Wondering if anyone has had experience with Beaches in the S E Asia region in October? We're doing a trip around Thailand, Cambodia and Malaysia but want to sneak a beach trip in, reading all kinds of conflicting advice.
For example, SEA on a shoestring (Lonely Planet) reckons Perhentians are fine in October, but lots of accommodation websites (who should be better informed?) state they're mostly closed for monsoon season. Other places we've looked at include Sihanoukville, Ko Phi Phi, Koh Samui, Phuket, Langkawi and Tioman... however, the more we read, the more conflicting advise seems to be about!
Would be grateful for any advice about this, where is likely to provide the best beach experience (mostly lazing with a hint of learner diving / experience) in October? Is the weather genuinely so unpredictable for the whole region? Where would you go?
As an aside, has anyone stayed in the Financial district of Bangkok? Good experiences or a bit ropey?
#1 Spuck has been a member since 20/4/2012. Posts: 1
I can speak only for Thailand.
October is the transitional month between seasons. Samui, for one, should be going fairly strong then, and someplace like Phuket has resorts open year round. I visited a bunch of the Andaman (west) coast islands last year from mid to late October, and most were at least visitable. Some of the more out of the way ones like Ko Bulon Lae and Ko Sukorn were still closed almost completely, but Ko Lipe, Ko Muk, Ko Ngai, and Ko Kradan were all mostly open. It's a good time to go too - the brunt of the rainy season has past but you get still get the low season prices. The national park islands like Ko Adang, Ko Tarutao, Ko Similan and Ko Surin don't open until Nov. 1 or Nov. 15. Island hopping speedboats generally don't start running until Nov. 1 but you can still get to most islands in October.
Two most unpredictable months of the year: May and October. This is because (as stated above) it is the transitional swing between SW and NE monsoonal seasons. The lower Gulf of Thailand and east coast of the Malay peninsula are generally best May-Sept and the rest of the region is drier Nov-April. Did you notice I left out Oct? I've spent plenty of time in southern Thailand on both coasts during October previous years and it can be a real coin toss whether you get sun all day and just a late-day thundershower vs. longer rainy spells. I'd say the Perhentians would be a good bet or maybe Tioman further down the coast. I've also been on Phi Phi and Ko Lanta, Railay etc. in Oct and lucked out with the sun then some run-for-cover flash showers at the end of the day. Hopefully the weather gods will be smiling upon you.