One of the most important things to consider before planning a trip is the weather at your destination. Given the length of the country, it is no surprise that Vietnam has many different climates. It can be difficult to find a single period when the weather is fine throughout the country. Find out in advance the best time to visit Vietnam, depending on where and when you travel. In addition, you should apply for a Vietnam visa before departure.
The best time to travel depends on the region
Vietnam has different climates due to its length, so it is difficult to determine the best time to travel for the entire country. It will depend on the period and places you visit as well as your travel plans. The whole country has a tropical climate, and the year can be divided into the usual four seasons. However, there are three different climate zones.
North Vietnam: Sapa, Hanoi and Halong Bay
The climate in North Vietnam is the most extreme in the country. The summers are very hot and rainy, and the winters are wet and cold. It is therefore not advised travelling to this area during these periods. The best months to visit this region are March to May and September to November, as these months coincide with the dry season. This allows for more outdoor activities, such as visiting the rice fields of Sapa, exploring the historical capital of Hanoi or enjoying the breathtaking views of Halong Bay.
Central Vietnam: Hoi An, Da Nang and Hue
This area has a tropical, humid climate and temperatures similar to the south of the country. However, Central Vietnam receives more rainfall and is often hit by typhoons during the rainy season. The weather is hot and dry from January to August, with temperatures rising considerably from May onwards and dropping again in September. The rainy season runs from October to January. The best time to travel to this area and enjoy the coastal town of Da Nang or the resort of Hoi An is therefore in spring (between February and May). This is also a good time to discover the city of Hue, the former capital of the country until 1945.
South Vietnam: Ho Chi Minh City, Vung Tau and Nha Trang
South Vietnam has two distinct seasons: the dry season (December to May) and the rainy season (June to November). In the dry season, temperatures are high (from March to May they are almost unbearable), and in the rainy season there is a lot of precipitation. Therefore, the best time to travel to this area is during our winter, an ideal time for those who want to escape the cold in search of sunshine and warmth. It is not only an ideal period to visit the financial capital of the country, Ho Chi Minh City, but also to relax on the beaches of Nha Trang or Vung Tau.
Applying for a Vietnam visa
To travel to Vietnam, every traveller, including minors, must have their own visa. Since 2018, the e-visa for Vietnam can be applied for entirely online. Previously, the visa could also be arranged upon arrival in Vietnam, the so-called visa on arrival, but this is no longer recommended by the Vietnamese embassy. Another option is to have a physical visa stamped in your passport by the embassy, but this is much more complicated and time-consuming.
The most convenient and widely used method is the electronic version of the Vietnam visa, as you do not have to queue up at the embassy or upon arrival at the airport, and you do not have to pay a stamping fee. The validity period of the electronic visa for Vietnam is 30 days. However, you should take into account the requirements of the Vietnam visa. For example, you must have booked at least one accommodation, and you may only enter and leave the country through one of the permitted airports, seaports or border crossings.