Beat the Heat in Southeast Asia

Railay Day Trip Thailand(when you’re not lucky enough to be on the islands and a cool off means jumping in the sea.. you’ll need these tips)

Its hot in Bangkok. Almost always. It might seem like there’s no way to beat the heat in Southeast Asia, but especially in one of the world’s hottest capital cities.

As my friend from Norway once so aptly described Thailand, “Sometimes its hot. Sometimes its hotter”

Whether you’re in Bangkok, or the islands, or Cambodia or Indonesia or anywhere around here thats SO FREAKING HOT, don’t let it spoil your trip. Or even your day.

Beat the Heat in Southeast Asia:

7 Ways to Survive Thailand’s Hot Climate

1. Find a hotel with a pool

Agoda has a great option for narrowing down search results to include only those with a pool, and don’t worry about breaking your budget, as hostels with pools are under $10 per night.

If you can’t find a hotel with a pool, or you’re going extreme budget, you can always inquire at hotels about using the pool for a day rate or if you buy a drink… or if you’re some kind of rule breaker, sneak in and look like you know what you’re doing.

(Some of my pool favorites in major Southeast Asian Cities: Bangkok – City at Fifty for only 250B, Siem Reap – Jasmine at only $8, and Phnom Penh – 88Backpackers for only $5)

Bangkok Apartment Silom

2. Think like a vampire

Get up early, or stay out late. Hit the attractions you want to see as early as they open, and time your lunch or a snooze or a trip to a mall or cinema (AC!) for midday.  Avoid the midday sun as much as you can (great time to utilize the afforementioned pool).

3. Choose your clothes wisely

Wear breathable, light colored, lightweight clothes, or sweat wicking gym wear. If you’ve got long hair, keep it back and up off your neck. Polyester is a heat-trapping nightmare, and silk will show your sweat.

Bangkok Thailand Temple Selfie (2)

Dressed for the heat but still covered up for the temple

4. Use any freezer you can find

If your hostel has a freezer, use it! Keep a frozen water bottle ready to go at all times. While walking, hold onto it. It’ll cool you off, and melt into drinkable liquid faster than you’d ever thought possible back home in the frigid north (also important to stay hydrated!)

5. Plan to sweat. A LOT

Carry a handkerchief to dab at your sweat soaked face.. arms, legs, wherever. There’s nothing worse than that sticky feeling after dried sweat… or the embarassment of your damp arm brushing up against people in a packed BTS train. Bring a pack of wet wipes with you to wipe down after a particularly sweaty walk or packed bus ride.

Island Thailand Ferry Koh Phi Phi Railay

sweaty AF but taking my mind off it with a book

6. Utilize that AC

Eat in air conditioned food courts instead of on the street during the midday – Tesco Lotus, Big C, and even MBK have awesome food courts with plenty of main dishes ranging from 30-60THB

7. Do as the Thais do

Walk slowly, take your time, and stay on the shaded side of the sidewalk. Chill out!

Pin it! Beat the Heat in Southeast Asia: 7 Ways to Survive Thailand’s Hot Climate

Beat the Heat in Southeast Asia

Do you have any tips for beating the heat?


A short vacation in Thailand turned into a life abroad with a canceled ticket home. Nearly a decade later and after living in Bangkok, Rio de Janeiro, Puebla, and Puerto Vallarta, Steph is on to her next adventure and living back in beautiful, cosmopolitan Mexico City. She is living, traveling, and working (both as an expat therapist and an international health insurance representative) around the world to find the beautiful, inspirational, and interesting while sharing it with you!

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