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Nepal has a diverse weather and climatic variation comprising mainly four seasons namely autumn (or fall), winter, spring, and summer (also monsoon). The seasons in Nepal are pretty much the same as that of Europe while quite contrasting to that of Australia. It is cold in December-January while in June-July you could do with just shorts and T-shirts. Generally, the climate of Nepal is moderate which means the winters are dry and summers are hot. Overall, the best tourist season in Nepal with summer passing and before the onset of winter is autumn or fall.
Autumn/Fall season (September – November)
The autumn season falls between September and November, bringing highly pleasant weather and breathtaking mountain views.
Spring (March – May)
Spring, which falls between the months of March and May, is also considered a favorable season. During this time, the temperatures are mildly warm in the lowlands and moderate in higher altitudes, offering plenty of opportunities to witness breathtaking mountain views.
Winter (December – February)
Winter falls between the months of December and February and is known for its relatively cold weather. During this period, Nepal experiences a lower influx of tourists compared to other seasons.
Summer (June – August)
Summer, also known as the monsoon season, spans from June to August, characterized by hot and humid weather during the daytime and occasional rain showers, sometimes lasting throughout the day. The monsoon season typically extends from the end of May until the end of August or early September. Approximately 80% of the country’s rainfall occurs during this period, while the remainder of the year remains dry.
Autumn and spring are considered the best seasons for trekking and climbing in Nepal. These seasons offer pleasant weather and clear skies, making them ideal for outdoor activities. Winter, as well as autumn and spring months, are also great times for leisure tours, wildlife safaris, culture tours, and foothill trekking below 3,000m/9,850ft. However, it’s important to note that winters can be quite harsh in some areas.
Summer or monsoon months can also be a good time to visit Nepal for certain activities. City tours, volunteering work, and culture tours can be enjoyed during these months. Some areas of Nepal fall under the ‘rain-shadow’ regions where the monsoon is much lighter, making summer a good time to travel to these areas.
Overall, the best season to visit Nepal will depend on your interests and the activities you want to do. It’s important to plan your trip accordingly to make the most of your time in this beautiful country.
Like any other adventure trips or cultural holidays, the best time for leisure tours in Nepal is undoubtedly during the spring season (March to May) and the autumn or fall season (September to November). During these seasons, the weather is pleasant, with ample sunlight and warmth. The sky is clear, allowing travelers to fully appreciate the remarkable Nepalese landscape, adorned with panoramic Himalayan backdrops.
While winter, from December to February, can be very cold in certain regions, it is still a favorable time for a leisure vacation. Starting from May, the heat and humidity levels rise until the arrival of the monsoon season, making it less ideal for travel. The Terai regions in Nepal are generally hot and humid during the summer months, so planning a leisure tour in these regions during this time may not be as enjoyable as in other months.
Nepal can be feasible to visit in all four seasons, but it depends on the purpose and destination you choose. However, for most people, the best time for adventure travel in Nepal is spring (March to May) and autumn or fall (September to November). These seasons have pleasant weather with efficient sunlight and warmth, making it a perfect time for hiking and trekking. In addition to that, the sky is clear, allowing you to enjoy the remarkable Nepalese landscape complete with the panoramic Himalayan vista.
The monsoon season (June to August) can be a blessing for keen botanists despite slippery trails and issues of less visibility and constant rain, as the higher valleys, mountains, and meadows blossom with flowers and abundant vegetation. Trekking can also be done in winter (December to February), especially in the hilly regions. However, high-altitude trekking in winter is very risky and challenging due to extreme temperatures and heavy snowfall. If you don’t enjoy crowds, trekking during the monsoon or winter or choosing more solitary trekking destinations could be options for you. Other adventure trips in Nepal, such as white water rafting, canyoning, or bungee jumping, can be done throughout the year, although the monsoon season may not be a good choice for most people.
Summer, monsoon, and late spring temperatures range from 28ºC (83ºF) in the hills to over 40ºC (104ºF) in the southern plains. In winter, average maximum and minimum temperatures in the plains range from a brisk 7ºC (45ºF) to a mild 23ºC (74ºF). The central valley regions experience minimum temperatures that rarely fall below freezing point and a chilly maximum of 12ºC (54ºF) during the winter.
The Kathmandu Valley has a mild climate throughout most of the year. Summer temperatures range from 19-27°C (67-81°F), and in winter, temperatures range between 2-20°C (36-68°F). During the monsoon season in August, the average rainfall in Kathmandu is between 200-375mm (7.8-14.7 inches). May and June can be very hot and humid until the onset of the monsoon rains. In spring (March to April) and autumn (October to November), the temperatures are pleasant with occasional short bursts of rain. From November to February, it is dry but can be very cold, especially at night.
When packing for Nepal, you need to consider the different regions and activities you’ll be engaging in. If you are planning to explore the mountains and the Himalayas, you’ll need layers of clothing, a waterproof jacket, a fleece, a hat, gloves, socks, and boots. Additionally, you’ll need a backpack, a sleeping bag, trekking poles, a headlamp, a water bottle, and a camera. For exploring the cities or relaxing in the countryside, you can pack lighter and more casual clothes. To assist you in preparing for your trip, we have compiled a comprehensive packing list for Nepal travel that covers everything from clothing and gear to documents and medications.