Thailand has a variety of travel themes to offer to the tourists.From the white sand beaches and islands , water sports to dazzling night life ,jungle safaris , the experience of Thai massage and many more .Thus being an ultimate holiday destination Thailand has emerged to become a tourist hot spot.
BEST TIME TO VISIT
Best time to visit Thailand is during the cool and dry season between November and early April, when temperatures range from 29°C to 34°C.
HOW TO GET TRAVEL VISA FOR THAILAND
Interestingly Thailand offers Visa on arrival to all tourists arriving from India including other countries. See the full list of counties by clicking this link: List of Countries eligible for Visa on Arrival in Thailand
Documents to be produced to the Visa Issuing officer at the Airport : Visa application form ,Passport , 02 passport size photos ,Round-trip air ticket or e-ticket (paid in full) , Proof of financial means (20,000 baht per person/40,000 baht per family). For more details, Click here.
LET'S EXPLORE MY JOURNEY
On my journey to Thailand , I choose to explore Phuket at first .This is the largest Island in Thailand with beautiful long beach lines surrounding all around ,the limestone hills standing tall to guide the fishermen ,the abundance of delicious sea food , a house of great temples to offer our pray and when the Sun sets in the west, a part of the city wakes up to offer a grand nightlife to the travelers. Once you start exploring Phuket you will surely want to define the island in your travel stories as “The Pearl of Andaman “.
How To Reach :Reaching Phuket is convenient as it has it’s own international airport connecting flights from many major places like Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand, China, Indonesia, Japan, and India.
The first thing one can do after reaching Phuket is to take a bike on rent and start exploring the city.While the center of the city is mostly busy , however one can just travel to Old Phuket Town and discover the historic look of Phuket.It is a small town one can cover on foot , which was built by the rich owners of Tin mining business from 18th century.The architecture of the town has a resemblance to the European designs, mainly Portuguese and British.
Old Phuket town has always been decorative and ready for the tourists .On evenings one can enjoy the traditional Thai food courts , enjoy some live music bands or may do a handful of shopping.
Next place of attraction is : Wat Chalong Temple ; The largest temple in Phuket. This colorful building is carved with numerous images of the Buddha, along with imagery from Thai and Buddhist mythology.
In case time permits one can visit : Siam Niramit Show,a family-friendly show that celebrates Thailand’s rich culture and history.
Other places of attraction like Radar Hill ,Rang Hill , Panwa View Point , located just a few Kms outskirts of Phuket and offers a magnificent view of the ocean and the island’s sea shore.
When the Sun sun goes down in Phuket, the action starts centering the Patong Beach. Hurtling down the centre of Patong, there is street named Bangla Road ,which is always alive in night with music, girly bars, and clubs and it’s also a non-threatening place to party all the night away. Bangla Road–and Beach Road nearby–is truly the dancing heart of nightlife in Phuket.
In terms of Street Food, hawker stalls can be seen in almost every corner of Phuket, offering up a full of delicious food menus at a very reasonable prices.Starting from Sea foods , spicy salads , fruits, to fried chicken and noodles cooked with Thai spices , all can be seen in abundance in the streets.
PHI -PHI ISLAND
My next destination was Phi Phi Island , this place always had my special attention.Starting from beautiful Maya Bay to the monkeys on the tiny island beach named “Monkey Beach” and the diving experience, nightlife, and ultra luxury resorts, Phi Phi Island is one of the most famous destinations in Thailand. One may take the option of staying in Phi-Phi main Island , however I must warn that the main area of the island is very overdeveloped and overpriced. Instead in a single day return journey from Phuket to Phi-Phi Island , one can have more than the expected fun.
With amazing diving locations and tiny islands nearby , beautiful white sand beaches, Phi Phi Phi Island is surely a paradise for beach lovers.
How to Reach Phi -Phi Island : It’s easy, just hire a long tail speed boat in Phuket ,start early in the morning ,pack your diving gears and the action camera , after a few hours of sea voyage you will reach Phi Phi’s main land.
On the day 3 of my journey I left Phuket and move towards Krabi Province.
On the way to Krabi , I visited , Tiger Kingdom , which is one more famous tourist attraction. You can be with real tigers in the same cage, click some pics with it and leave the place.Tigers are sedated, so there is nothing to be brave or to be feared. Lol. Click here to know more about Tiger Kingdom : https://www.tigerkingdom.com/phuket
Krabi , is a very scenic region with its rugged limestone cliffs , white sandy beaches and lush green hills. Once you arrive at Krabi , you will see a very less populated city with small buildings , almost no traffic, beautiful landscape.What else one can ask for a peaceful vacation.
The first place I visited at Krabi was : ThanNok Khorani National Park. It is located at a 50 Km distance from the main city area. A quite and peaceful place one can imagine with moderately dense forest, lots of blue colored emerald pools in it,which makes it the park a must visit destination.
Other attractions in the city area are the iconic bronze sculpture of a Sailfish at the Ao Nang , the Wat Kaew Korawaram temple , the Tiger Cave Temple or Wat Tham Sua. If time permits one can have a visit to Old Krabi town market for some delicious street foods and some shopping.
THE FOUR ISLAND TOUR
Once you are in Krabi you must book the Four Island Tour ,without it the tour will simply be incomplete. You can buy a ticket from a private tour operator near Ao Nang beach or can be booked it at the hotel.It is a full day tour and most of the boat operator arrange lunch for the tourists.
The Long tailed boat started the voyage to Four Islands at morning 9 and after a hour of journey I reached the first Island –Phra Nang Cave Beach. The sceneric view of Phra Nang Cave Beach is really gorgeous.The cliffs made of limestone , the fine white sand, the calm blue water , makes the island a mesmerizing place to sit and relax and make some day dream while laying at the sand. Travelers can also have the experience of rock climbing or visiting the Phra Nang Cave with the famous Penis Shrine.
The Next Island was Tup Island. This island lies between two small islands, named Koh Mor and Koh Tub. The beauty of these islands is that they are connected by a sandbar.Walking in the sandbar in the middle of the ocean exploring the islands was one of kind experience.
The third stop was Koh Gai, or famously known as Chicken Island or Koh Poda Nok.The rock formation can be resemble to a Chicken neck, hence got the name. Very less visited island as island is full of high rocky mountains , however there is a view point , if one is interested to visit the island mainland.
The next stop I made was at Koh Poda Island.This was the last one for that day and the lunch was served at this island .I had ample amount of time to take a swim , had some snorkeling.The White sand beach and the greenish-blue water were just waiting for me. One can do snorkeling at Koh Poda or may be somewhere on the way to the islands (just ask the tour guy), as there are many good snorkeling sopts.
The Four Island Tour from Krabi covers many of the most beautiful destinations at the coast of Ao Nang . In case one have only 02 planned days on Krabi, this journey to the islands is a must.
Next destination I moved to was Pattaya. To reach Pattaya one can take a flight from majr airports like Krabi ,Phuket , if one is traveling from Bangkok the convenient way is by a cab .Once I landed in Pattaya , the city presented itself with it’s very busy roads , much more crowded than I expected , somewhat unorganized and cleanliness was not at all comparable with the places I visited before that day.
However crossing through the city’s busy heart, when I visited the Sanctuary of Truth , it was a jaw dropping moment when I saw the masterpiece of architecture. The whole structure was built by wood and it is high enough to touch the sky.An entire world far away from the harsh noisy city center, this place is one of the places to enjoy some peaceful and calm moments.
Next place to visit in Pattaya City is the “Underwater World” .For any one who has not seen underwater world museum, this place must be included, which offers a unique experience of close encounter and the feel of the marine life including very tiny ones to the big sharks.
Once I felt I had enough for the day , the evening gets ready to delight me with the amazing world of cabaret show , The Alcazar. The beautiful ladyboys in colorful costumes puts all the effort to amuse and entertain us. The 1.5 Hrs show is full of cultural extravaganza with booming sound effect, dance and dramatic scenes.
THE CORAL ISLAND
On a short speed boat ride, I reached out to The Coral Island.My sole purpose to visit the island was the water sports. Coral Island in Pattya known as the hub for waters ports.One can the have the experience of walking on the sea bed, ride around on a Jet Ski, fly over the ocean by Parasailing or may be fall into the ocean on a Banana Ride all at one place.
After the water sports , one may also choose to go for a snorkeling , the sea water is just perfect at Coral Island.
Night Life at Pattaya :The Walking Street in the center of Pattaya welcomes all the night crawls and keeps the fun lasting all the night.One can chose to have a fine drink at one of many the girly bars or spent some time on a dance floor at a nice pub or if not any of them, then just have a slow steady walk on the street and feel the steamy excitement in the air.
Bangkok was my final stop as I choosed it to be , since it is mainly a commercial, political and economic center of Thailand and so the touch of natural appealing is missing and the city is mostly a concrete jungle.However I must say the high rise skyscrapers gives an image of a developed country.
The first place I visited in Bagkok was “The Grand Palace” and I recommend to keep sufficient time in hand to visit this place, as the palace is vast and every corner of the palace is magnificent.It is yet another architecture marvel stand tall to represent the splendid work of designers from ancient Thailand.
While visiting “Grand Palace” one must remember that it is important not to wear any kind of shorts or tank tops, which is considered as disrespectful.So make sure that legs are covered, however a Sarong (a traditional long piece of cloth) can be taken on rent near the entrance.
Next very famous place to visit in Bangkok is the Safari World. In the midst of the busy city, there is this place full of nature and wild life.Once I entered the Safari World , it was felt like moving to an another world (do you remember the movie “Narnia”). This place is meant to Conserve the wild life and maintain the habitat almost like a natural one. Even tons of tourists visits this place everyday , however the natural structure seems to have not effected.Different kind of amusement shows adds more reasons to visit the “Safari World”.
In case one have more than two planned days in Bangkok, there are several other places to consider like Wat Pho Temple which is also known as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha. Next place I recommend is “The Wat Arun Temple”,also known as “The Temple of Dawn” because it was named after the God of Dawn named Aruna .Evenings at Bangkok can very delightful, where one can choose to walk in Chinatown , a perfect place to visit if you want to indulge in delicious Chinese food at a cheap prices – soups, rice balls, exotic fruits, seafood, the popular Yaowarat Toasted Bread and everything else your heart desires!. In case one missed the steamy night clubs in Pattaya, no worries Bangkok has plenty of them including Rooftop cocktail bars, nightclubs, wild parties, nice places with live music, it has all to make a memorable night.
FINAL WORDS :
Thailand is no doubt a land of dream destinations and can offer a wide variety of experiences. Covering all the well known places in a single journey may not seem possible. All the places I covered are the most famous among the travelers and worth visiting again.From Bangkok I concluded my journey , with a bagful of memories.
FEW COST SAVING TIPS
I believe any journey need not be an expensive and one must look for smart ways to save some cash.Here are some ways I followed and found useful during my journey to Thailand-
1.Avoid cab bookings and take bikes on rent for local conveyance.Trust me you will be delighted how much savings you can achieve.
2.Order Food Online.Yes I found it very cost effective and there are tons of restaurants available with variety of food menus that one can’t count.
3.Choose a Hostel rather than a Hotel. Hostel accommodations are as good as nice hotels and yet at a very cheaper rate.