When to Visit Thailand

Published on: Feb 02, 2021
Jade Lamb
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A nation renowned for warm welcomes, Thailand is one of the world’s best holiday destinations. You can pack plenty into a trip to ‘The Land of Smiles’, from cosmopolitan city breaks in the neon-lit capital of Bangkok, to tranquil beachside escapes on the eastern islands like Koh Samui. Whatever the pace of your Thai adventure, there’s something to do at all times of the year. Read on to find out what’s on and when to visit Thailand.  


When to visit Thailand 

Thailand has a tropical climate, with weather in the southeast Asian nation generally falling into three seasons – the rainy/monsoon season, cool season and hot season.

When is the rainy season in Thailand? 

The rainy monsoon season in Thailand occurs between May and October. However, it's worth noting that the real monsoon season doesn’t tend to hit until July to October, though you might expect rain showers from May onwards.


When is the cool season in Thailand? 

The cool season lasts from November to February, although despite the name, Thailand’s ‘cool’ temperatures of 30°C would be considered a heatwave in the UK! 

When is the hot season in Thailand? 

The hot season in Thailand typically occurs from March to May when it is not unusual for city temperatures to reach an impressive 35°C.


When is the high season in Thailand? 

The months of November to March are considered to be high season in Thailand, this means popular tourist areas can be very busy, but the weather is typically warm and sunny across the country.


Average temperatures in Thailand throughout the year 

The temperature can vary across the country, so here we've broken down what to expect depending on where you decide to spend your holiday. 


Temperature °C
Jan  Feb  March  April May  June  July  Aug  Sep  Oct Nov  Dec
Bangkok 27 28 30 31 30 30 30 30 29 29 28 26
Chiang Mai 28 31 34 35 33 31 30 30 30 29 29 28
Phuket  31 32 33 33 32 31 31 31 30 30 30 31
Koh Samui 29 31 33 34 33 33 32 32 32 31 29 29
Krabi  31 33 34 34 32 32 32 31 31 31 30 30
Khao Lak 31 33 33 33 32 31 30 30 30 30 30 30
Koh Samet 33 33 33 34 33 32 32 32 31 32 32 32
Hua Hin  26 28 29 30 30 30 29 29 29 28 27 26
Pattaya  31 32 33 33 32 30 30 30 30 30 30 30

Visiting Thailand in January 

Thailand in January offers good weather with minimal chance of rain – so if you’re craving sunshine but still fancy immersing yourself in the cultural sights of the country's big cities, this is one of the best times to go! However, January is also one of the high season months, so expect the islands and cities to be busy with tourists and locals alike. 

Leave the winter blues behind and book a break to Thailand in January – there's plenty to see and do. 


Average temperature in January: 33°C 

Average rainfall: 8mm per month 

Sunshine: 11 hours per day

Best location to visit in January: Bangkok


What to do in Thailand in January 

  • Explore Bangkok – No visit to Thailand is complete without a trip to the capital city. By day, take in the elaborate temples and ornate palaces, shop 'til you drop whatever your budget in high-end shopping malls and local street markets like Chatuchak and Sampeng, or take a day trip to the nearby river island of Koh Kret. And by night, enjoy nightlife like no other.
  • Celebrate Chinese New Year – Across Thailand, typically in late January, you'll witness the colourful celebrations of Chinese New Year with dragon dancers, firecrackers and tempting discounts on food and goods. Bangkok is a great location to join in the Chinese New Year celebrations and these typically take place in the capital's Chinatown area. 

Where to stay: Find premium luxury in the city centre at Akyra Sukhumvit.


Visiting Thailand in February 

Peak season continues into February with warm temperatures across the country. But no matter the weather, there's fun to be had and sun to be worshipped – particularly in Chiang Mai.

Average temperature in February: 34°C

Average rainfall: 14mm per month

Sunshine: 11 hours per day 

Best location to visit in February: Chiang Mai 

What to do in Thailand in February

  • Explore Chiang Mai – Chiang Mai is the largest city in northern Thailand. Here you can discover a slower pace of life, stunning Buddhist temples (over 300 hundred to be exact), incredible mountain walks and fascinating hill tribe villages.
  • Chiang Mai Flower Festival – In the first week of February, Chiang Mai explodes with colour with flowers such as chrysanthemums and roses in full bloom throughout the city. To celebrate these flowers and their beauty, floral sculptures are featured throughout the Old Town, and horticultural contests and parades take place across the city. In these parades, floats are charmingly decorated with flowers and greenery, traditional dances are performed and girls dress in their finest outfits before the Chiang Mai Flower Festival Queen is crowned. 

Where to stay: Enjoy the slower things in life at the peaceful Tamarind Village Chiang Mai.


Visiting Thailand in March 

Peak season is starting to wrap up in Thailand come March, as the weather really starts to turn up the heat. Average temperatures are high, cities are hot and if you're planning a holiday, we recommend a laidback beachfront hotel with a pool to cool off in and a bar to keep your drinks topped up.


Average temperature in March: 37°C

Average rainfall: 49mm per month

Sunshine: 12 hours per day 

Best location to visit in March: Hua Hin


What to do in Thailand in March 

  • Discover Hua Hin – This is a stunning beach resort made popular by the Thai royal family in the 1920s and located in the Gulf of Thailand. Enjoy incredible beaches and experience the local culture at impressive temples and bustling night markets.
  • Time your visit with the annual Kite Festival – This annual kite festival in Hua Hin offers something for all the family with colourful air displays as hundreds of kites sway in the winds. Watch spectacular performances from professional kite flyers to exhibitions featuring kites made by local creators.

Where to stay: There’s plenty of beachside fun to be had at Amari Hua Hin.


Visiting Thailand in April 

Sunworshipper? Then Thailand in April is the best time for working on that tan! If you're planning on visiting Phuket for beachside lounging, be prepared for high temperatures and we suggest exploring the town itself in the early morning or late afternoon before the heat of the day reaches its peak. Venture out in the evening to explore the night markets or grab a seat in a bar to people watch.


Average temperature in April: 37°C

Average rainfall: 71mm per month

Sunshine: 12 hours per day 

Best location to visit in April: Phuket 


What to do in Thailand in April 

  • Explore Phuket – Soak up the culture on Thailand’s biggest island filled with magnificent beaches, stunning architecture and mouth-watering cuisine. 
  • Celebrate Songkran – This is Thailand's New Year festival with parties and celebrations taking place all over the country. However, one of the best places to experience Songkran is Phuket. Whether you're travelling solo or as a couple, head to Patong Beach where you'll find water fights and parties until dawn. 

Where to stay: Check in to Centara Kata Resort in Phuket to explore the sights and sounds of this popular destination.


Visiting Thailand in May 

Things continue to stay hot throughout May but for those who want to escape the humidity, Chiang Mai in the north is a good choice as it experiences cooler temperatures than the southern parts of Thailand. In May, the southwestern regions may experience a little more rainfall than the rest of the country, but for the most part, temperatures remain in the 30°Cs. Evenings are great for getting out and about, as the air is still warm so you can continue to enjoy wearing your lightweight summer clothes. 


Average temperature in May: 35°C

Average rainfall: 173mm per month

Sunshine: 12 hours per day 

Best location to visit in May: Koh Samui 


What to do in Thailand in May

  • Discover Koh Samui – This island is extremely popular with visitors due to its white sandy beaches and spectacular scenery, not to mention the luxury resorts and spas. Find time to see the impressive 12m-high golden Buddha statue which can be found on a small island just off Koh Samui, and make sure to set your alarm for the impressive sunrise vistas.
  • See the rocket festival, Boon Bang Fai – In May, the towns of Nong Khai, Ubon Ratchathani and Yasothon celebrate the Rocket Festival. This involves locals shooting rockets into the sky to encourage rain to fall on their crops. As well as impressive projectiles, there's also music, dancing, pageants and plenty of delicious food and drink. While these locations aren't the easiest to reach, this event is popular amongst tourists.

Where to stay: Soak up the sun at the four-star Centara Villas Samui.


Visiting Thailand in June 

In June, the weather is hot and humid – perfect if you plan on spending most of your time by the resort pool. This is when monsoon season hits the south-east of the country with hard and fast rainfall. Rain showers don't last long but it's a good idea to bring along a lightweight poncho or waterproof if you're heading out and exploring the likes of Phuket or Koh Phangan. 


Average temperature in June: 34°C

Average rainfall: 150mm per month

Sunshine: 13 hours per day 

Best location to visit in June: Koh Phangan


What to do in Thailand in June

  • Discover Koh Phangan – Thailand's fifth largest island is a tropical oasis and is perhaps best known for its full moon parties that take place each month on Haad Rin Beach. But there’s more to this tropical getaway than cocktail-filled celebrations! Explore the island's natural beauty on one of the various treks to its inner waterfalls – Than Sadet is one of the most notable spots. If you're the active type, plan a visit to The Challenge Phangan, a water park where you jump around on inflatables and navigate a slippery obstacle course. 
  • Enter foodie heaven at Thong Sala Night Market – If you love a night market, then Thong Sala is worth a visit. Tuck into steaming pad thai, sample noodles in a range of spicy sauces and be sure to try some seafood dishes featuring freshly caught fish from the nearby coastline.

Where to stay: Escape the party scene and unwind at Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas.


Visiting Thailand in July 

While July may be peak holiday season for many of us in the UK, this is when Thailand’s tourist season begins winding down as the monsoon season sets in. Now is a good time for an island-hopping trip, with Koh Samui, Koh Tao and Koh Phangan top of the list. This is because you'll enjoy fewer crowds, prices can be a little cheaper and while you may see some rain this will likely be short showers in the afternoon and quite pleasant as they break up the heat. 


Average temperature in July: 33°C

Average rainfall: 147mm per month

Sunshine: 13 hours per day 

Best location to visit in July: Koh Tao 


What to do in Thailand in July

  • Climb John Suwan Viewpoint – It's a bit of a hike to reach this viewpoint in Koh Tao but wow, is it worth it! If you love nothing more than taking pictures while on holiday you'll find yourself overwhelmed by the impeccable landscape that offers some stunning shots. You'll need to pay an entry fee and be sure to wear decent shoes – leave the flip flops in your hotel room. 
  • Go diving in Koh Tao – Koh Tao is also known as Turtle Island and you can see these creatures up close swimming among the vibrant coral reefs around its shores. This month is considered to be in the midst of the island's peak diving season, with plenty of excursions available to take you out on the water. 

Where to stay: Enjoy an island hideaway at Haad Tien Beach Resort.

Visiting Thailand in August 

The weather varies across the country in August, with rain moving down from the north, however, this doesn't make it any less popular for a summer holiday. In fact, the rain brings out the true beauty of Thailand, especially when you head into its northern rainforests and mountainous regions. For those looking for a destination off the beaten track, consider Phayao. This quaint town is based around three hours by bus from Chiang Mai so could be sought out for day trips or a couple of overnight stays. 


Average temperature in August: 32°C

Average rainfall: 203mm per month

Sunshine: 12 hours per day 

Best location to visit in August: Phayao 


What to do in Thailand in August 

  • Discover Phayao – This northern town isn't your typical tourist hotspot but has grown in popularity in recent years. If you're looking for a calmer environment immersed in authentic Thai culture, Phayao is where to be. Wat Sri Khom Kham temple is a must see, featuring unusual (and a little scary) sculptures depicting heaven and hell. The town is located between two beautiful national parks (Doi Phu Nang and Mae Yom) where you can pull on your trainers and head out in search of magical waterfalls and exotic hiking trails. 
  • Witness the Queen Mother's birthday celebrations – On the 12th of August, expect to see vigils laid out across the country to Her Majesty Queen Sirikit. Locals honour her memory with ceremonies and by offering gifts to their mothers. You'll find some spectacular displays in Bangkok, with floral arrangements and large portraits of the Queen Mother around the city. 

Where to stay: The Antara Bangkok Riverside Resort is a superb choice overlooking the Chao Phraya river. 

Visiting Thailand in September 

With the air hot and humid, we wouldn’t blame you if all you wanted to do is sit beside the pool, cocktail in hand! And while Phuket and Krabi experience very heavy rain in September and it's the wettest month for visiting Bangkok, as long as you’re prepared with waterproofs and umbrellas, there’s no reason not to go out and explore. Pattaya is another location many flock to in September, you'll find there is a little less sun but those cloudy days make for the perfect conditions for exploring outside your resort. 


Average temperature in September: 32°C

Average rainfall: 199mm per month

Sunshine: 12 hours per day 

Best location to visit in September: Pattaya 


What to do in Thailand in September  

  • Explore Pattaya – Only an hour from Bangkok, be sure to add this fascinating city to your must-see list. Visit the spectacular Khao Chee Chan Buddha Mountain and enjoy a plethora of activities such as watersports, bungee jumping, horse riding, golf and diving alongside an impressive nightlife.
  • See the Big Buddha in Pattaya – This popular tourist attraction features a grand golden Buddha, overlooking a long and ornately decorated pathway. It's a popular spot for tourists, offering plenty of photo opportunities.

Where to stay: The five-star Amari Pattaya is ideal for exploring this coastal city. 


Visiting Thailand in October

The islands of Phuket and Krabi, as well as Koh Samui and Koh Tao, are still very wet during this month but for the rest of Thailand, brighter days have arrived. The south of the country continues to enjoy high heat and humidity, making days by the resort pool a must. In the south west, monsoon season continues but the rain showers are usually short and sharp, before the sun returns. In the north, the crowds are fewer but the weather is no less enjoyable. Cities such as Chiang Rai and their surrounding areas flourish with life after months of wet weather and warm, sunny days provide visitors with the chance to explore what it has to offer without the waterproofs. 


Average temperature in October: 32°C

Average rainfall: 88mm per month

Sunshine: 11 hours per day 

Best location to visit in October: Chiang Rai  


What to do in Thailand in October  

  • Explore Chiang Rai - A visit to Chiang Rai wouldn't be complete without seeing the majestic White Temple, a palatial building that draws thousands to its bright white spires. It's also home to one of the world's most beautiful public toilets. 
  • Witness the Vegetarian Festival – This isn't your typical foodie festival, but instead a Taoist celebration of the Nine Emperor Gods. The story goes that a group of Chinese opera performers fell ill while travelling in Phuket and so ate a strict vegetarian diet and prayed to the Nine Emperor Gods who cured them. Now, people take part in the festival and pledge their allegiance to the gods with acts of self-mutilation and parades. Phuket, Bangkok and Chiang Mai all put on celebrations. 

Where to stay: Get up close to gentle giants and enjoy spectacular views poolside at the Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort.


Visiting Thailand in November

Northern areas of Thailand and the capital, Bangkok are the better choices for November as popular islands such as Koh Samui and Koh Phangan see heavy rainfall. The eastern gulf is where you'll find the best weather with sunny days and crystal-clear waters.  


Average temperature in November: 32°C

Average rainfall: 88mm per month

Sunshine: 11 hours per day 

Best location to visit in November: Koh Chang  


What to do in Thailand in November  

  • Enjoy the remoteness of Koh Chang – Don your hiking boots and plan a day trip to Mu Ko Chang National Park where you can search for waterfalls, navigate the trails and end up at the beach for a drink or two to celebrate your adventure.
  • See the Yi Peng Festival in Chiang Mai – Across northern Thailand, the Yi Peng Festival occurs over three days with fire lanterns being lit at nightfall, street parades and firework displays. There's a carnival atmosphere and many take to the streets of Chiang Mai to enjoy this festival.

Where to stay: Enjoy a little respite in the wonderfully secluded The Emerald Cove.


Visiting Thailand in December

Incredible weather and plenty to do makes Thailand a hotspot for tourists in December. The northern cities are cooler but if all you want for Christmas is an even suntan then Phuket, Krabi and Koh Samui are your best choices.


Average temperature in December: 32°C

Average rainfall: 88mm per month

Sunshine: 11 hours per day 

Best location to visit in December: Krabi  


What to do in Thailand in December  

  • See more of Krabi - You're guaranteed sun, sea and sand on a visit to Krabi in December. This island is where to go for the ultimate opportunity to relax, away from the crowds. Book into a spa and indulge in an authentic Thai massage, hire a kayak and explore mangrove forests or hike in the jungle to reach impressive viewpoints that look out over the island's landscapes.
  • Shop at the Krabi Town night market – If your baht is burning a hole in your pocket then a visit to Krabi's popular night market is a must. Here you'll find 70 stalls, packed with souvenirs, accessories and delicious street food as well as the opportunity to try your hand at karaoke and watch performances from local school children. 

Where to stay: Dine on the beach and relax in the sun when you choose The Tubkaak Krabi.

Speak to our expert team today, who can help you plan your trip. Or browse our website for our latest deals on holidays to Thailand.

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