Best Time To Visit Cambodia


Cambodia, located in Southeast Asia, is renowned for its rich history, vibrant culture, and an array of breathtaking attractions, from the magnificent temples to the stunning beaches . However, it is crucial to determine the best time to visit Cambodia before embarking on your journey to this enchanting destination. This comprehensive guide will present an in-depth exploration of the various seasons and weather patterns in Cambodia, enabling you to plan your trip meticulously and make the most of your experience.

Cambodia Climate Overview

Cambodia experiences a tropical monsoon climate characterized by two distinct seasons: the dry season and the rainy season. The country is situated in the tropical zone, which means it has a warm and humid climate throughout the year. However, the weather can vary significantly depending on the time of year and the region you are visiting.


Pick up the most suitable time to visit Cambodia – Independence Monument, Phnom Penh

Dry Season (November to April)

The dry season in Cambodia starts in November and lasts until April. This period is considered the best time for most travelers to visit Cambodia. The weather during the dry season is generally sunny and dry, with temperatures ranging from 25°C to 35°C (77°F to 95°F). The humidity is relatively low, making it more comfortable for outdoor activities and sightseeing.

Highlights of the Dry Season:

  • Temple Exploration: The dry season offers ideal conditions for exploring the magnificent temples of Angkor Wat and other historical sites. The clear skies and cooler temperatures make it easier to navigate the vast temple complex and appreciate its architectural wonders.

  • Beach Getaways: Cambodia is home to stunning coastal areas, such as Sihanoukville and Koh Rong. During the dry season, these beach destinations enjoy sunny weather and calm seas, making it perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and sunbathing.

  • Festivals and Celebrations: The dry season is also the time when Cambodia celebrates various festivals, such as the Water Festival (Bon Om Touk) and the Khmer New Year. These vibrant celebrations showcase the country’s rich cultural heritage and provide a unique insight into Cambodian traditions.

Rainy Season (May to October)

The rainy season in Cambodia spans from May to October, with the peak rainfall occurring between June and September. While some travelers may be deterred by the prospect of rain, the rainy season has its own charm and advantages for those willing to embrace it.

Highlights of the Rainy Season:

  • Lush Greenery: The rainy season transforms Cambodia into a lush, green paradise. The countryside and national parks come alive with vibrant foliage and blooming flowers, creating a picturesque backdrop for nature lovers and photographers.

  • Fewer Crowds: As the rainy season is considered the off-peak travel period, you can expect fewer tourists and lower prices for accommodation and attractions. This provides an excellent opportunity to explore Cambodia’s popular destinations without the usual crowds.

  • Authentic Cultural Experiences: The rainy season offers a chance to witness traditional rural life in Cambodia. Farmers are busy with their rice cultivation, and you can observe the traditional farming techniques and participate in local activities.

Regional Variations in Weather

It is important to note that Cambodia’s weather can vary across different regions of the country. The coastal areas experience a slightly different climate compared to the inland regions.


Coastal areas and inland regions do not share the same weather

Coastal Areas

Cambodia’s coastal areas, including Sihanoukville and Koh Rong, have a tropical maritime climate. The temperatures are generally higher, ranging from 27°C to 35°C (81°F to 95°F), and the humidity is more pronounced. The coastal regions also receive more rainfall throughout the year, with the rainy season being more intense.

Inland Regions

The inland regions where the famous temples of Angkor Wat are located have a tropical savanna climate. The temperatures are similar to the coastal areas, but the humidity is slightly lower. The rainfall is more concentrated during the rainy season, with occasional showers during the dry season.

Best Time To Visit Cambodia

The dry season from November to April is generally considered the most popular time to visit Cambodia. The weather is quite pleasant, with cooler temperatures. It’s also the least rainy period, making it ideal for activities like hiking in remote areas or island hopping.


Dry season is also the most crowded time in Cambodia

However, the dry season is also the peak tourist season, so you can expect larger crowds at major attractions and higher hotel prices. Let’s explore this further.

From December To February

December through February are popular months to visit Cambodia due to cooler weather. Even though January is typically the coldest month, the average high temperature remains between 25°C to 30°C. This makes it an ideal time to explore the lush forests or shop at the bustling markets.

  • Places To Visit During This Time

Siem Reap, Phnom Penh, and Battambang are great options because the weather is less humid, making it easier to tour temples, markets, and museums. However, it is also the prime travel season, so it is advisable to book your hotel accommodations in advance as prices are typically higher. The Christmas period is particularly busy, and popular tourist spots can become crowded.

If you want to see lakes, rivers, or the Tonle Sap floating communities, December is an excellent choice as they are still populated after the wet season. It is important to be prepared for the crowds especially in primary tourist destinations during this time of year.

  • Events You Can Enjoy: Liberation Day (7th January)

From March To May

Springtime in Cambodia falls between March and May. During this season, you can bask in the sunshine and enjoy the stunning beaches of Cambodia. If you’re looking for a tropical paradise, then this is the ideal time of year to visit.

  • Places To Visit During This Time

Travelers usually flock to the southern islands, Kep and Kampot, during this season. Kampot’s peacefulness and relaxed ambiance add to its charm. You can explore the surrounding towns of Kep and Rabbit Island, kayak and paddleboard along the Kampot River, or take a boat cruise during this time of day because of the beautiful sky.

You can reach Koh Rong, Koh Rong Samloem, and Koh Ta Kyiv from Sihanoukville. Although there are busier beaches like Ochheuteal Beach and Serendipity Beach where you can party from sunset to dusk, tranquil Koh Ta Kyiv remains an unexplored area that provides a serene experience.


Beach view at Koh Rong Samloem

  • Events You Can Enjoy

The Khmer New Year, which lasts for three days, usually falls in mid-April. During this period, many Cambodians travel back to their home provinces to celebrate with their families. As a result, most of the city’s top attractions, museums, and restaurants close during the holiday in Phnom Penh. There are frequent events in Siem Reap as well. Families reconnect in the country and celebrate together. Due to the high demand for accommodations, it’s advisable to book in advance since it’s one of the busiest holidays of the year.

Tips for Visiting Cambodia During the Peak Season

If you’re planning to visit Cambodia during the peak season, which typically runs from November to February, here are some tips to make the most of your trip.

Book Accommodation in Advance

As the peak season attracts a large number of tourists, it’s advisable to book your accommodation well in advance. This ensures that you have a wider range of options and can secure the best deals. Consider staying in popular areas like Siem Reap, Phnom Penh, or Sihanoukville, depending on your preferences.

Plan Your Itinerary

With an influx of visitors, popular attractions can get crowded during the peak season. Plan your itinerary in advance to avoid long queues and make the most of your time. Research the opening hours of attractions, plan to visit popular sites early in the morning, and consider visiting lesser-known or off-the-beaten-path destinations to escape the crowds.


Decide the destinations that you want to visit

Stay Hydrated and Protect Yourself from the Sun

Cambodia’s peak season coincides with the dry season, which means you can expect hot and sunny weather. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water, especially when exploring outdoor attractions. Apply sunscreen, wear a hat, and dress in lightweight, breathable clothing to protect yourself from the sun’s rays.

Be Mindful of Cultural Etiquette

Cambodia is a country with a rich cultural heritage, and it’s important to respect local customs and traditions. When visiting temples, dress modestly and remove your shoes before entering. Be mindful of your behavior and avoid touching or climbing on sacred structures. Learning a few basic Khmer phrases, such as greetings and thank you, can also go a long way in showing respect to the locals.

Try Local Cuisine and Street Food

Cambodia is known for its delicious cuisine, so make sure to indulge in the local flavors. From the famous fish amok to fresh seafood and tropical fruits, there’s something to satisfy every palate. Don’t miss the opportunity to try street food, which offers a unique culinary experience. However, be cautious and choose vendors with good hygiene practices to avoid any stomach issues.

Stay Safe and Be Aware of Scams

While Cambodia is generally a safe country to visit, it’s always important to stay vigilant and be aware of your surroundings. Avoid displaying valuable items openly, keep your belongings secure, and be cautious of common scams targeting tourists. Use reputable transportation services and consider hiring a local guide for added safety and to enhance your experience.

By following these tips, you can have a memorable and enjoyable experience while exploring the wonders of Cambodia during the peak season.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the peak season from November to February is often considered the best time to visit Cambodia. However, no matter when you go, Cambodia’s beauty, culture, and welcoming people will more than make up for any weather uncertainties you may face. Just pack light for layering, bring a portable umbrella, and an adventurous spirit – and you’re sure to make magical memories in the Land of Smiles.

At Asia Pioneer Travel, we understand that your holiday experience is of utmost importance to you. So our highly experienced team of professionals with over 14 years of experience in the tourism industry in Asia is dedicated to creating tailor-made tours that meet your unique preferences and demands. Craft Your Cambodia Journey with us now to immerse yourself in the cultural wonders!

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