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Best (and Worst) Times to Visit India 2023 & the Monsoon?

Best (and Worst) Times to Visit India 2023 & the Monsoon?

By Ruby ZhaoUpdated Jan. 3, 2023

Generally, the best time to visit India is from December to February, when it is warm during daytime and cool at night in most areas of India. December marks the beginning of the peak travel season with higher-priced accommodation and flights.

It starts to get hot from March and the temperature reaches its average high point of 45°C (113°F) in May. If you can bear the heat, traveling India from April to May, you can expect the benefits of smaller crowds as well as big promotions from hotels and airlines (usually 50% off).

India's rainy season starts from June and lasts until September. North India is less affected by downpours than central and southern parts. You could still enjoy a good experience if you visit north Indian destinations like Delhi, Agra, Jaipur and other Rajasthan areas. Many national parks are closed because of floods and landslides. Goa becomes a "ghost city", with few travelers and many beach resorts closed. Ladakh, located in the far north is cool, and little affected by the rainy season, and it starts to welcome its high travel time from June to August. 

Rain starts to ease from the middle of September. In October, most areas of India have dry weather. Though it is still hot, it feels much more comfortable than in May. Traveling in October and November, you'll not be drenched, while enjoying better deals than in December-February. 

India Weather

Best Times to Visit India for Great Weather, Low Prices, etc.

Best Time to Visit India by Region

Although most people consider the best time to visit India to be from December to February, India is a large country that contains many different climates with extremely different weather patterns. When you should visit India varies greatly depending on what/where you want to see, budget, and weather preferences.

Best Time for the Most Comfortable Weather

For most comfortable weather, December to February are the best months to travel. You can enjoy clear skies and all kinds of outdoor activities in most of the country. It is also a good time for a tiger safari as the undergrowth is low and the animals are more active in cool weather.

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Best Time for Mountain Hiking in India

If you're a mountain hiking lover, visiting Ladakh from June to August or doing a Himalayan trek from March to early June or from late September to November would be rewarding with cool weather and little rain. Himalayan mountains get extremely wet from late June to early September! 

Best Time for Festival Experiences

Join in the Holi in Agra Join in the Holi in Agra

If you're interested in attending India's colorful festivals, Holi and Diwali are two most celebrated festivals in India. Holi is typically observed in March, occasionally in late February. In 2023, it is on March 8th. Diwali's date ranges from October to November. It is on November 12th in 2023.  

Best Time for the Lowest Travel Prices in India

April to June is the best time for the lowest prices in general. The heat prohibits many travelers (international and domestic) from traveling around India. You may find only a few visitors in the temples, and you can expect lower prices, with 30–50% off offered by many hotels and flights.

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Best Time for Good Weather With Better Prices

March, October, and November could be seen as middle ground periods. During these months, you don't need to bear extreme hotness like in April to June, while you can expect less crowding and more affordable prices than in December to February.

Read more on How to Plan a Trip to India (Expert Advice) or tell us your interests, and we'd be glad to find the perfect timings and activities for you. India Private Tour Packages for inspiration >>>

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The Worst Times to Visit India

Strictly speaking, there is no worse time to visit India. No matter which month you travel, India has somewhere with suitable experiences that are not too negatively affected by the weather.

Worst Times to Visit  Popular Cities in India

For first-timers to India, the travel routes usually focus on Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur (Pink City) with Varanasi, or MumbaiGoa,and Kerala in the south. With time permitting, you can also extend your trip to Jodhpur (Blue City), Udaipur (White City), and Jaisalmer (Golden City) in the western desert, Rajasthan. For these areas:

  • If you cannot stand the burning hotness, avoid April to June. 
  • If you don't like heavy rain, avoid August. The monsoon will approach to India from June and fade away after September. August is the wettest month. But you can still find some hours for sightseeing during the rest of monsoon season as the rainfall might not last for several days.
  • If you'd like to experience a desert camp in the western desert, avoid May and June as some resorts in the desert are closed because of the heat. Accommodations in city areas is still OK to stay in. The desert is a good destinations in rainy season as it's hardly affected.  
  • If you want to relax on the beach in Goa, avoid June to August as summer's big sea currents are not safe for swimming and many resorts will close.
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The Worst Times to Visit Far North Montain Areas in India

Road Trip to Ladakh Road Trip to Ladakh

Ladakh in the far north and Himalayan mountain areas in the northeast are usually popular with those visiting India for the second time or those with a long holiday for their first trip. For these areas:

  • If you're keen on mountain scenery and Buddhist culture exploration in Ladakh, avoid September to April when passes and roads are blocked by snow.
  • If you're keen on hiking in Himalayan mountain areas, avoid late June to September when it's extremely wet and December to January when routes are blocked by snow.  
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Visiting India in January: Pleasant Weather

  • Average temperature ranges: 7 to 20°C (46–68°F) in the north (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 20 to 30°C (68–86°F) in central and south India (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festivals: Bikaner Camel Festival (January 8th and 9th, 2023), Republic Day (January 26th)

Many travelers from America and Europe come to India from the end of December to January to celebrate Christmas and New Year. January has pleasantly warm days and cool nights, which are great for outdoor activities. Though there might be some fog in early morning, January is generally good for traveling throughout India, except for the highlands and far-north mountain areas.

The weather in the south is much warmer than in the north in January. It's a great time to celebrate the New Year on beaches in Goa or join in a camel festival in the desert of Bikaner.

Read more on January Weather in India — Pleasant Weather, One of the Best Months to Visit >>>

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Visiting India in February: Nice Weather

  • Average temperature ranges: 10 to 25°C (50–77°F) in the north (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 18 to 30°C (64–86°F) in the center and south (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festival: Taj Mahotsav in Agra (February 18th to 27th)

Warmer than January and with less fog, the weather in February is still very comfortable for traveling in India

If you visit Agra (home of the ultra-famous Taj Mahal) from February 18th to 27th, don't miss the Taj Mahotsav for its dizzying handicraft presentations, enchanting local dances, and tasty range of local foods. You'll get a real eye-opener. The festival is held in Shilpgram, 20 minutes' walking from the Taj Mahal. More details about best places to go in February in India>>>

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Visiting India in March: Start of India's Hot Season

  • Average temperature ranges: 16 to 32°C (61–90°F) in north India (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 25 to 33°C (77–92°F) in central and south India (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festivalHoli (March 8th, 2023)

Most of India starts to get hot from March. Many locals go to hill stations in the Himalayan foothills to escape the heat. It is still comfortable to visit popular cities like Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur and enjoy cooling down in the sea in Goa.

Hotels and airlines begin to offer some deals to attract more customers.

March is the month when the Festival of Colors (Holi) is held. People throw vibrant colors over each other to celebrate the triumph of good over evil, welcome spring, and pray for good luck. It is celebrated all over India. The top places include Udaipur, Pushkar, Hampi, Jaipur, and Goa. For more, see our Holi 2023 Travel Guide for India.

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Visiting India in April: Hot, but Better than May

  • Average temperature ranges: 21 to 37°C (70–99°F) in the north (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 25 to 33°C (77–91°F) in the center and south (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festival: Eid al-Fitr (April 22th, 2023)

It begins to heat up in April, but it is still pleasant enough for outdoor activities in popular destinations. The rainy season hasn't come and animals become more conspicuous looking for food, which makes it a good time for safaris in national parks. To avoid the heat, you can plan activities for early mornings and evenings and enjoy pool time and a nap at noon.

April is not a high season for travel in India. Popular tourist sites such as the Taj Mahal will not be as packed. It will give you more of a chance to leisurely explore the sites and get some great photos without huge crowds in your shots.

There might be a peak period around Sunday, April 9th in 2023 for the Easter break. Book an Easter trip to India at least 3 months ahead for more affordable prices.

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Visit India in May: Hottest Month

  • Average temperature ranges: 26 to 42°C (79–108°F) in north India (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 26 to 34°C (77–93°F) in its center and south (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festival: Buddha Jayanti (May 26th, 2023)

With May comes the hottest month in India. In the Golden Triangle area (Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur), temperatures reach 45°C (113°F) on some days. If you don't want to miss Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur in your first trip to India, lower prices and smaller crowds are the rewards for braving the heat of May. Check the best places to avoid the heat>>>

Mumbai and Goa in central India and Kerala in south India have comparatively cooler weather. You can seek coolness in Himalayan mountain areas in the northeast or relax in the tea plantations and palm jungles of Kerala in the south. From the end of May, the southwest monsoon from the Indian Ocean starts to bring some rain to southern parts of India.

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Visiting India in June: Start of the Rainy Season

  • Average temperature ranges: 28 to 39°C (82–102°F) in the north (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 25 to 34°C (77–93°F) in central and south India (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festivals: There are no major festivals in June. Some villages hold celebrations for the coming of the rain, which is essential for their harvests.

After the hot season, India experiences monsoon weather that lasts from June to September across most of the country. Heavy downpours are seen nearly every day in June in the south and middle of India (Kerala, Goa, Mumbai, etc.). As the monsoon starts from the south and spreads north gradually, Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur may still get some sunny, dry days in early June.

Because rainfall is so high in this season, some of the lowland areas and rivers, like around Mumbai and Kalkata, experience flooding and many national parks close at this timeCheck with us whether a tiger safari is available if you are planning to visit India in the rainy season. 

Monsoon Season in India: When It Is, 5 Best Places to Go >>>

Ladakh in the far north welcomes its best season. It is nearly unaffected by the monsoon. It's great to relax there, while taking in mountain views, hiking, or exploring Buddhist monasteries, as it starts to get nicely warm from June. 

Visiting Ladakh at its best season from June to August Visiting Ladakh at its best season from June to August

Visiting India in July: Rainy, but Less hot

  • Average temperature ranges: 26 to 34°C (79–93°F) in north India (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 25 to 30°C (77–86°F) in the center and south (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festival: Guru Purnima (July 3rd, 2023)

India gets cooler in July. Although the likelihood of heavy rain means it is not a good time to visit some areas of India, certain cities in North India have dry and cool weather, making them the perfect places to visit. Leh in Ladakh is especially beautiful in July. The Rajastan area in west India, including Jaipur, Jodhpur, Udaipur and Jaisalmer, gets much less rain as well.

If you travel in July, you will meet less crowding as most domestic family groups will have gone back home when India's summer vacation ends (usually lasting from mid-April to mid-June). In order to attract more clients in the low travel season, promotions from hotels and flights are still common.

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Visiting India in August: Wettest in the North

  • Average temperature ranges: 25 to 34°C (77–93°F) in north India (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 24 to 30°C (75–86°F) in central and south India (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festivals: Raksha Bandhan (August 30th, 2023), Independence Day (August 15th)

August is usually the wettest month in cities in north India, such as Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur. In contrast to them, cities in middle and south India, like Mumbai and Goa, get less rain than in July.

The unstable sea currents mean Goa is still not a safe destination for swimming and sea sports.

Visiting Rajasthan in west India, you will meet less rain.

Because of high river levels, August is a good time to take a Ganges River cruise between Varanasi and Patna.

August will be the last good month to travel to Leh in Ladakh as the mountain routes will start to be snow-blocked from September until April.

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Visiting India in September: End of the Rainy Season

  • Average temperature ranges: 24 to 34°C (75–93°F) in the north (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 24 to 30°C (75–86°F) in central and southern India (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festivalGanesh Chaturthi Festival (September 19th, 2023)

September is the last month of the rainy season in India. Although the northeast monsoon will bring some rain to south India in November and December, especially the states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Kerala, this rain is much less heavy than from June to September.

Beach resorts start to reopen in September with the easing of the rains. The Himalayan trekking routes are dry enough for you to come, and the trekking high season lasts from September until November.

Most hotels still haven't raised their prices (fully). Less crowds, less rain, and low prices are the rewards for traveling in September.

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Visiting India in October: Sunny Days and Cool Evenings

  • Average temperature ranges: 19 to 34°C (66–93°F) in the north (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 24 to 32°C (75–90°F) in central and south India (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festivalDiwali — the Festival of Lights (November 12th, 2023)

October is a month of transition from the rainy season to the cool season. Because of this, October's weather is very pleasant with sunny days and cool evenings. There are still some rainy days in south India, but only showers that don't affect travel much.

As there is little rain and tour prices are not as high as in peak times starting from December, traveling in October is a great time if you're looking for an affordable price and sunny but not very hot days.

The biggest festival in India, Diwali, is celebrated in the latter part of October (in 2023, it is in November). The whole country will be immersed in the festival atmosphere of lights and candles. A Complete Guide to Experiencing Diwali >>>

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Visiting India in November: Start of the Cool Season

  • Average temperature ranges: 10 to 29°C (50–84°F) in north India (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 22 to 33°C (72–91°F) in its center and south (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festival: Pushkar Camel Fair in Rajasthan (November 20th to 28th, 2023)

The weather in November is pleasant in most areas of India. The rainy season ends officially and the cool days begin.

Comfortable weather attracts more visitors to this incredible country. We recommend that you book your hotels and tickets at least two months in advance. Check India tours for inspiration >>>

When visiting in November 2023, you can also join in Diwali celebrations (November 12th). Indian city streets are a joy to explore when there are fireworks exploding in the sky, the buildings are decorated with lights, and families and friends come together in celebration. You can contact us to arrange a family visit for an authentic local celebration expereince.

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Visiting India in December: Cool and Sunny

  • Average temperature ranges: 9 to 23°C (48–73°F) in the north (Delhi, Agra, Jaipur), 20 to 32°C (68–90°F) in central and southern areas of India (Goa, Mumbai, Kelara)
  • Key festivals: Christmas (December 25th) and New Year's Eve (December 31st)

Because of the pleasant weather and the last month of the year to use up vacation time, December is India's busiest travel time. Many travelers come to India for an incredible warm Christmas and a New Year getaway. Try to make your bookings at least three months in advance for reasonable prices and flight availability. Check the best places to celebrate your Christmas in India.

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Monthly Weather and Travel Information for India

Learn about the weather in India for 12 months and find out the best places to visit each month.

Visiting India with Asia Highlights

Want to explore all of the incredible destinations India has to offer while avoiding extreme heat and heavy rains? Here at Asia Highlights, we can help you navigate India's changing seasons and help you pick your perfect time to see the famous sites you want to see most. Some India tours are recommended below for inspiration. 

Why Travel with Asia Highlights During the Pandemic

  • Tailor-made experience: All of your ideas/needs will be carefully considered to create your ideal trip.
  • Worry-free planning: Your 1:1 travel consultant in Asia will take all the uncertainty out of your planning, helping you navigate any travel restrictions. 
  • No-risk booking: 100% refund policy! (up to 14 days before departure)

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