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When is the best time to visit Hoi An?

| Words by Rachel McCombie |

Our definitive guide to when to travel to the Vietnamese port town of Hoi An

Founded in 1595, the ancient seaside town of Hoi An in Vietnam has silt to thank for the fact that it’s now recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Once a powerful trading port, Hoi An fell out of favour in the 18th century as the mouth of the Thu Bon River fell victim to a build-up of sediment. What probably seemed devastating at the time turned out to be a good thing for history, which preserved the town in a state largely untouched by modernisation from that period onwards. But when is the best time of year to visit and admire Hoi An?

Hoi An’s Seasons

Though it has two distinct seasons, Hoi An is warm all year round, with an average temperature of 29°C (84°F). However, rainfall varies quite dramatically, and it’s worth being aware of when the wettest times are so that you can enjoy your visit without worrying about staying dry.

Key highlights

  • February to April: comfortable temperatures, low humidity
  • June to August: temperatures are at their hottest, reaching as high as 38°C (100°F)
  • July and August: the most spectacular Full Moons of the year
  • September to January: Hoi An’s rainy season. October and November are wettest
  • November to January: coldest temperatures, ranging from 19 to 24°C (66 to 75°F)

Dry Season - February to August

The British-colonial palace on Yangon, formerly Rangoon

Hoi An’s dry season is from February to July, when the city sees lots of sunshine, lower humidity and the least rainfall. The season can be roughly broken in two; February to April/May has more pleasant temperatures and the least rainfall, and June to August are the months when the mercury is at its highest.

Temperatures reach a maximum of about 34°C (93°F) in the latter half of the dry season, but it’s a good time to enjoy nearby beaches such as Cua Dai and An Bang, because they’re less busy and you’ll quickly top up your tan.

Other highlights of the Dry Season include:

  • Calm water with superb visibility makes June to August a fantastic time to go diving and snorkelling off the coast of Hoi An
  • July and August have the biggest Full Moons of the year - a spectacular sight over the ocean
  • It’s peak fishing season, so seafood is even more plentiful than usual
  • Accommodation is more affordable from May to July
  • Half Tet - a day-long festival in June that features dragon boat races by day and coloured lantern parades by night.

Monsoon Season - September to January

Heavy rain is common in Hoi An from September to January

Hoi An’s dry season is from February to July, when the city sees lots of sunshine, lower humidity and the least rainfall. The season can be roughly broken in two; February to April/May has more pleasant temperatures and the least rainfall, and June to August are the months when the mercury is at its highest.

Temperatures reach a maximum of about 34°C (93°F) in the latter half of the dry season, but it’s a good time to enjoy nearby beaches such as Cua Dai and An Bang, because they’re less busy and you’ll quickly top up your tan.

An all-year-round tip

Hoi An celebrates Full Moons rather delightfully, with singing, dancing and games, and streets lined with lanterns. Full Moons occur on the 14th day of each lunar month, so bear that in mind when timing your visit.

Planning a trip to Hoi An? Find out about our small group tours to Vietnam.