Bangkok is a bewildering city that will stir your senses no matter when you decide to visit. Its mix of landmark attractions combined with a consistently hot climate means it bustles and sizzles each day with endless amounts of action. From its frantic street food markets to its entrancing temples and gleaming skyscrapers, there’s always something in the city to grab your attention.

But the best time to visit Bangkok will largely depend on your preferences when it comes to high humidity, sweltering temperatures, and monsoon rains which typify its tropical climate.

Bangkok weather and climate

Hot tropics

Bangkok’s climate remains warm and humid throughout the year, making it ideal if you like to turn up the heat on your travels. Average temperatures can soar above 30⁰C during the hottest months of April through to June, while the ‘cool season’ of November to February is far from chilly, with temperatures rarely dropping below 26⁰C. 

Best months to visit Bangkok

Many people regard the Bangkok ‘winter’ of November to February as the best time to visit Bangkok as these are the driest and coolest months in the calendar, making city sightseeing a relative breeze. However, you should expect more crowds during these popular months, so consider visiting during the shoulder seasons of April and May, if you can stand the scorching heat, or in late October to early November, when the summer temperatures start to drop and the monsoon rains start to subside. 

Image: Buddha statues, Wat Arun temple, Bangkok

Bangkok monsoon months

The start of Thailand’s south-west monsoon season begins in May and lasts up to October, bringing heavy showers and humid average temperatures of 30⁰C to Bangkok. But with far fewer tourists around and great accommodation discounts on offer during this period, you shouldn’t dismiss it. 

Bangkok; A month-by-month guide

Our detailed month-on-month guide will help you select your own best time to visit Bangkok. Whether you need to see the city at the height of the hot season, or want to escape the crowds with a mindful monsoon retreat, every month is covered. Simply take your pick and plan your ultimate trip. 

  • January: exploring the city’s famous temples
  • February: The Grand Palace and Temple of the Emerald Buddha
  • March: an ancient escape to Ayutthaya
  • April: a visit to the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
  • May: a meander through Bangkok’s Chinatown 
  • June: shopping at the city’s Grand Sales 
  • July: Thai cooking schools and the Jim Thompson House
  • August: relaxation at a Thai spa
  • September: exploring Bangkok’s hip neighborhoods
  • October: living the Bangkok good life
  • November: the bright lights of Loy Krathong
  • December: a Chao Phraya river cruise

January

January is a glorious month to visit Bangkok with balmy weather, bright skies, and low amounts of rainfall. This is a perfect time to explore the city’s key cultural treasures, including its mystic Buddhist temples, which rise out of its urban jungle like glittering jewels thanks to their decorative stupas. The sprawling Wat Pho temple complex is one of Bangkok’s best, housing the city’s largest reclining Buddha statue and the biggest collection of Buddha images in Thailand. The gold-drenched Reclining Buddha will leave you truly dazzled. But if you prefer less ostentatious options, then take your pick from more tranquil temples like Wat Benchamabophit Dusitvanaram, with its graceful marble features, or the meditative Wat Mahathat, an 18th-century refuge filled with majestic Buddha figures.  

Get me there: a Go Bangkok pass includes a guided tour of three temples, including Wat Pho and Wat Benchamabophit Dusitvanaram.  

Image: Wat Benchamabophit Dusitvanaram, Bangkok

Average temperature: 27⁰C

Average rainfall: 2 days

Average sunshine hours: 9 hours

February

February is another fine month to visit Bangkok, with sunny skies, dry days and warm but bearable temperatures. This gives you a great excuse to visit the city’s two most famous attractions; the opulent Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew, or Temple of the Emerald Buddha. The 18th-century Grand Palace has been the official residence of Thailand’s monarchy since 1782, and today comprises a compound of more than 100 intricately-designed buildings that blend European design with traditional Thai architecture. Spend a sunny morning or afternoon waltzing around the impressive prasats and spires as you look out for kaleidoscopic statues that guard the entrance to notable buildings. Then head over to Wat Phra Kaew for a glimpse of Thailand’s holiest object, the Emerald Buddha (which is actually made of jade). A Go Bangkok pass offers a fully guided walking tour that takes in the most beguiling sites at each of these locations. 

Image: Entrance to The Temple of the Emerald Buddha, Bangkok

Average temperature: 28⁰C

Average rainfall: 2 days

Average sunshine hours: 9 hours

March

Bangkok’s hot season begins to ramp up in March as the average temperature escalates to 30⁰C. Take a breather from the urban mayhem by escaping to one of Thailand’s most important historical sites. The ancient city of Ayutthaya is an architectural dream resembling Cambodia’s Angkor Wat, with over 2,000 stunning Buddhist temples laid out across a perfect patchwork of sleepy rice fields and meandering rivers. The calm countryside setting is a stark contrast to the busy streets of Bangkok, and yet only 50 miles north. Come face-to-face with a range of atmospheric temple ruins dotted with beautiful Buddha statues and don’t miss the enigmatic Wat Mahathat with its serene Buddha head wedged in the tangled routes of an exotic Bodhi tree. Also don’t miss the golden-glow sunset at Wat Chaiwattanaram, with its stupendous stupas. 

Image: Buddha head in Bodhi tree, Ayutthaya, Thailand - Photo by Pinkasem Muisri from Unsplash

Average temperature: 30⁰C

Average rainfall: 5 days

Average sunshine Hours: 9 hours

April

April is often the hottest month in the city, with average temperatures hovering above 31⁰C and peaking in the mid to high thirties. For some, this might pose a bit of a physical challenge when it comes to your standard city sightseeing route, so forget the rules and head to one of the city’s fantastic floating markets instead for a leisurely float in a colorful canal boat. One of the most unmissable of these markets is the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market on the city’s outskirts, as seen in the classic James Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun. Here, you can drift through a twisting maze of palm-fringed canals while shopping for quirky objects or tropical fruits from the colorful canal boat market trader. Grab the sugar-sweet juice from a freshly picked coconut for that ideal midday-heat pick-me-up. 

Get me there: a Go Bangkok pass includes a Damnoen Saduak Floating Market tour, with a coconut plantation visit included. 

Image: Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, Bangkok

Average temperature: 31⁰C

Average rainfall: 8 days

Average sunshine hours: 8 hours

May

May days in Bangkok sizzle around 30⁰C with intense humidity and some bouts of rainfall as Thailand’s south-west monsoon begins. Take things slow during this time by retreating to the intricate alleyways of Bangkok’s Chinatown district, with its historic Chinese shop-houses, crumbling old mansions and deliciously authentic eateries. It’s the perfect place to get lost for a while in the sights, sounds and smells of local life. Think bustling streets, delectable noodles cooking on roadside stalls and ramshackle shops complete with vintage features. Walk down shaded streets lined with flashy neon signs or take a detour to the cool refuge of the Holy Rosary Church, built in 1769. It’s the perfect place to pass the time while soaking up the lively atmosphere of this simmering city. 

Get me there: a Go Bangkok pass includes an Unseen Chinatown tour that also takes in stops at authentic noodle houses. 

Image: Chinatown, Bangkok - Photo by Florian Wehde on Unsplash

Average temperature: 30⁰C

Average rainfall: 17 days

Average sunshine hours: 8 hours

June

Wet weather increases in June, with 180mm of rainfall on average and high temperatures that frequently exceed 30⁰C. The good news is that this month also heralds in Bangkok’s ‘Grand Sale’ shopping period, where shops all over the city offer amazing discounts on a wide variety of products, from clothes and electronics to jewelry and household goods. If you like your high-end shopping, then head to the ICON SIAM shopping mall with its dizzying array of 500 shops, or seek out the Chatuchak Weekend Market, where you can bag beautiful local handicrafts at a fraction of the price. With many shops offering discounts of between 10-80% from mid-June onwards, it really is the best time to go on a Bangkok shopping spree. 

Average temperature: 30⁰C

Average rainfall: 18 days

Average sunshine hours: 6 hours

July

Temperatures remain high in July, but with increased short and sharp downpours as the summer monsoon intensifies. This month is a good time to choose activities and attractions that don’t require you to stay outside for long periods. Swap your walking tours with a visit to one of Bangkok’s numerous cooking schools, like the Go Thai! Cooking School, where you can learn the art of fragrant Thai cuisine from an expert chef. Or head to one of the city’s enlightening museums. Perhaps one of the most intriguing is the Jim Thompson House Museum, containing the mesmerizing art collection of American businessman Jim Thompson, who revived the Thai silk-weaving industry throughout the 20th Century. See a magical myriad of his cherished antiques in an old teakwood house surrounded by lush gardens. 

Get in: both experiences can be accessed for free with a Go Bangkok pass. 

Image: Jim Thompson House Museum, Bangkok

Average temperature: 30⁰C

Average rainfall: 19 days

Average sunshine hours: 5 hours

August

August is defined by ample rain and humidity, as Bangkok enters the middle of its monsoon season. Tropical showers will fall for around 21 days during this wet month, so tourists should come prepared with an umbrella to shield themselves from storms as they move around the city. But you shouldn’t let the rain dampen your spirits as many of the city’s charms lie in its sheltered corners. Head to one of the many Thai spas on offer in the city to experience the deep relaxation of a blissed-out Thai massage. The award-winning Banyan Tree spa is one of the city’s highlights thanks to its luxurious 5-star setting and mix of herbal treatments, while Spa 1903 next to the calming setting of Lumpini Park wins all the prizes for unrivaled atmosphere, with indulgent treatments on offer at a history-filled Thai mansion. 

Average temperature: 30⁰C

Average rainfall: 21 days

Average sunshine hours: 5 hours

September

This month is typically the wettest of the year with 220mm of rainfall on average, and rain pouring down for 22 days. Seeking shelter indoors is therefore de rigueur as city streets can often be waterlogged from intense monsoon downpours. Luckily, the city has countless attractions to keep you entertained in comfort, from razzle-dazzle cabaret shows to cocktails and avant-garde food at the city’s best eateries and bars. The Silom district is the area to head to if you want buzzing Bangkok nightlife served in raucous bars, while the hip neighborhoods of Ekkamai and Thonglor are where the style-set head to for fashion-forward shops, edgy art galleries and stylish cafés replete with modern Thai design aesthetics. Find a cool place to hang out and let the rains pass you by.

Average temperature: 29⁰C

Average rainfall: 22 days

Average sunshine hours: 5 hours

October

October welcomes in the end of Bangkok’s hot and wet season, with average temperatures dropping a few degrees and rainfall petering out towards the end of the month. It’s a good time to experience the city thanks to generally clear skies with infrequent spots of rainfall. Tourist crowds are also relatively thin on the ground, so why not take this time to indulge in some of the city’s sleek luxuries. History lovers will revel in the vintage elegance of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, a gorgeous 19th-century landmark that harks back to the decadent days of colonial Siam. Taking a traditional high tea in the hotel’s intimate Author’s Lounge is an Instagram-worthy moment that you definitely won’t want to miss. Think stacks of clotted cream scones, slender finger sandwiches and baked pastries served with a side of old-world charm. You can work things off afterward with a gentle walk along the banks of the nearby Chao Phraya River – simply the perfect place to catch a surreal sunset during one of October’s bright and sunny days. 

Image: Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Bangkok - Photo by Ninara: image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

Average temperature: 29⁰C

Average rainfall: 16 days

Average sunshine hours: 6 hours

November

November in Bangkok marks the start of the cool season, with average temperatures dropping slightly to a balmy yet manageable 28⁰C. Rainfall also drops considerably to only 40mm in stark contrast to the torrents of the previous months. This is great news for sightseers who should be able to explore the city in the company of relatively clear skies and ample sunshine. Tourists shouldn’t miss taking in the picture-perfect candle festival of Loy Krathong on the first day of the November full moon when Bangkok residents light decorative candles en masse in dedication to the goddess of water. Expect to see the city’s lakes and canals filled with small boats of banana leaves and flowers with a candle in the center. You’ll be lost for words at night time when they flicker like magic in the moonlight. 

Average temperature: 28⁰C

Average rainfall: 5 days

Average sunshine hours: 8 hours

December

December is one of the most popular times to visit Bangkok as travelers flock to warmer climes to enjoy the holiday season. Expect to enjoy up to 9 hours of sunshine per day and average rainfall drops to 10mm. This can make some of the city’s key sights busier than usual, so travel flexibly and take advantage of early mornings and late evenings when visiting key landmarks like the Grand Palace or Wat Pho if you prefer to see things in solitude. A smart option is to avoid the traffic-clogged roads and use the city’s main waterway, the Chao Phraya river, to get around instead. Take a detour to the city’s Pak Klong Taladd flower market to enjoy a slice of colorful local life and disembark at the Wat Arun pier in the late afternoon to view the spell-binding riverside Wat Arun stupa when the crowds have dispersed. Then end your day by heading back across the river just before the sun goes down to enjoy surreal sunset views of the temple from the panoramic terrace of the Sala Arun hotel. 

Take me there: a Go Bangkok pass gives you access to an unlimited hop-on-hop-off boat ticket for the Chao Phraya River for a full day.

Image: Wat Arun sunset, Bangkok

Average temperature: 26⁰C

Average rainfall: 2 days

Average sunshine hours: 9 hours

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