Best time to visit Suriname
Pack for humidity and rain, even in the ‘dry’ months – Suriname’s capital Paramaribo gets 240cm of rainfall on average a year.
Suriname is tropical with roughly four seasons in the north. There are short rains from early December to early February, then a short dry season into March and April. The major rainy season starts in late April until mid August, with May and June the wettest months. The long dry season runs from mid August to late November or early December. September and October are the warmest months but also the driest; if you can stand the heat, now is the best time to come. Expect daytime temperatures in Paramaribo to hit 32°C. January is coldest (minimum 22°C), but it’s hot and humid all year.
Suriname Weather Chart
Our Suriname Vacations
Things to do in Suriname
Things to do in Suriname…
Things not to do in Suriname...
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Suriname travel advice
Chris Parrot, director of specialist supplier Journey Latin America has this advice on traveling in Suriname:
“Paramaribo is the only city; others (Nieuw Nickerie, Moengo, Albina) are smallish towns. Other than that most settlements have only a couple of thousand inhabitants. Paramaribo has a defined center, and many of the dilapidated and crumbling colonial mansions I saw in 1975 have been - or are being - renovated to former splendour. The only area which has a ‘reputation’ is the large market on the waterfront. Tourists stand out and locals really don’t like discourteous photography. Best to visit in groups of three or four, rather than alone (unless you’re confidently chatty and gregarious), or en-bloc. Avoid money changing on the street or in dodgy mini-shopfronts along Waterkant.”
Food and drink tips
"There are lots of influences: Dutch, Indonesian/Javanese, Arab, Jewish, Creole, Brazilian – past clients have tried most, and enjoyed them. More conservative tastes like the very popular Zus & Zo restaurant - it feels European, like being in Amsterdam. Ubiquitous is ice-cold Parbo beer (the big bottles are called djogo).”
Benefits of joining an organised tour here
“There are flights from Amsterdam, and reasonably reliable but ramshackle public buses all along the coastal strip, but our escorted tour leader (a native Dutch speaker) organises this all for you. Very few British people visit Suriname on its own, they tend to combine it with the neighbouring Guianas, and this takes a lot of preparation, coordination and determination."
Advice on what to expect
“The Dutch influence is very strong, both the language and culture, but the Asian/Indonesian influence is, too. Most people speak English, except for small convenience stores and specialist restaurants. All are friendly though. When I was last there, few ATMs accepted VISA cards (mostly Mastercard) but our tour leader will help. The currency is SRD, the Suriname dollar, but the euro is often accepted. Almost all settlement is along the coastal strip, and coastal road. Mostly well-paved, the road stretches west to east from Moleson Creek car ferry (Guyana) near Nieuw Nickerie to Albina car ferry (French Guiana). Inland is impenetrable rainforest, bauxite mining, and a few tourist facilities, but we don’t stay long enough to go to these.”
More about Suriname
Suriname may be South America’s smallest country, almost completely covered by rainforest, but it punches above its weight when it comes to culture, cuisine and exciting city life. Its capital Paramaribo is vibrant and vivacious, and its jungle is waiting to be explored. Our Suriname travel guide explains more, with a handy map pinpointing key highlights.