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Weather in Phnom Penh - Best Time to Visit

Weather in Phnom Penh - Best Time to Visit

By Wendy Updated Apr. 21, 2022

Phnom Penh now reopens to travelers. From March 17, 2022, you don't need to do the nucleic acid test or post-arrival test to enter Cambodia as long as you're fully vaccinated.

Like other places in Cambodia, Phnom Penh is hot all year round, though it experiences three distinct seasons: the dry, rainy (monsoon), and hot seasons. The hot season is from March to May. The dry season is regarded as the best time to visit Phnom Penh, yet a trip during the rainy season also has certain advantages.

It is important to take weather into consideration when planning a trip to Phnom Penh. Most of the major attractions are good to visit any time of year, and suitable for outings or indoor visits. It is still advisable, however, to allow yourself enough time to relax and recover from the heat if you are traveling in the summer.

Phnom Penh

Plan Your Trip to Phnom Penh in Accordance with the Weather

Phnom Penh has a typical tropical climate with wet and dry seasons. The weather is subject to tropical monsoons; thus, there are three seasons for traveling: the hot season (March to May), the rainy season (May to October), and the dry season (November to the following February). Whenever you are traveling, good preparation is necessary.

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Best Time to Visit Phnom Penh

the Dry Season–November to the Following February

The dry season is the coolest time of year with average temperatures of around 28℃ and little rain; good for outdoor activities. With the comfortable weather, many travelers choose this season to visit Phnom Penh, especially December, January and February.

At night, temperatures drop to around 22℃. Outdoor activities can be considered: You can walk around the town at leisure, alongside the river or through the night markets, and feel the gentle breeze on your face. The water level is high enough for boat trips on Tonle Sap Lake. You can have a good view from the river itself. Or you can even take a drive into the countryside.

With the great weather during the dry season and the time coinciding with Christmas and annual vacations of western travelers, accommodation, flights and even experienced tour guides quickly become unavailable. Planning and booking in advance is critical. We suggest you settle your trip plans at least 6 months in advance.

The Hot Season–March to May

In the hot season, it seldom rains, and temperatures can rise to 35℃, with strong sunlight. From March, temperatures increase by the day; it can sometimes approach 40℃ in April, but it is still dry. It is wise to choose more indoor sightseeing than outdoor activities. Museums, temples or visits to local markets are preferable. And prepare sunblock, hat and sunglasses.

Take advantage of our expertise when traveling during the hot season: you can obtain great hotel and flight deals. And less-crowded attractions will allow you to explore more thoroughly. Our travel advisers will ensure your trip is both enjoyable and unrushed, by establishing an easy pace; your private tour guide may get the tour started early in the morning, so you can have an early finish or a noon break.

Another silver lining is the chance to encounter interesting celebrations of traditional festivals, such as the Water-Sprinkling Festival (14th–16th April) which is the most important holiday in Cambodia. Be blessed by a local monk, which can be a special experience from your trip to Cambodia. If you decide to make your trip in the hot season, we suggest you plan and book at least 3 months in advance.

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The Rainy Season–May to October

In this season, it rains a lot and heavily, along with some strong winds, but the rain brings the temperature down to around 24℃. Even so, the rain also brings humidity. Some people say the humidity is even worse than the heat, and you might need an iced coffee to cool off.

The bright side is that it doesn’t rain all day long, mostly in the afternoons, typically lasting around 15 minutes to half an hour. Umbrellas and raincoats are needed. Since the rainfall increases, the river level goes up and the water is turbulent after the rain. With good planning, however, you can also benefit from the rainy season when there are fewer tourists and there is refreshing weather after the rain.

No matter when you travel, it is important not to plan too much sightseeing in one day, so you have time to relax. Especially during the hot and rainy seasons, you should take a break during the heat of the day, or hide away from the heavy rain.

Please feel free to talk to one of our travel advisers for more ideas or suggestions. Our advisers will provide expert insights based on their experience and knowledge, for better planning.

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