwards it is much better.
In addition the cooler temperatures in the north make the conditions very comfortable for tourism. It is the height of the high season in Thailand, so if you want to find better deals, try to avoid the first two weeks.
It is also an especially good month to visit Bangkok. Next to December, it is the driest and the one with the most pleasant temperatures, always keeping in mind that they remain high all year round.
February, the best month to travel to Thailand
Best time to go to Thailand and visit: All the country
For us, February is the best month to travel to Thailand, without a doubt! It is the driest month of the year, ideal to enjoy the beaches of Thailand and the rest of the country without worrying too much about the rain.
Also, in the north the temperatures are still quite pleasant. And if you are lucky enough to visit Chiang Mai during the first weekend of February, you can enjoy the Flower Festival, a three-day festival that is spectacular.
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Visiting Thailand in March
Best time to travel to Thailand and visit: The whole country, especially the Andaman Sea
March is still a good month to travel to Thailand, although temperatures are starting to rise considerably. It is one of the best times to go to the Andaman Sea before the rainy season starts in the southwest of Thailand. So you can take the opportunity to visit the Similan Islands, Phuket or Krabi.
Thailand in April
Best time to visit Thailand: All the country except the Andaman Sea
April is still a good month to visit Thailand, although in general the temperatures are higher and more uncomfortable. Despite the fact that there is more rain, especially on the west coast of Thailand, it is a good opportunity to visit the Gulf Islands, since together with February it is one of the driest months in Koh Samui or Koh Tao.
In the north and in Bangkok, the temperatures are higher, it rains more than in the previous months, but it is still a good opportunity to visit them.
Also during the month of April one of the most important festivals in Thailand, the Songkran, is celebrated. It is also known as the Water Festival because of its huge water fights to celebrate the Thai New Year. The three holidays are between the 13th and 15th of April.
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Visiting Thailand in May
Best time to travel to Thailand and visit: Gulf of Thailand
May is the end of the high season, so if you’re looking for good prices, your time has come! The rain is starting to come to all parts of Thailand, although not in a heavy way. The least amount of rain is in the Gulf of Thailand, although there is usually rain all over the country.
Visiting Thailand in June
Best time to travel to Thailand and visit: Gulf of Thailand
June is one of the wettest months in the Andaman Sea, so it is not a good idea to visit the Phi Phi, Phuket or Krabi islands. However, if you are looking for a beach, it is an ideal month to enjoy the lively islands in the Gulf of Thailand and you will find great deals!
Travel to Thailand in July
Best time to go to Thailand and see: Gulf of Thailand and national parks
Temperatures are starting to drop a bit, although July is usually a rather humid month in Thailand. In the Gulf Islands it is where it rains the least.
But everything has its positive side. Thanks to the rainfall, it is a fantastic month to get lost in the beautiful Thai national parks like Khao Yai to see the splendor of its waterfalls and green landscapes. Thailand is much more than just a beach!
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Thailand in August
Best time to travel to Thailand and visit: Rain all over the country
As the summer progresses, the country receives more rain. So it’s not the best time to visit Thailand. The islands in the Gulf are the driest part, although they receive a lot of rain.
Traveling to Thailand in September
Best time to travel to Thailand and visit Gulf of Thailand
September is the wettest month of the year, so it is not the most recommended month to travel to Thailand. Especially in the Andaman Sea and Bangkok, although you can enjoy its shopping malls! However, if you want to try your luck and enjoy cheap prices and without crowds, you can try it.
Visit Thailand in October
Best time to go to Thailand and visit: Northern Thailand, rain all over the country
The rains continue in early October and temperatures begin to drop. However, fortunately, at the end of the month the panorama begins to change and the cooler and more pleasant temperatures, together with the lower probability of rain, make October a good month to travel.
Anyway, forget about visiting the south of Thailand, as there is a lot of rain on both coasts. If you want to visit Thailand in October, better do it in the second half and from Bangkok upwards before the crowds arrive in November.
Travel to Thailand in November
Best time to travel to Thailand and visit: Bangkok, central and northern Thailand
November is one of the best months to travel to Thailand, for many reasons! First, because it is the beginning of the high season, and not by chance. The rains are starting to let up in most of the country, although in the south there is still a lot of rain, especially in the Gulf, as November is the wettest month in the area.
However, November is a good month to travel to Thailand to see the Loy Krathong festival first hand. People float beautiful krathongs in the rivers after making a wish to thank the water spirits. We were lucky enough to experience it in Bangkok and it was very special. But in the north of Thailand, in Chiang Mai, it is even more special. There they celebrate the Yee Peng. They throw thousands of flashlights to ward off bad luck. It’s beautiful!
Visit Thailand in December
Best time to travel to Thailand and visit: All the country except the Gulf of Thailand
Finally, to finish this month-by-month analysis on what is the best time to visit Thailand, it must be said that December is one of the best months to get to know the country. In general there is a good climate everywhere and the temperatures are mostly comfortable. With the exception of the beaches on the Gulf of Thailand, where it rains a lot, in the west there is little rain and many hours of sunshine.
However, there is a lot to be said for the Christmas holidays. Especially on the beaches of the west coast of Thailand. It is a very popular destination for these dates, so if you do not want to pay more, try to avoid them.
In short, what is the best time to go to Thailand?
As we have said, everything will depend on what you are looking for, although we would try to make it during the cool season to enjoy milder temperatures and less rain. So basically, we think that the best month to travel to Thailand and enjoy good weather all over the country is February.
To sum up, the best months to travel to Thailand are November to April. Especially in the center and north of the country. Regarding the south, those dates would also serve as a guide, although it is better to leave Krabi for the end of December and until March and the Gulf Islands for February and until April.
Which is the cheapest month to visit Thailand?
You will find the cheapest flights to Thailand and the best prices in hotels from May to October. It may seem like a good plan because it coincides with European vacations, but not all is gold that glitters. During these months the southwest monsoon arrives in Thailand and causes rain throughout the country. So it is certainly not the best time to travel to Thailand, although it is the cheapest.