No announcement yet.

Thailand | Regional Weather Data

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Thailand | Regional Weather Data

    Thailand Weather Conditions and Temperatures | Best Time to Travel

    Click image for larger version  Name:	Thailand-Weather-Data.jpg Views:	1 Size:	288.2 KB ID:	918
    Last edited by Macman; 08-26-2021, 06:44 PM.

  • #2
    Click image for larger version  Name:	Best Time to Visit.jpg Views:	0 Size:	240.3 KB ID:	1013

    The Climate of Thailand

    Thailand has a predominantly tropical wet and dry climate (Köppen climate classification Aw) in the north and tropical monsoon type of climate (Köppen Am) in the south. A few sections in the western and southern regions harbor tropical rainforests (Köppen Af). The extreme north has few regions with a temperate climate (Köppen Cwa, Cwb), with warm to hot summers and dry winters. Thailand lies in Southeast Asia, entirely between the equator and the Tropic of Cancer. Laos and Cambodia are in the east, Malaysia and the Gulf of Thailand in the south, Myanmar and the Andaman Sea in the west, and Laos and Myanmar in the north. The tropical location and monsoon rains, along with proximity to large water bodies, chiefly influence the climate.

    Thailand has several geographical regions with varied topography. Northern Thailand is mountainous and a source of several important rivers. The northeast region is mainly a plateau that sits on a high-level plain. Doi Inthanon in Chiang Mai is the highest mountain in the north, at 2595 meters. The Yom, Nan, Ping, and Wang rivers unite to form the Chao Phraya River in the broad, low-level plain of the central region. The eastern portion mostly consists of plains and valleys and kisses the Gulf of Thailand in its south. Southern Thailand is a peninsula between the Andaman Sea in the west and the South China Sea in the east. The long ridge of western mountains extends from the north and central regions, all the way to the south. The Phuket and Nakhon Si Thammarat ridges separate the southern portion into western and eastern coasts. The Mekong and Chao Phraya are famous rivers. The Bang Pakong, Mae Klong, Tapi, and Chao Phraya rivers drain into the Gulf of Thailand, whose clear shallow waters along the southern region are famous for tourism. The islands along the Andaman Sea coast, such as Phuket, Phang Nga, Trang, and Krabi are tourist hotspots.

    Thailand has three distinct seasons, with a mainly tropical climate. Summers run from March to May and are generally hot and dry. The average high temperatures peak in April and register in the 32.2°C (90°F) to 36.1°C (97°F) in much of the country. The northern inland plains are hot throughout the year except for a brief period in the winter. Peninsular Thailand, overlooking the Gulf of Thailand in the east, has moderate summers than the rest of the country. The rainy season begins by the last week of May and lasts until October. The rainfall is heavy, and the conditions are humid and hot. Mountains receive abundant rainfall above altitudes of 1000 meters. November brings the pleasant winter season in Thailand that lasts up to late February. Bangkok and surrounding areas have average daily high temperatures in the 31.1°C (88°F) to 32.2°C (90°F) range, even in the winter. The northwest mountain ranges near Myanmar and Laos have comfortable temperatures throughout the year.

    The southwest monsoon prevails over Thailand to bring abundant annual rainfall in the range of 1092.2mm (43") to 1701.8mm (67"). August to September is the usually wettest period of the year in much of the country. The northeast monsoon brings heavy rainfall to the east coast of Southern Thailand, where November is the wettest month. The Trat province in the east and Ranong province in the west receive more than 4572mm (180") of rainfall in the year. The annual sunshine ranges from 2100 hours on the rainy west coast to 2700 hours in Bangkok and Pattaya. The relative humidity is highest during the rainy season and the lowest during the summer. The cloud cover is usually less between November and March. El Nino and La Nina factors that arise from the Pacific Ocean affect the monsoon rains in Thailand. The highest temperature on record for Thailand is 44.5°C (112.1°F), set on April 27, 1960, in Uttaradit. The coldest temperature is -1.4°C (29.5°F), set on January 2, 1974, in Sakon Nakhon.

    The best time to visit Thailand
    The best time to visit Thailand is post-monsoon, during the pleasant months from November to February. The skies are clear, and the temperatures are in the most comfortable range of the year. Cold and dry air masses from China keep northern Thailand in their grip. Bangkok and the western coast, including Phuket, Krabi, and the Phi Phi Islands have excellent weather until early summer. The east coast along the Gulf of Thailand is a great vacation destination until mid-summer. The greenery soothes the eyes after the rainy season. Budget travelers find the final phase of the wet season cheap on the wallet and the weather to be moderate.

    The worst time to visit Thailand
    The worst time to visit Thailand is during April and May when the summer is at its peak. Temperatures frequently cross 40°C (104°F) in the hinterland, and the conditions are dry. June provides relief in the form of the southwest monsoon, but the heat and humidity are often high. The heat index in Bangkok and many other cities is high due to the urban heat island effect. July and August bring heavy rainfall along the western coast of Thailand. The rain, heat, and humidity are occasionally unbearable for visitors from the temperate weather zones. Additionally, tropical cyclones are active in the rainy season, and it is prudent to skip the wet period for a vacation.

    Weather hazards
    Thailand is prone to thunderstorms, floods, and tropical cyclones during the rainy season. May has the highest frequency of thunderstorms in the country. Tropical cyclones usually arrive from the Pacific Ocean or the South China Sea to Thailand's shores. The southern part has a high incidence of typhoons with wind speeds above 120.7km/h (75mph). May to November is the season of tropical storms, with an annual average of three to four cyclones. Typhoon Linda hit the Prachuap Khiri Khan province in November 1997 with devastating effect. Heavy rainfall causes seasonal floods in Thailand.
    Last edited by Logan; 08-26-2021, 01:49 PM.


    • #3
      The Climate of Thailand

      Weather in January

      January is beautiful and sunny, even though it is usually the coldest month of the year in Thailand. The northern plains and valleys have a rosy cold, with average low temperatures in the mild 11.1°C (52°F) to 15.6°C (60.1°F) range. The mountains above altitudes of 1000 meters are the only places where the conditions are cold enough for wearing layered clothing. Much of the country sees lovely sunshine that lasts 7 to 8 hours. Follow the strict dress code during a visit to the Grand Palace in the heart of Bangkok, the capital, where temperatures are comfortable in January compared to the summer. Enjoy the hospitality and relax at luxurious spas, with warm oils for a massage that rejuvenates the body in the cold season. The New Year is a festive time with plenty of tourist footfalls. Expect the southeastern beaches to be rainy in the winter due to the effect of the northeast monsoon. The dry atmosphere, comfortable temperatures, and low humidity make January a pleasant time to explore Thailand.

      Weather in February
      February is moderately cold and dry in Thailand, with mostly clear skies amid beautiful sunshine. The days have 9 hours of lovely sunshine in the northern plains, but the evenings are cold after sunset. The average temperatures in the Chiang Mai region are in the 16.1°C (61°F) to 32.2°C (90°F) range, with negligible rain. Check the blooming forecast in the north. Wild Himalayan cherry blossoms turn the landscape into a combination of pink and green in the mountains of Doi Inthanon and many parks in Chiang Mai. Mountain adventurers enjoy hiking in the winter months in a blanket of mist and frost feathers. The beaches of Krabi and Phang Nga have fewer crowds and offer great sunset views in the mild waters in the winter. Expect temperatures to rise gradually with the end of the winter season insight. February has charming weather in much of Thailand.

      Weather in March
      March is dry and hot at the beginning of the summer in Thailand. Temperatures rise steadily every day, and the sunshine lasts for more than 9 hours. Phuket is an excellent destination in early summer, with average temperatures in the 23.9°C (75°F) to 32.8°C (91°F) range. The southwestern coast receives a few showers, but the precipitation is light at most. The waterways are busy with cruises and ferries full of tourists. Sea breezes mostly occur in the evenings, which is a pleasant time on the beaches. The parks and reserves are full of visitors who try to find solace in the warm weather. Feed elephants and bathe them with cool waters to escape from the rising heat. The Khlong Lat Mayom Floating Market near Bangkok offers delicious food and fun activities under the clear skies of March. Lightweight clothing such as sweatshirts, along with comfortable shoes is suitable during the day. Thailand begins to heat considerably by the second half of March.

      Weather in April
      April is typically the hottest month of the year in Thailand. The average high temperatures are in the range of 31.1°C (88°F) to 33.3°C (91.9°F), with 9 to 10 hours of bright sunshine. The northern interior lands are hotter than the peninsular south due to the proximity of large water bodies in the south. The beaches and islands beckon travelers with their moderate temperatures, clear blue skies, and shallow waters. Phi Phi Island and Koh Lanta are fantastic destinations with plenty of water activities to beat the heat. The heat is oppressive in the north unless people opt for a vacation in the mountains. Bring sweaters for evenings on mountain tops above 2000 meters if the plan is to camp in the open. Pre-monsoon showers mostly occur on the southwestern coast for 4 to 5 days in April. Air-conditioners run in indoor places everywhere, from offices to hotels and restaurants to malls. Expect long and warm evenings that are fun to spend outdoors in April in Thailand.

      Weather in May
      May is hot and dry in Thailand, with mostly clear skies and sticky heat. The southern region is especially humid with its closeness to the sea. However, temperatures are moderate in the south and never reach highs like 40°C (104°F) in the north. Seasonal fires also burn in northern Thailand and cause terrible smoke and haze. Storms batter the southwestern coast overlooking the Andaman Sea. Koh Lanta begins to bear the brunt towards May-end with storms, and slowdown in tourist footfalls. Temperatures are between 25°C (77°F) to 32.8°C (91°F) in the south, with 76.2mm (3") to 101.6mm (4") of pre-monsoon rainfall. Bangkok is uncomfortably hot with the urban heat island effect in full force in the city. Lightweight clothing, such as sweatshirts, t-shirts, and shorts, are desirable. Expect humidity in addition to the heat. There is a chance to grab discounts in the hot season, but many tourists who escape from the southern hemisphere winter land on the shores of Thailand in May.

      Weather in June
      June is the beginning of the rainy season in Thailand, with cloudy skies and high humidity levels. The southwest monsoon strikes the country with its full intensity and is particularly harsh on the southern coasts. The average temperatures in Pattaya hover in the 27.2°C (81°F) to 32.2°C (90°F), with 127mm (5") of precipitation. Phuket is cloudy with less than 6 hours of sunshine. Thunderstorms frequently occur in the northern mountains, but trekkers do not find the weather dangerous for hiking. The heat and humidity are unbearable in June at times, and the best way to beat the heat is to spend time on the beaches such as Koh Phi Phi. The Namtok Phlio National Park in Chanthaburi is another cool place to escape from the heat and heavy rainfall. The start of the monsoon season offers moderate weather conditions with the rainfall yet to peak. Budget travelers find cheap flights and accommodations during June, which is the period of relatively fewer tourist footfalls in Thailand.

      Weather in July
      July brings heavy rainfall and high humidity levels in Thailand. Winds push the heavy moisture-laden clouds from the Indian Ocean towards the sub-continent. The days mostly receive at least 6 hours of sunshine, particularly in the northern region. The average high temperatures are below 31.1°C (88°F) in much of Thailand, but the humidity raises the heat quotient.
      Evenings are uncomfortably humid when the skies are cloudy due to lack of breezes. Air-conditioners make the nights comfortable in the luxurious hotels. The seawater temperatures in Koh Samui average below 28.9°C (84°F) and attract the tourist population. Expect rain any time and wear a rain jacket or carry an umbrella during outdoor visits. Keep electronic gadgets dry and out of reach of the wet weather. Keep an eye on the weather forecast for cyclones from the Andaman Sea and typhoons from the South China Sea. The islands in the Gulf of Thailand are a safe bet for a vacation as they remain out of reach of tropical storms in July in Thailand.

      Weather in August
      August has regularly cloudy skies in Thailand that bring heavy rainfall to the various parts of the country. The eastern shores receive comparatively less rainfall than the western shores. Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai in the north receive up to 4 hours of daily sunshine and less than 228.6mm (9") of rainfall. Bangkok and Pattaya, with 152.4mm (6") to 203.2mm (8") of rain, are prudent choices in the rainy season than the south. Streets flood in water during heavy rains in most places, including Bangkok. Temples, historic sites, and museums have plenty of space for visitors during the wet season. The southwest is particularly out of bounds, with torrential rainfall along the coast and the cyclone season in full swing. If it is mandatory to visit the south at least stay in the interior and avoid the islands. Light summer clothing is best as daily high temperatures usually reach above 32.2°C (90°F), and humidity levels touch 90%. Umbrellas and raincoats are mandatory for protection from the rain. Avoid a vacation in Thailand in August as far as possible.

      Weather in September
      September is the wettest month of the year in Thailand except for the southeastern region. Many places receive rainfall above 304.8mm (12") to 381mm (15") that floods the rivers, lakes, and streams. The average temperatures are in the range of 21.1°C (70°F) to 32.2°C (90°F), but the cloudy skies raise the heat index. A burst of rain cools down the atmosphere for a few hours before humidity builds up again. The daily sunshine of fewer than 5 hours offers little opportunity for outdoor activities. Scrumptious Thai food comes to the rescue of visitors who spend time indoors in malls, shopping centers, museums, and the like. Ayutthaya has plenty of historical relics of interest to history buffs during the few hours of sunshine in September.
      For those who dare to spend time outdoors, the peak monsoon is the time of roaring waterfalls down the mountain slopes, misty mornings, and lush greenery everywhere. Picturesque streams and waterfalls unleash their natural beauty only in the rainy season. Do not forget to wear raincoats and rubber-soled shoes during outdoor explorations in September in Thailand.

      Weather in October
      October sees a gradual retreat of the southwest monsoon from Thailand. The average temperatures are in the zone of 23.9°C (75°F) to 32.2°C (90°F) in much of Thailand. Rainfall reduces to register below 254mm (10"), even in the wettest places of the southwest coast. However, it is prudent to avoid the coasts and beaches and head towards the central and northern regions. The mountains are green, with wildflowers blossoming on their slopes. Trekkers take advantage of the decrease in precipitation to climb the peaks and enjoy the scenery on the valley floors from vintage points. Tropical storms occasionally rage along the coast and make a mess on the white, sandy beaches. October heat is oppressive at times, and it is prudent to avoid the mid-day sun with dangerous levels of ultra-violet radiation. Expect frequent cycles of rain and shine and carry an umbrella for protection. The tourist footfalls begin to increase in Thailand by the end of October and the rainy season.

      Weather in November
      November is the wettest month along the southeast coast of Thailand, but dry in the rest of the country. The retreating monsoon brings heavy rainfall up to 464.8mm (18.3") in Ko Samui in the Gulf of Island, and it is a prudent idea to avoid the region. Pattani and Songkhla are generally cloudy and rainy, with average temperatures in the zone of 23.9°C (75°F) to 30°C (86°F). The weather is comfortable in much of Thailand, with the harvest season in full swing. Lush green paddy fields in the small villages along the beautiful countryside are a lovely sight for tourists exploring the roadways. Pattaya receives less rainfall in November, and the weather is perfect for exploring the many cultural and historical places in the city. The days have at least 6 hours of beautiful sunshine, and the nights are cozy. Sweaters are not necessary for the peninsular part of the country.
      November brings a breath of freshness and new hope to Thailand.

      Weather in December
      December is the beginning of the mild winter season in Thailand, with plenty of sunshine. The conditions are pleasant, with moderate daily temperatures and mild to cool nights. The clear skies and sunny days are perfect for exploring the country and experiencing the famous Thai hospitality. The absence of rain in much of the country is the reason for increased tourist footfalls. Visitors who prefer cold temperatures have the option to explore the mountain resorts that are past the peak tourist season. Temperatures in Chiang Mai in the north drop up to 4.4°C (39.9°F) during the night, yet the daily sunshine lasts for 8 hours. The northeast monsoon is active along the southeast coast overlooking the Gulf of Thailand. It is better to postpone a trip to the island of Ko Samui in the Gulf, with the 190.5mm (7.5") of December rainfall. Phuket is a lovely destination in the southwest, with little rain and average temperatures in the 23.9°C (75°F) to 31.1°C (88°F) range. December is one of the best times to visit Thailand.


      • #4
        Regional Weather Conditions throughout Thailand
        Click image for larger version

Name:	Kanchanaburi.jpg
Views:	19
Size:	140.3 KB
ID:	1287

        North & Central
        Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Nan, Chiang Kham, Kanchanaburi, Issan

        In the north of Thailand, the dry season runs from November to May/June, with little if any rain expected throughout the region for much of this time. After the cooler winter months, from mid-January temperatures start to rise, peaking between March and May when it is not unusual for the mercury to break into the high 30’s and even 40°C+ especially in the central regions. These sky-high temperatures can last well into the rainy season, however with the rain comes cloud cover and a rise in the humidity, making travel less comfortable. The south-west monsoon usually arrives between May and July. Initially the rain usually comes in the form of short downpours, lasting an hour or two, clearing the way for warm, clear skies. As the rainy season progresses, the rain can becomes heavier and more constant, traditionally reaching peak levels in August and September. In the early wet season (June to August) temperatures generally remain high (avg daily temp: 28 °C-34°C), although they drop dramatically in the winter months of October and November. By November, the rainfall and hot, sticky weather will have decreased significantly, with dry weather returning for the next six months. From October to January, temperatures can be relatively cool, especially in the north of the country at higher altitude (avg daily temp: 17°C -26°C). Throughout the region at this time of year, evenings can be chilly due to the lack of cloud cover and the temperatures relatively low.

        Andaman Sea, Khao Sok
        Phuket, Krabi, Koh Phi Phi, Khao Lak, Koh Lanta, Koh Kood, Koh Chang, Khao Sok National Park

        Thailand’s west coast has three defined seasons. From November to March, many consider conditions to be at their best with a cooling wind keeping the sky-high summer temperatures at bay and making the daytime more comfortable (avg daily temp: 26°C -32°C). Thanks to the breeze, the humidity levels are lower than later in the year. From March through to May the temperatures rise (avg daily temp: 30°C-36°C) as the cooling winds depart and the humidity rises. Come late May, monsoonal weather will usually have arrived, which is expected to last through to October. Peak rainfall levels are usually experienced between mid-September and mid-October. Outside of these months, the rain will often come in a short, heavy downpour, usually in the afternoon. Khao Sok National Park in southern Thailand follows the same weather patterns as the Andaman Sea coastline, experiencing most rainfall between May and October, although being one of the wettest areas of the country, rain showers can be expected year round. Wet season is actually a good time of year to visit the National Park as average temperatures are a comfortable 25-26°C, the rainforest is green & lush, and there is more chance of spotting wildlife.

        Gulf of Thailand
        Koh Samui, Koh Phan Ngan, Koh Tao, Khanom, Hua Hin & Cha Am

        Thailand’s east coast has three defined seasons. From December to February you can expect good weather, with little if any rain, and refreshing winds helping to keep temperatures more moderate. Because of the winds, the sea can be a little ‘dynamic’ creating ideal conditions for water sports enthusiasts. From March, temperatures will start to rise (avg daily temp: 29°C - 35°C), usually reaching peak levels in April and May. Whilst initially rainfall remains unlikely, by June a little rain becomes is expected, usually in the form of an hour-long afternoon downpour, clearing the way for more blue skies and bright sunshine. In late-August/September the monsoon is expected, bringing with it plenty of rainfall and a rise in humidity. Temperatures are still in the 30ºC's however and you can expect sunny spells interspersed with rainy periods.Rainfall usually peaks between October and November. Despite being on the Gulf of Thailand coastline, Hua Hin & Cha Am experience slightly different rain patterns with serious rainfall only occurring in September and October. Another slight anomaly are the islands of Koh Chang and Koh Kood that sit on the eastern side of the Gulf of Thailand and experience similar weather patterns to the beaches along the Andaman Sea coast with wet season occurring between May and October.
        Last edited by Tripadvisor; 09-11-2021, 03:19 PM.


        • #5
          Travel Guide: Thailand’s 3 Seasons and when to visit in 2022?

          Thailand is one of the most visited countries in Southeast Asia. Its beautiful beaches and lush mountain jungles, in contrast to the colorful concrete jungle of Bangkok, are all popular destinations, not to mention the many delectable dishes and street foods that are famous worldwide. To the distant eye, Thailand might seem like a country with constant topical heat throughout the year. While that might be true for most locations, in reality the weather is much more nuanced and changes during three distinct seasons. So when is the best time to visit the Land of Smiles? Keep reading to find out!

          Hot Season: March to June
          The temperature starts to rise as soon as February, but won’t reach its peak until April. It will stay hot until late June and possibly July, until it starts to rain. Temperatures tend to hover in the mid-30s and can even breach a blistering 40 degrees Celsius. This is the best time to visit the beaches, where you can enjoy the sunny weather and walk around without worrying about a sudden rainstorm. The popular Songkran Festival takes place from April 13-15, when you can participate in public water fights. Just make sure to arm yourself with plenty of water balloons and squirt guns, and abide by the rules of new normal festival etiquette.

          Monsoon Season: July to October
          The rainy season in Thailand is like a bad cocktail: the two don’t mix well. This is when boiling temperatures meet the monsoon rains. The humidity is through the sky, pun intended. We advise you to be careful if you visit the north during this season as landslides could occur. The rainbow in the raincloud is that the rainy season is also traditionally the low season for tourism in Thailand. This is the quietest time to visit the country, while most tourists prepare their beach bodies for the return of consistently sunny weather with no clouds in sight. This is also a great opportunity for anyone who wants to save some money or doesn’t want to travel around too many other tourists. Just make sure to bring an umbrella or pack your bag with a 20 baht plastic poncho from 7-Eleven. If you’re lucky enough to experience flooding in a poorly-irrigated urban area, you might even spot a few locals floating down the street in a boat reserved especially for the rainiest of days.So what causes Thailand’s rainy season? As the southwest monsoon sweeps up out of the Indian Ocean, it carries moist air and heads toward the northeast, where it is sucked into a void replacing the rising warm air over the Asian continent warmed by the summer sun. The monsoon also coincides with Thailand’s location in the Southeast Asian tropical rain belt – the Inter Tropical Convergence Zone.

          Dry & ‘Cool’ Season: November to February
          The dry season is the most recommended time for travellers to visit and is regarded as the high season for tourism. Yes, it’s still sunny, but not too hot. The wind is more of a cool breeze than a hot blow drier, especially in the early mornings and evenings. The weather seems to find a perfect balance, unlike the other seasons when it’s either too humid or too hot. If you’re going to visit Chiang Mai, you’ll get to experience the ‘chilly’ weather in Thailand. Thais love to go there for camping during the later days of December to experience the drop in temperature, and dust off their jackets and sweaters. The first full moon in November is Loy Krathong, Thailand’s Festival of Lights, when you can make floating lanterns for the river and launch paper lanterns into the night sky.


          • #6
            Thailand’s Monsoon and Wet Season

            Unlike much of the rest of the world, north and south of the equatorial regions with the four reliable seasons of winter, spring, summer and autumn, Thailand has just three seasons: hot, not-quite-so-hot and wet. The wet season coincides with a n annual tropical monsoon that is the overwhelming feature of Thailand’s weather in the late spring, summer and autumn. The rainy season is caused by the southwest monsoon that sweeps out of the Indian Ocean with moist air heading in a north-easterly direction across Thailand, sucked into the void left by rising warm air over the summer Asian continent. The monsoon also coincides with Thailand’s location in the Southeast Asian tropical rain belt – the Inter Tropical Convergence Zone.

            The timing of the season isn’t the same around the country and isn’t the same every year although it is reasonably reliable. Chiang Mai does not have the same rainy season as the Gulf of Thailand islands. Koh Samui’s wet season is month’s after the islands on the other side of the Malay Peninsula (the Isthmus of Kra). The annual celebration of Songkran, the Thai New Year – April 13 – is usually timed to match both the end of the hot season and the start of the annual wet season. But in most provinces the start of the monsoon is usually a month or so later.

            Some places can be much wetter than others. Ranong, in the south of Thailand, just north of Phuket facing the Andaman Sea, is the wettest province in the country with a rainy season stretching from April to November. But the seaside resort of Hua Hin on the Gulf of Thailand only really has two particularly rainy months, September and October. The strength and intensity of the rains vary greatly. But, generally, monsoon rains tend to be short, intense bursts of rainfall. They could last for a few hours in the middle of the day, but they could just as easily be over within about 15 minutes in the morning or evening.

            The monsoons do little to stop the locals who are used to just plugging-on, despite the deluges and occasional floods. Help is never too far away with the 20 THB ‘poncho’ available at every 7 Eleven and Food Mart. Flimsy and available in a variety of unfashionable colours, they’ll keep at least some of your body dry if you’re caught out in a downpour. It floods very easily in Thailand, such is the intensity and suddenness of the monsoonal rains. Bangkokians will just roll up their trousers, or hold onto their skirts, take their shoes off and wade through the floodwater – it’s just part of life when living in Thailand. Every year millions of baht are spent to improve drainage and prevent flooding, just about everywhere, but nothing seems to make the situation any better.

            The best thing about Thailand’s wet season is that the rains are never icy cold and usually provide a pleasant respite from the heat. There’s also a poetic drama and beauty of the Thai monsoons as we enjoy and celebrate the annual rains that provide water for the crops and fill up the dams.

            Bangkok and Central provinces
            The Thai capital generally can time the rainy season from late June or early July, peaking in September and starting to dry out in September and October. The rains could start as out-of nowhere storms and often some notable overnight dumps, before increasing to more regular almost daily rains in July and August. It won’t necessarily rain every day and very rarely all day. But sometimes it’s torrential. Bangkok, whilst built to cope with the heavy rains has closed off a lot of the canals and the natural means of escape has been blocked off over the years.

            Chiang Mai and Northern Thailand
            Chiang Mai is the north capital, mostly flat and surrounded by hills, and attracts plenty of tourists and travellers year-round, regardless of weather. Chiang Mai is also the jump off point for visits to Pai, Mae Hong Son, Lampang and Chiang Rai. The monsoon season lasts longer in the North, compared to Bangkok. It usually starts around May and continues until November. July and August are particularly wet. Whilst tourism plunges on, regardless of the rains, there will be occasional disruptions to some of the outdoor activities during the peaks of the northern wet season. The northern parts of Thailand do have distinctly cooler weather during the dry season – December until the end of February – even a morning frost in the mountains around the region.

            North East Thailand
            The Northeast provinces (known as Isaan) are further away from the Indian Ocean so the monsoon has lost some of its power by the time it reaches the region. The wet season would stretch from May to October but 80% of the rain usually falls in August and September. The region’s north and eastern borders are the mighty Mekong River which relies on a decent annual fall of rains. In recent years the Mekong has recorded lower levels due to the changes in wet season rains and damming upstream in Laos and China.

            East Thailand
            Koh Chang and the other islands off the coast of Trat province are beautiful and mostly unspoiled by mass tourism but can be very wet during the monsoon which usually runs from late May to the end of October. In June, July and August it’s likely to rain at some stage just about every day. The moist air has been sucked in from the Indian Ocean, crossed over the thin peninsula of southern Thailand and then rebuilt strength as it passes over the Gulf of Thailand. Storms and choppy offshore waters means that diving and snorkelling may be limited. But the islands will be much quieter and prices lower during the wet season.

            Phuket, Krabi and the Andaman Coast
            Glorious beaches, tropical living and beautiful islands. Once upon a time this region had a distinct high and low tourist season but the changes in international tourist mixes have made many of the Andaman Sea destinations busy throughout the year, rain or no rain. Phuket, Krabi, Koh Lanta, Khao Lak, Koh Phi Phi are just a few of the popular destinations in this picture-postcard region. It will usually start raining from mid April to October and November. September and October are the wettest. And when it rains, it pours. The strong south westerly winds usually make the west-facing beaches unswimmable for the duration of the monsoon – many tourists drown off these coastlines each year. Some of the smaller islands and diving spots shut down during the monsoon.

            Koh Samui and the Gulf Islands
            Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao in the Gulf of Thailand are a triad of popular islands off the coast of Surat Thani and have their own annual season weather patterns. The monsoon season doesn’t hit Koh Samui until later in the year, with the rains arriving during October to December with peaks in November and trailing off during the start of the new year. But, like the Andaman Coast destinations, it remains hot and mostly humid throughout the year.