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Let it rain! See South East Asia in the wet season

South East Asia in the wet season is not all waterlogged Birkenstock’s, mudslides and mosquitoes.

Hitting the tropics during the rainy months can mean much more bang for your buck - miles of beach without so much as another Bintang beach towel in sight, photos of Angkor Wat refreshingly free of other tourists’ heads and more sunshine than you might expect!

Here are some of the upsides for lapping up the wet season in South East Asia:

It doesn’t always rain
The best kept secret of South East Asia in the wet season is this - it doesn’t rain all the time (shhh!). In fact, it often only rains in the afternoon. Sure, when it rains it pours, but usually only for an hour or two and the chances are you’ll get plenty of dry, sunny mornings, and some bonus 100% rain-free days too.

Cooler temps
An afternoon storm in the tropics can be a welcome relief from the humidity and intense heat of the day when the mercury drops and the cool change means less sweat and more action.

Cleaner, fresher air
Asthmatics rejoice! One of the unexpected bonuses of the wet season in bigger cities is that the rain really clears the air  –  and if you've spent any length of time in any of South East Asia's big cities, you'll know that cleaner, fresher air is a welcome change from the often stifling atmosphere. 

Extra-lush scenery

The wet season means even better scenery and natural surrounds when the tropics are greener and more lush than ever and their legendary waterfalls rage at their most dramatic and spectacular!

Better value
Wet season = low season, which means you can get some sweet deals on accommodation and tours - rates drop by as much as 50% in the low season and bar and restaurant prices tend to fall dramatically too with more competition for fewer travellers’ baht and dong!

Fewer tourists
Even crowded South East Asia can seem pretty chilled out in the wet season when tourists are fewer and much farther between which means more space, no queues, and much more relaxed sight seeing.

Great storm spotting
There’s nothing like watching a tropical storm roll in from the shelter of your bungalow or bunkering down in a beachside bar with a front row seat to one of nature’s wildest and most spectacular shows. It really is pretty awe-inspiring.

More downtime
There’s nothing like an hour or two of torrential rain in the afternoon as an excuse to chill out, write in your journal, catch some hammock time on the deck with a good book or settle in for a beer and board-game session with your travel buddies. When the heavens open up in the topics it gives you the chance for down time which means you can really get your holiday on in between the white water rafting, paragliding and mountain climbing!

Best places to go in the wet season

  • Thai mainland – its roads are generally better and more reliable than those in Cambodia and Laos and it’s generally less prone to flooding than parts of Vietnam
  • Indonesia for beach time. It’s less dramatic weather can mean great beach time, with fewer tourists in popular beach destinations and much more value for money.

What's your favourite time of year to visit South East Asia? Tell us about it in the comments section below. Then head to twitter and Facebook to share your stories with other travellers.

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