Thailand will always be a special place for us, as it’s where we first met, back in 2014. Asides from that, Thailand is home to such a diverse range of activities and sights, it’s no surprise it is also called the Land of Smiles. We’ve travelled throughout Thailand six times in the past three years, and each visit is unique and as different as the last. As a result, we’ve put together a list of our favourite things to see and do in Thailand, to help you plan your own visit in the future.
Grand Palace, Bangkok
A visit to Bangkok isn’t complete without visiting the famous Grand Palace. You simply cannot move onto another area in Thailand until you have taken the time to visit here. The palace at one time was the kings home, as well as where the government of Thailand carried out their work. A trip to the palace and its grounds can take many hours, depending on how much time you have. Make sure to visit the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaeo), even if you’re short on time.
Be aware of potential scams when outside the palace, including seemingly knowledgable guides telling you the palace is closed. Also, make sure to only pay the entrance fee when you are actually going in, not before hand to a dodgy looking sales guy.
Admission is 400 THB per person.
Full Moon Party, Koh Phangan
No trip to Thailand is complete without visiting the infamous Full Moon Party, besides this is where we met! For all you party lovers out there, trust us when we say this is the craziest, most awesome night you’ll ever have. Dance until the sun rises with 30,000 other travellers, sound good? We thought so! This monthly event is known throughout the world as one of the biggest and best all-night raves.
If you’re heading to Koh Phangan for Full Moon, to be aware that hostels and hotels get booked up very quickly, and it’s best to book in advance online.
Khao San Road, Bangkok
Backpackers from all over the world flood here, for their first real taste of Thailand. The kilometre long stretched street, offers a continuous overlap of bars, hostels, clubs, restaurants and massage parlours all crying out for backpackers to take advantage of their low prices. You’ll find beer for as low as 40THB and cocktails around 150THB during happy hour you can buy one get one free!
Chiang Mai Night Bazaar
Also known as the ‘Rose of the North’, Chiang Mai is a beautiful city encompassed by national parks, rainforests and abundant wildlife. Expats and locals alike are seduced by Chiang Mai’s laid back culture, beautiful Buddhist temples, plentiful restaurants, and spirited nightlife. Every evening, the city hosts its night bazaar, a great place to snag a bargain on souvenirs. There is a huge range of items for sale, including: clothing, street food, jewellery, souvenirs, shoes, you name it.
Its located along Chang Khlan Road, east of the old side of the walled city. The scene is pretty much the same every night, with locals and tourists turning up for some delicious street food and great bargains. If you can visit the ‘Sunday Night Market’ or ‘Walking Street’, its larger, busier and crazier. The night bazaar lasts from 4pm to midnight. Don’t forget to bring cash and don’t be afraid to drive a hard bargain!
Koh Phi Phi Island and Mayan Beach
Rising to fame after the The Beach staring Leonardo DiCaprio and James Bond, tourists have flooded to this island for their glamorous Hollywood shot. Koh Phi Phi itself, boasts white beaches, a relaxed atmosphere and stunning hikes overlooking the island. You’ll never want to leave this paradise island, and for good reason.
Khao Sok National Park
Khao Sok National Park is a stunning aura of native rainforest, waterfalls, limestone cliffs and immense wildlife just waiting to be explored. There are various activities to do round the National Park, including: jungle trekking, kayaking, bamboo rafting, bird watching and up close elephant encounters. Located in the Surat Thani Province, it’s close to the islands of Koh Samui, Koh Tao and Koh Phangan.
Scuba Diving, Koh Tao
Home to some of the best dive locations in the world, Koh Tao, is a mecca for beginner divers through to masters flock here for some of the most abundant ecological life in the world. It is also one of the most affordable places in the world to get qualified, making it a haven for backpackers and travellers. You’ll be swimming with all kinds of exotic underwater creatures, including green turtles, rays and thousands of species of fish.
Have a Thai Massage
Thai massage is known globally as an alternative therapy as well as a way of relaxation. Getting a Thai massage is a must do in Thailand, as this is the place where you will find real skilful masseur/masseuse with proper knowledge of Thai healing. Moreover, there are more for you to choose from, which means you will get good service with a great deal. Throughout Thailand, you can get massages for as cheap as US$8-15 for an hour! You’d pay over US$50 for one in America, UK or Australia!
Eat Street Food
If you find Thai food delicious, wait until you try it actually in Thailand. What’s better than trying it on the street?! There is a bit of difference between Thai food from the restaurants and those from stalls on the street. Of course, the first difference is the setting which will give you a different feeling. Street food is more upbeat, energetic and changeable. At street food stands, you can enjoy various kinds of food without really have to put your finger on just one dish, as you can enjoy everything – from the flavourful Satay Pork to a delectable Pad Thai and refresh your throat with fresh smoothie.
If you’re worried about food poisoning, we suggest having a veggie option or visiting a stall which is busy and other ‘Westerners’ are at.
Cocktails on a Skybar, Bangkok
Escape one evening from Bangkok’s crazy nightlife, and head up to one of the cities many famous skybars. Prices vary immensely depending on which one you visit. For example the Lebua Tower Skybar (famous for the Hangover II) will cost you nearly US$20 for one cocktail. However, we suggest visiting the Anantara Sathorn Zoom Skybar for an epic yet money saving experience. During happy hour it’s buy one get one free, and even during peak times cocktails aren’t too expensive. Read our full review here.
The old Thai capital of Ayutthaya, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the most impressive and cultured ruined cities in Asia, and a must-see for history buffs visiting Thailand. The city is filled with old ruins and temples, wandering through Ayutthaya will feel like you’ve step back in time. The best way to see the city is by hiring a bike, and cycling to the many ruins around the city, all within easy reach of one another. It’s a great over night trip to escape the bustling city of Bangkok.
Have we missed out any great things to see and do in Thailand? Or you have a question? Do not hesitate to comment below!
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