Halong Bay Weather: Find The Best Time Of Year To Visit

October to December (Fall) is the peak season and the best time of year to visit Halong Bay thanks to the pleasant weather, though you can expect double the crowd. While July to September (Summer) is the low season and has a higher chance of storms and typhoon. 

However, with some planning, you can have an amazing Halong tour with half of the normal price when booking cruise in the low season. 

This post will give you pros and cons for each season of weather in Halong Bay, so you can easily to choose the best time to visit that most suitable with your schedule, budget…

Also, there will instructions what you can do in case of your cruise tour get canceled due to bad weather at the end of the post.

Halong locates in the North of Vietnam- just 156km away from Hanoi capital so the weather in Hanoi and Halong is similar. 

Both Hanoi and Halong Bay climate share the same typical humid & tropical monsoon weather. 

While the South of Vietnam has only two seasons (rain and dry season), Halong has 4 seasons with its own weather features. 

Take a look at the following graphs for an overview of the weather conditions in Halong:

SeasonMonthOff/PeakTemperatureSunshine HoursCrowdedPricesRainfallChance Of Storm
SpringJanuary-Febuary-MarchPeak Season~13-20°C5 hoursCrowdedMore Expensive30Low Chance Of Storm
SummerApril-May-JuneOff Season~29-40°C7 hoursLess CrowdedLess Expensive145Chance Of Storm (May Have Rain)
FallJuly-August-SeptemberOff Season~23-34°C8 hoursLess CrowdedLess Expensive (Low Season Discount)190High Chance Of Storm
WinterOctober-November-DecemberPeak Season~17-21°C5 hoursCrowdedMost Expensive53Low Chance Of Storm (Foggy)
SeasonSpringSummerFallWinter
MonthJanuary-Febuary-MarchApril-May-JuneJuly-August-SeptemberOctober-November-December
Off/PeakPeak SeasonOff SeasonOff SeasonPeak Season
Temperature~13-20°C~29-40°C~23-34°C~17-21°C
Sunlight Hours5 Hours7 Hours8 Hours5 Hours
CrowdedCrowdedLess CrowdedLess CrowdedCrowded
PricesMore ExpensiveLess ExpensiveLow Season DiscountPeak Season (Expensive)
Chance Of StormLow Chance Of Storm (May Have Rain)Low Chance Of Storm (May Have Rain)Highest Chance Of StormLow Chance Of Storm (Foggy)

Spring (January - March: Mystical Halong Bay)

The temperature is around 13-20°C which is very pleasant and perfect for relaxing. 

There is sunlight during the day but mostly you will see fog and drizzle in the morning and late afternoon. 

However, during this time you can see a completely different look of Halong Bay. 

Jan-March
Credit photo: @thaopham26

A mystical Halong Bay, where the rock formations hide under cloudy fog, appear, disappear and then show up again.

“…the rock formations were looming out of a thick fog. This actually increased the intensity of the peacefulness that is this wonderful bay.”-Ask Diver71au about Halong Bay

Compared to October to December, Halong is less crowded and you will have the chance to experience Lunar New Year – the most important holiday in Vietnam.

tet_holiday_cruise
Lunar New Year Event on BhayaCruise

Summer (April - June: Start Of Summer)

The weather is not hot yet but it will be more likely to rain. Humidity will start to increase during this time.

However, the weather is still pleasant and there is more sunlight for outdoor activities such as swimming and kayaking in the daytime.

When you visit Halong during this time, you can avoid the peak season and still enjoy the nice weather with various festivals, including the Halong Carnival (which is held annually in April).

couple kayak in halong bay
kayak in halong bay

When you visit Halong during this time, you can avoid the peak season and still enjoy the nice weather with various festivals, including the Halong Carnival (which is held annually in April).

Fall (July - September: Storm Season)

Can be hot and humidity for westerners but Halong during this time is very charming with crystal clear sky and emerald water.

There can be some light rain but overall, you can expect a lot of direct sunlight. 

If you want to enjoy a clear view of the bay, especially from the seaplane, this is the best time to do so.

There will be more time for swimming, kayaking, and other water activities than in the fall and winter.

halong summer

Starting from July to the end of September is the rainy season with a high chance of storms and typhoon.

The average temperature is quite warm so you can swim as long as you like. 

It tends to rain the most during August but don’t worry too much: usually, the rain does not last long so you can relax at your hotel for a day and continue your adventure the next day with a bright blue sky.

During this period, your trip or cruise can be canceled or delayed; however, almost cruise companies will usually give you refund or reschedule your tour in that case.

For more information on what you can do in case of your cruise tour get canceled, we will discuss more detail later.

On the plus side, many cruise lines offer deals and promotions during this low season.

If you keep your eyes on the weather forecast around 14 days prior to your booking, you can easily avoid the crowds and enjoy the beautiful Halong Bay with half of the usual price.

Winter (October - December: Peak Season)

October – December is the best time of year and peak season to visit Halong Bay, thanks to its pleasant weather. The humidity level drops considerably and the temperature is around 13°C-21°C.

There is less rainfall during this period of time. 

Tourists can enjoy more sunshine, which is not as harsh as in the summer. 

December is also time for Christmas and New Year, however, you can expect rare light rain during this month.

There will be Halong Bay cruise deals and special programs for this occasion.

Overall, keep in mind that this is the peak season for tourists so Halong is expected to be more crowded. 

 

octorber
Peak Season

On a side note, if you are into squid fishing, mark these months in your calendar because you have the best chance to catch big squids. 

Contact your tour company to have them arranged the activity for you

Any Special Discount On Halong Bay Cruise At The Moment?
Bhaya Cruise Offers Limited Discount On Some Special Dates

How To Handle Cancellation Of Halong Bay Tour Due To Bad Weather?

The Management Board of Halong Bay is the state agency in charge of managing all operations Ha Long Bay, including:

Giving permissions for cruise companies to sail and having the rights to cancel or shorten any cruise trip in favor of the passengers’ safety. 

Bad weather conditions like typhoons, storms or heavy fog are usually the main causes of trip cancellation. 

All cruise companies and travel agents have to follow the final decision of tour/cruise cancellation by the Halong Bay Management Board which is made till 3:00 PM of the day. 

While they cannot do any about this decision, they will inform their passengers as soon as possible and provide the best arrangement/alternative options they can.

halong management board

As for passengers, it is highly advised to check the update news and stay in contact with travel agents/cruise operators to be swiftly informed of any cancellation news. 

Here are several scenarios for you in case of trip cancellation due to bad weather:

Scenario #1- Prior to departure from Hanoi

When you are informed of cancellation before departing for the trip, make sure you ask your travel agent 

  • When is the next trip?
  • Alternative Options
  • Cancellation Policy From Your Cruise Company

In case you have to wait for the next trip, check with your hotel about your booking time and probably take a short tour around Hanoi if you feel like it.

Scenario #2- After arriving at Halong Bay

If you are informed of cancellation news after you arrived at Halong Bay, you can either .

  • Go Back To Hanoi
  • Wait For The Cruise The Day After
  • Check Cancellation Policy From Your Cruise Company

For the first option, the cruise operator will make arrangement to transfer you back to Hanoi. 

If you choose to wait, take note that it can take several days for the next cruise in case of heavy rain and storms

Scenario #3- In the middle of the cruise

When you are informed of the cancellation news on a cruise trip, the trip will be cut short to ensure your safety. 

Depending on the weather conditions, the cruise operator can make different arrangements. 

If you learn the news on the trip’s first day and the weather forecast for the next day is positive,

  • You should spend a night at a hotel on the mainland and then resume your journey.

If bad weather is not going get better

  • Asking Cruise Company Transfer Back To Hanoi
  • Asking Your Cruise Company About Refund Policy

Check out the refund policy of Bhaya Classic in case of storms or typhoon for more information.

Of all the four seasons described above, which one is your favorite? Are you into swimming or other outdoor water activities? 

Or do you want to take advantage of promotion programs during the low season? 

After all, the weather is known for its unpredictability nature, so there can be a lot of surprises in store for even the most carefully planned trip. 

But whatever month you choose to visit Halong, there is one thing for sure: you will be charmed by its beauty.