‘Phuket Rainy Season’ and ‘Low Season in Phuket’ are the topic of endless discussion and apparently a very stressful decision factor too, so let’s look at what we know. Let’s start by clearing 1 point:
Online weather forecasts can’t really predict anything and will display thunderstorm icon even if it rains an hour
1. Phuket has mostly 2 seasons
Phuket has mostly 2 seasons: the rainy season and the high season and everyone seems to already be well aware of that. Good. The Tourism Authority of Thailand gently tried to rename it ‘The Green Season’ because it sounded less worrisome but that didn’t seem to really take off, it’s still the rainy season (or low season for some).
Frequently Asked Questions
The rainy season topic is the hottest topic, it makes sense since it cover almost half a year. The questions we get range from:
When is the best time to come
Will it rain everyday if I come during the rainy season
I’m coming to Phuket between August 2 to 12, can you promise it won’t rain? No sir, we cannot promise!
2. Facts About Low Season Weather
Online weather forecast can’t really predict anything since weather forecast is tuned to ‘permanent pessimistic mode’ and will predict non-stop thunderstorms during every single day of the entire low season. They like to play safe: if it rains once during the day, even short > display thunderstorm icon. It’s really like this and you can basically ignore it.
The low season used to be from May to November and the high season from November to May. Unfortunately it’s not really like this anymore but that’s how it mostly is.
Weather is unpredictable in tropical regions. This year even January saw quite some rain. If you want to be 100% sure the sky will be blue and rain will be at its lowest: March to May
During low season it does not rain everyday and when it does, it often rains during short periods of time.
HOWEVER, there will be ‘Unlucky Weeks’. Here locals say those weeks come by 3, 6 or 9 days of non-stop rains. No one can say when those will weeks will occur, but they will happen so just pray it’s not yours!
3. What you should know about Low Season
Sea is likely to be rough. It will not rain everyday but the sea can rough most of the time, so pick a hotel with a good swimming-pool and you’ll have a great holiday.
Respect the warning flags on the beach! Swim only when the flags are not red but you can swim between the yellow and red flags. Please take this very seriously and never over-estimate you swimming abilities: rip tide will always be stronger than you think you are.
Make sure your hotels has a nice spa, you might need it more than once.
Pick a hotel on the 5 main beaches: Patong, Karon, Kata, Kamala and Bangtao. Other less known beaches are beautiful during high season but you will most likely feel very lonely and isolates during low season. Those small beaches are also rather neglected during these months and you might be surprised to see how much trash is brought in by the ocean.
Tours are still running unless the weather turns to rainstorm. Some tours like Phang Nga Bay are actually nicer with heavy clouds. Remote islands like Similan are closed during six months but Phi Phi Island is always open.
Hotels are cheap! Hotel prices are significantly cheaper and you will get a lot more attention from the staff since they are more relax. Take advantage of it, get yourself a 5 star resort with a massive pool and a great spa, because that is where you will go as soon as it starts raining. Bargaining is a lot easier as shops and markets find it harder to get customers.
MOST OF ALL: You can have a great time in Phuket during the ‘green season’! (here, I said it! Green season!)
Born in France a long long time ago, I started to travel the world early and never stopped until I settled in Thailand in 1994. Then for the past 24 years, my passion for photography and my natural curiosity has taken me to every corner of Thailand, jumping frequently between Bangkok and Phuket and basically everywhere I could go. I run 2 blogs: Phuket101.net and BangkokUndercover.com, I also manage 30 online travel guides in Asia and beyond, including Phuket.com, Bangkok.com and Bali-Indonesia.com