When Is the Best Time to Visit Laos?
The best time to visit Laos is during the shoulder seasons of October to November and February to March. During these months, the weather is generally mild and sunny across most of the country, with fewer crowds and lower prices than during the peak dry season (December to January).
Here are some of the benefits of visiting Laos during the shoulder seasons:
- Mild weather: Laos has a tropical climate, with hot and humid weather year-round. The shoulder seasons offer milder and more pleasant temperatures, making it ideal for sightseeing, exploring, and enjoying the outdoors.
- Smaller crowds: The shoulder seasons are less crowded than the peak dry season, so you’ll be able to enjoy Laos’ popular tourist attractions without having to deal with large crowds. This is especially important if you’re visiting popular destinations like Luang Prabang, Vang Vieng, and Vientiane.
- Lower prices: Prices for flights, accommodation, and activities are generally lower during the shoulder seasons than during the peak dry season. This means you can save money on your trip without having to sacrifice quality.
Here are some specific examples of how you can enjoy the most of Laos during the shoulder seasons:
- October to November: The weather in October to November is typically sunny and warm, with occasional showers. This is a great time to visit for visiting the Luang Prabang temples, hiking in the Vang Vieng rice terraces, and visiting the Kuang Si Falls.
- February to March: The weather in February to March is also typically sunny and warm, with occasional showers. This is a great time to visit for visiting the Vientiane temples, hiking in the Phou Khao Khwang National Park, and visiting the Bolaven Plateau.
While there are many great times to visit Laos, if you’re looking for the best weather and the most opportunities to enjoy the country’s natural beauty and cultural attractions, then we recommend visiting during the shoulder seasons.
Climate in Laos
Summer Season in Laos
The dry season in Laos is split into the cool and hot phases. The cool phase (November to February) is marked by cooler temperatures and is considered the best time for tourism, offering pleasant weather for exploring the country's cultural and natural attractions. The hot phase (March to April) sees temperatures rising significantly, especially in the lowland areas, making outdoor activities more challenging during peak daytime hours.
Rainy Season in Laos
The rainy season in Laos, often equated with 'summer', is characterized by high humidity and regular rainfall, which usually comes in the form of heavy downpours, often in the afternoon or evening. Despite the rain, temperatures remain warm. This season brings lush, green landscapes and is crucial for agriculture, although travel in some rural areas can be challenging due to muddy conditions.
Winter Season in Laos
Laos does not experience a traditional winter season with cold weather. The closest to 'winter' would be the cool phase of the dry season (November to February), where the temperatures are cooler compared to the rest of the year, but the climate remains warm, suitable for various activities. The concept of winter, as understood in temperate regions, does not apply to Laos's tropical climate.