Phuket Hacks What to Know Before You Go

Adventure in Phuket

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Going to Phuket When planning a trip to beautiful Thailand, choosing which sites you’ll visit while there is just the start.

In addition to brushing up a bit on the language, you’ll need to know a little about the culture too.

To make your stay in Phuket completely enjoyable, take a few moments to go over everything you need to know to get around and interact with the locals as courteously as possible.

Going to Phuket? What to Know Before You Go

Going to Phuket?
Going to Phuket?

Tipping

Tipping service men and women is customary in Phuket, and these people may be relying on it for income.

Remember that one Baht is about three cents (in USD); money can go a lot further in Thailand.

What to tip Hotel maids in Phuket

Leave a tip at the end of your stay if you appreciate the service – it’s not expected, but a tip of around 200 Baht for the stay is equal to their entire day’s wage (only a little over six dollars) and will be greatly appreciated.

What to tip Bellhops

Give bellhops 20 Baht whenever they carry your bags or show you to your room.

What to tip Sit-down restaurants

Anywhere from 10 to 15 percent of the total bill.

What to tip Fast food or restaurants that don’t have at-table service

Nothing, but rounding up to the next even number and letting them keep the change is often very appreciated.

However, if that amounts to only one Baht, avoid tipping or tip another five Baht.

Tipping only one Baht anywhere in Thailand is akin to saying you weren’t happy with the service.

What to tip Taxi cabs

Depends on whether or not the taxi driver negotiates a flat fee from the start.

If they do negotiate a flat fee, they’re including a tip, so you need not pay extra.

If the taxi runs on a meter, a 20 to 50 Baht tip is customary, particularly if the service is good.

What to tip Tuk tuk

If you take a rickshaw, you don’t have to tip, particularly if the experience is unpleasant.

If the driver is nice, a 20 to 50 Baht tip can show your appreciation.

What to tip Drinks

Tip bartenders and servers 30 Baht per drink.

What to tip Tour guides

If a professional tour guide spends an entire day with you all over the city, a 300 to 500 Baht tip is customary (and in that case, don’t worry about tipping drivers, as the tour guide will likely do so).

Going to Phuket Internet Access
Going to Phuket Internet Access

Going to Phuket Internet Access

Wifi is very common throughout Thailand, and if you happen to end up in a hotel without wifi, there is probably a cafe around the corner that offers it for free.

But expect slower speed than you’re used to. 

There are internet cafes here and there where you’ll find stationary computers – these tend to be pretty costly.

Some guesthouses also tend to offer wifi for free, but charge a hefty sum to use their computers, so bring a laptop or tablet on your trip!

General Etiquette Phuket
General Etiquette Phuket

General Etiquette Phuket

There are a few customs you will need to respect in Thailand, or you will get many strange glances your way..!

Never use your foot to point to something or someone.

Never touch a person’s head.

Refrain from displays of public anger.

Refrain from public displays of affection with your significant other beyond holding hands.

Take off your shoes when entering someone’s home or a temple.

Don’t wear tank tops, tight pants or short skirts into a temple; don’t go shirtless, either…

Stand for the national anthem before a movie plays in the cinema.

When in doubt, be patient and polite.

If you follow these tipping guidelines and general etiquette tips, your vacation will go more smoothly and you’ll have a great time, leaving you with memories for many years to come.

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Life’s A Beach In Phuket

Although we had heard mixed reviews about Phuket Island, my sister and I decided that the luscious looking beaches far outweighed the horror stories of Ping-Pong shows and the somewhat seedier side of the place.

Life’s A Beach In Phuket
Life’s A Beach In Phuket

In hindsight i’m so glad that photos of the beautiful shore made such an impression, as we had an absolutely amazing holiday!

When we first arrived, both being very disorganized, we had no idea where we were going to stay but knew we would like somewhere quite quiet, away from the more touristic parts of Phuket.

After asking around we were directed to ‘Boomerang Village Resort’ in Kata and found ourselves in heaven.

The only downside is that it is situated 100 steps up a hill, which got a bit tiring after a long night out, but on the plus side it was a good way to walk off all the delicious Thai food.

‘Mom Tri’s Oasis’
‘Mom Tri’s Oasis’

Speaking of food, we found some yummy eateries in Phuket that are also well worth a mention. We particularly enjoyed the food at ‘Mom Tri’s Oasis’, which had a mix of European and Thai cuisine.

I had a tasty sea bass fillet with lemongrass and chilli, the fish was full of flavor and went really well with the Chenin Blanc (they have an excellent choice of wines).

The location was also wonderful, situated directly on the beach, you can watch the sun set on the sea, while enjoying all the scrumptious delicacies!

But be warned this is not one of the cheaper places to eat in Phuket, but worth the idyllic experience if you’re not on a budget.

Patong Beach Hotel
Patong Beach Hotel

After a week relaxing in Kata we decided to move to Patong to experience the busier scene.

We found a place to stay almost straight away, ‘Patong Beach Hotel’, half way between the bustling town and it’s quieter surroundings.

We had a great view of the beach from our balcony and the rooms were very clean.

The swimming pool was amazing and the buffet breakfasts catered to all tastes (they even serve curry) and kept us full until dinner!

The only downside was that they charged for Internet, which we thought was a bit cheeky considering we were already paying customers.

Yet the staff were wonderfully friendly and went out of their way to help us out if we needed anything, which was a real bonus.

Tom Yum Soup
Tom Yum Soup

All the restaurants we ate in were lovely, we particularly enjoyed eating in ‘Banana Leaf’, which is a Thai restaurant that serves the most beautiful Tom Yum Soup and also has great deserts (which can be hard to find in Thailand).

The drinks were cheap and the ambiance was very merry, especially after a few!

All in all we had an amazing time; Phuket lodging was fantastic, the food was immense and the people were friendly!

I would highly recommend visiting this beautiful island.

An Unexpected Adventure in Phuket

We ended up in Phuket during the worst possible time; a whole week of pouring rain, storms and flooding over southern Thailand, and since we had come to spend a week there before catching a flight back to Europe there was no point in leaving.

I felt sorry for all the people who had saved up money to visit Phuket for two week beach holidays and ended up with one week of rain and flooding (but as you can see in the photo below, they’re still sunbathing in the cold wind and rain!)

Adventure in Phuket
Adventure in Phuket

But by the end of the week the weather started to clear up, and we decided to spend the last few days by a beach close to the airport.

We chose Nai Yang, and went to the bus stop to catch a local bus.

When we asked for a bus to Nai Yang the bus drivers started running up and down the street yelling the destination in hope for one of the bus drivers agreeing to take us, but nobody was up for it.

The guy came back to us and said that Nai Yang was a bad idea, not because nobody wanted to take us but for ‘our own good’: ”the bus stop is 5 kilometers from the beach, too long walk”.

Instead, they told us to jump on and they would take us to Mai Khao beach, so we wouldn’t have to walk all that way.

An hour later, several detours breaking road laws and moving people’s fruit stalls from one point to another (you know how it is in Thailand), we ”arrived” in the middle of nowhere, the bus driver stopped and made a gesture to get off.

Phuket Adventure
Phuket Adventure

Where the h*ll were we?

All the bus driver did was to wave his hand towards a dirt road leading further away into nowhere. But before we could say anything, he was gone.

The rain started pouring down and we started walking.

I never thought there was an area of Phuket like this

This part of the island looked just like the country side of Thailand, not like the tourist developed party island it’s known for; Huts held together by sheer luck, next to small gardens where they grew their own food and a buffalo walking freely on the road side – this was a world away from Patong!

10 kilometers later (how was this beach any closer to the bus stop than the other one?), the rain pouring down, and we finally saw a beach.

”Yes!”, we thought: beach equals tourists, tourists equals guesthouse and food.

most beautiful beach in Phuket
most beautiful beach in Phuket

It was the most beautiful beach in Phuket: golden sand, nice clean water, and not a sole in sight.

No sun chairs, not even a sign of people having been there.

Of course, the only place within the next 8 kilometers was a luxury guesthouse charging more for one night than we could afford.

We were surprised to see how deserted this beautiful beach was, but we can imagine that this place soon will be one of the top destinations people head to for their Thailand holidays, because a 5 star Holiday Inn was already being built close by.

Giving up hope, we knew we faced the whole 10+ kilometer walk back to the main road, where we would hope for a bus to come past on one of their ”detours”.

Funny how that is, because when standing there on a dirt road in the rain, a man comes up and (apart from asking what in the world we were doing here) offers us a ride back to Phuket town – FOR FREE.

You learn two things when traveling:

Nothing is ever for free

Being open minded and trusting people can be rewarding

You learn two things when traveling
You learn two things when traveling

In situations like this those two lessons contradict each other, so you simply have to go by what feels right.

That drive was one of the most memorable we had in Thailand.

Anutin was one of the most interesting people we had met in the country, and shared both his thoughts, culture and stories with an open heart.

There are quite a few things to do for those who want to experience adventure holidays in Phuket, but, as it usually happens, you don’t have to pay a lot of money to have an adventure – all you need is a very loose idea of where you’re going.

Even though we ended up where we started earlier the same day, we came back with a great memory and a new experience.

And that is, after all, what traveling is about.

(photo credit: AlphaTangoBravo – gstrosaker : avlxy – williamcho – edwin.11)

How To Enjoy Thailand Without Visiting The Beach

Thailand Buddha Sukhothai

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Enjoy Thailand Without Visiting The Beach – When you think of Thailand, I bet one of the first things that come to your mind are long, white sandy beaches and those beautiful long-tail boats with colorful cloths tied to the front.

You would be forgiven to think that life is a beach in Thailand, but there is so much more to the country than the beach.

Enjoy Thailand Without Visiting The Beach, In Thailand, we had some of our most memorable experiences inland, and while a visit to the beach is almost compulsory when visiting Thailand, I really think a trip inland is a must, and then I don’t mean a short visit to Bangkok.

We went to Ayutthaya during the World Heritage Fair, and as with every festival and event in Thailand, there has to be a beauty contest.

This one went with the rather strange theme “beautiful daughter and possessive father”.
Enjoy Thailand Without Visiting The Beach Beauty Contest in Ayutthaya, Thailand

Enjoy Thailand Without Visiting The Beach

Some people choose to take one of those great Thailand tours which takes them all over the country without them having to worry about a thing, but if you’re in for something more challenging and if you want to choose your own schedule, I would suggest doing it alone.

We chose to travel through Central and Northern Thailand by train and bus, and while we saw far from every place, here are a few places we recommend which are ”off the beach radar” and still easy to reach:

LopBuri

This place is often overlooked because it doesn’t have any huge attraction, but there is something about this town which I really think deserves a night or two.

The place is overrun with crazy fun monkeys, and it’s pretty interesting to see how instead of finding a way of ”getting rid” of the monkeys they have chosen to play by their rules and put bars over their houses and windows to avoid the monkeys from coming inside their homes.

The vibe here is relaxed, the people are friendly, and everything is a lot cheaper than elsewhere in Thailand.

Sukhothai

Sukhothai has the most fascinating and beautiful historical park in the country, and it’s easy to get stuck there for a while.

Many people would recommend Ayutthaya, which is also a nice place and very close to Bangkok.

It’s great fun during one of the many festivals there, but if there is nothing special going on at the time you travel, skip that and choose Sukhothai instead.

It’s more beautiful and personally I think everything there was better, from the accommodation and food to experiences.

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A Memorial stone for loved ones who have passed, Turtle Temple, Bangkok.

I can’t think of a better place to let your loved ones rest than in this peaceful temple.
Turtle Temple, Bangkok

Chiang Mai

These gorgeous Thai girls competing in the many beauty contests in Thailand were seen as celebrities, and fans crowded around them in the breaks to have their photos taken

People fall in love with Chiang Mai for different reasons – some like the cooler climate, others the extraordinary food, or the cheap accommodation.

Chiang Mai is a great place to base yourself in and take small day trips to surrounding villages and towns.

There are tons of activities and tours to choose from, like cheap cooking courses, zip line adventures and Elephant camps, but also just hiring a scooter and driving around the outskirts is a great option.
Groupies Of Beauty Contest Thailand
Chiang Mai is also famous for its abundance of temples.

If there is any place in Thailand where you can get “templed out”, it’s here.

From here you can find buses to Chiang Rai, Pai, Lampang and even Mae Hong Son, which are other interesting and fun places to visit.

These are just a few places away from the beaches in Thailand that are worth exploring, but you could spend months in Thailand exploring villages and cities without ever even see the water.

Elephants are interesting animals.

They are so big and look so clumsy, but they are actually very sensitive, intelligent and gracious.
Big and Beautiful Elephant Trunk
Only the trunk itself contains 100,000 muscles and is used for so many things.

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Thailand Luxury Trip

Thailand Luxury Trip

Thailand Luxury Trip travel agents Kenwood Travel have over 35 years of experience in tailor-making amazing holidays bespoke to their customers’ needs. Central to this service is their ability to provide first-hand knowledge of the destinations they serve.

Last year the Kenwood team traveled far and wide visiting the crème de la crème of luxury locations including Mauritius, Las Vegas, Dubai, Granada and Barbados.

Gaining valuable expertise and appreciation of these places, which can be passed on to customers in a uniquely personal way, is all part of the process at Kenwood Travel.

These intrepid experts even squeezed in a bit of fun along the way too.

One travel consultant who embodies this spirit is Matt Hall.

As one of Kenwood Travel’s Far East team, he was invited on a journey to Thailand to experience the best of the ‘land of smiles.’

He documented his Thailand Luxury Trip on video, which you can see here, and I thought it might be a good idea to ask him a few questions to accompany the film.

I started by asking him the obvious: Which of the places he visited were his favorite?

It seems he found the question a little taxing at first. “Choosing my favorite place in Thailand is like choosing my favorite brother – they all have their good bits!”

Feeling the pressure slightly, he finally decided upon the general area of Krabi as his number one locale.

“Krabi really symbolizes Thai beach life,” he told me.

“It’s the little things, like how the hotels agree not to bombard beaches with sun-beds, so they always look their natural, uncluttered best.”

Matt went on to describe the incredible views that some of Krabi’s beaches afford, noting eloquently how “…hundreds of sheer limestone cliff-islands jolt sporadically and spectacularly from the turquoise waters.”

Even more sensational views come at sunset and many of the beaches provide cozy beanbags in which to recline as you savor an exotic cocktail. Matt highlighted Tubkaak Resort as a good example of this.

To summarize, he explained that Krabi is an all-round idyllic holiday destination that offers boat trips, trekking and diving, and while in the town, world-class shopping and dining can be found.
Saroijin Resort
Coming in at a close second for this Thailand Luxury Trip was Khao Lak.

As a quieter and more laid back beach town, its untouched pristine beaches were particularly special for him.

The area had to be extensively rebuilt after the tsunami in 2004 and Matt heard some stories that will stay with him forever.

One such story featured the amazing Saroijin Resort.

After the disaster, the owners stayed when the other hotels in the area left.

They helped the local community rebuild and assisted in securing pipelines and infrastructure.

As such the owners are deservedly held in high regard in Thailand. Matt was honored to stay at the resort.

These heart-warming tales were told by the hotel’s ‘Imagineer’ who is on hand to help guests in any way – from setting up a dinner proposal on a remote beach, to spending an afternoon shipwrecked on a deserted island.
Ritz Carlton Phulay Bay
Matt’s favorite hotel proved to be another tough question: “Near impossible to answer.” He said the reason for his ambivalence was the sheer variety of hotels on offer in Thailand.

Some are grand, opulent affairs like the “unbelievable” Ritz Carlton Phulay Bay (featured in the film Hangover 3, no less!), which provides four meter-long beds and “mind-blowingly extravagant rooms.”

Others, like the aforementioned Tubkaak, have a more intimate, boutique appeal.

The Rayavadee and Centara Grand Krabi are totally unique due to a combination of their accommodation style and setting – hidden away on sequestered beaches surrounded by limestone cliffs.

In Khao Lak, Thailand’s leading architects got together to design Casa De La Flora – a property, Matt said, that is “… even more unique; ultra stylish and modern.”
The Shore Katathani
Pushed for an answer as to his ultimate favorite hotel, he eventually decided upon The Shore by Katathani.

He enjoyed being able to amble along Kata beach to the little restaurants, shops, massage parlors and bars, and a short taxi ride took him to Patong and its vibrant nightlife.

The beach at the Shore is “one of the best” and its pool villas are in Matt’s top three room-types of all time.

He went on to describe the comfort, service, cuisine and location as first class. Certainly sounds like it ticked all the boxes.
Six Senses Koh Yao Noi
Elsewhere he loved his stay at Six Senses in Koh Yao Noi.

This resort is eco-friendly and boasts spectacular sea views from the Hilltop Reserve infinity pool and bar.

There’s a palpable “Robinson Crusoe” atmosphere to the place, and it boasts some unique extras, like 24-hour homemade Gelato ice cream.

I mentioned to Matt how much fun it must be to travel by boat in Thailand, being able to gain new perspectives on the stunning scenery.

He was quick to agree.

Arriving at the Rayavadee in Krabi, the Centara Grand Krabi, and the beautifully remote islands of Koh Phi Phi or Koh Yai Noi, was amazing: “Arriving by boat really gives you that sense of freedom from the rat race back home.”

He also confessed that it’s a great way to top up the tan!

Many resorts in the area offer transfers on private speedboats and very often have private jetties on the mainland to take clients to and from the islands.
Thailand Luxury Trip
It could be argued that, following films such as ‘The Beach,’ Thailand suffered a reputation for attracting too many gap-year backpackers.

Some detractors were quick to stamp it with the ‘tourist trap’ label.

Finally, I asked Matt whether he experienced any of this while he was there.

He explained that Phuket is the busiest tourist hot spot so you have to expect other travelers and backpackers.

His advice is to choose your locations carefully and recommends calling Kenwood Travel to speak to either himself or one of his colleagues to plan your Thailand Luxury Trip.

They’ll be able to gauge what type of holiday you’re looking for, and place you in the ideal resort. “If you want busy, you can have busy.

If you want off-the-beaten-track barefoot luxury, then places like Zeavola offer this,” he said.

Knowing where to go helps, as you can even find empty beaches in Phuket.

You may encounter backpacking revelers in Ao Nang in Krabi and in several spots in Phuket, but, generally, Kenwood resorts are all on separate beaches and again, he said: “Just ensure you tell us what you want and we can deliver.”

How to enjoy Thailand at its fullest?

Thailand is one of the most popular Asian vacation spots around the world.

With its extraordinary weather and passionate locals, it is hard not to fall in love with this place.

You can always take a good rest with the breath-taking sunset and beautiful coral reefs, and let’s not forget the food.

Here is the perfect travel guide for you to enjoy Thailand at its fullest.

Mysterious Thailand
Mysterious Thailand

Best time to visit Thailand

There are three seasons in Thailand, the High Season, Shoulder Season and Low Season.

During the High Season, which is November to March, the weather would be cool and dry, meaning that you can enjoy some soothing sea breeze after your scuba diving.

Also, you can take part in one of the major events in Thailand, the lantern festival.

During April to June, the Shoulder Season, it would be hot and dry.

The average temperature can reach to a swooping 30°C with a hint of humidity.

It would be the best to visit Central, North and Northeast regions.

For July to October, the Low Season, you would be expecting a lot of rain, ranging from showers to raining cats and dogs.

Make sure you have several back up plans if you are planning outdoor activities in these months.

Major cities in Thailand

Thailand is a large country with a lot of charming cities.

The most famous one would be Bangkok.

23.3 million of visitors went to Bangkok in 2017 to experience the vast contradiction between solemn temples and the wild night clubs.

Another popular choice would be Chiang Mai.

Located in the middle of the ancient Lanna Kingdom, you can find mountains and valleys in Chiang Mai, allowing you to take a break from your busy city life.

When it comes to sun and beaches, you could not miss Phuket.

With amazing beaches, there are a lot of activities you can choose from, like diving and scuba-diving.

Best activities in Thailand
Best activities in Thailand

For those party animals, you have to go to Ko Phi Phi where you can enjoy an exotic night life.

Best activities in Thailand

There are a lot of things you can do in the land of smiles.

You should definitely get on a Tuk Tuk, the Thailand traditional taxi while you explore the city.

To spend an exotic evening with traditional Thai festival, you can participate in the Lantern festival where you can release a lantern to the rivers or join the Full Moon Party held every month.

For foodies, you cannot miss the floating markets where you can shop for Thai food and spices while you travel around colorful the Internet is crazy about.

As for those who are into outdoor activities, you can participate in scuba diving, where you can explore the clear waters and observe the colorful corals.

Another attraction in Thailand for some would be their elephants.

As one of the countries that loves elephants, you can visit these adorable animals in multiples places.

So grab your passport and a useful travel guide, and start your journey to the land of smiles!

Things To Do In Chiang Mai Thailand

Chiang Mai Thailand

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Chiang Mai Thailand is for many people the ideal place to settle down.

It has the comfortable 20-30 degree temperatures, cheap and modern accommodation (advertising weekly and monthly stays), tons of restaurants, cafes and bars, and all other comfortable necessities you’ll need – western quality for a much cheaper price.

It’s the second largest city after Bangkok, but compared to Bangkok’s 11 million inhabitants, Chiang Mai is rather small and quiet with only 160 000.

It’s likely that you will find yourself staying here longer than you intended, just spending your day hopping from cafe to restaurant to bar to market.

I really liked the look of this shop window.

There are so many things that it seems completely unorganized and random, yet they all seem to match each other in color!

Things To Do In Chiang Mai Thailand
Things To Do In Chiang Mai Thailand

Few of our top things to do in Chiang Mai Thailand

Chiang Mai Food

Food has a key role in Thailand, and in my opinion, the best place to explore this famous cuisine is in Chiang Mai.

There are also a lot of choices for western, Indian and organic alternatives.

The restaurants are lined up along every street.

Along Mueang Soi 6 and around the small street corners are some great eateries, and there are some great cafes at Rachadamnoen road.

The street food is best at the southern end of Taphae Gate.

3 Favorite Chiang Mai Restaurants:

Nice Kitchen:

Great breakfast and lunch, large portions and a lot of choices on the menu (especially for vegetarians), in a nice relaxed environment

Aum Vegetarian Food:

The Khao Soy soup is to-die-for, and the Chiang Mai Style Muesli Fruit platter is great!

El Diablo:

If you’re craving for something else than Thai food, El Diablo serves huge burritos and a big basket of fat nachos, worth the price.

Take a Cooking Course
Take a Cooking Course

Cooking Courses in Chiang Mai

Learning how to cook in the food mecca of Thailand was my high light of Chiang Mai. I cannot recommend this enough.

I took a cooking course and had an amazing time. Aside from cooking, you learn so many things about Thai cuisine and traditions.

Choose your school wisely, as the teachers are what makes the class.

We chose Asia Scenic Cooking School, and our teacher Gay Ray was fantastic.

Chiang Mai Massage

Massages in Chiang Mai are incredibly cheap, often down to half the price of the ones in Bangkok.

A normal price for an hour Thai massage is 120-200 Baht, and an oil massage is from 200 Baht.

A local Thai woman told me that just like every Thai woman can cook, they know massage.

However, some parlors are just nicer and more romantic than others.

Massages in Chiang Mai
Massages in Chiang Mai

Green Bamboo and Fah Lannah Massage are both great places, a little more expensive (200 baht) but really professional and very nice rooms.

If you like, there are massage places all down the Loi Khro rd on the street giving foot massages for a cheap price, although it’s not quite the same experience.

Chiang Mai Thailand Temples

I must admit that we had had our fare share of temples by the time we finally reached Chiang Mai.

But there are so many temples in Chiang Mai that you can’t walk 30 meters in the old town before you walk past another temple – they’re everywhere!

They’re all beautiful, and in some you will see the surrounding gardens full of small and big statues of all kinds, that you normally wouldn’t think would fit in; Donald duck, Ganesha, a rooster, a cow – they’re all around the temple, which makes it a fun change.

Buddhists in Thailand strongly believe that worshiping at temples is a way of making merit, and a popular thing to do in Chiang Mai for Buddhist monks and locals is to visit nine temples all in one day, during a special holiday.

Sounds like a crazy thing, but it’s pretty manageable as all of these nine important temples are close to each other in the old city (click here to read more about the nine temples).

If you want to join their tradition, go ahead, otherwise I suggest you just walk around in the old city and choose the ones which look interesting.

Things To Do In Chiang Mai Thailand
Things To Do In Chiang Mai Thailand

Explore the Chiang Mai markets

If you like markets you will love Chiang Mai.

Every hour of the day there is a market going on some where in the city.

Weekday or weekend, morning, day or night – there is always a market going on.

Chiang Mai Morning Markets

There are morning markets spread out all over Chiang Mai, Somphet is the one which is closest to the guest houses in the old city, a perfect place to buy some fruit or coconut for breakfast.

Other great markets are San Pa Khoi market and Muang Mai market.

The markets in South East Asia are a feast to the eyes as well as a shock.

Fish, candy, fruit and meat all mix together in a mish mash of stalls.

Fish markets in South East Asia
Fish markets in South East Asia

Chiang Mai Day market:

During the rest of the day there is the Warorot day market up at Chiang Moi Rd,  a favorite for shopping among the locals, perhaps because you can buy anything and everything here.

Chiang Mai Sunday Market:

This market in the center of the old city along Ratchadamnoen Rd, the stalls are crammed next to each other and live music performers line the middle of the street.

Try to visit the market on a Sunday which is not during a holiday season, as it’s more quiet and less crowded then.

There is also a Saturday market down the Wua Lai road from late afternoon til midnight,some prefer this one over the Sunday market.

It’s the same kind of market but smaller and less crowded, and the prices are lower. You can still get the insect, ancient ice creams and waffles, but be able to enjoy them better 😉

Chiang Mai Night Bazaar:

This market is on every night, and you’ll find anything from lanterns to clothes to jewelry.

Just make sure to shop around for the open prices, as they vary a lot between the stalls for the same thing.

One of my favorite things to do when I travel is to visit the local markets; the smells, the pace, the people, the colors and the food is always such a fun experience, and it gives a great insight into the daily life of the people and the culture of the country you’re in.

Things To Do In Chiang Mai Thailand Markets
Things To Do In Chiang Mai Thailand Markets

Chiang Mai Day Tours and Treks

Every second shop down the main streets in Chiang Mai will be a tour agency trying to hook you up with a trek or tour.

There are many different types of tours to choose from, and I suggest you shop around comparing prices between different agencies.

The tours usually include an elephant ride, a tribal village, some trekking and bamboo rafting.

Hire a Scooter or bike in Chiang Mai

A scooter is a great idea if you want to see the outskirts yourself.

You don’t have to go to the tribal villages with a tour, but are more than welcome to go there by yourself too.

Just be careful, I saw more people injured from scooter accidents in Chiang Mai than I’ve seen in total in the rest of Thailand, the drivers are pretty reckless, and just because the streets are emptier it doesn’t mean that they’re much safer.

A bike is a great way of getting around the area, not just the old city but if you want to bike a bit further and check out some malls and spa’s.

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(Photo credit: thomaswanhoff  – fortes)

Ayutthaya VS Sukhothai – Which Ancient Thai City Is Better?

Ayutthaya VS Sukhothai

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Ayutthaya VS Sukhothai  – We have noticed in the online forums that many people traveling through Thailand are wondering which city offers the best overall experience: Ayutthaya or Sukhothai?

So we thought we’d share our thoughts and experiences of the two places and which one we prefer:

Ayutthaya VS Sukhothai Same Same – But Different.

There are so many Buddha statues around Ayutthaya that after a while you really don’t appreciate them as much.

But keep on taking photos, because once you’ve left this place, you will look back at those photos and realize how beautiful they really were…

Ayutthaya VS Sukhothai - Buddha statues around Ayutthaya
Buddha statues around Ayutthaya

There are a few things that make Ayutthaya and Sukhothai similar.

Ayutthaya used to be the capital of Thailand, and so did Sukhothai; they both have hundreds of ruins, are popular for biking between temples and both have been granted UNESCO World Heritage status.

However, this is pretty much where it ends.

We found the two places very different from each other, and depending on what you want to experience you choose one or the other, but preferably choose both.

I’m very glad we took the time to take the train and stop for a few days at both places, rather than taking an overnight bus or train right up to Chiang Mai.

Ayutthaya

Ayutthaya VS SukhothaiThe Burmese invaders really demolished the empire to the ground, and all the temples and statues were completely destroyed.

The ruins there really hold little meaning for the every day life of the people today.

They were left for a long time, and becasue of the lack of workers and monks to look after them, they were very vulnerable.

This resulted in looting and treasure hunting.

The majority of ancient Buddha statues’ heads have been chopped off and sold to rich people overseas, and there are very few stupas today without holes caused by explorative treasure hunters.

This makes Ayutthaya’s ruins look very … ruined.

It’s sometimes hard to imagine what the place used to look like, but the beauty is still there.

Ayutthaya has a rough but interesting history, and is definitely worth a day or two.

Buddha head in Wat Mahatat, Ayutthaya
A perfect example of the forces of nature. The roots of an old Fig tree has grown over and around an ancient Buddha head in Wat Mahatat, Ayutthaya.

The ruins are relatively close to each other, with a few exceptions, and  they’re within walking distance between each other, however biking is very popular, and is an easy way of getting around the city.

You have to pay for EVERY temple you visit, so it adds up quickly if you go to many.

Most temples charge 50 BHT, despite what it says on pamphlets.

Most temples are around the old part of town, which is the only interesting part of Ayutthaya.

The city center is pretty dull, there are very few shops and no restaurants at all.

The only reason to go there would be to check out the small market area and buy some food from the food stalls.

Bangkok to Ayutthaya, Thailand Travel Video

Sukhothai

Ayutthaya VS SukhothaiSukhothai is also divided in a new part and an old part, and just like in Ayutthaya the ruins are all in the old part of town.

The only difference is that the old Sukhothai is 14 km away from the new one, while in Ayutthaya the new and old part are next to each other.

This could be seen as a problem, but in the long run I think this is what has saved the ruins here and what makes it in many aspects “much better” than Ayutthaya.

The most impressive ruins are all gathered in a large park called Sukhothai Historical park, which covers about 70 square km (27 sq miles)!

Sukhothai Historical Park was full of Buddha statues in all shapes and sizes, and I loved how each Buddha looked different from the other, even in facial structure.

This one is a little…chubby 😉

Sukhothai Historical Park
Sukhothai Historical Park

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The park is divided into 5 zones, each zone costing 100 baht (extra 10 if you have a bike), and you pay when you enter each zone, so you can choose yourself how many you want to visit.

All tickets are valid for one full day pass so you can go out of the park and grab something to eat and the return again.

The Buddha statue was so big that only the hand could fit into the camera lens – but it’s nevertheless a beautiful hand.

Buddha statue big hand
Buddha statue big hand

What I loved about the park was that not only was it incredibly peaceful and quiet, but it was so green and lush.

The nature around the ruins in Ayutthaya was pretty dry and hot, while in Sukhothai you could relax in the shade under a tree by one of the many lakes and buy some snacks from one of the few who walked around the park.

You could easily spend a whole day in one zone, while in Ayutthaya you couldn’t spend a whole day in just one temple area.

The Buddha statues were mostly complete and the ruins in general weren’t as demolished as in Ayutthaya.

There were a few great restaurants outside the park with the thickest menus (in English) I’ve ever seen, and one or two good cheap guest houses with wi-fi etc.

Some of the things we learned while traveling to Thailand is most people stay in the new city, where they have many great guesthouses, awesome street vendors and a few excellent cafes and restaurants.

Ayutthaya VS Sukhothai 

The dragon is an important part of Thai culture and beliefs.

There is always at least one dragon outside the temples guarding it and protecting it from dangers.

Dragons are associated with wisdom and longevity, and apart from protecting temples they also bring water.

ragon is an important part of Thai culture
ragon is an important part of Thai culture

If you have time, I would recommend you take the time and visit both, but if you are looking to visit only one ancient city, then the winner is Sukhothai.

Really it is hard to describe the beauty experienced at these ruins – relaxed, green, peaceful, picturesque – they really showcased the magnificence of what it might have looked like many many years ago.

Understanding Thai Food Culture What We’ve Learned

thai food culture is very social

Updated:

Thai food Culture is one of the most internationally spread cuisines, and is often considered a favorite.

Having spent some time in Thailand, I’ve noticed that they have a very strong food culture, which I feel is very special and unique to Thailand.

I noticed many things myself, but it wasn’t until I had that private cooking course in Chiang Mai that I got a true understanding of the Thai peoples food culture, and started to appreciate the little details they pay much attention to.

Here are some typical things that I found stood out in the Thai food culture:

The Thai food culture is very social

In fact, I rarely saw a Thai person eating alone.

Usually they eat in groups, either with family or friends.

The Thai people are a very social people in general, and eating is something they like to do together.

Even at the restaurants and shops, all the staff sat down together at lunch time, with a big meal for everyone to share.

There is no specific meal for Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner.

They eat whatever meal they want.

They can eat fried rice for breakfast, noodles for lunch and soup for dinner, or the opposite way around.

They never eat cornflakes and yoghurt as a meal.

My cooking teacher GayRay told me that they see western meals such as cornflakes, toast and even pizza as just a snack.

They balance the fundamental senses in their meals

What I love about the Thailand food culture is that they always balance their meals with the five fundamental taste senses.

In the West, we usually choose one or two per meal, either salty and spicy, or just sweet.

In Thai food they combine all five senses; salty, spicy, sour, sweet and bitter – into one and the same meal.

This makes the food so interesting for your taste buds!

Thailand Always Make an Effort About Presentation

No matter whether it’s a street food restaurant or a hotel, your meal will always be served with pretty decorations.

This could be flowers, nicely cut cucumbers or fruit.

They don’t eat with chop sticks or use a knife

Unless you’re eating a western style steak, you will be served with a fork and spoon.

Thai people eat with their spoon in the right hand, and the fork in the left.

They often have chop stick available, which is something influenced from China, but most Thai people can’t actually eat with chop sticks.

This is what they told me, and I haven’t seen any Thai people using chop sticks yet.

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The Thai people love snacking

Thai people love to snack, and often do so when they’re on their way somewhere.

Sweets and desserts are usually not eaten on meal times, but as snack.

When you’re invited to a Thai person’s house you’re always greeted with a welcome snack, which for the record was the best snack I’ve ever had.

They put a plate on the table with roasted peanuts, coconut (sweet), ginger (bitter), lime (sour), shallots, and chili (spicy), which you fold into a betel leaf, drizzle some palm sugar and eat together with your host (shove it all in at once).

It’s a feast as well as a shock for your taste buds, but I couldn’t get enough of it!

Understanding Thai Food Culture What We've Learned
Understanding Thai Food Culture What We’ve Learned

Thai people never waste food

Thai people always finish the food on the plate.

They believe that wasting rice brings bad luck.

When I think about it, all the healthy rules I’ve learned about food, what you should eat and how you should eat, the Thai people follow.

They don’t eat dessert after meals, they makes sure to get all the five food senses and they don’t eat bread and cornflakes for breakfast but proper meals …

(photo credit: Marshall AstorDave_B_)

We Got Our Colons Cleaned Out in Chiang Mai Thailand

Colons Cleaned Out in Chiang Mai Thailand

Updated:

Colons Cleaned Out in Chiang Mai Thailand – When entering the fancy glass doors into a “Health and Beauty Clinic” in Chiang Mai, we were welcomed with a glass of ice cold water and asked to sit down and discuss the treatment – with your eating habits, it’s safe to say that your body needs regular maintenance through detox cleanses.

It really was an absurd situation, to be talking with two young, good looking women about bowel massage and… poop.

Yes – we were both having a colon cleanse.

The reasons to have a colon cleanse are many, like skin beauty, cancer prevention, longevity etc.

However, for us there was one reason that made us really want to do it (prepare for some gross facts):

The average person has between 4 to 25 pounds of built-up intestinal matter in their colon…

Thailand Medical Tourism

The amount of built up “crap” depends a lot on your eating habits.

Back to the reception.

It was absurd simply because you just don’t discuss your bowel movements and habits with others – EVER!

It’s embarrassing and disturbing.

But I had to get over myself and remind myself that these two well dressed petite Thai women do this every day – it’s their job to empty people’s… bowels.

The women weren’t embarrassed at all, but talked about everything as though it was nothing more sensitive than a facial treatment.

Although I’m not sure how used they were to having a 6 foot 3 tall guy (Nathan) coming there!

A few minutes later, the two of us were put into different rooms (something I was very thankful for later on!), and given a set of sandals, a towel, and a silk robe.

As I entered the room there was a huge spaceship-seat-looking thing with a big tank in front filled with 25 liters of water.

I was left alone, and had no idea what to do.

Did they expect me to do it all myself and know how to get this spaceship going?

I started getting nervous: what had I got myself into?!

How could this tank of 25 liters of water possibly be able to fit inside MY body?

What were those two see-through pipes running along the sides, and that huge leaver next to the seat?!

As I tried to climb on top of the thing, one of the women finally entered the door.

This is when things got a little awkward… She helped me with all the..uhm..arrangements, and told me to start pulling the “gear”.

The tropical climate in Thailand is perfect for these beautiful Frangipani flowers, and you see them all over the country.
tropical climate in Thailand
It was a very strange feeling, and being told to “push out” in front of a stranger was a thought that I had to fight to get over.

I have never before been into such a crazy situation, having someone carefully observing what comes through the pipes running along the machine.

Then, after a minute or so, she said “Oh, I see you’re a vegetarian!”…Huh?

She continued asking me questions, talk about my health and eating habits, things I thought nobody else could know unless you followed me 24/7 – she could see it all by just looking inside that see-through pipe, and knew my body better than myself!

I was left alone with a magazine, as though they thought you could relax and read anything when your whole world was been pushed upside down.

The following hour was one of the strangest experiences, but it also changed everything for the better for months afterwards.

In the West, colon cleanse is still something rather new, and old-fashioned doctors claim that the body should take care of it without help – however the truth is that it doesn’t.

Researches have shown that 90% of the western world’s population’s colon is completely messed up and doesn’t look anything in the way it does when we’re born, this because of our eating habits.

It’s not the normal spoil-yourself gift for the start of a new year, but if you want to get healthier instantly, Thailand is a cheap place to do it.

Medical Tourism in Thailand is a huge business.

Other than health treatments, Thailand is full of medical beauty touch ups too, like dentists… I can’t help but to consider trying that too… 😉

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Cooking and Deserts Video Chiang Mai Thailand

After spending a few days traveling through Lopburi to Sukhothai – we decided to head north and spend a few weeks resting and relaxing in Chiang Mai.

Sofia has never really been the best cook :p – so I decided to sign her up for an authentic thai cooking course – watch the video below to find out how she did :p – The video also includes Sofia’s adventures to a fish spa, and enjoying a traditional Thai massage.

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This monkey was tricked by his friends to fall into a pool of water while chasing them for some food – he does not look too happy!
Soaking Wet Monkey Lop Buri
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(our cooking course was Gayray was an amazing host, and teacher.

We really recommend you attend one of her full day courses next time you are up in Chiang Mai, Thailand)

Temples & Monks In Chiang Mai

With the overwhelming number of Wats, it comes as no surprise that Chiang Mai has very strong Buddhist traditions, and temples have become a very important part of peoples’ lives in the city.

Many temples act as community centers, and they are also very popular places for people to go to just relax, sit down in the shade and contemplate – below I have posted a series of photos we took while walking around Chiang Mai last week.
Temples & Monks In Chiang Mai
The temple grounds are peaceful and quiet – and although the hectic streets are just outside the temple walls, you feel like you’re a world away from it all.

There is so much to look at, and we loved all the wooden signs with words of wisdom that were nailed to the trees, reminding you of what is really important in life.
Temples Monks In Chiang Mai
Every temple is beautifully decorated with golden details glittering in the sun, and they all have their own touches that makes each Wat unique and different from the rest.

Whether that’s a huge Buddha head statue or a Donald Duck statue eating noodle soup …
Buddhist monks wear robes in different shades of Saffron and Orange
You can easily get templed-out while in Chiang Mai, but as soon as you leave you realize how much you took all of these beautiful serene places for granted …

Buddhist monks wear robes in different shades of Saffron and Orange.

People say that this is because it used to be the cheapest dye available, and thus became a tradition.
Buddhist monks robes in Saffron and Orange

Guide To Yummy Desserts In Thailand

I have a serious sweet tooth, one which needs to be satisfied every day.

Food is ok, but desserts are to-live-for!

If I could choose, I would have dessert for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

So, wherever I travel, I make sure to try out at least a few desserts while I’m in each country, and South East Asia has been no exception.

This time around, I’ve been trying typical Thai snacks and desserts.

The Thai people are real snackers, and there is an abundance of sweets, snacks and desserts to munch on.
Video Chiang Mai Thailand Thai Style Banana Roti (Pancake)

Sticky Rice and Mango

Yummy Desserts In Thailand
It might sound a bit like a savory dish, but it is really sweet and totally delicious, and is one of Thailand’s most popular and famous desserts.

When the mango is ripe, there is no better dessert than this one, but the fruit has to be perfect.

Banana in Coconut Milk

This dessert is quite interesting, the bananas get a tangy flavor from absorbing the coconut milk, and the sesame seed add a nice extra detail.

Thai Style Banana Roti (Pancake)

Some people love them, others hate them.

I absolutely love them, the best ones are found in Krabi (many different varieties, and cost only 15 baht!).

Banana roti is the classic one, nothing extra needs to be added to it than the complimentary condensed milk.

Just don’t count the calories…
Kanom Thom Khaow

Kanom Thom Khaow

These little green balls are made from rice flour, a common ingredient in Thailand.

Inside the balls is a filling made of palm sugar and coconut – strange but yummy!
Sponge Cakes

The Sponge Cakes

This is probably not a traditional thai dessert, but i have found them to be quite different from other parts of the world, or just pimped-out and exaggerated.

Think baptizing cake meets wedding cake meets birthday cake.

In other words; an artificially colored and over detailed tasteless sugar bomb that is nicer to look at than to actually eat.

It still makes you want to buy it a second time just because it looks so nice!

Black Sesame Dumplings (Tang Yuan) In Sweet Ginger Tea

This is rather interesting, and is far from any Western type of dessert.

It tastes pretty healthy, and although the balls are a bit slimy, the sesame paste is nice, but strange.

If you like ginger tea you will love the tea the balls float around in, it’s very strong – Nathan loved this one!

Impressions From The Islands Of Thailand

After traveling through Laos & Cambodia we decided to head down to the south of Thailand and relax for a while on a few of the islands – in the video below we decided to try something new – we wanted to try and capture our impressions of the Thai islands in video format.

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Thailand Medical Tourism Get Healthy and Beautiful

Thailand Medical Tourism is becoming increasingly popular in Thailand as people are realizing that traveling abroad can actually save you more money than getting the treatment in your own country.
Thailand Medical Tourism Get Healthy and Beautiful
Walking down the streets of Chiang Mai, it’s hard to avoid seeing all the signs and shops offering amazing deals for all sorts of health treatments – so why not go for it?

We took advantage of the cheaper prices in Thailand Medical Tourism and had a bunch of health and beauty treatments in Chiang Mai, from a visit to the dentist to another detox and getting my hair cut.

Whether you’re just looking for some touch-ups, to spoil yourself, or looking for a more serious surgery, Thailand is definitely a place to consider.

Here are some popular treatments that are much cheaper in Thailand…
Thailand Medical tourism

Thailand Medical Tourism Dental Treatments

Normally, people don’t just pop into a dentist and get their teeth fixed in a “spur of the moment” kind of way – in Thailand, that’s pretty much exactly how you do it.

A lot of people go there to just whiten their teeth, but having a check-up and do some fillings is also a great idea.

The dental clinics in Thailand are very modern and equipped with the latest technology, so we were happy that we decided to go there ourselves.

Thailand Medical Tourism: To give you an idea of the prices, a tooth filling costs from 500 baht (15 USD), whereas in Europe it costs around 100 USD.
Medical Tourism Get Healthy

Spa Resort / Detox Center Packages

Stay for an hour, a day, or a week – there are plenty of spa resorts, detox centers and other types of wellness retreats all across Thailand Medical Tourism – both for those who just want to pamper themselves, as well as for those who want to change their whole lifestyle – detoxify their bodies and meet with alternative health doctors.

We even had our Colons Cleaned Out in Chiang Mai Thailand

Tao Garden outside of Chiang Mai is one of the best health retreats in northern Thailand, mixing new medical developments of Holistic Western Medicine with traditional Eastern arts like Taoist Massage, 5 Element Chinese Healing Systems, Acupuncture and Ayurvedic practices from India.

In the South, Kamalaya on Koh Samui has won many awards for being one of the best wellness retreats in the world, as much for the beautiful location as for the service itself.
Massages and Manicures

Massages and Manicures

A Thai girl we met said that just like every Thai woman learns how to cook Pad Thai, they learn how to do a great Thai massage – which might explain why they’re so many massage parlors everywhere..!

Massages are so cheap in Thailand that you can treat yourself to one every week – but I would suggest visiting a real parlor rather than sitting down in a chair by the street, it’s just not the same.

There are many different types of massages to choose from, and just to let you know, the Thai massage is not as relaxing as it sounds, although it is an experience in itself..!

Manicures are also cheap and a great way to spoil yourself, and you can hustle a good deal if you go for a pedicure as well.

A 1 hour Thai massage costs around 4 USD, while in Europe the same massage costs 60 dollars.

A manicure costs around 5 dollars, while in Europe you would pay around 30 dollars.

Cosmetic Surgery

Walking around Chiang Mai, you pass by a lot of clinics advertising everything from botox to face lifts – even specialized surgeries like a tummy tuck, cost half the price from getting it done in Europe.

While botox is probably not on top of most people’s lists, I know several people who traveled all the way from Sweden to Thailand Medical Tourism& to get help with their skin and health issues because the treatments were both cheaper and better than at home.

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(photo credits: 1234happymealy)

Lopburi to Sukhothai Thailand Over-Run by Crazy Monkeys

Lopburi to Sukhothai Thailand

Updated:

Lopburi to Sukhothai Thailand: After exploring Bangkok and Ayutthaya – we decided it was time to continue heading north and check out the ‘crazy’ city of Lopburi (which was apparently over-run by crazy monkeys) before heading up to the wonderful Sukhothai.

Watch Episode 2 in which you get to see Sofia learn the fine art of Thai cooking up in Chiang Mai and also enjoy a nice relaxing thai massage.

Lopburi was packed with monkies, especially by the ruins which you can see in the background.

Lopburi monkies
Lopburi was packed with monkies

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Lopburi to Sukhothai Thailand

In Lopburi, Monkeys rule the town. And the people there don’t seem very bothered about it…

Streets Of Lopburi Monkeys rule the town- The Monkey Town
Streets Of Lopburi Monkeys rule the town- The Monkey Town

Why People Visit Thailand Again & Again

Only a year has passed since we last visited Thailand, and in a few weeks we’re already going back for more – Thailand is a country that people either love or hate, and regardless of which, nobody leaves without an opinion.

Many of the people I know have either never gone on holidays to Thailand, or they have gone at least twice.

There is something captivating about the country that makes people go back again and again, some even make a habit of it when they travel – and fly to bangkok for that little kick, that spark, before moving on.

Why do people love going back to Thailand? We all have our own reasons – here are some of mine.

Why People Visit Thailand Again & Again
Why People Visit Thailand Again & Again

Lopburi to Sukhothai Thailand Beaches

Thailand beaches
Thailand beaches

You only need to look at Tripadvisor’s latest “award” for the best beach destinations in Asia 2012, and you’ll get my point.

7 beach destinations out of 10 on the top list were located in Thailand – if you want long, white beaches, clear turquoise water, coral reefs and cheap bungalows right on the sand – Thailand has it.

Many people have been going on Phuket holidays year after year, but are now starting to look around for more options – which there’s plenty of (and yes, there are still many secluded beaches!).

Personally, I wish there were a few beaches with good surfing, but I guess you can’t have everything … 😉

Koh Lanta has some of the most beautiful beaches, and while Khlong Dao wasn’t our absolute favorite beach on Koh Lanta (nothing beats Khlong Nin!) this beach was definitely living up to our standards:

Beautiful turqoise clear water, soft sandy beach – and a bunch of cheap wooden bungalows with WiFi and hammocks just a few meters from the beach!

Koh Lanta beaches
Koh Lanta beaches

Thailand Easiness

Lopburi to Sukhothai Thailand
Lopburi to Sukhothai Thailand

It almost seems like every new place I travel to reconfirms the fact of just how easy traveling around Thailand is.

In many of the cheaper countries we’ve been to, getting around has been a huge hassle and very limited – in some places you can only choose between private taxis or taking horrific overcrowded and slow public transport.

I don’t expect it to always be easy and smooth, but from our experience you have a good range of options in Thailand.

You can go third class if you like, but the VIP First class buses are cheap and awesome as well, and knowing that you have the option makes things so easy.

Things like Wi-fi connection is another thing that hotels in Thailand seem to really get, where in other countries in Asia it’s near impossible to find.

Thailand Food

Thailand drinks
Thailand drinks

I won’t say that I enjoyed all the food in Thailand, but there are a few favorites that I have longed for many times during the past year; the curries in northern Thailand, the banana pancakes, the typical fruit shakes, the fresh warm corn waffles from local street vendors, pad thai, mango sticky rice etc … :p

Prices in Thailand

I was often surprised by how much cheaper accommodation was in Thailand compared to many of its neighboring countries, and the wide range of street stalls everywhere makes it super easy to grab a cheap snack or meal.

The cheap prices is one of the main reasons why Thailand has become a good base for digital nomads, where you can live cheaply and have more money left over to spend on building up your company.

Besides, when we looked for an apartment in different places around the world, we often found that you got more for your money in Thailand – maybe you spend the same, but you live a lifestyle impossible for that same price in Europe.

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5 Things I’ve Learned About Thai People While In Thailand

Thai Children are special

Updated:

After having traveled through Thailand for over a month now, I’ve seen and learned quite a few things – not just about the country, but also about the Thai people.

Here are five things I’ve learned about the Thai people that never seems to fail:

5 Things I’ve Learned About Thai People While in Thailand

Thai people are always really friendly, no matter if you buy what they sell or not.

Thailand really is the land of smiles.

Warmest, friendliest smile – if you smile first.

Thai People
Thai People

Thai people are often incredibly friendly, and many do smile at you on the street.

But most of the times, they look at you, and if your eyes meet and you smile, THEN they smile back right away.

If you don’t smile, however, neither do they.

My experience has often been that they smile bigger and brighter than you, when you smile first.

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The street hustlers are not scamming you, they just try to make a living.

Scammer, hustler or just working?

Thailand really is the land of smiles
Thailand really is the land of smiles

Especially in Phuket.

There are entire websites and forums out there that only talk about this topic, the scammers in Thailand.

Sure, there are some big scammers around here, but I wouldn’t call the guys trying to sell you crappy suits, tuk tuk rides or ping pong shows scammers, they’re just trying to get by and make a living.

And frankly, a truth that some people prefer to ignore, is that they can only live off of our greed.

We want the cheap stuff, we want free – free – free, although we should know that nothing in this world is really free.

When you watch them work the street, see them working for hours on end getting rejected, ignored and yelled at, they deserve some respect.

How many people can handle getting turned down or treated as though they don’t exist?

If you just make sure to them that you’re not interested in what they are offering, you can often have a nice conversation with them about other things.

They serve the man first, but give the woman the larger portion.

First, we thought this was just a random thing, but nearly every time we ate at a restaurant, they always served me a huge portion, and Nathan a much smaller one.

Each time, they gave him his food first.

It’s the same all over the country. If anyone knows why this is, please let us know!

Beautiful sunset in Ao Nang, Thailand.

Sunset in Ao Nang, Thailand
Sunset in Ao Nang, Thailand

Thai People are hard workers

No matter how early you get up in the morning, most of them will already be awake and working.

It’s true, I’m an early bird, but no matter when I get up, it feels like the city has been awake for just slightly longer than me.

People are already in their shops, at the market, or on a moped.

The young girls have their hair curled and the middle-aged ladies have already put that same bright pink color lipstick on.

It’s not that the city never sleeps, they just don’t sleep in like we do in the West.

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Best Data Plan WiFi Hotspot Devices for Travel

When it comes to transport, there is no such thing as full.

They can always fit one more person in – always.

Even if some kids have to hang off the end of the bus, there is still space for more people.

We had about 33 people in a mini-bus which in Europe would legally fit maybe 8 people – CRAZY!

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Skyroam Wifi Anywhere

Thai People
Thai People

Thai Sense of humor

They have the most innocent sense of humor.

I’ve found Thai people to be very innocent and gentle people.

The men are often very feminine, something which is not just accepted but also encouraged.

The teens dress in a pop rock punk style, but walk around with a teddy bear under their arm, or a furry baby hat on their heads.

When they laugh it’s a sweet giggle rather than the manly macho laugh.

What they laugh at is even more innocent.

I’ve never seen a whole bus full of people in all ages laugh so much at a filmed live show where a woman pulls a guy’s skirt off and he stands in his knee long underwear.

And every time Nathan bumps his head into the umbrellas put up at the vegetable markets everyone around him breaks into a big laugh and tell all their friends who missed it about what just happened.

It’s all really cute, but I wonder what they would think about our Western humor?

When a new boat gets launched into the river or ocean in western countries we have a ceremony of breaking a champagne bottle.

In Thailand, they tie colorful cloth instead.

At the beginning of each season the long-tail boat owners bring colorful cloths to tie to the front of the boat for good luck and ask the spirits to protect and bring prosperity to their business.

This happens during the month of November of every year in Ao Nang, Krabi.

Amazing Long Tail Boats In Thailand
Amazing Long Tail Boats In Thailand

If you have been to Thailand, what did you learn about the people?

Checkout this article and video about an Amazing Luxury Trip to Thailand

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Hin Ta Rock, The Grandfather Rock, Hin Yai rock
Hin Ta Rock, The Grandfather Rock, Hin Yai rock

The Hin Ta Rock – The Grandfather Rock

The Samui people are very proud of their The Grandfather Rock which has a long history.

The Grandfather Rock is called by the locals ‘The Hin Ta rock’.

It along with the smaller Hin Yai rock are major tourist attractions.

The myth has it that an elderly couple sailed to the island to propose a marriage for their son.

But due to a storm, their boat was capsized and they lost their dowry.

Fearing the shame of turning up penniless, they are said to have jumped into the sea before being reborn as The Hin Ta rock and Hin Yai rock.

Skyroam Solis
SkyRoam

(photo credits: Hanumann – inrime_nasrul – tanvach)

Things To Do In Bangkok Thailand

Things To Do In Bangkok

Updated:

Our feet are blistered, our legs are giving in, our minds are buzzing – Bangkok got the best of us, but we also got the best of Bangkok.

Bangkok really has everything for everybody – it is huge, chaotic, but also in a weird way quite charming – after spending 10 days there last month we decided to share below a few of our favorite things to do in Bangkok, “The City Of Angles”.

We had a lot of creatures living in and around our bungalow in Koh Lanta: The two frogs in the bathroom and this lizard were the most frequent guests…

Koh Lanta lizardKoh Lanta lizard

5 Things To Do In Bangkok

Check Out The Local Food Markets

There are loads and loads of markets in and around Bangkok, and it’s great fun to visit them even if you’re not planning on buying anything.

Our favorite one is Thewhet Flower Market, a smallish flower and food market, and it really is a true cultural experience.

Although the flower market is quite nice, the food section is most interesting part.

Bangkok local food MarketsBangkok local food Markets

Don’t be surprised if you’re the only tourist there, this is where locals come to buy their groceries, so soak up the atmosphere, take in the contrasting smells and sights, and just stroll around.

In a country like Thailand with so many things going on, people seem to be able to relax and rest anywhere no matter how crazy it is around them – especially monks…Sleeping Monk On Train Thailand

Go Temple Sightseeing

Things To Do In Bangkok
There are so many temples in Bangkok, so it would take you forever to see all of them, but among many others these four are the temples you’ll absolutely love:

The Turtle Temple (Wat Prayoon)

was my favorite of them all, it was so different from all of the others.

What’s special about this place is the cave like mound surrounded by a large pool full of turtles.

The mound is covered with shrines, all from chedis to spirit houses and doll houses.

Built for loved ones who have passed away. (email us if you want directions – since seems not many people know where this place is.)

The Temple of Dawn (Wat Arun)

is known as the icon of Thailand. The detailed sides of the temple are so amazingly beautiful, and the view from the top is awesome – make sure you go as high as you can, even if you have a fear of heights – it really is worth it!

Also go there in the afternoon, as the sun will give it a smooth beautiful light.

Stay until after sunset to take some awesome shots, and it’s also much nicer to visit when it’s cooler outside.
The Reclining Buddha (Wat Poh)

The Reclining Buddha (Wat Poh)

is a HUGE golden statue of a reclining Buddha.

But don’t just leave after having seen it, stay around and check out some of the other 1000 buddhas within the temple area.

The Giant Standing Buddha

is another huge buddha, it’s a nice temple because it’s a little quieter and you can sit back and just admire the size of it in peace.

Note! I wouldn’t suggest you to see them all in one day, I tend to get templed out after only a few, so to really enjoy and appreciate them, take your time and spread it out over time…

Muay Thai (Thai boxing) means “Art Of Eight Limbs”, and it’s a favorite sport for everyone in Thailand.
Muay Thai (Thai boxing) means "Art Of Eight Limbs"

Shopping And Thai Boxing

Shopping can be an overwhelming experience in Bangkok, but that really is part of it – so go crazy and take a day running between these huge malls and update your wardrobe while snacking your way through the food courts.

MBK and Central World were our favorites.

Spend a full day shopping, and if you go on a Wednesday you can finish the day with a nice, relaxing – thai boxing match outside MBK!

It’s free, it’s rough, it’s Thai…

Travel Around Bangkok By Boat

Things To Do In Bangkok
Bangkok can get horribly hot, and with 11 million people the streets are often jammed with cars and mopeds.

If you want to get away from the bustling street, or just want to find a quicker and more enjoyable way of getting around the city, head to the canals – this is also where you can also find many great Riverside Hotels.

Taking a boat down the Chao Phraya river is one of the most popular things to do in Bangkok, the waterways are also often the best way to get around the city, plus it’s really cheap.

We really enjoyed the boat ride to Siam Square from Golden Mount, and the orange boat line on the Chao Phraya river.

The first one takes you via a small canal behind people’s houses right into the center of Siam Square, all for just 9 baht.

The Orange Flag Express boat takes you to many of the most popular tourist attractions, and shows Bangkok from a different angle.

The tickets cost 18 baht flat fee, and you can step off wherever you like.

Hang Out On Khao San Road's Side Streets

Khao San Road’s Side Streets

Khao San Rd has become a tourist attraction in itself, and you will likely want to spend some time there, especially the area around Khao San Road.

The side streets have a little more laid back attitude and some really nice bars, restaurants and many Khaosan Hotels – you also might find that strolling around the smaller streets and corners is much more enjoyable than the actual Khao San Road itself.

You’ll find some great street vendors along the street, and some nice bars to sit down and have a drink and do some people watching.

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There are so many more things to do in Bangkok, but I hope you enjoyed this quick mini guide and got an idea of what this city has to offer!

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Sivarin Guesthouse In Bangkok, Thailand Hostel Review

A few weeks ago we stayed at Sivarin Guesthouse in Bangkok for 10 nights, and had an amazing stay.

Not knowing anything about the place before we arrived – we were impressed with the accommodation and the service.

Check out our review of the place below, and if you want to see what the guest house looks like INSIDE make sure you watch the video we made!

Sivarin Guesthouse In Bangkok, Thailand Hostel

Sivarin Guesthouse Hostel
The guesthouse is located in a nice and quiet area in the old town of Bangkok, on a small street off Samsen Road.

Only an 8-10min walk away from the famous Khao San Road,

makes it a perfect place to escape to when you want to get away from the noisy polluted streets of Bangkok.

Tucked away on a small side street, it’s hard to believe that it’s only a minute away from all the shops, markets, convenience stores and some of the best restaurants in Bangkok.

Sivarin Guest House

Is situated close to many interesting attractions such as The Giant Standing Buddha and the Whet Flower market, and a short taxi ride to most main attractions.

Sivarin Guest House Internet / Wi-Fi

As full-time travel bloggers, we LOVED the fast and free Wi Fi access they offered in our room, and for those without laptops you can also use the free computer downstairs.

Sivarin Guest House Facilities

Sivarin Guesthouse Hostel ReviewLarge rooms, hot water, air-con, free drinking water, comfortable king-size beds – this place really felt more like a hotel, than simply a guesthouse.

There is a fridge and a microwave if you’d like to cook or heat up some food, which is a nice touch that guest houses usually don’t offer in Asia.

It’s really the small details which makes this guesthouse stand out from the rest.

You get two bottles of free water daily, you get free shampoo, conditioner and shower gel, they serve a free great fresh breakfast every morning, and there is free coffee, tea and hot chocolate at any time of the day.

The staff were incredibly friendly and helpful, and there was always someone by the reception to help you out if you had any questions about Bangkok and Thailand.

In short, this place really understands service, and makes you feel at home right away.

So, if you like a quiet, clean and comfortable accommodation close to restaurants, markets and Khao San, but still away from the noisy streets, this place is perfect for you.

Sivarin Guest House Room Rates

– Superior Double Room with Fan: 550 baht/night

– Superior Double Room with A/C: 690 baht/night

– Family Room (1 Double bed and 1 single bed) with Fan: 690 baht/night

Sivarin Guest House Contact Details

Tel./Fax: +66 2628 5659

(office hours 8am – 8pm)

Email: sivarin_guesthouse@hotmail.com

Website: www.sivaringuesthouse.com

Address: Sivarin Guesthouse 11/1 Soi.Samsen3, Samsen Rd., Watsampraya, Phranakorn, Bangkok 10200 Thailand

The Man In The Chair Bangkok

This man is one of the people we met during our trip that I will remember the most.

Every day he sat outside his home on a worn leather seat and watched the people pass by on this small side street in Bangkok.

He was there when we went out in the morning, and there when we went home in the afternoon.

And every time we passed he smiled with his toothless smile, waved his hands and said “Sa-waht dee-krap!” (hello).

The last day of our stay, we asked to take a picture of him.
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Bangkok Nightlife – Where To Go

As the sun sets behind The Temple Of Dawn down the Chao Phraya river, people are getting ready to hit the streets and enjoy some of the crazy bangkok nightlife that makes the city change completely.

Some prefer to spend the evening in a nice bar or restaurant, others want to get right in the middle of it all and experience the crazy events that Bangkok hides under its robe during the day.

But the city is spread out over a large area, and it can be difficult to know where to go.

Here are our top picks of where to go to enjoy the Bangkok nightlife to the fullest:
Bangkok Nightlife - Where To Go

For The Bar/Restaurant Chill out:

Although the Bangkok nightlife is known for being crazy, there are many places to just chill out at a slower pace.

Rambuttri road has quite a few nice bars and restaurants with a nice chill vibe, and a few places have live jazz and blues bands playing, which makes for a nice atmosphere for those who want to grab a drink and relax.

It’s a nice street with many restaurants and bars to sit back and relax, do people watching, sample street food and talk with friends. This street is for a quieter night out.

Sleeping Monk On Train ThailandSleeping Monk On Train Thailand

If you want some more action, Khao San Road is right nearby.

Green House – Trendy restaurant bar, free wi-fi, cool music and always nearly full.

Even at 12 pm you’ll find young tourists having drinks while trying to pick up girls.

Molly Bar – Relaxed atmosphere, a good place for people watching, having a drink or some food and just talk or play pool, while some not-amazing live band is playing in the corner.

It seems to be pretty popular with Thai people, but everyone comes here.

Girls, Girls and Ladyboys…

Let’s face it, even if you’re not looking to bring someone home, you’re curious to see what the whole thing is about, what the Bangkok nightlife is most infamous for.

If you want to see where sad men go to buy their fake happiness, head over to the Sleaze central Nana Plaza.

It has become one of the most visited of all the areas to enjoy the nightlife Bangkok is so (in)famous for.

All the famous bars are here; the Rainbow bars, Hollywood Rock, Hollywood Strip, Playskool, Voodoo, G-spot, Rock Hard, Silver Dragon, Mandarin, Carnival etc.

It’s basically a 3 story high sex mall with bars and shows.

It’s rumored to be the largest sex complex in the world, and every night people flock here for a “unique” experience.

The place used to be a normal restaurant place, but in the 80’s go-go bars started taking over, and today that’s all there is to find at this place.

Quite a few bars here have only ladyboys working there (pre-operative), just so you know.
Sleaze central Nana Plaza
So you get the deal, it’s adult entertainment on high level, and although a few curious girls come to visit, the American, European and Japanese men are the main types of people you’ll see here.

Patpong

is a more “gentle” version as there is a night market there as well as a few other normal live music bars.

But remember that it is still a sex industry place. I saw a girl standing outside so shocked that she was crying in her boyfriend’s arms.

It’s your choice to go there, you know what it’s there, so don’t act all surprised.

Bangkok Clubbing

Patpong
There are many “high class” clubs in Bangkok, and budget travelers as we are, we never entered any of them.

But, there is a really popular club you will love if you’re looking for a cheaper option.

Route 66 – This place is known as one of the best clubs and is totally packed with people, and the entry is free!

Both live bands and DJ’s play here, and they have light shows playing in the roof and on the walls.

Live Music

Adhere 13th Blues Bar – A small but lively bar playing blues music every night.

The stage is small, and the guitarist is the owner of the bar (to give you an idea of the place), but it has a great vibe.

You’ll find it on Samsen Road.

Saxophone Pub and Restaurant – Not just jazz music is played here, but ska, rock, reggae (a local band called T-bone plays every Friday night) and funk too.

It’s a funky place to hang out for an evening, and pretty popular with expats.

Enjoy your time in Bangkok and get the most out of the Bangkok nightlife on offer!

Experience Mysterious Thailand with a Local

Mysterious Thailand – In some destinations, it’s best to do things strictly by the book.

A person could visit Los Angeles, for instance, using a reputable guidebook and could have a perfectly acceptable experience.

They’d hit all the highlights of the area and probably avoid some of the grittier neighborhoods.

Thailand meat sticks
Thailand meat sticks

However, other destinations (Traveling to Thailand) definitely deserve to be explored in a manner that’s more off the beaten path.

A little unscripted wandering in these places means being able to interact meaningfully with local people and to experience their culture in a way that simply can’t be achieved when a traveler is chained to a guidebook…Ayutthaya and Sukhothai

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As vegetarians we never tried these meat sticks, but they are very popular for some reason…?

Bangkok to Ayutthaya, Thailand Travel Video- As We Travel TV Show

One of the most memorable images of Thailand are the long tail boats lining the beaches with its colorful bands, here with the lime stone cliffs from Rai Leh in the background.

Long Tail Boats On Rai Leh Beach
Long Tail Boats On Rai Leh Beach

Mysterious Thailand

One of these places is Mysterious Thailand.

It’s an ancient, majestic and mysterious place that’s worthy of years of exploration.

Unfortunately, most people who visit here don’t have tons of time to really absorb the local flavor.

While a guidebook might be enough for the casual visitor, someone who wants to really delve into the depth and complexity of Thai culture won’t be satisfied with that experience.

As with any foreign civilization, the best way to view it is with the assistance of a local.

Someone who has grown up with and is fully immersed in the Thai culture can open doors for the tourist who wants to go beyond the well-known temples and palaces.

It makes for an intimate, highly personalized experience the likes of which would be virtually impossible to duplicate without having a local friend or two.

Mysterious Thailand
Mysterious Thailand

Fortunately, the internet makes connecting to local experts a breeze.

It makes one-of-a-kind experiences a reality in a way that just wouldn’t happen otherwise.

Imagine being able to dine in a private home, enjoying authentic Thai dishes that were prepared by a host who has been learning to craft traditional meals since childhood.

It’s definitely not the kind of evening that would happen in even the finest restaurant in the nation.

Travelers visiting mysterious Thailand can go way beyond the major attractions with the assistance of a local guide.

Hosts can arrange for a vast array of experiences.

Depending upon their specialty and interests, a host might provide a lesson in Muay Thai, the nation’s style of martial arts.

Others offer cooking lessons, tours of the local marketplace, or provide insider tips on how to get the best deals on locally made wares.

Wat Pho is famous for its impressive huge golden Reclining Buddha, but few know that this also is the birthplace for the traditional Thai massage…

Wat Pho golden Reclining Buddha
Wat Pho golden Reclining Buddha

Hosts are friendly and accommodating, which makes it easy to arrange for a tour, activity or meal.

There’s simply no substitute for being able to visit a temple or museum with someone who can bring the local perspective to the adventure.

By sharing their thoughts and memories, hosts bring the Thai culture to life in a particularly personal way.

They help visitors to understand not only what the Thai lifestyle is, but also why and how it has evolved the way it has.

We met these fishermen on a morning market in Thailand, selling their newly caught fish from the previous night – they seemed like two men with a lot of stories to tell.

Hosts are fully vetted, so visitors can rest assured that their experience will be safe and memorable for all the right reasons.

fishermen market in Thailand
fishermen market in Thailand

More than one tourist has made a lifelong friend by using this service.

It’s possible to arrange for a tour or other activity well in advance, but sometimes the hosts can be quite flexible when it comes to accommodating last minute requests.

I’ve heard that these women try to make you pay for taking photos of them in Vietnam – well this was Thailand, where you don’t pay to take a photo of someone, and she was so happy that we took a photo of her that she actually stood up and posed for us… such an adorable woman…

Each experience is unique, and it is often possible to make special requests that the host is willing to tailor to the taste of the visitor.

For instance, enjoying a home cooked meal with a local family is one of the most asked for experiences.

Thai Women
Thai Women

The visitor may arrange for their own transportation, but in many cases the host provides a knowledgeable escort who can see them safely to the home of their host.

Visitors are immediately put at ease by a warm and gracious welcome, and special dietary requests are respected.

Each individual is treated like an honored guest and can expect to enjoy the finest Thai style hospitality.

For many visitors, it is these unique, one-of-a-kind experiences that become the most memorable part of their visit.

Tourists may also arrange to observe some of Thailand’s most interesting festivals with a local host.

Songkran, or the New Year’s Day celebration, is particularly popular.

Many people also choose to visit on Ghost Day, traditionally known as Pi Tha Khon.

Unique Thai festivals take on far more significance with a local guide.

It’s a wonderful way for visitors to understand the meaning behind the celebrations and better appreciate the traditions and legends that are incorporated into each.

We’re not quite sure what the strings were used for, but the owner of the bike sure had an eye for pretty color combinations..!

Colorful Bike In Thailand
Colorful Bike In Thailand

While there are a number of reputable, well-written travel guides on the market, none of them can truly compare with having the guidance of a local insider.

No book can possibly contain information on every attraction, festival and restaurant in Thailand.

That’s why a local friend is so indispensable.

With their assistance, greater understanding and appreciation is possible.

It turns an interesting experience into a remarkable one, and mysterious Thailand definitely deserves to be appreciated in all of its complexity.

This is one of the very few whole Buddha statues in Ayutthaya.

Nearly all Buddha statues were decapitated when Ayutthaya fell to the Burmese in 1767.

This was done to remove precious items – gold, jewels and other relics – placed inside the statue when they were made, and the heads were then sold to private collectors in Europe and the US.

A few have been rediscovered in museums in the US, but when Thailand asked to have them returned they refused.

Buddha statues in Ayutthaya
Buddha statues in Ayutthaya

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Koh Lanta – Thailand

For a moment we thought we would never get away from this island.

We extended our stay longer and longer, and really fell in love with everything this island had to offer.

Life in Koh Lanta is slow paced, easy, and days turn to weeks without anyone even noticing.

Koh Lanta – Thailand
Koh Lanta – Thailand

We lived right on the beach with the most amazing view from our bungalow overlooking a seemingly endless white beach and turquoise water.

(Photo credit: Keng SusumpowRay_from_LApermanently scatterbrained)

5 Streets Of Bangkok You Need To Visit

Thailand Luxury Trip

Updated:

Bangkok – the infamous capital of Thailand is full of amazing places to visit, some well known, some less so.

However from my personal experience, the city is very easy to get caught up in and you can find yourself only visiting the popular tourist places – The Grand Palace, Khaosan road, Chatuchak market the list goes on.

But the beauty of this place is when you take a side-step away from the tourist hot spots it’s very easy to go off the beaten track and into the less known areas of Bangkok.

In my opinion these areas are the more interesting parts of Bangkok to discover and explore.

So, to really get a taste of what this incredible metropolis has to offer make sure you visit these five streets when you explore the city.

Bones and Blood Market Bangkok

Would you ever see anything like this in your supermarket at home?

Bones and Blood Market Bangkok
Bones and Blood Market Bangkok

Klong Toei

Central Bangkok’s largest surviving shanty town looks like something out of a film set.

It lies alongside the Chao Praya River and is a jumble of huddled together old wooden houses, narrow lanes, busy markets and stalls selling cheap souvenirs.

It’s quite a full on place to visit, and not somewhere to go if you sterile and perfect, but this area will show you a real slice of Bangkok life that’s disappearing.

Vegetables In A Thai Market
Vegetables In A Thai Market

New Road

The main thoroughfare of New Road is often listed on the tourist trail because of the atmosphere you’ll find here, but the surrounding warren of alleyways, hidden courtyards and narrow streets that weave across it are not.

Step off the main drag, and you will discover enticing food stalls, shops selling everything from gold to bric-a-brac, and little local bars where you’ll feel wonderfully welcomed.

Washington Square

Tired or just BORED?

Hard to say, but this woman didn’t bother trying to talk you into buying her sprouts…

Washington Square
Washington Square

Fronting onto the south side of Skhumvit Road between Sukhumvit Soi 22 and 24, Washington square is rarely on a visitors ‘must visit’ list.

Here, you’ll find an easy going laid back atmosphere and a cluster of tourist friendly bars.

This is an area that is popular with ex-pats, and is what we imagine Bangkok used to be like before all the tourists came in and it was made all glitzy and well, touristy.

This is definitely a place to keep to yourself shhhh…

This is a very common sight that you will see in South East Asia.

It may look like a hassle, but it’s actually pretty practical.

South Easdt Asia Market Traditional Way Of Selling Veggies In Asia
South Easdt Asia Market Traditional Way Of Selling Veggies In Asia

Phahon Yothin soi 7

Reached by sky train, Phahon Yothin soi 7 is the perfect spot for a little people watching.

This really is authentic Bangkok street life not the sanitized tourist version, but the real thing.

Head west along the main soi and you’ll see many tiny shops and small workshops with people going about their everyday business.

You can buy authentic food from the many food stalls here, and the sub-sois (side streets) are filled with many apartments as well as small bars that most tourists never find.

A Smorsgasbord of colorful veggies drew my attention so much that I barely noticed the little ladies in the middle of it all!

Smorsgasbord of colorful veggies
Smorsgasbord of colorful veggies

Thonburi

Outside the main bustle of the city centre, the tourist throng thins out, and in the suburbs you’ll find very few.

What you will find here, are seldom visited temples, cheap restaurants selling delicious food in pleasant and relaxed atmospheres, and quiet side streets interlaced among the leafy canals.

If this has tempted you to visit this amazing city, you can get flights to Bangkok and accommodation in the city.

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Changes In Bangkok

People always talk about how places change so fast, how only ten years ago things were so different.

Bangkok in Thailand is no different, only that time there seems to be running on high speed!

During the end of our 10 day stay in Bangkok, we found this really nice street food restaurant on a small side street off Soi Samsen road.

The street was quite empty, there were only a few other street food restaurants nearby, although when we went there this was the only one which was open.

7 weeks later we returned to the same street (after having traveled through Laos & Cambodia), but instead of the cute street restaurant we found a huge luxury 5-star hotel – open for business.

First we thought we had ended up on the wrong street, since we didn’t recognize any of the restaurants, funky bars and huge 7-eleven shop, and especially not a luxury resort.

Well, after a second look, we found that the little street stall restaurant we used to go to was still there, hidden by all the glamor from its neighbours, although it wasn’t open for business.

The quiet little side street had in about 7 weeks turned into a really cool area with some awesome eateries and a massive 7/11.

Changes In Bangkok
Changes In Bangkok

This wouldn’t ever have been able to happen in cities like London, but in Bangkok it is more than possible – it’s simply how it is, with everything in Bangkok!

Nothing ever stays the same: Different owners, different shops, new houses, everything is constantly changing.

People say that at some point everyone will eventually find themselves visiting Bangkok, and although I wasn’t too keen on going back there – I must admit that seeing how much had changed in only 7 weeks ago, I’d like to come by every year or so just to see what else has changed.