Rainy Season Arrives: Storms to Pound Thailand Through Tuesday

Rainy Season on Soi Cowboy
Soi Cowboy around 7 p.m. on 20 July. (Photo: Digital a-Go-Go)

Rainy season has truly arrived with heavy rain forecast to continue in most parts of Thailand until Tuesday thanks to a monsoon trough covering most of the country.

Those looking to get a jump on the weekend had their spirits dampened starting Thursday night when the heavens opened around 4 p.m. with it pouring down for an hour before tapering off to a steady drizzle that lasted until 10 p.m.

That left bars like Suzie Wong devoid of both customers and girls even an hour after the 7 p.m. opening.

Friday, those who went out early got stuck where they were after heavy rain began around 10:30 p.m. It didn’t stop until after 1 a.m., with thunder and lightning banging throughout.

Start of Rainy Season

Buddhist Lent – which begins Aug. 2 – marks the traditional starts of the rainy season. While many maintain rainy season starts after Songkran, the storms don’t start coming fast and furious until July.

In Thai tradition, the start of Buddhist Lent, or Khao Phansa, begins a three-month’s “rains retreat” for monks where, back in the day, they would return to the temple and remain inside there so as not to trample the rice crops while seeking alms. It’s why the traditional merit-making gift on Visakha Bucha and Buddhist Lent are candles and lanterns, as the wats in the old days did not have power.

Back to modern days, the Thai Meteorological Department warned Friday that flash floods and overflowing rivers and streams are an acute danger, especially in low-lying areas, until mid-week.

The monsoon trough – which spans the North, Northeast, Upper Central and East regions – will continue delivering downpours to Issan, Pattaya and the South’s western coast.

The downpours will end when the monsoon trough shifts to Myanmar, northern Laos and northern Vietnam on Wednesday and Thursday, the department forecast.

The department also said that tropical storm “Doksuri” will intensify as it moves from the northern Philippines and the upper South China Sea to the coast of southern China from Tuesday to Thursday, but it will have no direct effect on Thailand.