Top 50+ AMAZING Places to Visit in Thailand

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Looking for the top places to visit in Thailand? In this post, we have outlined the top 50 amazing destinations you should not miss!

There is never a surplus on where to go in Thailand. You have seen bits and pieces of this tropical haven all over your feed, in marketing newsletters. As the setting of the current series, you’re binge-watching.

Thailand destinations have the power to hypnotize you into booking that flight on sale. The country has always been on your mind, yet you have not made an effort to pursue the idea.

Once you’re there, Thai islands will then work their wonders into extending your stay. A couple of weeks more won’t hurt. Besides, the beauty of Thailand is worth exploring for a good full month – and more.

As you give in, your newfound Thai-exploring friends will then talk you into possibly moving in and calling this Southeast Asian gem your home.

Before you know it, a quick trip away from your work desk has turned out to be a total change of address.
One weekend after another, you tick off a box or two on your list of places to visit in Thailand.

Sounds like a reel from your Thailand dream, doesn’t it?

Let’s pick on the idea some more. Here is your ultimate list of places to visit in Thailand:

Top 50+ AMAZING Places to Visit in Thailand

 Koh Lipe Beach Resort Koh Lipe Island
via Wikimedia Commons

Koh Lipe

Go to the southernmost edge of Thailand, and you shall be welcomed by the island of Koh Lipe, standing four square kilometers small with coconut plantations dominating the whole scenery.

This piece of paradise is part of the Adang group of islands, which, together with the Tarutao and Klang archipelagos, make up the Tarutao Marine National Park. On favorable weather, you can see Langkawi Island in Malaysia peeking at the horizon, some 30 kilometers away from where you are.

Travelers come to Koh Lipe for its pristine white sand beaches, rich diving, and snorkeling sites, and a quiet atmosphere. Whale shark and manta ray sightings are a regular occurrence on the island.

Three beaches serve as your local playground: Pattaya, Sunrise, and Sunset. The main road aptly called the Walking Street, allows you to explore Koh Lipe from north to south in 30 minutes.

A number of Chao Ley or sea gypsies live in small villages, most of which are found along the coast of Sunrise Beach. In their native language, Koh Lipe means “Paper Island.”

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Koh Lipe

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Ao Nang beach
via Wikimedia Commons|kallerna

Ao Nang

Ao Nang is a resort town in the province of Krabi. Its beauty is accessible as it is memorable, making it one of the greatly developed destinations in this side of Thailand. You are sure to be spoiled with choices when it comes to accommodation, recreation, food, and services.

In the morning, swim along its warm waters or go island hopping to the nearby areas. Before the sun sets, mark your station on the sands and marvel as the magic hour turns Ao Nang’s skyline a stunning bright red-orange.

Witness the town come alive at night as people from different parts of Krabi flock to Ao Nang for an evening of refreshing drinks, live music, and great seafood. Find yourself at the Catalunya Walking Street, a beating hub of nighttime entertainment and happy hour offerings.

An invitation to Ao Nang comes with a gentle warning, as its rapid tourist development seems to have left sustainability out of the picture.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Ao Nang

Ko Chang
via Needpix.com |logoline11

Ko Chang

Be lost in the jungle paradise that is Koh Chang, where mountains, rainforests, and beaches diverge to bring you a taste of a true tropical paradise. As part of the Mu Ko Chang National Park, its beauty is well-protected, its ruggedness sustained, and its doors open to those who are willing to disregard the invitations of more developed options like Samui and Phuket.

Do not limit yourself to the usual beach holiday activities, which commonly include swimming and snorkeling. Go deep into the forest and explore the Koh Chang jungle by hiking. Hire a local to be your guide and know more about the surrounding wildlife, bathe in the waterfalls, and feed friendly elephants.

Before you bid goodbye to your local companion, inquire why Koh Chang is dubbed as the Elephant Island. Does it have to do with the island’s shape, perhaps its large size, or the mammal itself? Maybe he or she has the right answer to this long-running mystery.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Ko Chang

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Silverlake Vineyards Pattaya City Vineyard Thailand
via Needpix.com |Longjeaw

Pattaya

Pattaya never sleeps. It is a city brimming with activities from morning till evening. When the sun is up, you see people frolic along the lovely sands and come sundown you find them having fun in social gatherings.

The north side of Pattaya is perfect for a family escapade. There is something for everyone – entertainment centers, shopping malls, historical attractions.

The south end, on the other hand, caters to the party-goers and night owls. See the road get closed down by six in the evening and witness a bright flood of neon lights signify the existence of bars and clubs in almost every part of the famous Walking Street.

Playing to its advantage is its close proximity to Bangkok. With only 147 kilometers separating each other, you shall find many tourists traveling from the city center of Thailand to this coastal city.

LOOK HERE:Pattaya: 2-Hour ATV Off-Road Adventure Tour with Meal

Khao Lak–Lam Ru National Park
via Wikimedia Commons|Sirapa Atikomchakorn

Khao Lak

Belonging to the province of Phang Nga is the coastal region of Khao Lak. Its name translates to Lak Mountain, a fitting ode to the main majestic attractions of the Khao Lak Lamru National Park.

Khao Lak is characterized by a series of beaches that run along its 30-kilometer coastline. Pakarang Beach stands out from them all, and the Memories Beach Bar located in the area is a true tropical gem you should discover for yourself.

If pure peace and utmost relaxation are the echoing themes of your Thailand holiday, Khao Lak is the perfect destination for you. Its beauty is pleasantly unassuming, and the people you shall find in this place are after the same simple things. Nature is at its best here, and entertainment is kept at low key. The more you head up north, the more tranquil your environment gets.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Khao Lak

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Railay Beach, Krabi
via Wikimedia Commons|Wokshots

Railay

Nestled between Krabi and Ao Nang is a small peninsula called Railay. Four stunning beaches make up this popular tourist destination, all boasting of white sands and limestone cliffs.

With beauty that can only be accessed by boat, feel as if you are secluded entirely from the busy hubs of Thailand. Railay calls for you to go barefoot and be one with nature, offering not a single road for vehicles of any sort. Its minimal tourism development may either be a charm or a disappointment to you; it all depends on the kind of vacation you are yearning to have.

Don’t be fooled by its remoteness, though, because beneath Railay’s facade are some upscale properties, hip bars, and worthwhile activities.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Railay

Loei

Cold weather in a tropical paradise that is Thailand? It all happens in the mountainous region of Loei. Its name means “to pass beyond,” a fit description of one of the country’s best-kept secrets. It goes beyond the crowded areas, beyond your usual fanfare, beyond the typical description of a Thai paradise. We are thankful it is so.

Located in the northwest part of Isan, Loei is home to many of the country’s natural reserves. One of these is the Phu Luang Wildlife Sanctuary, home to about 100 Asian Elephants roaming in the wild.

A vineyard can be found nearby, enticing curious visitors to see how wine can come from seemingly unknown territory. Chateau de Loei proceeds to break barriers, producing fine wine, which has made its way to the international market. A tour of this property is a must.

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Wat Arun Ratchawararam, Bangkok
via Wikimedia Commons| Preecha.MJ

Bangkok

Much has been said of Bangkok – both good and bad. Despite them all, Thailand’s capital city still proves to be one of the most visited places in the world. No need for further advertisement; Bangkok is your next travel destination.

Whether you are here for the temples or the tuk-tuks, Bangkok has all the interesting highlights you’ve heard of – and more. The well-photographed floating markets, the sumptuous Thai cuisine, the quirkiest of all museums – all of these act as a blend of spice incorporated in every Thailand getaway.

Make it your mission to go to the best rooftop bar in Bangkok and witness the sunset a thousand feet above the ground. From here, the view is incomparable, the breeze cool, and the city in its liveliest.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Bangkok

Karon Beach, Phuket Thailand
via Wikimedia Commons|yeowatzup

Karon

Along the coast of the Andaman Sea is a 5-kilometer stretch of white sand that welcomes sea turtles during nesting season. Its name is Karon, one of Phuket’s beaches located at the west end of the island. Karon is characterized by its clear turquoise green waters that make snorkeling and diving popular activities in the area.

Regarded as one of the most family-friendly destinations in Thailand, Karon is home to family resorts, wide beaches, and wholesome areas of interest.

As if you needed to, uproot yourself from the beach, and hit the streets of Karon. Along the way, you’ll discover the majestic Karon temple and the vibrant night market happening every Tuesday and Friday.

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 Wat Yai Suwannaram Petchaburi
via Wikimedia Commons|Ddalbiez

Petchaburi

The region of Petchaburi, alternatively known as Khao Wang, is a birdwatcher’s paradise. The province is teeming with waterbirds, providing 123 acres of pristine playground to these species. One of the resident birds to see here are the black-winged stilts.

Petchaburi is considered one of the oldest provinces in Thailand. You can see how its architecture dates back to the olden days, getting inspiration from the Ayuthaya period. One of the most notable historical landmarks in the area is King Rama IV’s summer palace, also known as the Khao Wang. It gained more popularity after serving as the grandiose setting for the Hollywood movie The King and I.

 Wat Paramaiyikawat Worawihan at Ko Kret, Pak Kret District Nonthaburi Province
via Wikimedia Commons|Preecha.MJ

Nonthaburi

It is easy to get overshadowed by the popularity of Bangkok – especially if it sits adjacent to you. Yet, for visitors who manage to get past the capital city, a riverside beauty awaits.

Located along the Chao Phraya riverbank is the province of Nonthaburi. It speaks of Thai traditions, Buddhist values, and natural wonders to those who are willing to listen.

Fill your morning with sights and sounds from the Nonthaburi market, a haven of authentic Thai flavors and hospitable locals. Embark on a photo walk and capture the visual essence of the temples and landmarks that spice up the exotic Nothanburi.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Nonthaburi

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Visit James Bond Island

Phang Nga Bay

Without Roger Moore’s “The Man With The Golden Gun” being shot on location, curious minds will ask: will Phang Nga Bay be as famous as it is now?

While the film has successfully garnered the attention of the world – and the privilege of renaming Koh Tapu the James Bond Island – this charming town on the Andaman Coast might have stayed quietly beautiful, something worth discovering with or without the iconic connection.

Stay awhile and see the many ways Phang Nga Bay will leave you amazed. Pay a visit to the floating village of Koh Panyee and marvel at how locals were able to establish a community amid limestone formations and vast waters.

Kut Phiman Dan Khun Thot District Nakhon Ratchasima
via Wikimedia Commons| กิตติ เลขะกุล

Nakhon Ratchasima

Nakhon Ratchasima is the biggest province in Thailand, which also goes by the name of Korat. It used to be enclosed by towering walls and a deep moat, with four gates that act as doorways to the province. Today, one gate stands firm, retaining its old glory and inviting visitors to partake of a piece of Korat history.

Finding its way into Korat is the lush surroundings of the Khao Yai National Park. While it encompasses three more provinces, namely Prachinburi, Saraburi and Nakhon Nayok, much of the 2000-square kilometer expanse is at the vicinity of Korat. A plethora of hornbills and macaques call the province their home.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Nakhon Ratchasima

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Railay Beach, Krabi
via Wikimedia Commons|Wokshots

Krabi

White sand beaches, limestone cliffs, and clear waters – Krabi has all the elements of a perfect dream island destination. With more than 150 islands to choose from, visitors are invited to hop from one spot after another.

Emerald green lagoons are your pristine playgrounds in this tropical paradise. Adventure awaits the brave as Krabi offers the best venue for extreme sports such as outdoor, mountain biking, rock climbing, and white water rafting.

Ao Nang, Railay Beach, Phi Phi Islands, and Koh Lanta are four of the most popular tourist spots in Krabi. With natural beauty this strong, you might ask – is there more to Krabi than these picture-ready destinations? The answer is a resounding yes.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Krabi 

Pa Tong Beach, Phuket

Pa Tong

Patong Beach is a party goer’s paradise. With a stunning backdrop that is not new to the province of Krabi, where it belongs, your nightlife just got more tropical.

Lounge in the morning and stay for the party at night. This Thai destination is a place where the restless finds refuge in its blue waters and generous sunlight. Come night time, the outgoing crowd collides, pumping the scene alive at the well-renowned Soi Bangla.

Shopping in Patong is made exciting by the rise of Jungceylon, Phuket’s biggest modern shopping center. Malin Plaza and the Banzaan Fresh Market are there for the quality and budget-conscious buyers.

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Wooden bridge Sangkhlaburi Thailand
via Wikimedia Commons|mistagrrr

Sangkhlaburi

Will you cross the river Sang Kalia if what awaits is an 850-meter bridge made out of wood? Saphan Mon, Thailand’s longest wooden bridge, is your gateway to the Mon Village. A day of discovery is hanging by, so better take that step.

Will you brave the waters in order to reach the sunken temple of Wat Samprasob? A little paddle away from the land, there lies a panoramic view that’s both eerie and captivating.

These and some other unique spots can be found in the small town of Sangkhlaburi in the province of Kanchanaburi, Thailand.

Travel to Wat Chalong is a must thing to do in Phuket

Chalong

East of Phuket, there is Chalong Bay, a prime haven for boats and yachts. Its location offers complete shelter from the northeast winds and the southwest monsoon that come at the end of the year, making it a viable spot for passenger boats and cruises to set their anchors.

Given that Chalong Bay’s strength is in its protected waters, kitesurfing and sailing thrive in the area. Once you’ve had your fill of adrenaline, head over to the famous Kan Eang @Pier and enjoy mouth-watering seafood dishes and authentic Thai delicacies. Pick an outdoor table with a good view of the marina and watch the sunset unfold around the corner.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Chalong

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Hat yai city
via Wikimedia Commons|JJ ApekillerXD

Hat Yai

Southern Thailand is fortunate to have Hat Thai within its borders. Emerging as what people coin as a ‘mini Bangkok,’ this city is gaining popularity from travelers longing to explore Thailand with less crowd for the same rewarding experience.

Observe: early in the morning, tourists who are in-the-know make their way to the mountain at Khuan Chedi. Here, they drown in a sea of clouds, only to be resuscitated by the abundance of flora and fauna in the area.

It will not come as a surprise if you see the same crowd heading over to Bankampu. This Hat Yai gem is famous for its crabs: a serving of fresh crustaceans lovingly separated – with all the meat peeled and ready to eat.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Hat Yai

Birds eye view of Amphoe Ko Sichang
via Wikimedia Commons|JingJun

Koh Si Chang

Take a ferry boat from Si Racha and arrive at the picturesque island of Koh Si Chang. It’s a beautiful diversion to the hustle of the nearby tourist spots such as Bangkok and Pattaya.

Beaches in Koh Si Chang are tranquil, offering you a place to lounge under the sun and enjoy a dip in the ocean. The biggest is the beach of Tham Phang. Rent a kayak and paddle quietly away from the shore.

The best way to explore the rest of Koh Si Chang is with a resident. Hire a five-seater tuk-tuk and go on a full-day journey with your local guide through this serene Chonburi district.

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Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat Phitsanulok
via Wikimedia Commons|JJ Harrison

Phitsanulok

The Phitsanulok province is right at the heart of Thailand, with the country of Laos nearby. Two rivers, the Nan River and the Kwae Noi River used to flow through it. The latter has long diverged, yet some still regard Phitsanulok as The City of Two Rivers.

You may have known of this place from a picture or two of its well-celebrated temple, the Wat Phra Si Ratana Mahathat. This sanctuary is home to the Phra Phuttha Chinnarat, one of the most revered Buddha images in all of Thailand.

While most people treat Phitsanulok as a convenient gateway to other tourist destinations in the country, its regal beauty is worth stopping by for.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Phitsanulok

Wat Chang Lom Sukhothai

Sukhothai

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Sukhothai Historical Park, is a definite must-see as you revel in Thailand’s rich culture and history. The once illustrious capital dating as far back as the 13th and 14th century spans 70 square kilometers of what was once a royal palace and sprawling ancient temples.

Wat Mahathat or “Temple of the Great Relic” is the most important and impressive of the ruins at the central square, with Wat Si Sawai and Wat Sa Si close by. Wat Si Chum, also known as the “Temple of the Bodhi Tree,” features the giant image of Buddha over 15 meters high.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Sukhothai

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Wat Paramaiyikawat Worawihan at Ko Kret, Pak Kret District Nonthaburi Province
via Wikimedia Commons|Preecha.MJ

Pak Kret

Take time off cosmopolitan Bangkok and head out to Pak Kret for a more laid back local experience. Explore the many floating markets and villages on a longboat or opt for some tranquil moments at Kret Buddha Garden.

Hop on a ferry for a tour down the Chao Phraya River to Ko Kret, a small man-made island and home to the Mon tribe whose lineage dates back to the 6th century.

The island is well-known for its traditional terracotta pottery and its binge-worthy sweets along Dessert Canal. You will also have a picturesque view of Wat Bang Chak from across the bank, with a large golden image of Buddha looking on.

 Mu Ko Chumphon National Park Chumphon Thailand
via Wikimedia Commons|KOSIN SUKHUM

Chumphon

There are “lots of blessings” that you surely are missing if you treat the province of Chumphon as just another gateway to more popular destinations in Thailand. Quite literally, that’s its translation – and it is easy to decipher why Chumphon is named such.

Take a dip at the Thung Wua Laen Beach and enjoy the pleasant weather that warms the waters and allows forests to thrive. If the season permits, venture into the deep dive sites surrounding Koh Ngam Noi and Koh Ngam Yai and see the reefs that flourish underwater.

When the night falls, find yourself at Farang Bar, a place where other tourists opt to hang around.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Chumphon

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Pai Canyon
via Flickr| James Antrobus

Pai

Located north of Chiang Mai in Mae Hong Son Province, there is a small town known to be a backpacker’s paradise. Pai is a secluded haven for those wanting to be one with nature in its truest sense.

Hike the Pai Canyon and get lost in its tricky trails, only to find yourself deeper in love with adventure. Walkthrough Pai’s main street and score some great bargains of hard-to-find clothes and quirky keepsakes.

As you roam around the neighborhood, a White Buddha would almost always be lurking nearby, sitting on top of a hill and waiting for you to take that 353 steps to the top.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Pai

Trang Thailand
via Wikimedia Commons|Vyacheslav Argenberg

Trang

The Trang province is Thailand’s finest – but without the crowd. It is divided into two sections: Trang City and Trang Old Town. While the whole province is filled with great seascape and stunning attractions, what drives people to Trang is its delicious cuisine.

It will be a disgrace not to stop by at Pia Soi 9 for some Chinese cakes. The Asian influence doesn’t end with pastries, though. Whichever place you dine in, order a Trang Breakfast, and you shall be greeted with a myriad of bamboo steamers stacked to one another, each containing piping hot dim sums and dumplings.

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Mae Sot Mae Sot District
via Wikimedia Commons| Mozhar

Mae Sot

The district of Mae Sot acts as Thailand’s main gateway to Myanmar. Because of its close proximity to the said country, it is only natural for Mae Sot’s economy to take advantage of trade relations with the neighboring nation. Mae Sot has also served as a true home to many Burmese and Chinese over the years.

A stay in Mae Sot means an exploration of its natural wonders. Go deep in the mountains of the Tak Province and take a rejuvenating dip at the Mae Kasa Hot Springs, a naturally-heated pool that maintains a temperature average of 75 degrees Celsius.

Waterfall in Koh Kut
via Wikimedia Commons| by giladr

Koh Kut

Superlatives will not suffice to describe the beauty that is Koh Kut. This island, also known by many as Ko Kood, offers authentic Thai beauty without the rushing crowd that often comes with it. Koh Kut is for the ones who wish for a tranquil escape from the bustling tourist destination that is Thailand.

Head to Bang Bao Bay for a satisfying swim in the West Coast’s clear and calm waters. Chase the waterfalls of Klong Chao and Klong Yai Ki by joining organized tours. For a deeper understanding of the community, pay a visit to Ao Salat, a fishing village built on stilts.

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Mae Sariang

When Chiang Mai seems too much for the solitude-seeker in you, the nearby small town of Mae Sariang is all yours to explore. Walk around or rent a bike and lose yourself in the serenity of Mae Sariang Lake. Continue your journey to the quaint teak homes and shops around the area.

November and December are magical months to be at Mae Sariang. These are when the flowers at the Bua Tong Field in the nearby Mae U Kho bloom beautifully, coloring the whole hills and valleys golden yellow.

Prang Sam Yot Lopburi
via Wikimedia Commons|Davidlohr Bueso

Lopburi

Lopburi is Thailand’s Monkey City. A huge population of crab-eating macaques calls the city their home, invading most parts of the temple Prang Sam Yot and the shrine of Phra Khan. These aggressive residents are both a sight to behold and mayhem to avoid.

A short walk from the monkey-filled town center is the Wat Phra Sri Rattana Mahathat. Covering eight acres of land, it is one of the largest temples in Lopburi.

Inviting you for a day of historical exploration is the palace museum called Phra Narai Ratchaniwet – a quick two-minute drive from the complex.

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Bottle Beach Koh Phangan
via Flickr | Fabio Achilli

Koh Pha Ngan

Many who are in Thailand are in pursuit of the lustrous Koh Pha Ngan and its infamous full moon parties. It was started out as a small celebration of sorts along Haad Rin Beach has blown up and become one of the most famous monthly parties to attend worldwide.

Is there more to Koh Pha Ngan than this? Undeniably so. Brush the powdery beaches aside and dive into the deep where thriving marine wildlife is waiting to be explored. Dedicate a day to trek the east coast and immerse yourself in the thick jungles that make Koh Pha Ngan a great spot for nature exploration.

emerald cave kho mook
via Flickr| Sonia Marotta

Koh Muk

Sunsets at Koh Muk are destinations of their own. This small island in the province of Trang provides a stunning golden hour setting made majestic by the vast Andaman Sea.

Tourism in the area is in its early stages of development, and while this can prove to be a challenge to travelers, it also gives way for simplicity and authenticity to thrive in Koh Muk. The whole island is your playground – the Emerald Cave and its secludedness, the Sivalai Beach and its clear waters, the city center, and its fresh seafood.

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Prasat Sikhoraphum Surin thailand
via Wikimedia Commons| Amata Niyomsataya

Surin

Elephants roam wild in many places in the province of Surin. The animals have long been part of the place’s defining character that there is an elaborate Elephant Festival being held every November. Pay a visit to the Phanom Sawai Forest Park, and you are bound to share the space with these permanent residents.

Put a broader meaning to your Thailand vacation by volunteering at the Save Elephant Foundation in Surin. If you have seven days to spare, take part in the desire of the province to educate travelers about animal tourism in general.

Wat Sirintornwararam Ubon Ratchathani Thailand
Photo by icon0com from PxHere

Ubon Ratchathani

Ubon Ratchathani is situated in Northeastern Thailand near the Laos border. The Mekong River flows nearby, providing a sense of tranquility to the simple Isan community.

Along the river, there lies an uncanny tourist spot in the form of holes. The Sam Phan Bok rock reef, as translated, is a garden of holes that are three thousand in number.

One of the main attractions in Ubon Ratchathani is The Glowing Temple, featuring an ingenious way of gathering daylight to emit a certain glow at night, which makes up the Tree of Life.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Ubon Ratchathani

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Explore Sam Roi Yot National Park

Hua Hin

Tourists and residents alike often come to Hua Hin. The town is home to many first-class beach resorts, making it a popular destination for families longing to catch a short breather away from the mainland.

It wasn’t this way before. Hua Hin was once highly-regarded as a romantic getaway, especially for couples and lovers with the proliferation of cozy seaside villas and vintage accommodations that primarily cater to the lovestruck.

It is in Hua Hin where you will find the King of Thailand’s summer palace, the Klai Kang Won. If this doesn’t speak enough of the town’s specialness, we don’t know what else will.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Hua Hin

Bang Pa In Royal Palace Ayutthaya

Ayutthaya

Sometime during your reading about Thailand, you may have seen a glimpse of the UNESCO World Heritage city of Ayutthaya through one of its most photographed sites – the Wat Phra Mahathat. On this site, a stone Buddha is seen only with his head amid the roots of a growing tree. Feels familiar now, doesn’t it?

Many of Ayutthaya’s tourist spots are concentrated in Buddhism. Marvel at the Wat Chaiwatthanam and its design, which acts as a blueprint to many temples across Thailand. Visit the Temple of the Reclining Buddha and see the 42-meter high statue in all its glory, usually wrapped in massive orange cloth.

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The City Pillar Shrine Udon Thani
via Wikimedia Commons|Stefan Fussan

Udon Thani

A lot of people regard Udon Thani as a highly-Westernized community. Having been greatly influenced by the movements during the Vietnam War, many establishments that have been erected during the time of war may have paved the way for the “Westernization” of the area.

Put the shopping malls and fancy restaurants aside and take a closer look at the city, and there you’ll see how Thai culture is still evident in Udon Thani. A visit to the Udon Thani Provincial Museum will bring you back to the city’s rich culture and history.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Udon Thani

Maya Bay, Koh Phi Phi
via Flickr | Vyacheslav Argenberg

Phi Phi Islands

You come to Phi Phi Islands for two things: one, to check if the hype about Thai’s most happening destination is real; and two, to come back because once is never enough for such a beauty as this.

Much has been said about the pristine surroundings of Phi Phi Islands in Krabi province – yet we are here to say it again. All of the beaches are pristine, with crystal clear waters that are perfect for snorkelling, cruising and scuba diving.

While most of the visitors intend to spend their time at Koh Phi Phi Don, the smaller island of Koh Phi Phi Leh is a destination worth taking a short boat trip for.

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Ko Samet
via Wikimedia Commons|Bjørn Erik Pedersen

Koh Samet

Koh Samet is less than 3 hours away from Bangkok, making it a popular beach getaway for residents along with Pattaya and Hua Hin. The island – or at least a majority of it – is part of the Khao Laem Ya Mu Ko Samet National Park.

On weekends, Koh Samet transforms into a party destination, with locals traveling

from Bangkok for a night of fire shows at Ploy Talay and barbecues along the beach. Naga Bar sees the most guests, and as the night goes deeper you will stand witness to a crazy night involving body paint and buckets.

WatPhra Singh Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai, dubbed as the “Rose of the North,” is the capital of the Lanna Kingdom. With its favorable location, the city enjoys a cooler climate compared to the rest of Thailand.

There are over 300 temples that can be found in Chiang Mai, one of which is the Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. This 13th century Theravada Buddhist temple is located on the Doi Suthep mountain, made popular by the belief that a piece of Buddha’s shoulder bone is housed here.

When the night falls, find yourself at the Chang Klan Road. Practice your bartering skills and score some unique finds in the daily night market.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Chiang Mai

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Phra Mahathat Kaen Nakhon Temple Kohn Kaen
via Wikimedia Commons| Newsabra

Khon Kaen

Development is on the constant rise in the city of Khon Kaen. It is often regarded as a new town, having only been established two centuries ago. Silk is what put Khon Kaen on the map, producing world-class handwoven Mudmee silk fabrics being made into different types of cloth pieces and handicrafts.

One of the best universities in Northeastern Thailand is found in Khon Kaen. The Khon Kaen University is not only prestigious, but it is also pleasing to the eyes, adorned by a large lake and surrounded by trees. Outside the university and beyond the city are rising cafes serving exceptional local coffee.

Death Railway bridge Kanchanaburi
Image by Tracey Wong from Pixabay

Kanchanaburi

War has greatly shaped the historic charm of Kanchanaburi, with many of its tourist destinations speaking of the events that shaped World War II. Ride a train passing through the Death Railway, an extensive railroad system built by the Prisoners of War in just a matter of 17 days.

Further along, the road, wander through the Hellfire Passage and revisit the difficult times that the workers had to endure in order to build such a steep railway. No construction this hard is free from cruelty-related deaths. For the people who perished during World War II, the Kanchanaburi War Cemetery serves as a fitting memorial.

LOOK HERE: Erawan National Park and Kanchanaburi Small-Group Tour

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Jungles of soppong
via Flickr|Doug Knuth

Soppong

Soppong is nestled in between Pai and Mae Hong Son, aptly regarded as the Caving Capital of Thailand. Its most famous cave is Thom Lot. Visit the cave at night and see thousands of bats and swift birds roaming around the place. Cruise through the Nam Lang River that flows inside Thom Lot.

Caving can occupy a huge chunk of your itinerary, but there is indeed more to Soppong than this. Go trekking, enjoy kayaking, or mingle with the local tribes. Should you find yourself in Soppong on a Tuesday, visit the morning market and eat some traditional breakfast items.

Golden Field Rayong
via Needpix.com |jakk_wong

Rayong

The province of Rayong is a haven of tropical fruits and dried produce. A huge portion of its rich land is dedicated to the cultivation of fruit-bearing plants and trees that make the finest durians, papayas, and mangoes.

Aside from fruits, Rayong also has some of the best seafood in Thailand. Don’t let the opportunity of trying fresh and dried fish pass. Take it up a notch: open a strong bottle of nam pla and savor the richness of this one-of-a-kind fish sauce. Truly, deliciousness sometimes bypasses your sense of smell!

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Rayong

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Mae Sai

The district of Mae Sai is more than just a gateway to the neighboring country of Burma. It is a tourist destination of its own, calling shoppers and nature lovers by their names.

Shop at the Mae Sai market and experience a lively atmosphere of visitors rummaging through unique finds, bargaining with vendors, and enjoying the open-air market.

For an overdose of natural wonders, head to the forest park called Tham Luang – Khun Nam Nang Norn. This eight-square kilometer protected area is filled with views of rolling hills and rich wildlife.

Limestone rocks in the Khao Sok National Park Surat Thani
via Wikimedia Commons|JayExpat

Surat Thani

Why should you visit the province of Surat Thani? If you observe what most travelers do, you shall discover that the province is merely a huge transport complex for everyone who’s en route to more popular islands on the East coast.

Those who intentionally stop and admire the beauty of Surat Thani are often surprised that the province – and the city with the same name – offer so much to the traveling public.

Rent a scooter and pay a visit to the Monkey Training College. Here you’ll find farmers training Thailand’s monkeys to harvest coconuts. If the ‘students’ like you, they just might ride the scooter and hold onto you for a quick tour!

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big budda koh samui thailand
Image by Terry Bouris from Pixabay

Ko Samui

Being Thailand’s second-largest island, Ko Samui promises a lot even to the most discerning traveler. A trip to this gem belonging to the Chumphon Archipelago is filled with plenty of diving opportunities amid crystal clear waters and coral reef gardens.

On land, pay a visit to the popular Wat Phra Yai, home to the twelve-meter high golden Buddha depicted in a sitting position. Deep in the jungle, chase the Na Muang Waterfalls and swim in their scenic pools.

Come night time, pick your spot in one of Chaweng Beach’s vibrant bars and restaurants. This five-kilometer strip transforms into an open-air dining destination filled with bright lights and live music.

WHAT TO DO? Spend quality time with elephants at an ethically-run elephant jungle sanctuary.

Koh Nang Yuan

via Flickr| Joan Fruitet

Koh Nang Yuan

Peeking from the nearby Koh Tao is the tropical island of Koh Nang Yuan. As it is private property, access is limited, and a fee of 100 Baht is collected at the entrance. From 10 AM to 5 PM, the island welcomes curious visitors to go see what the recent hype is all about.

Diving is at its prime in Koh Nang Yuan. Get in early as more people are discovering the same precious experience you’re after right now.

An easy fifteen-minute trek through the paved forest will bring you to a viewpoint that shows the whole island at its best angle. From the top, you’ll see how the three islands that makeup Koh Nang Yuan are naturally connected
by sandbars.

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Similan Islands Thailand
via Flickr|Fred von Lohmann

Similan Islands

Eleven gorgeous islands comprise the 140-square kilometer Similan paradise. All these are part of the massive Mu Koh Similan National Park, a place thriving with natural formations and exotic wildlife.

The vast Andaman Sea provides an unmatched marine playground to visitors who come to swim, snorkel and dive. Island No. 5 is a local secret shared to all, a place where Anita’s Reef houses a garden of eels and so much more.

Consider a guided day tour when visiting Similan Islands; stay for a day more and experience sleeping in a bungalow set in the midst of such a rich ecosystem.

Phi Phi Island , Phuket Thailand
via Flickr| Jeff Gunn

Phuket

Phuket needs no fancy introduction. This large Thai island has all the ingredients to a true tropical getaway. Over the years, it has efficiently established itself as one of the Asian destinations to visit – not without some infamy along the way, of course.

Then and now, Phuket is truly the Pearl of the Andaman Sea. Be adventurous: hop on a Songthaew and drop yourself off one of the pristine beaches that will catch your eye. Be one with nature and explore the virgin forests of the Khao Phra Taew National Park.

Be ready to give in and see the hype surrounding Patong Beach. Witness the Bangla Road nightlife come to play and unwind, Phuket-style.

FIND HOTEL DEALS: Best Hotels in Phuket

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Ko Tao
via Flickr|Retinafunk

Ko Tao

Gone are the days when Ko Tao used to be a simple refuge of seafarers who get caught by stormy winds. This island is now a well-loved tourist spot frequented by scuba divers enamored with its highly accessible diving sites.

Go south and hike your way to the John Suwan Viewpoint. After twenty minutes of traversing the green surrounding, you will be welcomed by stunning views, especially of the Chalok Baan Kao Bay and the Shark Bay.

When it’s time to relax, head to a local bar and chase the sunset at Sairee Beach. Witness a unique play in colors, the sky mixing shades of pink and orange signaling the equally vibrant lights of the beachfront shops to be put on – until another diving day dawns.

WHAT TO DO? Try out scuba diving and tick it off your bucket list

Ko Lanta
via Wikimedia Commons|dronepicr

Ko Lanta

A lot will describe Ko Lanta to you as a destination that is somewhere in the middle – not too crowded, not too secluded, somehow rugged, somehow developed. As you read between the lines, it must be said aloud: Ko Lanta is anything but mediocre.

A stay in Ko Lanta is inexplicably blissful. Explore the 30-kilometer short island by motorbike, and you won’t help to wonder how such an enchanting destination can remain hidden in most newsfeeds. A small selfish part of us wishes it stays so.

It’s quite a given that a good fraction of your stay will be dedicated to the unassumingly beautiful Long Beach, drinking one fresh coconut juice after another and mingling with like-minded serenity-loving visitors.

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