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Vietnam Weather December: Is December a Good Time to Travel to Vietnam?

Vietnam is an incredibly diverse region with 3,000 kilometers of coastline. And with cooler temperatures and fewer monsoon rains, December is a perfect time to experience its beauty! Air temperatures are way above 0°C/32°F, with average lows dropping below 10°C/50°F only in the far north.

However, conditions vary in different areas, so understanding the weather helps you plan the best Vietnam tour. In this guide, we will provide you with an overview of what to expect weather-wise in December and recommendations for top destinations, festivals, packing, costs, and tips. By exploring these sections, you can start your December trip to Thailand according to your needs and budget.

What's the Weather Like in Vietnam in December? Temperature & Precipitation

In December, Vietnam experienced varied weather conditions across different regions, offering travelers a diverse range of experiences. Let's have a look at what the weather is like in Vietnam in December.

North Vietnam: Temperatures in the north can drop to around 15°C (59°F), especially in Hanoi and Sapa. While it's cooler, it's generally dry and sunny, making it a great time for outdoor activities.
Central Vietnam: Regions like Hue, Da Nang, and Hoi An enjoy mild temperatures averaging around 20-25°C (68-77°F). This period sees low humidity and minimal rainfall, ideal for exploring historic sites and pristine beaches.
South Vietnam: Ho Chi Minh City and the Mekong Delta experience warmer temperatures ranging from 25-30°C (77-86°F). December marks the start of the dry season in the south, with little to no rainfall, making it perfect for exploring the bustling city and taking river cruises.

Overall, December offers pleasant weather across Vietnam, with cooler temperatures in the north and warm, dry conditions in the central and southern regions. It's an excellent time to explore the country's diverse landscapes, rich culture, and vibrant cities without the discomfort of extreme heat or heavy rainfall.

Is December a Good Time to Visit Vietnam? Cool & Dry

Yes, December is indeed a good time to visit Vietnam due to its cool and dry weather, making it an ideal season for travelers to explore the country's diverse attractions. With minimal rainfall, travelers can enjoy clear skies and sunny days, perfect for exploring beaches, historical sites, and natural landscapes without interruptions from heavy downpours.

The pleasant weather conditions in December also makes it an excellent time for various outdoor adventures such as trekking, hiking, cycling, and water sports. Whether exploring the rugged mountains of Sapa, having a Halong Bay cruise tour, or lounging on the pristine beaches of Phu Quoc, travelers can enjoy a variety of activities.

Explore Halong Bay in December
Explore Halong Bay in December

What Are the Best Places to Visit in Vietnam in December? Top Things to Do

December casts a spell of wonder over Vietnam, transforming it into a playground of discovery and enjoyment for travelers. Here are some of the best places to visit and top things to do in Vietnam during this wonderful time of year.

North Vietnam
The diverse landscapes of northern Vietnam come alive in December. Mild temperatures make it an excellent time to explore the region's cultural and historic cities as well as the spectacular natural scenery. Here are the main places in this region you shouldn't miss out:

Hanoi: Wander Old Quarter streets decorated for Christmas, see Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and Temple of Literature. Visit iconic sights like One Pillar Pagoda or the Botanic Gardens. Enjoy street food al fresco at restaurants tucked away on tiny alleys.
Sapa Valley: Experience picturesque rice terraces and ethnic minority towns in moderate temperatures. Hike between hill tribe villages to admire the dramatic karst mountain scenery. Spot locals harvesting crops or weaving traditional fabrics.
Halong Bay: Cruise the iconic emerald waters dotted with limestone pillars under clear skies. Spend nights aboard luxurious junk boats while kayaking through spectacular seascapes. Rise early to watch the sunrise illuminate the pillars before exploring hidden beaches and lagoons.

Central Coast
The central coast of Vietnam boasts a wealth of cultural treasures and scenic wonders waiting to be discovered. Here are the main places in this region you shouldn't miss out:

Hoi An: Explore well preserved architecture and eclectic cuisine in the charming old town. Wander the lantern-lit streets to visit Vietnamese, Chinese and Japanese inspired structures. Sample local specialties like cao lau noodles and white rose dumplings.
Hue: Tour majestic Citadel and pagodas, discover imperial architecture and cuisine. Cruise along the Perfume River between regal tombs of emperors marveling at their intricate designs. Soak up history at sites like the Imperial City.
Da Nang: Relax on golden beaches and see the iconic Lady Buddha statue atop Marble Mountains. Visit Monkey Mountain by cable car for sweeping city views or sample seafood in vibrant food markets.

South Vietnam
Palm-fringed beaches line the southern coast of Vietnam. And during December's sunny weather, crystal-clear turquoise waters lure you to take a refreshing dip, while water sports such as kayaking or jet skiing offer a sense of adventure. Here are the main places in this region you shouldn't miss out:

Ho Chi Minh City: Shop bustling markets like Ben Thanh, see Reunification Palace and War Remnants Museum. Explore the Mekong Delta to encounter rural life and cruise through intricate canals.
Mekong Delta: Cruise through lush waterways passing floating markets and tropical scenery. Visit bustling Cai Be for authentic experiences. Sample fresh tropical fruits and local delicacies.
Mui Ne: Ride sand dunes and spot local fishing villages along pristine beaches. Go kitesurfing in the wind or relax at beachfront resorts and spas. Visit nearby fishing hamlets and temples.

What Are the Festivals in Vietnam in December? Christmas & New Year's Eve

1. Christmas Celebrations: While not traditionally a Vietnamese holiday, Christmas is celebrated in many cities across the country, particularly in urban areas with large Christian populations. Visitors can witness festive decorations, attend midnight Mass at churches, and enjoy special holiday events and performances.

2. New Year's Eve: As the clock strikes midnight on December 31st, cities like Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, and Da Nang come alive with vibrant celebrations. Expect fireworks, street parties, live music, and plenty of merrymaking as locals and tourists ring in the new year together.

3. Lunar New Year Preparations: While the Lunar New Year (Tet) typically falls in January or February, December marks the beginning of preparations for this important Vietnamese holiday. Markets bustle with shoppers buying gifts and festive Vietnamese foods, and streets are adorned with colorful decorations in anticipation of the upcoming festivities.

vietnam-lunar-new-year-atmosphere
Vietnam Lunar New Year atmosphere

4. Dalat Flower Festival: Officially unveiled in 2005, the Dalat Flower Festival is held every two years in December, coinciding with the alternation of Dalat's rainy and dry seasons. Each flower festival in Dalat has a new theme and a series of different activities, providing a fresh and fascinating experience for visitors!

5.Hoi An Lantern Festival: Hoi An Lantern Festival is a monthly event held on the night of the full moon. It starts around 8-9pm when the bars and restaurants begin to cut the electricity. People get together and release lanterns on the Thu Bon River, which flows through the center of the old city. If you have a chance to experience a full moon night when traveling in Vietnam in December, you must come and experience it!

6. Epizode Festival: Epizode Festival takes place on Phu Quoc Island, a tropical island in the south of Vietnam. It is the best and only electronic music festival in Vietnam. The festival runs for 12 days and showcases local and international electronic and dance music artists from all over the world, and at night, world-class djs and musicians entertain partygoers until the wee hours of the morning for a cool tropical night! You can buy tickets on the Epizode Festival's website and check out the information on the official Facebook page!

Epizode Festival on Phu Quoc Island
Epizode Festival on Phu Quoc Island

What to Wear in Vietnam in December? Packing List

With temperatures ranging from 18-32°C depending on region, light, breathable fabrics are suitable for December in Vietnam. Bring packs versatile enough for various climates and conditions:

● Pack shirts, shorts/skirts and sandals for the south. Also bring pants, shirts and closed shoes for the north.
● Include a lightweight waterproof jacket and umbrella as a precaution against scattered rainfall.
● Bring sunglasses, a hat, sunscreen and comfortable walking shoes for sightseeing.
● Consider packing semi-formal attire if visiting during Christmas or New Year's festivities.
● Don't forget swimwear if planning beach or water activities in central/southern areas.
● Besides the usual travel essentials, an adapter is handy as Vietnam uses a mix of plug types.

Is Vietnam Expensive or Cheap in December?

Vietnam offers good value for travelers during the vietnam weather in December. Accommodation costs slightly less than peak season. A basic guesthouse room is approx $10-25 and 3-star hotels from $25-50.

Street food remains extremely affordable at around $1-3 per meal. Major sights usually cost $1-6 entry and internal flights average $30-60 one way. Local transport and shopping for souvenirs are also cheap. December does not impact airline ticket prices outward to Vietnam. Overall travelers can enjoy comfortable touring on varied budgets thanks to sale prices and sales at this mild and dry time.

Vietnam street food
Vietnam street food remains extremely affordable in December

More Useful Tips for Traveling Vietnam in December

In addition to understanding Vietnam's weather patterns and cultural highlights, here are some invaluable tips for travelers exploring the country in December:

Tip 1: Book sights and transport early as dates fill swiftly due to pleasant Vietnam weather December
Tip 2: Pack a light jacket as northern areas like Hanoi are cooler than south
Tip 3: Visit central markets in the cool morning when the freshest produce arrives
Tip 4: Buy water from stores rather than drinking from taps due to differing standards
Tip 5: Bargain respectfully at shops, but have a fair idea of pricing first
Tip 6: Learn a few essential Vietnamese phrases to make ordering and conversations easier
Tip 7: Carry tissues or toilet paper, as not all restrooms provide it

Conclusion

Traveling to Vietnam in December is a wonderful experience as many parts of the country have good weather conditions at this time of year. Cooler temperatures and lower humidity in the northern and central regions make outdoor activities and sightseeing more enjoyable. Much of Vietnam is in the dry season, leaving tourists free to explore the coastal landscapes.

December's pleasant weather makes it a popular time to visit Vietnam, so to start your relaxing and enjoyable trip as soon as possible, feel free to contact us. We can arrange accommodation and transportation for you and provide professional travel consulting services so you can make the most of your time to experience Vietnam!

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