Expats will find the weather in Vietnam is generally humid and moderately hot. That said, patterns are subject to large regional variation, with the northern area being significantly cooler than the central and southern areas.
Average temperatures range between 72°F (22°C) and 81°F (27°C), and humidity is usually upward of 80 percent.
Similar to other countries in Southeast Asia, the defining characteristic of weather in Vietnam is the monsoon, a transitional wind that can bring heavy precipitation. The southeasterly monsoon brings a long, rainy season between May and October, depending on the location; otherwise, rainfall is rare and light when it does occur. Expats will find the humidity especially oppressive during this period.
The high elevation in the north and the cool air that circulates downward from central China make for frosty winters in this mountainous area, but otherwise, Vietnam remains warm and expats won't need to worry about winter woollies even during the dry season brought by the northeast monsoon.
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