So you’ve got a date with Thailand, now what?
For how long? Slightly less than 6 months, teacher training, teaching English and traveling
First Impressions: If you could only do one thing in Thailand….. SONGKRAN in Chiang Mai
Songkran in Chiang Mai would be similar to Mardi Gras in New Orleans in the sense that it is celebrated throughout the country, but to really do it right, you have to go to THE spot. It celebrates the Buddhist New Year and falls in the middle of April each year- which also happens to be the hottest part of the year. It is a giant water fight that lasts for three days. Everyone crowds the streets with super soakers and buckets of water having the TIME OF THEIR LIFE. From locals to backpackers, children to adults- it is fun for anyone and everyone.
Will there be a second date?
Thailand will always hold a special place in my heart. The people are so kind and welcoming, the food is INCREDIBLE and the country itself has a lot of variety to offer. But living there I experienced a lot of the frustrations that you don’t get when you’re traveling and I struggled with some of the cultural differences. I will definitely be back one day, but I’m not quite ready yet.
Budget: Accommodation- ฿ 150-950 THB ($5-30 USD depending on what part of the country you’re in) /night Restaurant- ฿30-40 THB ($1 USD) for local thai food; ฿300+ THB ($9-10 USD) for Western food Beer- ฿70 THB for a big Tiger or Chang from 7 Eleven ($2 USD)
What to bring: Clothing appropriate for temples (covering knees and shoulders), sunscreen, bug spray, baby powder (for how sweaty you’ll get)
When to go: Avoid the North (Chiang Mai and Pai etc.) from the end of February to early April because it’s burning season. The air is going to be dirty and polluted and you’ll probably want to wear a mask. March – May it’s going to be REALLY hot and May – Sept is the highest rainfall, peaking from August-September. October through January tend to be dier and cooler, but as always, it’ll depend on what you want to do and where you want to go, as the weather varies in different parts of the country.
Visas: Not if your stay is less than 30 days (For Americans)
Vaccinations: Yellow fever if you’re arriving from certain countries
***Always check beforehand. Information can change so make sure you’re checking yourself for up to date information on Visas, vaccinations, and safety recommendations from your government! US citizens can check HERE***
Hello- Sa-wah-dee-kah (women)/ Sa-wah-dee-krap (men) Thank-you – kap-kuhn-kah (women) / kap-kuhn-krap (men) Spicy- ped A little spicy- ped nid noi not spicy- mai ped Rice- kao Fried rice- kao pad
What did I miss?
Phuket- this was by design. I have heard that Phuket is swarming with tourists and is extremely dirty.
Surat Thani- Many have to come here as it’s a travel hub in the south but other than that no reason to come here.
Everything else I just didn’t have time for!
Koh Phangang- The full moon party is a party unlike any other. Filled with drinks, drugs, and TONS of people it’s a bucket list item for many backpackers in Thailand. This happens during the full moon, obviously, so once a month. Check the schedule to see when it’ll fall. They also offer half-moon parties. The island itself is supposed to be amazing, so make sure to spend time on the island beyond the partying and if you’re not into the partying- come during off times as prices and crowds are much, much lower
Koh Tao- Would love to make it here to get certified to SCUBA dive. It’s one of the cheapest places in the world to get certified and from what I hear great diving as well as a great island itself.
Koh Lipe- The pictures look unreal.
Koh Lanta- Supposed to be beautiful and a bit less crowded than the other islands.
My favorite part: The food. Thailand has incredible food that I could eat forever. From amazing soups to curries to green teas laced with diabetic levels of sugar, everything you eat here will blow your mind.