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Nepal is the roof of the Earth, the country of lofty mountains, and soft, rolling valleys. Weather in Nepal can be rather moody, so as a visitor, it’s important for you to understand the varied climate of this beautiful country, so that you know when to visit. After all, you’ve got to visit when the country is at its beautiful best!
- High Season: March - May and September - November
- Low Season: June to August
- All Seasons: March to May, June - August, September - November, December - February
- The Fall months of September to November is one of the best time to visit Nepal, for people who wish to visit Kathmandu, and for those who want to trek.
- Spring in Kathmandu can be dry and dusty. But, in the mountains, flowers have started to bloom, so it is a beautiful time to go trekking.
You’d expect the home of the Himalayas to be chilly round the year, but it really does have a varied climate. October and November, or the fall season, is the best time to visit Nepal, as there will be sunny days, and clear skies, making these months ideal for those who want to trek. Between the months of March and May, tourists can enjoy the best of the spring season. There will still be some chill in the air, but the flowers will burst into bloom, and the sun will be up! This is also a great trekking season with clear skies, however, the skies may not be as clear as during October.
If you are primarily trekking in the mid-lands region, and want to know when to visit Nepal, know that there is pleasant weather the entire year round, perhaps with the exception of January / December, where it’s rather cold, but even that period is okay, if you have warm enough clothes. Monsoon season in Nepal is from mid-June to mid-September. It’ll rain a couple of hours a day and be mostly cloudy, but still with clear skies some days.
March to May – Spring / Good Season
March - May is the second best time to visit Nepal. These months are rather warm, and there is plenty of sunlight. Long days and great visibility make this period a great time for a trek. The nights might be slightly chilly, so remember to pack warm clothes. The valleys are incredibly beautiful in the spring season, especially after all the ice has thawed, and the flowers have bloomed. By the month of May, some showers also begin slowly, leading up to the upcoming monsoon season in Nepal, starting mid-June.
- Average Temperature: 46 – 84° F / 8 – 29° C (in Kathmandu)
- Rainfall: 10 – 70 mm
- Highlights: Spring is always a great season to visit Nepal and all treks can be undertaken during this period, even climbs to e.g. Island Peak, Mera Peak etc. Those looking for a more culturally oriented journey will find Bhaktapur to be a great place to visit in April. The traditional Nepali new year festival of Bisket Jatra Navavarsha is celebrated with great pomp and splendor in this quaint Nepali town and it is an experience you won’t observe anywhere else! Spring is also the best time to do a jungle safari in Chitwan National Park, giving you the best chances of spotting Rhinos, Elephants, Tigers, Monkeys etc. Especially tigers are easiest to find during Spring is there is only a few water holes available in the park, which most animals will visit, including the beautiful tigers.
June to mid September – Summer / Wet Season
The months of June to August are not ideal for visiting Nepal, but it’s still entirely possible to visit. It’s quite hot, and the lower regions can get rather dusty. From mid-June the monsoon season starts with 1-2 hours rain a day, also clearing away the dust. On the worst days it rains the entire day. The visibility in the mountains is rather low, however, still with occasionally clear days. Due to the daily rain there is a risk of landslides in the upper regions, so it is highly recommended that you avoid certain trekking areas. Please see further below.
- Average Temperature: 63 – 84° F / 17 – 29° C (in Kathmandu)
- Rainfall: 129 – 239 mm
- Highlights: There are some treks that are particularly good during monsoon season as they lie in the rain shadow. Those treks are: Annapurna Circuit, Manaslu trek, Upper Mustang trek, and the Nar Phu Valley Trek. The famous Everest Base Camp trek can also be done during the monsoon season, but please expect rain during the first few days after which the weather will improve day-by-day. An advantage of having the monsoon season is crowd-free experiences. You’ll also be able to get good rates at normally busy destinations such as Chitwan, Pokhara and Bandipur. Marsyangai Valley and Tilicho Lake (placed along the Annapurna Circuit) are absolutely beautiful this time of the year and are known for their lush greenery and great views.
Mid-September to November – Fall / High Season
Here we go! The fall season is hands down, the best time to visit Nepal! Weather in Nepal is absolutely stunning during this period - whether you want to explore Nepal’s beautiful culture, or go trekking in some of the highest passes in the world. The skies are clear, there is little to no rain, and the visibility is normally perfect.
- Average Temperature: 45 – 67° F / 7 – 19° C (in Kathmandu)
- Rainfall: 7 – 67 mm
- Highlights: During this season you can do all treks in Nepal and you can expect nothing but picture perfect views! Visiting destinations such as Nargakot, Dhulichel, and Bandipur is also recommended as you’ll be able to see the Himalayas from your comfy hotel room. In October, Nepal’s biggest festival, Dashain, is celebrated. Kathmandu, and even the smaller towns, get decked up, and everybody is in a celebratory mood. Celebrate both the wonderful culture, and the great weather in Nepal, by becoming a part of these festivities. Later during October or November the festival of lights, Diwali, is also celebrated in Nepal.
December to February – Winter / Low Season
As is the case of all Himalayan regions, winters in Nepal are a force to be reckoned with. Weather in Nepal during these months is cloudy, foggy, and rather cold. Some of the passes on the trekking routes may be closed. Such includes: Gokyo and Everest Base Camp, where the Cho La Pass my be closed, the Gokyo Circuit trek, where the Renjola Pass may be closed, and the EBC 3 Passes trek, where all 3 passes may be closed. There may be too much snow on the Larke Pass on the Manaslu trek as well and Annapurna Base Camp could be blocked as well. Recommended treks during the winter season are: Everest Base Camp Trek, Annapurna Circuit Trek, Langtang Trek, and the Poonhill Trek. During winter, normally daytime is okay, however, morning time and nighttime see a drastic drop in the temperatures. Thus, if you do go trekking in Nepal during this season, please bring sufficiently warm clothes. It is also not recommended to do any climbing in Nepal during this season as it’s simply too dangerous and too cold.
- Average Temperature: 36 – 53° F / 2 – 11° C (in Kathmandu)
- Rainfall: 0 – 8 mm
- Highlights: If you are an adventurer who wishes to experience the harsh Himalayan winter, enjoy the above mentioned hiking trails without any crowds, and save quite a bit of money on accommodation and travel, this is a good period to visit Nepal. Pokhara, a sunny lakeside town, is a unique destination for this period. There are a lot of cultural events during this period, including inter alia Saraswati Puja. The Tibetan New Year’s Celebration is celebrated in Losar in the month of January and is an experience of a lifetime.
Travelling to Nepal? Chat with a local travel specialist in Nepal who can help organize your trip.
Jón Jonker Travel Expert in Nepal
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Nilam Bastola Travel Expert in Nepal