Thailand’s Rainy Season: Should You Travel And What Are The Best Destinations To Consider?
Thailand has much to offer to visitors. But while it’s known as the “Land of Smiles”, it actually can experience plenty of dreary weather in a time that is considered the rainy season. Thailand’s rainy season can affect different parts of Thailand, from bustling towns to exotic wilderness. As a matter of fact, there is even a unique element to it that tourists should learn about before booking a vacation. Many even consider Thailand to have multiple rainy seasons due to the country’s experience with weather.
About Thailand’s “Rainy Seasons”
Depending on where you travel to in Thailand, the rainy season will be different from other parts of the country.
Northern Thailand on one hand will follow a cycle of two seasons. The high season spans from December to May, consisting of dry and calm weather. The low season, however, will last from June to November. This is when rainfall affects the central plains and cities like Ayutthaya and Lopburi. These are two of the most popular tourist sites in the Chao Phraya Basin. The high season is what to aim for if you wish to avoid rainy weather in Thailand cities up north. Also, keep in mind that March and April will also bring the hottest and driest weather, making pleasant weather more limited to visitors.
Southern Thailand, on the other hand, experiences a more trivial seasonal cycle. The rainy season occurs at varying times based on locations within this southern territory. For east coast cities like Pattani, the rainy season starts around September and stops in the middle of February. As for the west coast, the rainy season begins in March or April and ends in September or October, affecting cities like Phong Nga.
Annual monsoons are what mostly influence Thailand’s rainy seasons. While that may sound ominous to visitors, Thailand’s downpours are not as severe compared to other nations. That is not to say that they can’t cause trouble, however. The central plains often experience floods in many parts of the region, which take place during the summer.
Should I Consider Vacationing In A Rainy Season?
Despite the concerns that rainy seasons can bring to travelers, they can still make for enjoyable times of the year. Whether travelers should come to Thailand to experience a rainy season all depends on the traveler’s preference.
There are obvious downsides to vacationing during rainy seasons. These include the chance of rain, coastal waters being too rough for swimming, and many outdoor activities likely being inaccessible. That isn’t to say that rainfalls last for hours on end, though. Travelers can still enjoy beaches, temples, and trails several times of day when the weather is calm.
However, those that travel during rainy seasons in Thailand can also enjoy cheaper hotel rates as a result of less-decent weather. If saving money is a priority, targeting a rainy season will be ideal. Along with lower hotel rates, travelers can also enjoy smaller crowds and less congestion in tourist areas. For backpackers, rainy weather might make waterfalls and other scenery even more breathtaking to look at. This is because of clouds of mist that form due to the constant showers.
It is a well known fact that tourist seasons bring in more crowds not just to the most popular tourist attractions but also to less known places, which are usually the hidden gems that bring most value to a traveling experience. Off-season traveling also increases your chances of having more authentic experiences and meeting locals. To open up new possibilities to experience the country on an even deeper level you can learn Thai and immerse yourself in conversations with Thai people whenever you have the chance.
What Are The Best Thailand Destinations During Rainy Seasons?
There are many places tourists can go despite expecting plenty of rainy weather in Thailand:
- Bangkok is one of the most popular places for explorers to travel to in all of Thailand. The city has many indoor activities and shops to explore, which they can visit in the event of heavy rain. There are also plenty of outdoor activities in and around Bangkok. The only outdoor activity that gets canceled from rain is its signature floating market tour.
- In the north of Bangkok are Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai. They are home to several temples, shops, and spas, giving visitors a day’s worth of activities. Temple tours are highly recommended for travelers regardless of the chance of rain.
- The island of Koh Samui, while not immune to rain, is one of the driest destinations among all the tourist areas during the rainy season. Tourists can enjoy calm beaches and uncrowded restaurants. Boat rides to and from the island are still possible but maybe bumpy from rainy weather.
- Phuket is another island one can travel to. This island features several museums and aquariums and affordable shops. Phuket is the rainiest in September and October, but any other time of year will be mostly enjoyable.