Contact us now
Best time to visit Halong Bay – Weather & What To Do

Home Travel Blog Best time to visit Halong Bay – Weather & What To Do

Best time to visit Halong Bay – Weather & What To Do

Halong Bay is a must visit destination if you are planning your trip to Vietnam. Cruising is one of the major highlights that you shouldn’t miss, so it’s important to choose the right time to avoid being affected by the weather. This guide provides a breakdown of the different seasons, detailing what to expect in terms of weather, crowd levels, and expenses. Whether you’re looking for the best time to visit Halong Bay or trying to budget your trip, this article offers practical insights.

When are the best months to visit Halong Bay?

Halong Bay is a year-round destination, but there are indeed certain months that are considered the best times to visit. It largely depends on your preferences for weather, crowd levels, and activities. Generally, the most favorable months are February to May (Spring) and September to November (Autumn).

During spring, the weather is mild and pleasant, with temperatures ranging from 19°C to 25°C (66°F to 77°F). Rainfall is minimal, making it perfect for outdoor activities like cruising, kayaking, and exploring caves.

Autumn is another ideal period. The weather is similar to spring, with temperatures between 20°C and 27°C (68°F to 81°F). The humidity is lower, and the skies are often clear, providing excellent visibility for sightseeing.

best month to visit Halong Bay infographic
Quick infographic to help you choose the best month to visit Halong Bay

Peak Tourist Seasons

High Season: November – April

The high season in Halong Bay runs from November to April. This period is popular due to the pleasant weather, making it the best time to travel to Halong Bay and attracting mostly international tourists.

  • Weather: The weather is cool and dry, with temperatures ranging from 15°C to 25°C (59°F to 77°F). This is ideal for outdoor activities.
  • Crowds: Expect higher tourist numbers, especially during Christmas, New Year, and the Tet Festival (Vietnamese Lunar New Year).
  • Costs: During this time, expect higher prices for cruises with a budget of around $100-$180 per night for 3-4-star cruises.

Shoulder Season (June – August)

June to August coincides with the summer holidays in Vietnam, seeing mostly local tourists.

  • Weather: The weather during these months is hot, with temperatures ranging from 27°C to 30°C (80°F to 86°F). It can be humid and sees a significant amount of rain, with sudden heavy showers that are often short-lived. This period also coincides with the typhoon season, which can bring storms and rough seas.
  • Crowds: Moderate tourist numbers, mainly families on summer vacation.
  • Costs: Prices are lower than during the high season, offering good value for budget travelers.

Low season (May, September & October)

The low season in Halong Bay spans May, September, and October. This is the least crowded time of the year, providing you a peaceful experience.

  • Weather: These months experience a mix of warm and rainy days, with temperatures ranging from 20°C to 30°C (68°F to 86°F).
  • Crowds: Fewer tourists, providing a more peaceful visit.
  • Costs: The lowest prices for cruises ranging from $80 – $160 per night for 3-4 star cruises.

Weather in Halong Bay by season & Things to do

Halong in Spring (February – May)

February to May marks spring in Halong Bay. The weather during these months is mild and pleasant, with minimal rainfall and temperatures ranging from 19°C to 25°C (66°F to 77°F). This period is often considered the best time to travel to Halong Bay due to the comfortable climate and clear skies.

Best things to do in Spring

  • Cruising: Spring’s calm waters make it perfect for scenic cruises. You can explore the bay’s limestone karsts and hidden caves.
  • Kayaking: Enjoy kayaking in the calm waters, getting up close to the towering rock formations.
  • Exploring Caves: Visit famous caves like Sung Sot Cave and Thien Cung Cave, where you can marvel at stunning stalactites and stalagmites.
Kayaking on Halong Bay
Kayaking on Halong Bay

Halong in Summer (June – September)

June to September is summer in Halong Bay. The weather is hot and humid, with temperatures ranging from 25°C to 30°C (77°F to 86°F). This season attracts many local tourists, making it the shoulder tourist season.

While the best time to go to Halong Bay varies for different people, summer is ideal for those who love the heat and water activities. Enjoy a refreshing swim in the bay or visit one of the sandy beaches. Night squid fishing is another unique experience available in the summer.

Note: The typhoon season in Halong Bay typically occurs from June to August. During this time, the weather is more susceptible to typhoons and heavy rainfall. These storms can bring strong winds, heavy rains, and rough seas, potentially disrupting your travel plans. It’s advisable to book your cruise through a trusted agent. In case of cancellation due to weather, you will get faster support.

Night squid fishing on Halong cruise
Experience night squid fishing on Halong cruise

Halong in Autumn (September – November)

September to November brings autumn to Halong Bay. The weather is cooler and less humid, with temperatures ranging from 20°C to 27°C (68°F to 81°F). This season is also regarded as the best time to visit Halong Bay due to the comfortable weather and fewer tourists.

Autumn provides a serene and picturesque setting for your visit. Take a scenic boat tour to capture the beauty of the bay, or explore and learn the local culture at some floating village with various tours and activities.

Best season to watch sunset in Halong Bay is Autumn

Halong in Winter (December – January)

December to January is winter in Halong Bay. The weather is cooler, with temperatures ranging from 10°C to 20°C (50°F to 68°F).

Winter might not be the best time to travel to Halong Bay for those seeking warm weather, but it offers a unique charm. Enjoy indoor activities like spa treatments and cooking classes, or take in the sights with fewer crowds around. However, if you do not mind the cool temperature, you can still do outdoor activities like cave exploring, kayaking, squid fishing, etc as usual.

Frequently asked questions

How many days do you need in Halong Bay?

The ideal length of stay in Halong Bay depends on what you want to experience. Most visitors find that 2 to 3 days is sufficient to explore the main attractions and enjoy a few activities.

  • 2-Day Trip: Perfect for a quick getaway. Includes a cruise, a visit to a cave, and some kayaking.
  • 3-Day Trip: Allows more time for relaxation and additional activities such as visiting a fishing village or a pearl farm.

A 2-day trip offers a good introduction to the bay’s beauty. However, a 3-day trip provides a more relaxed pace and a chance to explore more secluded areas.

Is Halong Bay too touristy?

Halong Bay can get very crowded, especially during busy times. The beautiful scenery and interesting attractions draw visitors from all over the world, leading to crowds, especially around popular spots like Sung Sot Cave and Titop Island Beach. However, it’s still possible to find quieter areas and have a more peaceful experience. You can do this by choosing less popular routes or traveling during quieter times. Also, booking private or smaller cruises can give you a more intimate and less crowded experience. This can help you fully enjoy the beauty of Halong Bay without feeling overwhelmed by the tourist crowds.

Is Halong Bay really worth it?

Yes, Halong Bay is definitely worth visiting. Its stunning landscapes, unique limestone formations, abundance of outdoor activities, and rich cultural experiences make it a highlight of any trip to Vietnam.

Which is better, Hanoi or Halong Bay?

Both offer unique experiences and are worth visiting. While Hanoi provides a bustling city experience with rich history, vibrant street life, and cultural landmarks, Halong Bay offers a serene escape with stunning natural landscapes and outdoor activities. These destinations are highlights of your Vietnam trip that you should not skip.

How do I go from Hanoi to Halong Bay?

Traveling from Hanoi to Halong Bay is straightforward, with several options available. Here are the best ways to get to Halong Bay from Hanoi:

  • By Bus or Shuttle: This is the most popular and affordable option. Buses and shuttles depart regularly from Hanoi, taking about 3-4 hours.
  • By Private Car: For a more comfortable and flexible option, hire a private car. The journey takes about 3 hours.

Halong Bay is beautiful all year round, but the best time to visit is during spring and fall. These seasons have great weather, fewer people, and lots of chances to explore the bay’s natural beauty. Whether cruising, kayaking, or discovering its caves, this UNESCO gem promises an unforgettable adventure – making it a must-visit destination in Vietnam.

Custom your tour image

Enjoy reading our blogs and browsing our tours? Please contact us and leave any questions you may have.

Email us now