While Cambodia is still somewhat of an under the radar destination, it’s famous for its ancient temples and lost city of Angkor. But it offers lots more beyond that, from stunning paradise-like islands and serene countryside with rice fields and rivers to mountainous landscapes, mouthwatering cuisine and some of the friendliest people on the planet. Find out when is the best Time to Visit Cambodia.
Overview of the Best Time to Visit
The tourist seasons are broken down into high season which falls between December and March, and low season, from June through September, with April, May, October and November the shoulder season months. Generally, the best time to travel to Cambodia is when the weather is Mediterranean like, pleasantly cool and windy, which falls during the high season of December to March. After the monsoon season ends, October and November can be quite enjoyable with pleasant dry, weather and fewer crowds.
Monsoon Season/Low Season: June through September
Travelling in the low season often means discounted accommodation rates and lower airfares. You won’t have to battle the biggest crowds of the year, although there is a higher number of visitors in August and September, with Americans and Europeans coming to enjoy their holidays. While there are many upsides of visiting now, you’ll need to prepare for the humidity and significant rain. Some attractions in the countryside and remote areas with be inaccessible due to the downpours, although the rain will create a stunning green vision at Angkor Wat.
Average temperatures in Phnom Penh, the capital, range from 75 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit, with rainfall averaging 1.6 to 2.4 inches.
Dry Season/Shoulder Season: October and November
The monsoon season is officially over in October, with dry season beginning now. This is when the rain diminishes to just a few occasional showers in various places around the country. It will be mostly warm and dry, while the wet weather that preceded this season bringing vibrant greenery. As this is a shoulder season, you may be able to get some good discounts while also avoiding the hordes of tourists and enjoy accessibility to more remote locations with the roads opening after the rainy season.
Average temperatures in Phnom Penh this season range from around 73 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit while rainfall averages 1.6 to a little less than 2 inches.
Dry Season/High Season December through March
Many consider December through March to be the very best time to visit Cambodia, which makes it the peak tourist season, especially around the Christmas holidays when you’ll need to book your accommodation and airfare well in advance. There is little rain now in the heart of the dry season, with sunshine and blue skies. This is a perfect time to enjoy the beaches, the roads will all be open and the water levels at Tonle Sap will be high, making river cruises ideal. The downside is that this season brings the highest prices and the thickest tourist crowds.
Temperatures in Phnom Penh average between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit while rain is minimal, averaging just .4 to under .8 inches.
Summer Shoulder Season April and May
Cambodia’s other shoulder season, April and May is best avoided. It’s the most humid time of year with spotted showers across the country, and temperatures will be sizzling hot. Tourist destinations in the more remote areas will be starting to shut down, so you may not be able to visit them. If you plan to come during this period anyway, you can get some of the best discounts on accommodation and airfare of the year.
The average temperatures in Phnom Penh now range from 79 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit with rainfall averaging .4 to .78 inches.
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