What is the Best Time to Visit Bangkok?
What is the best time to visit Bangkok? Here we will give you the facts for each month of the year including; when it rains the most and when you’ll stay dry, when hotels and cheap and when they’ll cost you an arm and a leg, and when there are certain public holidays or celebrations on which can change the entire travel experience for you.
From my experience, the best time to visit Bangkok is either February to March or late October to mid-November. However, that doesn’t mean that it is the only time you should visit Bangkok. I’ll go into more detail below.
If you’re planning to spend a few days in Bangkok, or even use it as your base camp for exploring the region, then my Bangkok travel guide will be a total game-changer. I’ve packed this guide with loads of local knowledge learned from living there for 5 years.
There are also plenty of photos included so you can see what to expect before you go.
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The weather is cooler in January with an average daytime temperature of 31 degrees. Yeah, that’s meant to be cool for Bangkok. The rain is pretty much non-existent, so you’re almost guaranteed to have nice dry weather. It’s the perfect time for exploring the city by foot throughout the day.
Many western countries also have the long Christmas/New Years break, so this is the peak tourist season. Expect accommodation prices to rise by up to 50%, hotels commonly list a peak and off-peak rate. It is also common for hotels to be booked out in advance, so I suggest making hotel arrangements before you travel.
The only public holiday in Bangkok in January is New Years Day.
The cool and dry season continues. The average daytime temperature remains at about 31 degrees and there is little to no rain about. It is still the perfect weather for exploring Bangkok by foot.
The Christmas/New Years break has finished in western countries, so February is the shoulder tourist season. Hotel prices typically reduce the the “Shoulder Season Rate” which is usually 30% cheaper than the peak rate. There is also increased availability of rooms, so you don’t need to organize so far in advance..
In my opinion, February is one of the two best times to visit Bangkok.
The weather starts to warm up and get more humid by March. There is an average daytime temperature of about 33 degrees but there still isn’t much rain about. It is common to have a couple of rainy days in March, but do not expect the monsoonal weather just yet.
There are no major Thai celebrations in March to note. This is the off-peak season where hotels are cheaper, typically up to 50% cheaper than the peak season rates.
April marks the start of the wet season (monsoon) and is also the hottest month of the year. It is common to have daytime temperatures between 35 to 40 degrees. The constant 90% humidity can quite uncomfortable as the monsoon season gets ready to unleash on Bangkok. You probably won’t want to spend more than 2 hours outside at a time as you get so sweaty.
There is a major Thai celebration in March called Songkran festival (Thai New Year) which is iconic for the water fights which happen on almost every street. The holiday lasts for about a week but unofficially runs for 2 weeks. Half of Bangkok’s population goes to the countryside during the two week Songkran celebration. This is the least traffic you will ever see on Bangkok’s street. April is the best time to visit Bangkok if you want to catch the Songkran festival, just be prepared to brave the heat.
Outside of Bangkok, it can be almost impossible to book a hotel unless you reserve months in advance.
This is when the rain really pours down on Bangkok. Expect heavy rain to fall from 7am to 5pm or even later. It can rain relentlessly for hours on end and is common for the streets to flood and become impassable for cars and motorbikes. Whenever it rains, traffic comes to a standstill with entire suburbs in gridlock.
When the rain stops the humidity sits at about 95% so it is just always really uncomfortable. In fact, even leaving an airconditioned hotel will cause the humidity to condense on your forehead feeling like you’re already sweating.
May is not the best time to visit Bangkok. I recommend going to the islands in the Gulf of Thailand where the wet season occurs later in the year. Even if it does rain on the islands, at least you can go for a swim to cool off.
June to September
The wet season continues in Bangkok. The days are hot and wet. Expect rain on a daily basis, uncomfortable humidity, and bad traffic. It doesn’t rain all day, but heavily for a couple of hours either in the morning or afternoon. You are 100% guaranteed to have a wet trip at some point in these months.
If you want to brave out the storm, then you will be blessed with cheap hotels. This is the low season in Bangkok. There are plenty of hotels available and no major national Thai holidays. These months are the best time to visit Bangkok if you want to experience a monsoon. However, I’m not sure why you would.
Finally, the wet season starts to come to an end in early October. The typical daily temperature is around 28 degrees. While mid-October is still classified as the wet season there are considerably less rainy days.
October is the second shoulder season of the year where hotels are still about 30% cheaper than in the peak season. I usually visit Thailand starting in the third week of October. Hotels are cheap and the weather is good!
There are no major holidays in October so you won’t be competing for a room.
November is the start of the cooler season with daytime temperatures dropping to as low as 20 degrees. Believe it or not, this is cold enough for Thai’s to bring out their winter jackets and beanies. By November the wet season has just about finished. It is not uncommon to have a few rainy days in the month, but the rain doesn’t last long. November is considered the shoulder season with plenty of hotels still being available.
November is also the month of the Loy Kratong Festival iconic for the thousands of paper lanterns which are lit and released in the night sky. Note that these lanterns are actually released in the countryside. In Bangkok, the lanterns are banned as it is considered dangerous for airplanes. Loy Kratong in Bangkok is celebrated by placing small baskets of flowers into the rivers.
In my opinion, October is one of the two best times to visit Bangkok.
December is the cool and dry season. The rain is over, humidity is at a comfortable level and the daytime temperature is about 25 to 30 degrees.
December is the peak season as many western countries have the Christmas/New Years break. Expect hotel prices to rise by as much as 50% and booked out well in advance. Prepare for it and book your hotels in advance.
December has a few national Thai holidays including the King’s birthday celebration which is commonly combined with a weekend to make a national long weekend. Christmas is not celebrated locally but there is a huge influx of international tourists making it a very busy month.
I prefer not to visit Bangkok in December.
Where to go in Bangkok
Before you visit Thailand you must check out this post I wrote on the top things to do in Bangkok. I’ve included some of my favorite things here from temple hopping around the old quarter to watching amazing sunsets from some epic rooftop bars across the city.
When you’ve finished exploring the city then move onto this post I wrote on places to visit near Bangkok. You will discover some amazing waterfalls, floating markets, and even some islands right near the city! Let me know what you think!
Got any questions about the best time to visit Bangkok? Drop me a comment below and I’ll try to respond within 2 days!