High Season is (almost) here
Defining the start of "high season" is a bit tricky. Officially, it's November 1st.. or 15th, depends who you ask. Really it depends on the weather, but it's related to the wind, not the rain. Some people seem to expect that there will be no rain in high season, so when they visit Phuket in "high season", get somewhat shocked by a wet day. And it can happen often - November is on average the wettest of the 6 high season months - see Phuket Monthly Rain Averages. No, it's all about the wind. The prevailing wind in "low season" is from the southwest, and in high season from the northeast. These winds bring very different weather. The northeast wind is drier and cooler so on average there is less rain. It's still hot, but can be a degree or 2 cooler that the hotter times of year and night temperatures can be as low as 23 degrees C - which sounds warm, but if you live here, it feels nice and cool.
I keep forgetting to update the weather blog, it's been 9 days since the last update due to the fact that I am working, tired and it's the Phuket Vegetarian Festival now, which started on the 14th. I have been out several times in the early morning to take photos, some of which are online on Flickr already - see 2012 Phuket Vegetarian Festival Photos. The weather has continued to be very nice, with hardly any rain, just a few showers, a couple of little thunderstorms, but we've been having light winds and hot (if a bit cloudy) days .. the wind is blowing from different directions all the time, so the steady NE wind might be here soon. With hardly any wind, the heat builds until a bit of thunder arrives, there's a lot of that when the seasons are changing.
I missed the opening ceremonies for the vegetarian festival this year but have been doing plenty since and have been into Phuket Town most evenings with the family to eat. There's a little restaurant near the market which does vegetarian food during the festival. It's next to the traffic circle with a fountain in the middle - this one:
(above) Phuket Town at night, 16th October
I'll write about the 2012 vegetarian festival in more detail on the Phuket Blog in a few days. I've not really had my blogging hat on at all since we got back from our holidays 2 weeks ago, but the kids go back to school this week, so I think we'll get back in a routine. Weather for the festival has been great - sunny mornings for street processions, although .. that might be nice for watching, but if you are walking 10km with a sword in your face, you might want some cloud cover and not baking hot tropical sun! Also, too much sun is not the best for photos, the light can be very strong. On the 17th (last Wednesday) I went to Sapam shrine in the morning, and then for an evening procession of the gods in Kathu in the evening.
And on Thursday 18th I was at Sam Kong shrine .. another hot morning but quite cloudy - better for portrait photos without harsh shadows.
Yesterday on the 20th I was in Phuket Town in the morning for a big procession. Weather - perfect. Here's the dragon statue ...
And here's some lads carrying a statue from the shrine through the streets. They have stopped to allow people to throw firecrackers. BOOM!
And we're not done yet - tomorrow there's a big procession starting at Kathu shrine, I plan to be there before 6am. The final big day is on Tuesday before they have closing ceremonies on Wednesday. No sign of any bad weather on the way this week. Nah, it'll probably rain in November instead of October this year just to annoy some tourists! To be honest, much of the time, low season is OK. You can be unlucky or you can be lucky with the weather. Want no rain? The Atacama desert is lovely :)
High Season is (almost) here | The Phuket Weather Blog
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