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Thailand holidays

Known as the ‘Land of Smiles’ thanks to its welcoming locals, you can’t help but fall in love with Thailand. When you’re not exploring its pristine, tropical coastline or getting lost among the crowds in its charming city centres, you could be tucking into some of the most pad thai, whipped up right in front of your eyes from a street stall.

with 400 Buddhist structures dotted throughout the country, you can’t venture here without visiting a temple or two. Now throw in the fact it sees warm temperatures all year round, and you’ve got all the ingredients of an incredible holiday in Southeast Asia.  

Things to do

Known as the ‘Land of Smiles’ thanks to its welcoming locals, you can’t help but fall in love with Thailand. When you’re not exploring its pristine, tropical coastline or getting lost among the crowds in its charming city centres, you could be tucking into some of the most delicious food, whipped up right in front of your eyes from a street stall.

with 400 Buddhist structures dotted throughout the country, you can’t venture here without visiting a temple or two. Now throw in the fact it sees warm temperatures all year round, and you’ve got all the ingredients of an incredible holiday in Southeast Asia.

22°C - 37°C

The climate in Thailand is tropical, so you’ll experience warm weather all year round. April is the hottest month, with March and May following closely behind. However, May also marks the end of the dry weather. Come June, monsoon season arrives and heavy downpours can be expected until October.

View live forecast

 

12 hours

Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) is just east of Bangkok and is Thailand’s busiest and biggest airport.

Weather and climate in Thailand

The best time to visit this dream destination is between November and February when you’ll find blue skies, dry conditions and warm but not too hot temperatures. The hottest period is April to May. May to October has more rain but the showers tend to be short and sharp, with the sunshine not far behind.

In the southwest around Phuket and Krabi there are heavy storms from May to October, with around 400mm of rain falling in September. Then comes cooler and drier weather from November to February, with temperatures of around 27°C. The hottest weather comes between March and May when the thermometer can reach 35°C and there are up to nine hours of sunshine a day.

The southeast around Koh Samui has the most rain between September and December. Temperatures don’t vary much and average around 29°C, with around seven hours of sunshine a day to top up your tan.
Sea temperatures around Thailand  can vary little and are around a very pleasant 29°C, perfect for swimming and water sports.

The north of Thailand (Chang Mai) is drier and less affected by the monsoons, though rain falls mostly from May to November. Temperatures can hit 35°C in March and April but drop to a pleasant 22°C between November and February. Pack jumpers for chilly mornings and evenings when the thermometer drops as low as 8°C. You’ll be pleased to know that humidity is at its lowest at this time of year and you can bask in nine hours of sunshine a day.

If you’re heading for Bangkok and the central region, from November to February the northeast monsoon blows in cool dry air and more pleasant temperatures, ranging from 18°C to 32°C. You’ll find March to June is hotter, with the thermometer rising over 30°C every day and often staying in the high 30s. The hottest month is April, when temperatures soar to 40°C and 75% humidity.

If you visit from July to October, prepare to be rained upon almost everywhere in Thailand. You can expect flooding and humidity of up to 90%. Temperatures remain high, averaging around 30°C, though begin to drop in October.

Khao Sok National Park in southern Thailand is one of the wettest areas of the country, but the rainy season of May to October is a good time to visit for lovers of wildlife. You’ll find temperatures are a comfortable 25°C, the rainforest is lush, the waterfalls are in full flow and there’s more chance of spotting animals like tigers, gibbons, wild elephants and bears.
 

Thailand is best for...

Night owls: Party animals rejoice, Thailand has a varied nightlife scene. For drinks with a view, Bangkok’s sky bars won’t disappoint. If drinking in a dive bar will do, head to Khao San Road for a pub crawl instead. Or, you can always dance the night away among a sea of neon-clad revellers at the Full Moon Party.

Culture vultures: There are tons of ways to immerse yourself in Thailand’s rich culture. During the day most people gather at top sights including The Grand Palace and the Temple of Dawn, before sitting down for a cultural show in the evening. But the best way to experience the Thai way of life is through its bustling markets and tasty street food. 

Beach lovers: When you think of Thailand, one thing comes to mind, and that’s its photogenic beaches. Peaceful waters surrounded by dramatic limestone cliffs and the whitest sounds - it’s a paradise for sunbathers. Most tourists head for the busy stretches belonging to Phuket, but if you’re after some peace and quiet, Koh Samui offers that away-from-it-all feel.

Fast facts for Thailand

Language: The official language in Thailand is Thai. However, English is widely spoken in the  main tourist areas and hotels.

Currency: The currency of Thailand is the Thai Bhat.

Local time: Thailand is 7 hour ahead of the UK (GMT+7). 

Fly to: Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK), and reach the city by bus, taxi or rail. It’s around 50 minutes driving distance to the centre and around 25 minutes if you hop on the train. If you're looking to head for one of the islands, this airport offers great connections.

Flight time from UK: 12 hours

Tourist Information: Further tourist information can be found at Thailand’s tourism website.

Visa / Health: 
Before you travel, check the latest advice from the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office.

Do I need a visa?
If you’ve got a British passport, you don’t need a Thailand visa. This is known as ‘visa exemption’ and allows British nationals to stay in the country for up to 30 days. If your trip is going to be longer than that, or you’re going with the intent to work, you’ll need to apply for a Thailand visa before you fly. For further information on visas, please refer to the FCDO’s entry requirements.

Should I get travel health insurance? 
While holidays are supposed to be a time for fun and relaxation, there’s always the possibility for unexpected and unfortunate situations. Travel insurance gives you the peace of mind that the cost of any medicines, hospital bills or emergency treatment will be met. If you’re taking Thailand holidays with specific activities in mind such as diving or climbing, check to see what your cover includes.
 

 

Getting around Thailand

Events in Thailand

Thailand safety and security

For up-to-date advice on travelling to Thailand, please visit the FCDO website.

Any other tips?

  • Cash is king, so be sure to carry enough Thai Baht for your daily needs. Smaller notes and coins are particularly useful in markets, little shops and taxis. There are ATMs in Thailand, but the exchange rate can be steep, so it’s worth changing your sterling before you travel.
  • Whether you’re driving or on foot, watch the traffic. Thai roads are busy, and driving standards tend to be a little ‘random’. While renting a scooter might seem like a good idea at the time, taxis and rickshaws are a safer option.
  • Alcohol can only be sold from 11am – 2pm and 5pm – midnight.
  • Be sure to try the street food. While there are plenty of restaurants to enjoy on your holiday to Thailand, the best food is often found at street vendors and carts. It can be very spicy, but delicious.
  • Don’t touch anyone on the head. In the Thai culture, the head is seen as sacred and even ruffling a child’s hair could cause offence.
     

Best hotels in Thailand