The best time to visit Vietnam broken down by region: North, Central and South.
Vietnam is renowned for its monsoon tropical climate, which often makes for temperamental and unpredictable weather. The best time to visit Vietnam will largely depend on which part of the country you’re visiting and what you intend to do. If you’re going for a long trip, encompassing different regions within Vietnam, expect varying weather.
In short, there’s no right or wrong time to visit Vietnam! You’ll likely experience a mix of sunshine and rain throughout the different months and seasons.
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Hanoi, and most of North Vietnam, has a defined winter and summer.
November-April: These winter months are mostly dry, with temperatures averaging between 17-22°C. The coldest time to visit Hanoi and North Vietnam are January to March.
May-October: Summer months in North Vietnam are characterised by hot and humid weather, with the regions highest rainfall too. The wettest months of the year are usually between July and September.
Places to visit in North Vietnam
North Vietnam is famous for its many UNESCO World Heritage sites, northern capital Hanoi and its mountainous, trekking regions Sa Pa and Mu Cang Chai.
If you plan to visit Hanoi, Ha Long Bay or Ninh Binh and the Trang An region, consider going October/November or April/May. This will help you miss the peak rainy season and highest temperatures, as well as the coldest winter months. I visited this region in October, where I had temperatures of 30°C and no rain!
Expect cooler temperatures in the north-west and mountainous regions of Sa Pa, Ha Giang, Bac Ha & Mu Cang Chai. Temperatures range from 15-28°C in the day, and 10-18°C in the evening. You can cycle and hike all year round in these regions, but expect it to be chilly in the winter months and very rainy in the summer.
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January – August: The summer season in Central Vietnam lasts between January until August. Conditions during this time are hot and dry, with temperatures ranging from 21°C – 35°C.
October – November: Nearly half the annual rainfall falls during these two months. Typhoons are most common in Central Vietnam during these months.
September – December: Central Vietnam’s rainy season. Temperatures are still warm for most areas during the rainy season. For the central highlands (Da Lat), bring layers as it gets cold.
Places to visit in Central Vietnam
Visiting the central highlands, like Dalat, will need some planning. The heavy rainfall from June to October makes doing any of the outdoor activities it’s known for, pretty difficult. During my visit in November, all hiking routes were closed and we spent our time exploring the Crazy House in the torrential rain. Be sure to bring layers and waterproofs, as it does get quite cold!
Found in the centre of Vietnam, Hoi An, Hue and Danang have very hot (mid-30s) and dry weather from January to August. Typhoons are not uncommon in these areas during the rainy season.
Located far south, the coastal resort of Nha Trang experiences a longer dry season than other parts of Central Vietnam. Expect high temperatures, and few downpours, from January to September. Rainy season is still from October to December.
South Vietnam sees consistent temperatures throughout the year, with averages between 25-35°C. However this region has two distinct seasons: rainy and dry.
May – October: High temperatures and humidity during this time causes huge downpours; with June, July & August being the wettest months. These downpours usually come in short, heavy bursts in the afternoon.
November – April: Expect drier conditions from November to April, as the weather cools down.
Places to visit in South Vietnam
This makes visiting the classic sites South Vietnam has to offer (Ho Chi Minh City, The Mekong Delta, Phan Thiet & Mui Ne, Ho Tram & Long Hai) easy to plan.
The southern islands of Pho Quoc and Con Dao are sunny, year-round destinations. Although expect a few downpours if you’re visiting during the rainy season.
Check out the latest updates on Vietnam’s weather.
I hope this helps anyone looking for the best time to visit Vietnam!
Happy Travels xx