The best time to travel to El Salvador. Wet or dry season?

By Eddie.  |  Jan 15th, 2020
Best time to travel to El Salvador
Best time to travel to El Salvador. Photo by Roy Rivers, CC BY 3.0,

The best time to travel to El Salvador is from November to April, which is the dry season or summer; it’s perfect for outdoor activities such as hiking, sightseeing, or going to the beach. Nevertheless, the wet season, from May to October, is also ideal for a visit; it’s great for surfing, visiting museums, and some outdoor activities as well.

The reason for traveling and what each person wants to do during their visit will narrow down the best time to visit El Salvador. All I can tell you is that the most popular time to visit is summertime or the dry season; you will not have to worry about rain, and there are more outdoor activities available for you to enjoy.

About the best time to travel to El Salvador.

Before I get into the best time to travel to El Salvador; let me tell you a little bit about this hidden gem in Central America. Despite its fantastic qualities; El Salvador hasn’t managed to reach the tourist spotlight yet, but is getting there.

This country is an off-the-grid destination that will definitely surprise you. El Salvador has it all; beautiful national parks, stunning volcanoes, lakes, beaches that are ideal for surfing or relaxing, and so much more to choose from.

Obviously, before you venture into the country, you need to know what is the best time to travel. Well, the answer depends on what you want to do during your trip.

If you want to spend time surfing, then the wet season is better. However, if spending time outdoors is what you are looking for, then the dry season is more suitable.

The best and basically most adequate way to decide when to visit is by looking at the two seasons; wet and dry season or winter and summer.

The Dry Season or Summer is the best time to travel to El Salvador.

The dry season or summer is by far the best time to travel to El Salvador, the climate is pleasant, and there is always something to do for all types of visitors.

Eco-tourism activities for the dry season.

To begin with, for those who love the outdoors, the weather is perfect for many different activities. You can explore archeological sites like Joya de Ceren or Tazumal; visit colonial towns like Suchitoto or Nahuizalco; hike one of the many volcanos like Santa Ana volcano or Izalco volcano, or appreciate flora and fauna at the Cerro Verde Park or Montecristo National Park.

Undoubtedly, El Salvador has plenty of destinations for anyone who loves eco-tourism adventures.

Visiting the tropical beaches during the dry season.

Additionally, visiting tropical beaches is a top thing to do during the summer months or dry season.

You can go into the eastern part of the country and visit the less touristy beaches like El Cuco, El Espino, or Las Tunas; they are farther away from the capital but are definitely worth the effort to visit them.

Nonetheless, there are plenty of beautiful beaches near San Salvador or the international airport for you to visit; La Costa del Sol, El Majahual, or La Libertad are just some of them. Here is a list of the best beaches in El Salvador!

What about surfing? Well, surfing is best during the wet season, however, at the top surf spots in El Salvador, you will find waves to surf during the dry season or summer months as well.

As you can see, there is plenty of activities available during the dry season or summer. The ones listed here, such as eco-tourism or going to the beach, are not the only ones, there are plenty of other activities to do.

Visiting El Salvador during the wet season or winter.

The wet season or winter months in El Salvador run between May and October; during the wet season, it rains a lot.

The good news is that this is a tropical country, so the weather is always pleasant, even when it rains.

Eco-tourism activities for the wet season.

During the wet season, eco-tourism activities such as hiking volcanoes, exploring archeological sites, or visiting national parks can still be done.

However, keep in mind that hiking or exploring during wet conditions tends to be more difficult. Furthermore, some parks will close if the conditions can put visitors in danger.

Visiting the tropical beaches during the wet season.

For those of you who like to surf, this is the best time to travel to El Salvador, the waves are better during these months.

By all means, beaches like El Tunco, Las Flores, El Sunzal, or Punta Roca get really busy with foreigners and locals looking to catch the best Salvadoran waves. Here is a list of the best surf spots in El Salvador.

What about those who don’t like surfing? Well, the great thing about El Salvador is that even during the winter months, you can still visit and enjoy the tropical beaches, even when it rains.

During the wet season, the rains are usually limited to the afternoon and night. I am in no way saying that it will not rain during the morning, but most of the time it will rain in the afternoon or night.

To sum up, during the wet season, you will not be able to do all the things that you might be able to do during the dry season. Nonetheless, there are still plenty of things to do.

Avoid this times when travelling to El Salvador.

El Salvador, just like any other country, has specific times during the year that visitors should avoid; unless they have a specific reason for visiting during those dates.

Here are some dates to keep in mind when deciding the best time to travel to El Salvador.

The Month of April.

I can’t explain why and will definitely not try to make an explanation, but April is the hottest month of the year in El Salvador.

During this month, which marks the end of summer, the humidity and temperature increase. Ask any Salvadoran which is the hottest month in El Salvador, I am sure 99.9% of them will say April.

So, unless you are used to high temperatures and humidity, you might want to avoid this month.

The Month of August.

Despite being in the midst of the wet season, August is a busy month in El Salvador. The schools are on holidays and San Salvador, the nation’s capital celebrates its August Festivities.

The festivities in San Salvador are fantastic, and if you happen to be in the country during August, you should experience it.

But it seems that most Salvadorans living outside the country use this month to get back to El Salvador. Therefore, during August, airline tickets are more expensive, and a lot of the touristy spots will be filled with more people than usual.

Best time to travel to El Salvador

Eastern Weekend.

Holy week or eastern weekend is one of the major holidays in the country. Public employees and students have the entire week off; whereas, most private employees will be off from Thursday to Sunday.

As a tourist, whether you are into religion or not, eastern festivities are a sight that should be experienced. Visiting towns like Suchitoto, Juayua or Santa Ana during this week will give you a better understanding of Salvadoran culture.

During this week, mainly the weekend, I recommend avoiding major touristic locations, especially the beaches. It seems like the entire country goes to the beach, and some people behave crazy.

You might think that I am exaggerating, but a lot of people die during this weekend; most of them are due to alcohol intoxication, auto accidents, and drownings.

I recommend avoiding these dates for the reasons mentioned above. However, those dates are also unique in their own way and are worth experiencing.

Conclusion – The Best Time to travel to El Salvador

El Salvador, the smallest country in El Salvador, can be visited at any point during the year. The things I mentioned in this article are more of a guideline for you to use when deciding to travel to El Salvador.

Remember, El Salvador tourism can be experienced at any time. You might prefer the wet season instead of the dry season or the other way around; that part is entirely up to you.

Either way, travel to El Salvador, you will always find plenty of things to do!