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best time to visit Asia

Old Nov 28th, 2006, 10:04 AM
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best time to visit Asia

what time of year is best (or worst) to visit Asia? What are spring/summer months here like there? (April, May, June).
Thinking Hong Kong, China, Vietnam, Indonesia right now (very early stages of planning).
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Old Nov 28th, 2006, 10:51 AM
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Asia is a very large continent, so there is no ideal time to visit all of Asia or evan all of the locations you've named. China itself is huge and has a varied climate.

Are you thinking of going to all of those places in one trip?
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Old Nov 28th, 2006, 11:03 AM
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no, most likely it'd be indonesia, thailand or malaysia, with hong kong/china having to be a separate trip. I just recall someone saying summer months were monsoon season..
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Old Nov 28th, 2006, 11:12 AM
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Dividing this into two trips makes a lot of sense. Note that there is no time of the year when it is monsoon season everywhere. In fact, Indonesia, Thailland and Malaysia have different monsoon seasons from each other.

Here is the website on weather that I like best: www.weatherbase.com

Check each specific destination you are interested in.
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Old Dec 5th, 2006, 09:31 AM
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Thanks, that's a very helpful site.
Truth be told, I'm looking into potential honeymoon destinations and my wedding might be in May or Sept and I'm wondering if Asia is a possibility for either of these months. I'd love to do Bali and then maybe pop over to Thailand or China for the sightseeing/cultural leg of our trip. HOWever, I'm seeing alot of rain for Thailand/China (less for Indonesia) from May through Oct. Is this the case..is it risky exploring these destinations for a special trip, and are we talking monsoon weather? Any suggestions of great Asia honeymoon destinations?
Thanks!
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Old Dec 5th, 2006, 10:30 AM
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Take a look at BellaBluebell's many informative posts. She was married in Thailand and clearly had a wonderful time. You can use the search engine at the top of this forum. I may have misspelled her screen name, but try variations. It's worth it.
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Old Dec 5th, 2006, 11:24 AM
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It's actually Bella Bluebell. One needs the space in the search engine.
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Old Dec 5th, 2006, 06:30 PM
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In SE Asia as there are two monsoon patterns moving into and out of the area at varying times. Right now in Vietnam they have had so much rain they are evacuating people, yet Phuket is just coming into the best and driest season, and here in Hong Kong today it is sunny and a lovely 70 degrees. Conversely if you come in July, you wouldn’t want to go to Phuket as it is too rainy, but the east coast like Koh Samui would be beautiful. Hong Kong would be hot hot hot and humid and you more than likely would have rain. So you have to choose your destinations to suit the time of year and can’t always mix two destinations.

Bali is dry in both May and September, although Sept is actually even drier. Unfortunately Bali and Thailand are at the different ends of the monsoon patterns. However, if by “Thailand” you mean Bangkok, I think is certainly doable, because IMO Bangkok is not weather-dependent (i.e. you aren’t going for beaches or to lie by a pool) so the occasional downpour is not an issue (and can even be fun). I would not go to Phuket in May or September it tends to be very rainy there then.

Take a look at weatherbase.com for historical average rainfall in areas you are considering.

You also need to consider how long you have. “Asia” is huge and if you have only 2 weeks, to try to see Bali and Thailand and “China” (huge in itself) is not possible, IMO. Also, you may want to remember that the PRC is having the Olympics in 2008 and there is a good bit of construction going on in Beijing and other places in preparation for this. Places like the Forbidden City are under scaffolding and are being refurbished as well, so IMO 2007 is not the best time to visit. I would wait until 2008 and either attend the Olympics or go afterwards.

Finally, you do NOT want to go to the PRC the first week in May or October. Theses are major national holidays when the entire country has the week off and basically everyone is traveling. Public transport is crowded and hotels could be booked and/or much more expensive. Places like the Forbidden City can be very very crowded.

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Old Dec 6th, 2006, 05:56 AM
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www.wunderground.com is the weather site I use. You can look at specific dates going back several years. Any destination in the world. Take a look at it.
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Old Dec 6th, 2006, 06:59 AM
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thanks cicerone. Is Bali a nice honeymoon destination? It looks like it is pretty dry in Sept (which is looking like when our honeymoon might be). What is another good destination to couple with a week in Bali? We've been to Thailand, wouldn't mind returning to Bangkok since we loved it, but are there any other destinations might complement Indonesia? thanks..
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Old Dec 6th, 2006, 06:07 PM
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Bali is one of my top favorite 3-4 places in the world to visit. It is culturally rich and physically beautiful. The people are very friendly and the food is good, and now a days you can find restaurants severing everything from great French food to great Gado-Gado. It is not, however, a beach destination, so if you are looking for pure white sand beaches and turquoise waters on this honeymoon, you may want to go elsewhere (like the Maldives). It has some pretty beaches to be sure, but not spectacular ones. It has some black sand beaches along the north east coast and some good scuba diving and some snorkeling (but better diving than snorkeling IMO). It has some gorgeous lush green interiors with rich paddy terraces and misty mountains. It has music, dance, shadow puppetry, painting, sculpture and other arts. It has some very good shopping, for art as well as handicrafts. While parts are heavily touristed, it is still easy to get away from those areas. I find it mystical and magical. I like Thailand a lot, but do not find Thailand mystical in the same way; IMO it’s the form of Hinduism as practiced in Bali that makes the difference.

Personally, with only a week and I am assuming a somewhat long flight from your home which I think from your others posts is the east coast of the US, I would spend the whole week in Bali. (I can’t tell if you are also planning on Bangkok for another week as well or just a week overall, but as you may know that’s a long flight for only a week....) You could spend 3 nights in a beach area and 3 nights in an inland area around Ubud. However, a logical combination for Bali is a trip to Java to the city of Yogyajarkata to see that ancient city as well as Borbadour and Prambanan and the lush volcanic countryside. Run a search here and get a guidebook for ideas on that area. 1-2 nights is good in the Yogya area. You could instead include a trip over the Lombok, which is a drier island east of Bali which is Muslim and less developed and has a different flora and fauna because it is much drier. You can see Lombok as a longish day boat trip from Bali, I believe the trip is about 2-3 hours each way, so it is a long day but can be done.

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Old Dec 6th, 2006, 06:23 PM
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Sorry, I now have read your post correctly. You are planning on a week in Bali. I would still stick with my recco of adding Yogya, 1-2 nights. You could also plan to maybe overnight in Lombok (if you want to splurge, look at the Aman there, go to amanresorts.com). Other logical choices are going to Singapore as there is good air service to/from Bali or to Hong Kong (weather starts to improve late in September but its still going to be hot and humid and probably rainy but still there is lots to do).

If you have more time and like boat trips (or diving trips), you could consider a boat trip through the islands east of Bali. I have not done this, but have always been interested in it. I don’t know much about it, but know that they are operators out there, both sailboats and powerboats.

I would not make any visit to Jakarta itself, you may end up transiting through the airport but otherwise it is a huge city with very little for the tourist. Marmot may disagree, but that is my view.

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Old Dec 7th, 2006, 03:24 PM
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"I would not make any visit to Jakarta itself, you may end up transiting through the airport but otherwise it is a huge city with very little for the tourist. Marmot may disagree, but that is my view."

On the contrary, Marmot would agree wholeheartedly! Avoid Jakarta. It's a nice place to live but I wouldn't want to visit.

jubilefd, I think you've received some very good advice on Bali, Lombok and Yogyakarta. I could easily fill up two weeks among these three places, but if you'd like to add another country I'd suggest that you go for something urban like Singapore, Bangkok, Hong Kong or Tokyo.

April, May, June tend to be dryish (although it still rains). It is always HOT.

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Old Dec 8th, 2006, 06:41 AM
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thanks marmot! how about the weather in september? (for Indonesia and those urban locations of Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok).
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Old Dec 8th, 2006, 06:51 AM
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Again, you are asking about places that are quite distant from each other and so have different weather patterns from each other. Take a look at the website I recommended earlier, www.weatherbase.com
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