From glistening golden Wat temples, rural rice paddy fields and dense tropical rainforests, to bustling city streets amongst a horizon of sky scrappers. Thailand’s vivid culture, landscape and its beautiful people hold a place in the hearts of many wanderlusters.
If you’ve been struck by that deep uncontrollable desire to wander the world, here are the top places in Thailand you must see.
Once the capital of the Kingdom of Siam, just north of Bangkok lies an ancient city fit for the budding archaeologist and photographer. If you’re in search for visually rich grand palaces, temples and ruins, you must visit this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Viator offers some affordable day tours from Bangkok.
2. Grand Palace
You cannot miss this golden gem if you’re spending some time in Bangkok. Built in 1782, the intricate architectural structures are a true representation of Thai history. Put aside half a day for this site, which can easily be accessed by cab or TukTuk. There’s an entrance fee of 500 baht (well worth it). Be sure to check your daily attire is respectable and suits the dress code, otherwise you’ll be turned away.
3. Chatuchak Weekend Market
Here’s one for the shoppaholics! A spiralling maze of 8,000 stores will keep you on your feet for a day. From clothing to perfume, bags to antiques, you are certain to pick up a good bargain here!
Be sure to grab a map and visually pin point your location to avoid getting lost. The best way to get here is via the skytrain, hop off at Mo Chit Station and follow the crowds:
4. Phi Phi Islands
Off the coast of Phuket, the Phi Phi islands take you to a new world. Aqua clear waters, monkey roaming islands and white coral beaches leave you in a state of tranquillity. The best way to visit these islands is to organise an island hopping day tour. You can book online, but from personal experience it’s better to book with a company when you get there. Most hotels have affiliating day tour companies in the lobby.
5. Koh Samui
This island is the gateway for many backpackers to the famous wild Koh Phangan parties. If you’re heading to a half/full moon party, Chaweng Beach is the best place to stay with several boat transfers available. The party does continue on Koh Samui, with the Ark Bar the place to be for the hottest pool parties, DJ events and beach parties.
For those looking for some chill out time, fear not! The island isn’t completely run-a-muck with alcohol-infused revellers. Head over to Fisherman’s Village for some lunch and then on to the Lamai lookout. Na Muang Waterfall brings the serenity to the next level.
Images via unesco.org, Olivia Gordon, Bangkok.com, Thailandtravelnew.com