Have you selected Vietnam as your next vacation destination?
We think that’s a good choice, but before you spontaneously book your flight, make sure you know what you’re getting into. Vietnam stretches all the way down the coast of the Indochina Peninsula and has very different regional climate changes.
When people prepare for their Vietnam trip, they spend most of their time deciding what to do in Vietnam, not when to visit Vietnam.
Figuring out when to visit Vietnam should be your first step when you’re planning your vacation because what you want to do may rely heavily on the weather.
The Best Time to Visit Vietnam
Though the climate changes in different parts of the country, the year is roughly split into two seasons: the northeast monsoon and the southwest monsoon.
The best time to visit Vietnam is during the northeast monsoon season, from November to April because the weather cools down in these months, between 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit. This is also when the rainfall gets lighter.
January is the coolest month of the year, so if you want to avoid the hot, sticky weather, this is a great time to visit.
Another thing that makes the winter months a great time to visit is Vietnam’s New Year celebration. The Vietnamese New Year, called Tet, takes place in February, so you might be able to take part in the celebration if you plan your trip right. Some people choose this time of the year to visit Vietnam just to see the festive event and extravagant flower arrangements festival.
Visiting Vietnam during the northeast monsoon season is usually a good guide to keep in mind while planning your trip, but finding out the best time to visit Vietnam really comes down to where you want to go.
Hanoi – Romantic Autumn
Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam and a popular tourist location in the North. To learn more about Hanoi’s weather each month and the most interesting seasons, check out our best time to visit Hanoi Travel Guide.
The city of Hanoi is full of beautiful sights and rich culture. You can discover the legend behind Hoan Kiem Lake and visit multiple temples, like the Ngoc Son Temple, the Bach Ma Temple, and the Temple of Literature. Check our customized 3-day Hanoi itinerary of things to do and foods to try in Hanoi.
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Sapa – Blossoms in the Spring
A city in the mountains of northern Vietnam famous for its terraced rice fields. During the best time to visit Vietnam, to avoid the hot and humid weather of Sapa you should visit it between October through November. If you do prefer warm weather without humidity, March and April are the least humid summer months.
Unlike most places in Vietnam, this isn’t a place you want to go right in the middle of winter. The coldest temperatures in this region can get down to freezing.
Sapa is home to beautiful mountain scenery and stunning waterfalls. You can spend your time visiting small villages nearby or check out local buildings like the Mau Son Temple and the Notre Dame Cathedral.
Halong Bay – Summer Adventure
Halong Bay is also part of northern Vietnam, and as you’re planning when to visit Vietnam, there are a few different weather options to consider in Halong Bay.
March to May is probably the best time to visit Halong Bay because the sun is out but the temperature is not too hot. Because Halong Bay has a lot of water activities, such as boat tours, kayaking trips, and scuba diving, the sun helps you stay dry.
The days also aren’t too hot in May through November, but it is more humid and there are frequent afternoon showers.
Hoi An – Warm Spring
This is a perfect location for a summer beach getaway. The temperatures from June to July stay hot. The highs can get to 100 degrees Fahrenheit, but the humidity stays very low until August.
If you prefer to stay cooler during your beach visit, the sunny weather starts as early as February with comfortable temperatures between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Hoi An is known for its preserved ancient town, so make sure you check out the old architecture of shophouses and homes between beach times. Located not far from Hoi An is the booming coastal city of Da Nang, so be sure to visit Da Nang together with Hoi An to make the most out of your trip in Vietnam.
Hue – The Damp Ancient Land
Part of central Vietnam and only a short distance away from Hoi An and Da Nang, Hue is another good central city. It is also a good example of there being no real best time to visit Vietnam, regarding all destinations across this country.
The warm and dry season ranges from January to August, but afternoon showers are still common. This is not an ideal location during October and November months because of heavy rain that can cause flooding.
If you do decide to visit Hue, make sure you get the chance to see the Imperial City, also called the Forbidden City. This old capital has a historic palace and multiple gardens, temples, and tombs.
Nha Trang – Summer Beaches
Deciding when to visit Vietnam is not as difficult if you are planning to go to places like Nha Trang. This beach in southern Vietnam has warm temperatures, in the mid-80s, all year long.
Nha Trang is a popular coastal resort, and it has multiple beaches and offshore islands. Because it is a popular tourist city, there are a lot of fun things to do in Nha Trang.
The city features multiple museums, temples, and even a large amusement park called Vinpearl. Nha Trang can occasionally get bad weather during the months of September through January, which can bring typhoons that make rainy days.
Don’t worry about typhoons though. Nha Trang has nice, calm weather more often than not.
Saigon – Warm Winter
Saigon, also called Ho Chi Minh City, is a city in southern Vietnam that is well known for its busy nightlife.
This city has warm temperatures all year long, usually between 80 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. It, like many other Vietnamese cities, is marked by a wet and dry season. From May through November, Saigon sees daily short showers, specifically during the afternoons.
Despite the rains, Saigon is a popular tourist location, and the rains hardly stop tourist activities. The city is also a lush shade of green throughout the year, so there is no particular time to visit Saigon because the temperature is tropical. For more details, check out our blog on Saigon’s festivals and events.
But if you don’t like rain, stick to visiting sometime between December and April during the dry season. December and January are good months to visit as the weather is the most favorable in the year.
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