Thailand tempts every type of traveler with pristine beaches, tropical forests, traditional villages and cosmopolitan cities.

The historic, Sino-Portuguese architecture of Old Phuket Town is balanced by the bustling, 21st century capital city of Bangkok. Phuket, known for picturesque beaches rich with marine life, is a tropical idyll favored by the backpack set, while the sea-kissed island of Koh Samui enchants the luxury jet set. With diverse cityscapes and lush landscapes, Thailand comes by its “land of smiles” motto honestly.

Baht
Thai
Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK), Don Mueang International Airport (DMK), Phuket International Airport (HKT), Samui International Airport (USM)

DISCOVERIES

Floating Markets
Damnoen Saduak Canal, Ratchaburi
tea

Bangkok’s many canals are full of floating markets, where vendors hawk fruits, vegetables, traditional foods, and wares on long wooden boats. The oldest market is located outside the city, about 80 kilometers southwest, on Damnoen Saduak Canal in the Ratchaburi province, and the lively, traditional scene is worth the trip. For a canalside experience in the city, visit Baan Silapin (or, The Artists’ House) and the picturesque surrounding canal neighborhood in the Thonburi district.

http://www.tourismthailand.org/Attraction/Damnoen-Saduak-Floating-Market–989

http://www.bangkok.com/magazine/artist-house.htm#

Wat Pho
2 Sanamchai Road, Grand Palace Subdistrict, Pranakorn District, Bangkok
Wat-Pho_700x380

Located just south of the Grand Palace, the Temple of the Reclining Buddha is one of Bangkok’s largest and oldest temples, featuring the 150-foot-long, gold-plated statue of the lounging Buddha. Once a school for medicine, the working temple is home to the famous Thai massage style found all over Thailand, and massages can be booked at the Wat Pho Massage School.

http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thailand/bangkok/sights/religious/wat-pho

The Jam Factory
41/1-5 The Jam Factory, Charoennakorn Rd., Khlong San
The-Jam-Factory_700x380

Perched on the Chao Phraya river, a collection of old warehouses have been renovated and transformed into one of Bangkok’s hippest hangouts. Part art gallery, part music venue, part waterfront café and bar, part bookstore, part garden, part home décor boutique, this stylish concept space distinctly epitomizes modern Bangkok.

https://www.facebook.com/TheJamFactoryBangkok/

http://www.bangkokriver.com/shop/the-jam-factory/

Vimanmek Mansion
16 Rajvithi Rd, Dusit, Bangkok
Vimanmek-Mansion_700x380

The largest golden teak structure in the world, this ornate mansion was built by King Rama V in 1900 as a temporary residence during the renovation of the Grand Palace. Its unique blend of delicate Victorian and Thai architecture is especially impressive. Set within the Dusit Palace complex, it features 31 rooms of period furnishings, ivory, silverware, and ceramics collections, and historic photographs of the royal family.

http://www.vimanmek.com/en/

Sirinat National Park
Sirinat National Park, 89/1, Mu 1, Ban Nai Yang, Sakhu Sub-district, Amphur, Thalang, Phuket
Sirinat National Park

Encompassing much of the northwestern tip of the island, Sirinat National Park covers 90 square kilometers of pristine ocean and land. Some of Phuket’s most picturesque beaches are in the park – such as Nai Thon, Nai Yang, and Mai Khao – as are a number of mangrove forests, hiking trails, and coral reefs. This stunning landscape is also a destination for giant sea turtles, who venture here each winter to lay their eggs.

http://www.dnp.go.th/parkreserve/asp/style1/default.asp?npid=90&lg=2

Talad Kaset Night Market
Soi Thavonwongwong, near Robinson’s, in Phuket Town
Talad Kaset Night Market

Talad Kaset, the night market alongside Robinson’s Department Store in Phuket Town, is an essential part of the island’s local life. One of many regular markets held throughout the island, it’s the largest and most frequent, open every evening. Vendors set up mobile kitchens, the intoxicating aromas of Muslim, Chinese, and Thai ingredients wafting up from charcoal grills.

http://www.phuket.com/phuket-magazine/talad-kaset-night-market.htm#

https://www.angloinfo.com/phuket/how-to/phuket-lifestyle-shopping

Similan Islands
Similan Islands

Thick gumtree and bamboo forests, fringed by white sands, cover the rock formations of this stunning archipelago off Thailand’s west coast. However, beneath the crystalline waters that surround these nine granite islands lies even more dramatic scenery. Renowned as one of the world’s most diverse dive sites, the Similan Islands are home to hundreds of types of reef fish, rays, and other marine life, making their homes among coral walls, enormous boulders, caves, and sea fans.

http://www.dnp.go.th/parkreserve/asp/style1/default.asp?npid=212&lg=2

http://www.similanislands.org/

Ang Thong Marine National Park
Ang Thong Marine National Park

Ang Thong, or “golden basin,” exemplifies the vision of a tropical island paradise. The 42-island archipelago, a protected sanctuary, reveals a wealth of hidden waterfalls, secluded coves, and mangrove lagoons on idyllic islands like Mae Ko. Herons egrets, sea eagles, and turtles all make their home here. Explore the extraordinary variety of wildlife and stunning scenery with snorkeling, kayaking, and sightseeing excursions.

http://www.angthongmarinepark.com/

Na Muang Waterfall
Off Route 4169 south of the mountains between Nathon and Hua Thanon
Na Muang Waterfall

In the middle of the island, tucked away amidst Koh Samui’s jungle-covered hills, the tallest waterfall on the island cascades across rocks and into a secluded pool. The name Na Muang refers to the rich purple-bronze color of the rock faces over which the water tumbles. The lower part of the fall, easily reached on foot, drops into a pool that’s popular for swimming, while the steeper, higher fall can be reached by a hike or an elephant ride.

http://www.kosamui.com/attractions/namuang-waterfall.htm

http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thailand/ko-samui/sights/lakes-rivers-waterfalls/nam-tok-na-muang

Bophut
Bophut

Located on Koh Samui’s quieter northern shores, the heart of this charming town is the picturesque Fisherman’s Village, a collection of well-preserved, 19th-century Chinese-Thai houses that are now home to gourmet restaurants and hip boutiques. The town also boasts one of the island’s best beaches – and it’s less crowded than some of the southern ones.

http://www.kohsamuipoint.com/attractions/fishermans-village/

http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thailand/ko-samui/sights/neighbourhoods-villages/bo-phut

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