Weather in Vietnam – When is the best time to visit Viet Nam?

When is the best weather in vietnam to travel ?

The answer is quite simple: anytime is the best time!

Planning your holidays in Vietnam, you might wonder with the weather in Vietnam when it is the best time to visit the country. The answer is quite simple: any weather in vietnam is the best one.

Literally, it’s not completely true. I think it depends on how you would like to spend your holidays in Vietnam. If you want to stay at a nice and cozy beach resort, sipping cocktails and sunbathing, you will want to set your timing different than if you want a more interesting holiday.

However, there some thing you should know about weather in vietnam before planning your trip. The first thing you need to know : Vietnam is a long country, stretching over a thousand miles, from Sa Pa in the north to the Mekong Delta in the south. There are roughly two different weather patterns, the northern climate with four seasons and the tropical climate with only two conditions : dry and wet.

The climatic divide between the two main climates is the Hai Van Pass between Hue and Da Nang.

Climate of the south

Let’s start in the south of Vietnam. The dry season lasts from December to the end of April. It is not raining much; the sky is clear and blue. From January to March, there is almost no rainfall at all.

If your goal is to relax at a beautiful resort near the beach, this is the best time to visit Vietnam. If your destination is in the highlands, just choose Da Lat as it is rather cool in here

 

If you plan on spending most of your time in Ho Chi Minh City, be careful as the streets during the dry season can get quite dusty. The streets of the city are not really clean apart from air pollution you will realize that many Vietnamese wear facial masks. They do it to protect their skin from the sunlight, as well eliminate exhausted fumes released from motorbikes as much as possible.

weather in vietnam
People wear facial masks when they are on the roads during hot weather in vietnam

The temperature does not fluctuate much in the south. It’s always hot in the lowlands, nice and cool in the highlands of southern Vietnam. The hottest time of the year is between March and May. Tourists from colder countries welcome the burning heat, but for the locals it is a torture of a special kind. So when the rainy season starts in May or June, most are satisfied with the cooling effects.

 

The temperature becomes low from September to December, together with the end of the rainy season in November. In my opinion, from November until January is the best time to visit the south of Vietnam. It is unsurprisingly with the high season of tourism in Ho Chi Minh City as well.

So if you plan to stay sway from the cold, dark winter during Christmas time, Vietnam is the perfect destination for that purpose. You might also hear that Australians like to leave their even hotter summers behind during that time and find relief in the more balanced climate of Vietnam.

Climate of the north

The northern climate is known for four seasons, rather than two. You can decide between the hot and humid summertime and the cool and dry winters. If it rains during the colder time of the year, the rain can get quite nasty, but fortunately that’s not often the case.

If you visit the Northern Highlands however, prepare for quite cold winters with a low of around 0°C. It even snows in Sa Pa sometimes. Here is another quick weather guide, if you are especially interested in the weather in Hanoi.

 

Spring

The best thing about four seasons is springtime, with the air filled with the scent of a thousand flowers of tropical area. Springtime in Hanoi is usually wet and damp, before the monsoon arrives in May. While you carry your umbrella and scout for blue spots in the sky, check out for the countless flowers that use the damp weather to bloom.

 weather in vietnam
Beautiful flowers of a garden in Ha Noi in spring

Summer

Summertime in the north is hot and humid. There’s nothing to expect because the global warming causes all kinds of humidity-temperature combinations. Bring an umbrella or a rain coat just in case. The weather might change quickly.

Fall

Autumn in the north of Vietnam is considered the most romantic time of the year. Rainfall and temperature is balanced, the leaves are turning colorful and you can experience a nice and cool breeze. I would say that fall is the best time to visit the north of Vietnam, but the season is quite short. It just lasts only a couple of weeks from Mid-September to the end of November.

Winter

Winter in the north is cold, at least for a tropical country. The temperature in Hanoi can get as low as 10°C, together with the humidity, it gets chilly. Prepare for the cold season with proper clothing, but don’t be worried by what i tell you here. The winter in Vietnam has its own charm, when people gather around the fires of small street-side kitchens, sipping hot tea and eating fresh, hot and delicious street food.

Public holidays in Vietnam

This is another thing to consider when traveling to Vietnam. There are not many public holidays. Almost all the Vietnamese people have a couple of days off and they will visit their families or spend a few days in another town instead of their own.

If you need to travel to somewhere during Tet (Lunar New Year Festival) holidays or the National Day, book your tickets early. There is no way to get a bus or train ticket during Tet, and if you are extremely lucky, you can get a space on the floor between two seats. Even flight tickets to Bangkok and other Southeast Asian cities are sold out.

vietnam weather
A market day during Tet holidays

Hotel rooms’ price is going to be double and while many shops in the major cities close, the villages and famous travel destinations of Vietnam are bustling with visitors. So if you would like to experience Vietnam during public holidays, either plan ahead carefully or stay static during the storm.

Almost every year , I meet people who are nervous and upset because they cannot leave the place where they are currently staying during the chaotic events of Tet holiday. No tickets, everything full, everything booked, everything pricey. They pace around the lobby like locked up tigers and even shout at the employees of the travel agency, who can not help them. Please, don’t be one of them.

Check for the date and length of the holiday first. Please mind that the date of most festivals in Vietnam is not a constant factor, but depends on the moon phases. Make sure you have enough time at hand and check your visa expiration date. The embassy is closed during public holiday and if your visa expires, it might get pricy. If you manage to stay relaxed during that time, you get to experience a unique and exciting spectacle!

Typhoons

August to November is the typical season for typhoons, tropical storms with a huge destruction potential. Even if the edges of a typhoon occasionally reach as far as Hanoi, usually the coastal areas of the central region suffer the most.

In general, typhoons have already lost much of their power once they reach Vietnam, but they are extremely hard to predict. If you stay at Hue, Da Nang, Hoi An or another coastal city while a typhoon is on the way, make sure to check for updates online or with the receptionist at your hotel. Just to be safe.

weather in vietnam
Many houses and stores were damaged by a typhoon in 2017

In conclusion: When is the best weather in vietnam to visit Vietnam? It’s anytime. But from September to January is ideal weather in vietnam to visit the south, while spring and fall are perfect for visiting the north. If you are not afraid of some rain, the south is yours all year round.