The Best time to Travel to Phuket
Phuket, or Koh/Ko Phuket, is the largest Island off the coast of Thailand and is one of the most popular destinations in the country. It remains popular despite the fact that there are only a few areas left with jungles. Today the defining image of the island is the Palm Tree. Every year thousands of tourists flock to this island for many reasons such as its heavenly appearance, the location in the Andaman Sea and its own international airport. The real question is though, what is the best time to travel to Phuket? You will find the answer here. I’ll give you all the information that you might want for planning a trip to Thailands largest island. I’ll give you all you need to know about the weather and the climate. I’ve even got some information about the rainy and dry season and how to cope with them.
When is the best time to travel to Phuket?
As a result of its permanently high temperatures, Phuket is a great holiday destination year round. If you want to plan your holiday around getting the most amount of sunshine, the least amount of rain and a manageable humidity the best time to visit Phuket is from November to April. During this time period you can really count on the best weather conditions. If you want to be absolutely sure of getting the best weather then December, January, February or March are your best bet. November is when the rainy season ends and April is when it begins. During these months the probability of it raining is much higher and the humidity is higher than in other months. However, they are still considered good months because the weather, on average, is pretty good. For example the during November they would generally get around 16 days of rain. Compare this to February where they get on average 3 days of rain.
During the best travel time, you can look forward to some seriously sizzling temperatures. From November to April, you expect temperatures up to about 34 degrees Celsius. Another great aspect of travelling during these months is that the humidity is much lower. The temperatures are so high that even if you go to cool down in the sea you might have a hard time. The water temperature during this time is usually around 27 to 28 degrees. During the evening time, it doesn’t really cool down either. Night time temperatures rarely get down below 24 degrees Celsius. So you better make sure your accommodation has air conditioning!
If you travel to Phuket during the peak travel times you can expect the absolute most hours of sunshine. February is not only the dryest month in terms of rain, it also happens to be the sunniest. During the day you can expect about 10 hours of sunshine.
The Best time to go to Phuket in a Monthly Overview:
- November: 32°C, 7h of Sunshine, 28°C Water Temp., 16 Rainy Days
- December: 32°C, 8h of Sunshine, 27°C Water Temp., 8 Rainy Days
- January: 32°C, 9h of Sunshine, 27°C Water Temp., 4 Rainy Days
- February: 33°C, 10h of Sunshine, 27°C Water Temp., 3 Rainy Days
- March: 34°C, 9h of Sunshine, 28°C Water Temp., 6 Rainy Days
- April: 34°C, 8h of Sunshine, 29°C Water Temp., 11 Rainy Days
Climate and Weather in Phuket
Phuket naturally has quite a tropical climate and ssummertimeis popular on the island. The temperatures and the humidty on the island are permenantly high. If you decide to travel there you can look forward to temperatures of around 30 degrees Celsius all year round. There are minor difference year round but its pretty summery all the time. Even at night the temperatures rarely drop below 24 degrees Celsius. Along with the air temperature, the water temperature is at a high-level year round. It’s generally between 27 and 29 degrees Celsius. So, in reality, there are no major differences between air and water temperatures during the year. The only things that really vary in the year are the number of rainy days and hours of sunshine. From November to April, there around 7 to 10 hours of sunshine a day. Then from May to October, it gets to around 5 to 6 hours per day. In the month of May to October, they get down to a minimum of 5 to 6 per day. The number of rainy days per month is as follows: from November to April the average rainy days are around 3 to 16 days. From May to October, it rains 19 to 23 Days a month. The reason for this is that the monsoon is in full swing. The southwest and northeast monsoons divide the year on Phuket into two seasons: the rainy and dry seasons.
Dry Season on Phuket
The dry season on Phuket is from the end of November to March, and sometimes it can stretch into the beginning/middle of April. The northeast monsoon is the main reason for the increasingly dry weather. Generally speaking the temperatures get up to around 35 degrees Celsius during this period. While the temperatures might be quite high, they are more manageable as a result of the lower humidity. The months of February, March and April tend to get the highest temperatures. In certain places the temperatures can even get as high as 40 degrees Celsius. December and January are less extreme than this but can still get pretty hot at around 32 degrees Celsius. You can expect the most hours of sunshine to go along with the much higher temperatures. During February for example, the sun shines for around 10 hours. As a result of this change, you can expect much lower levels of rain. The number of rainy days is at their lowest during the dry season on Phuket. The driest months of the year include December, January February and March. On average in February it only rains around 3 days a month. However, this does not mean that theres no rain during the dry season. The showers are short but can get pretty heavy. Theres one plus to the rain though, it can cool things down a little bit!
Rainy season in Phuket
From the end of April to the beginning/middle of November, the rainy season is in full swing. The southwest monsoon influences rainfall probability and potential hours of sunshine. The monsoon takes rain from the Indian Ocean and brings it to Phuket. From the Climate Table below you can see that in Phuket it will rain twice as much in April as it will August. April marks the beginning of the rainy season and as the year progresses the number of rainy days continues to increase. The rainiest days of the year tend to be during September and October. During these months, it can rain for up to 23 days. However, the increased rainfall is not a problem for tourists. The real problem is the phenomenally high humidity along with average temperatures of 32 degrees Celsius. Some people might find the heavy humidity oppressive and can even be stressful. Even at night, the air temperature doesn’t even cool down, staying at around 25 degrees Celsius. Anyone whos familiar with other tropical countries knows that it usually rains briefly but in this time it can get pretty heavy. After a shower, the sky opens up to reveal lovely sunshine that you can continue to enjoy. Unfortunately on Phuket this is not the case, when it rains it tends to stick around for a few days.
Climate Table for Phuket
|Max. Temperature in °C||32||33||34||34||33||32||32||32||32||31||32||32|
|Min. Temperature in °C||24||24||25||25||25||25||25||25||24||24||24||24|
|Hours of Sunshine Per Day||9||10||9||8||6||5||6||6||5||6||7||8|
|Water Temperature in °C||27||27||28||29||29||29||28||28||28||28||28||27|
|Rainy Days per Month||4||3||6||11||20||19||20||19||23||22||16||8|
The best time to visit Phuket – my verdict
When it comes to finding a consistently great holiday to Phuket your best bet would be to go from November to April. During this time you will find the best weather without a doubt. The sunny temperatures combined with a relatively low humidity level lets you enjoy your holiday to the fullest. Only a little bit of rain and a lot of sunshine mean that this is definitely the best time to travel to Phuket! You’ll be doing it right if you manage to get to Thailand’s largest island in the dry season. The only thing to bear in mind is that it can get pretty crowded on the island during this time. This is definitely the high season in Phuket and this is reflected in the hotel prices and airfares.
Despite the bad weather with a lot of rain, less sunshine and higher humidity the low season in Phuket can also be a good choice. You’ll be able to find the cheapest possible hotel prices from May to October but you just have to bear in mind the worse weather. And by worse weather, we mean that theres a chance of non stop rain during your stay. This might mean that you wouldn’t be able to use the beaches because of the rain. If you have no problem with that then you can still get a great holiday to Phuket.