Vietnam Weather Guide

Though generally classified as having a humid subtropical climate, Vietnam's weather varies based on the different latitudes. For example, in Ho Chi Minh City in the south the weather is humid with a distinct wet, hot and dry season, while the north has 4 seasons and even wintry snow in the Highlands. Within the central regions, summers are hot and dry with monsoonal conditions from September to February.

Season and Clothing

Dry Season: October to March

While anytime is a good time to visit Vietnam, the dry season is considered to be the best, especially if you plan on visiting south Vietnam. From December to February, the conditions in the south are dry and cool, making it a great time to hit the streets and go sightseeing or take a cruise down the Mekong Delta. While not all temperatures drop significantly, the humidity does ease, particularly in Ho Chi Minh City in the south. On the flipside, temps in Hanoi in the north can dip to a cool 15 degrees Celsius with even snow possible in the Highlands region. With the northeast monsoon visiting the central regions of Vietnam from September to February and bringing strong winds, sea swells and rain, now is not the best time to visit this region with transport difficult and conditions unpleasant for travel. The dry season is also when Vietnam is in festival mode with numerous celebrations such as the lunar Vietnamese New Year, known as Tet, taking place between January and February.

Wet Season: April to September

By April, Vietnam starts to experience the southwest monsoon with warmer temperatures, humidity and rain. In the north, March and April offer pleasant springtime conditions before moving into a hot and wet summer that lasts until October. Typhoons and downpours are common during this season in the north with Hanoi reaching high temps of 32 degrees Celsius. May tends to be the month with the heaviest rain, especially for south Vietnam. From June to November, rainy season temperatures in Ho Chi Minh City in the south can reach up to 34 degrees Celsius with April being the hottest month before cooling down after a big downpour. If you are planning on visiting the Mekong Delta, mosquitoes are most numerous during the wet season. Summers in the central regions are generally hot and dry. April 30 is Reunification Day (also called Liberation Day), a national public holiday celebrating the fall of Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City) to Viet Cong and Northern Vietnamese troops in 1975, and National Day, commemorating the country's independence from France in 1945, falls on September 2.