Laos at a Glance: Best Time to Visit
Recommended time to visit: October - April is the Laotian dry season, which is a much more popular time to visit the country, with little rainfall and pleasant temperatures. This can vary depending on altitude, but as a landlocked country, the variations in Laos' weather are much less extreme than in Vietnam. November - April represents the best time to visit Laos.
Less popular time to visit: The wet season lasts from May - September and is characterised by tropical downpours and high humidity. Though if you can put up with the heat, prices tend to be much lower at this time of year.
Best time for cruising the Mekong: If you'd like to explore Southeast Asia's mightiest river, then November - January sees the highest water levels.
Best time for trekking: The best hiking conditions in Laos are generally between November - February, with cooler temperatures and less rainfall.
Climate | Vientiene
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Climate | Luang Prabang
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Festivals and Events
The people of Laos love a good celebration and there are plenty of reasons to put on a festival with a calendar of events that mark the agricultural seasons or to honour important dates linked to the life of Buddha. Here's a selection of our favourites.
What is the Boun Ma Kha Bu Saar (Full Moon) Festival?
Celebrated in temples and Wats across the country with the biggest celebrations taking place at the Khmer ruins of Vat Phu Champasack, this festival marks the day when Buddha delivered a speech to some 1,250 monks with chanting, candles and processions.
What is the Boun Pi Mai (New Year) Festival?
This is one of the most important celebrations in Laos with three days dedicated as a public holiday during which families get together to clean out their homes, provide offerings to local temples and decorate images of Buddha with flowers. Like Songkran in Thailand, it's a time for frivolity with friendly water fights held on the streets.
What is Boun Khao Padabdin?
Laos' version of the Day of the Dead, every September families across the country honour dead relatives and ancestors with offerings of rice and over foods. For visitors, a highlight of the festival is the handmade boats that are raced along the Mekong River in conjunction with Boun Khao Padabdin.
What is the That Luang Festival?
During the full moon of the twelfth lunar month (November) thousands of monks and pilgrims descend on the gold-covered Grand Stupa (Pha That Luang) in Vientiane. Bearing candles and floral votives, it's a particularly joyous time to visit though accommodation and other services book up quickly.
Highlights of Laos
Laos to Vietnam
Take a look at our handy Travel Guide resources for further help planning your visit to Laos:
Best Places to Visit - where to go and what to see in Laos
Tourist Visas - information on visa regulations for Laos
Top Travel Tips - useful info on money, health and food in Laos
Traveller Reviews - find out what our customers think