Jordan and I were able to spend about a week and a half in Thailand. We enjoyed our time in the country and hope you have a great time in Thailand also. It’s practically where backpacking was invented, back in the 1970s, and it’s a rite of passage to travel through these days. Thailand has a lot to offer to a wide group of people: 20-year-old partiers, retired culture and history aficionados, and everything in between. We met plenty of travelers that were passing through for their third, fourth, or even fifth time.
So here are little nuggets of advice from us to you.
- Book train trips several days ahead of time. It’s difficult to book online (and only possible through third-party companies) but do your best if you have a strict schedule to keep.
- Don’t miss the north! I know southern Thailand is calling with its beaches and booze and jaw-dropping island views, but northern Thailand has amazing food, gorgeous mountains, friendly people, and diverse cultures. Chiang Mai was our favorite stop in Thailand and we recommend a visit.
- Do your best to research elephant tours, indigenous people tours, and the like before you go on a trip. I absolutely don’t want to guilt trip anyone, but sometimes these tours are good and sometimes these tours are awful. It would be a shame to spend a lot of money on a tour that you end up hating yourself for taking part of, so do your best to know what you’re getting into before you book the tour.
- If you’re interested in traveling the entire peninsula, it is possible to start in Chiang Mai and take a train all the through Western Malaysia and arrive in Singapore. It’s not a one-ticket journey, so you will have to book legs at a time, but it’s possible.
- The taxi drivers and bus hawkers in southern Thailand can get pretty aggressive. One yelled in Jordan’s face because Jordan said he wasn’t going anywhere yet and didn’t need a taxi. We’ve never had that happen to us before in our travels. Most tuk tuk and taxi drivers are fine, but know that they’re charging an arm and a leg for their services (especially at the ferry for the Phi Phi Islands).
Have fun in Thailand!
Has anyone traveled there before? Got any tips for the rest of us?