Cambodia is a country with a rich history and some of the best architecture in the world. It has become a rather popular destination among travelers who have recognized the beauty of one of Asia’s largest civilizations. Whether you want to explore the legendary temples of Cambodia, or step off the beaten path and explore the deserted countryside, there is a lot to see and do in Cambodia. All you have to figure out is find the best time to visit Cambodia and you’re ready to go!
- High Season: December - March
- Low Season: June - September
- All Seasons: December - March (spring), April - May (summer), June - September (monsoon), October - November (fall)
- The best time to visit Cambodia is between the months of December to March, when the weather is cool and windy- almost Mediterranean. This is the peak tourist season as well.
- You can also visit Cambodia between October and November, when the monsoon season has ended, and the weather is rather pleasant and dry.
Cambodia has one of the simpler weather systems in Asia - so the weather in Cambodia can be broadly divided into two distinct seasons - the dry season of October to March, and the wet season of April to October. However, even within the dry months, you need to know when to visit Cambodia for the best vacation!
The months of December to March are widely considered to be the best months to visit Cambodia. The weather is excellent, and now that the rains have ceased, the views are spectacular as well. The weather is cool and there’s a cold wind blowing- what more can a person ask for? However, this is also the peak season, so you can expect a lot of tourist footfall.
If you wish to avoid that, you can visit Cambodia between October and November, when the dry season officially begins, and the tourists haven’t started coming down to the country just yet. These months are slightly colder than the peak season as well.
October to November — Dry Season / Good Season
Cambodia’s dry season officially begins in the month of October, when the rainfall tapers down to a few spotted showers across the country. The weather is warm and dry, making this one of the best times to travel to the more remote parts of the country. The post-rain greenery makes the Cambodia look really lush, and since the peak tourist season has not begun, you can get great discounts as well.
- Avg. Temperature: 73 – 86° F / 23 – 30° C (in Phnom Penh)
- Rainfall: 40 – 50 mm
- Season: Dry Season
- Highlights: If you want to know when to visit Cambodia to enjoy the best weather without having to pay too much, this is the best season for you. The roads to more remote locations, like Ratnakiri, Mondulkiri, and even Bamboo Island, open up after the rains. Festivals such as Pchum Ben (a festival honoring the departed) will give you a unique taste of Khmer culture. You could even visit Tonle Sap Lake for the Cambodian Water Festival.
December to March — Dry Season / High Season
If you’re looking for a perfect Christmas destination, Cambodia is the place for you. The weather is amazing, and sunny. It’s pretty dry, so you don’t have to worry about rains spoiling your plans at all. It’s not peak summer yet, so it will not be too hot either. This is the peak season - especially around Christmas. You should book your travel and accommodation well in advance.
- Avg. Temperature: 70 – 90° F / 21 – 32° C (in Phnom Penh)
- Rainfall: 10 – 20 mm
- Season: Dry Season
- Highlights: This is the perfect time for people who want to explore the country. Siem Reap’s great temple complexes are best during this period, as you will be able to walk the distance without getting tired. The water levels at Tonle Sap are quite high - so do go on a river adventure to see Cambodia’s unexplored sides. Summer is also the best time to visit the beaches like Kep and Sihanoukville on the southern Coast, where the gentle waters and silky sands await you.
April to May — Summer / Shoulder Season
April and May isn’t the best time to visit Cambodia. The weather will be swelteringly hot, and there will be spotted showers all around the country, making it quite humid. However, this is an off season, so you can get really good discounts on travel and accommodation.
- Avg. Temperature: 79 – 95° F / 26 – 35° C (in Phnom Penh)
- Rainfall: 10 – 20 mm
- Season: Summer
- Highlights: Slowly, the more remote tourist destinations will start shutting down, so you might have to stick to the larger tourist destinations, like Phnom Penh and Siem Reap. The Chaul Chnam or the Cambodian New Year takes place in April. You can find a few places that have public celebrations, but a lot of the shops and services might be closed, as people head home to spend the holiday with their families.
June to September — Monsoon / Low Season
This is the low season in Cambodia due to the high temperature and the rains. There is a 50% chance of rain during the peak month (September). There is a small peak in the number of visitors around August and September, due to the holidays in USA and Europe, and Cambodia offers a number of discounts for those willing to travel in the low season. However, be prepared for lots of rain and humidity.
- Avg. Temperature: 75 – 90° F / 24 – 32° C (in Phnom Penh)
- Rainfall: 40 – 60 mm
- Season: Monsoon
- Highlights: Since the countryside will be closed and some remote areas will be inaccessible due to rain, it might be wise for you to stick to the urban centers. Angkor Wat looks particularly stunning during the monsoons due to all that green cover. If you’re a wildlife enthusiast, a river cruise down Tonle Sap will introduce you to a number of new marine life and Cambodian flora.