South East Asia
Sara and John say...
Think ‘lush and hot’ and you won’t go far too wrong in preparing to visit this small, landlocked country. But thanks to its irregular geography, there is some variety through the year.
It’s best visited between October and April, when the weather’s warm and largely dry throughout.
Temperatures by day still reach into the high 20s or low 30s Celsius quite widely across southern areas; but it’s a lower humidity than at other times of year, and nights can get cool, especially in December and January. The highlands across central and northern areas are also more generally cooler - both by day and night - perhaps requiring an extra layer or two.
River travel is best during this drier period, the previous month’s rains making passage easy along Laos's main waterway, the Mekong River. Visiting the Bolaven Plateau is also pleasant at this time of year.
Temperatures rise markedly through March and April - peaking in the low 40s in some low-lying valleys. Humidity is building at this time of year too, resulting in more cloud and frequent showers. The 'green season’ falls between late May and October, when the rains peak across the country, and are highest over the mountains. However, the downpours are usually short and sharp, having little impact on your exploration. At this time of year the country comes to life, with waterfalls beginning to flow once more and the lush scenery attracting a variety of wildlife.