About the Islands and Beaches in Southeast Asia

There are sooo many beautiful beaches in Southeast Asia. Many enough that you can find a beach getaway for different kinds of holidays – budget-friendly cheap holiday, romantic holiday, family trip, beach parties with friends, adventure and outdoor activities, yoga retreats, luxurious sprawling beach resorts, private beach villas, beaches with over-the-water huts.

Some of the best beach destinations in Southeast Asia are:

Indonesia: Bali, Lombok, Gili Islands, Komodo, Raja Ampat

Malaysia: Tioman, Redang, Langkawi, Perhentian Islands, Mabul Island

Thailand: Phuket, Phi Phi Islands, Krabi, Koh Tao, Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, Koh Lipe

Philippines: Boracay, Cebu, Palawan

Cambodia: Koh Rong, Con Dao

Vietnam: Da Nang, Cat Ba

Best time to Visit the Tropical Beaches of Southeast Asia

Top destinations in this region: Phuket, Krabi, Phi Phi, Tioman, Langkawi, Perhentian Islands, Cebu, Boracay, Bali, Gili Islands, Lombok

Help Me Understand the Table

Peak Tourism Months:

High Season Shoulder Low Season

 

Header: Months of the year

First row: Season of the year

Second row: Average weather pattern

Third row: Range of average lowest to highest temperatures

 

Peak: Dates and Events in the year that draw big crowds and festivities

 

*All weather, info and event dates are estimates, serving as a general guide based on historical patterns. Events and conditions can vary year to year — Mother nature makes her own rules!

Travel Tips

Generally hot and summery all year. Only monsoon season is less beach-friendly.

Monsoons affect the east and west coasts at different times. Storms may be persistent or sporadic with chance of sunshine.

Monsoon Season brings rough seas which makes boat schedules between islands, unpredictable.

Monsoon has its plus sides: Surf festivals, wildlife encounters, marine life (diving). Or relax in luxe resorts at a bargain.

West Coast (Andaman Sea): Good weather from Nov-May in Phuket, Krabi, Khao Lak

East Coast (Gulf): Good weather from Apr-Oct in Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, Koh Tao, Koh Chang, Koh Samet.

Philippines: Typhoon season Aug – Oct – Occasionally, volcanic eruptions can disrupt flights and travel plans

Weather in Southeast Asia – Beaches and Islands

Most beaches in Southeast Asia have a tropical climate, meaning they are welcoming most of the year. The thing to watch for is the rainy season. This varies across the region, as monsoon season hits the coasts at different times of the year depending which way direction they are facing.

That said, there is hardly any time of year that is really off-limits. You can visit the beaches almost any month. Even rainy season can mean heavy but brief downpour, so you still have many hours of the day to explore. It’s not entirely uncommon either for the weather forecast to predict a week of storms, and when you get there, it hardly ever rains. It’s certainly taking a chance, but that chance means any stretches of sunshine allow you quieter beaches and hotels at lower prices.

There are also many amazing beach resorts in Asia. Book a nice place and you can equally enjoy your time indoors, looking out at the stormy seas from the shelter of your beachfront balcony, visit the hotel spa or splash about in the pool between clouds.

Do however check the weather reports. Typhoons, volcanic eruptions and earthquakes are no joke. Travel during such weather is not advisable.

Avoid Monsoon Season in Southeast Asia

East Coast Monsoon Southwest Monsoon  Beach-Friendly (Dry) Season
Oct – Mar Jun – Oct

Remaining months.

Each coast is beach-friendly on opposing months.

Peak Season for Beach Holidays in Southeast Asia

High Season Shoulder Season Low Season
 Mar – May Feb, Jun, Sept – Oct Jul – Aug, Nov – Jan

 

As we’ve said above, tourist seasons varies for each coastline of beaches.

The difference in crowds between seasons for the beaches of Southeast Asia is quite a gentle difference, as the beaches in Southeast Asia are still fairly inviting year-round.

What’s more definitive is whether it’s a public holiday in the country you’re visiting, and whether its a public holiday in neighbouring countries including Singapore and Malaysia.

Peak Season vs Low Season – What is the Best Time to Go?

It depends what makes your ideal holiday.

The off season travel months are generally the cheapest time to visit any destination. There’s a good chance that hotels and attractions offer discounted prices.

In contrast, the best month to experience a destination also tends to the busiest, so you have to contend with more crowds and longer queues at attractions. But peak season is the peak for a reason, so there’s many things at their best – such as weather, opening hours, events etc.

If your calendar is pretty open, then shoulder season is a great time for independent travellers. Between peak season and off season, the ‘shoulder’ months give you the best of both worlds.