We’ve already alerted you to the mega news that Bangkok is open, as well as what to expect on your first trip to the city, but then we thought we’d only go and be even more useful and tell you when to go, too.
We’re just an all-rounder, really. A Jack of all trades. A one man (or woman) band.
Anyway, a trip to Bangkok is way up high on the bucket list for travellers pretty much everywhere. Sizzling with delish street food, its sprawling cityscape is brimming with adventure for both the daytime amblers and the night-time dancers amongst you. Here you’ll find modern architecture brushing shoulders with golden temples galore and the city’s ceaseless cultural heritage to create a right colourful character that could only ever be, well, Bangkok.
As the most visited city in the world, this colossus of urban Asia has pretty much got a place for everyone. But to fully embrace the Bangkok experience, you’ll want to be greeted by the kinda weather that suits your plans. The type of holiday you want will shape exactly when you should visit Bangkok. So that’s the big question: What are you looking for? Hot and humid, with the coast close enough for some beachy swims? Cool and breezy, with a chance of snagging a bargain? Or somewhere in the middle, in that elusive Goldilocks Zone?
Here’s our tips to help you pinpoint the best time to visit Bangkok for you. We suggest reading with an ice cold Singha.
The sweet spot (November to February)
Like anywhere, Bangkok has got a popular season for tourists, when it’s not too hot but still retains that summery vibe. It’s labelled by some as the ‘cool months’, but don’t sweat it. No, literally — it’s pinned as being hot, but not so hot that you’re too sticky to enjoy roaming the city’s many wonders.
During this period, you’re unlikely to need a raincoat. On the back of the rainy season, the city dries out while retaining a slightly cooler temperature, so November and early December are likely the best times to visit. Plus, with tourist season really ramping up from the second half of December, you may avoid the crowds a little at this time.
Of course, if you’re heading to one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations at the widely considered ‘best time’, you’ll need to be prepared to mingle with other tourists. But for our money, it’s worth it. Don’t forget that things will get festive during this period; Chinese New Year in late January sees Bangkok’s Chinatown explode into a chaotic sea of colour. It’s a sight not to be missed.
Some like it hot (March to June)
If you think you can handle the heat, then prepare to get your tan on. Heading to Bangkok over the March – June period will see the temps rarely drop below the mid-30s, and the humidity can get pretty intense. But if you’d rather trade your urban sprawl for sun and twinkling water, you may well have found your very own Bangkok sweet spot.
Throughout this period, tourists tend to forego long days of wandering through the heart of Bangkok — unless it’s through the air-conditioned malls and restaurants, which are a sight to behold in themselves. Instead, you can seek out a watery escape. If you’re willing to travel, there are plenty of jaw-dropping beaches when you head south. Spots like Bangsaen are little more than an hour away, and welcome visitors with calm waters and palm-lined sands.
Cooling off doesn’t have to include the beach, though. Heading out into the wilderness, you can discover the best of Thailand’s natural beauty with a trip to one of the many stunning waterfalls that lie in the south of the country.
Bag a bargain (July to October)
If you want to enjoy Bangkok on a budget and don’t mind getting your raincoat out, then July to October is as good a time as any to head to Thailand’s capital. Low season will mean fewer tourists, allowing you the freedom of wandering around the beautifully bustling city without bumping into other tourists at every turn.
Low season it may be, but we didn’t mention that raincoat for nothing! July to October is also monsoon season in this neck of the woods. But! These showers often tend to last only 30 mins or so and mix with full days of clear or overcast skies. Rain isn’t always a guarantee — merely a bit of a risk. Plus, while it’s not the hottest period of the year for Bangkok, the temperature can still border on tropical. So, while a raincoat is a must, you might not need to pack too many sweaters.
But the biggest advantage to visiting in this period is the cost-cutting you’ll enjoy. Lower prices for accommodation and cheap Bangkok flights will taste sweet even in the rain — as will the bargains you’ll find in shops. Between July and August, the Amazing Grand Sale takes place, with shops offering anywhere between 10% and 80% discounts on everything: clothes, electronics, jewellery, you name it.