Thailand is extremely popular as a travel destination and we can see why. It’s simply amazing! As we explored it from north to south, we got to see all of its beauty. The country has so much to offer – beautiful beaches, great nightlife, stunning green views and nature, rich wildlife, incredible culture and (of course) some of the best food in Southeast Asia.
We are Sapir and Daniel from the Instagram account @dream.salty. We’re a travel couple who have visited 36 countries together so far! We love taking photos in creative ways and always try to be unique and different from our locations and background. The mix of travel and photography gave us the platform to share our creativity and endless imagination.
Recently, we travelled to Thailand and wanted to see as much as possible. Daniel went there already (before our trip) and it was Sapir’s first visit. We didn’t want to miss anything! We started our trip from the north side in a city called Chiang Mai. This city of culture was the perfect introduction to Thailand with lots of temples and an amazing night market.
Our Itinerary in Thailand: From Chiang Mai to Phuket
We continued to Pai – a small hippie town 3 hours from Chiang Mai. Pai was amazing too! It was a great way to start our trip and we loved the free vibes and hippie feel of this town. We took the time to explore the area, visiting waterfalls and hot springs, and mainly enjoying the chilled nightlife that Pai offers.
After exploring the north, we decided to head down to the islands. The first island we visited was Koh Phangan where we stayed for a week before the Full Moon Party, so the island was less crowded. Koh Phangan was brilliant and the beaches there were some of the best in Thailand! You really feel like you’re on a secluded island paradise.
From Koh Phangan, we moved to Koh Samui which we loved too. Koh Samui is more crowded than Koh Phangan but it was still very nice. We took a speed boat from Koh Samui to Koh Phangan for the full moon night so we got the best of both worlds – staying on both islands when they were less crowded and still attending the Full Moon Party.
Once we left the islands, we went up to Khao Sok National Park which is located slightly north of the islands in the south of Thailand. Khao Sok was amazing – we loved it! It’s a beautiful area filled with jungles, rainforests, rivers and incredible views. Next on our Thailand trip was a couple of days spent in Krabi, Phuket and finishing up in Bangkok.
The Best Travel Destinations in Thailand
Like every travel destination, it’s almost impossible to choose one place that we love the most because they all have their magic and Thailand was no different.
Pai was really special as it reminded us of a four month trip we did through Central America, which we loved. It gave us the same feeling we had there – being more of a free, laid back backpacker atmosphere. It’s something that you don’t get in all of the destinations in Thailand.
Second on our list of special places in Thailand was definitely Khao Sok National Park. The views there were some of the most beautiful we have ever seen and we literally felt like we were in some sort of Jurassic Park environment.
One of the best islands in our opinion was Koh Phangan. The beach next to our hotel was awesome. It had giant rocks like in the Seychelles and clear turquoise water. Another feature of Koh Phangan was the fact that the island wasn’t super crowded and you could always find a private spot.
During the day, we drove around the island in our scooters and found some amazing beaches. One of them was a sandbar that formed the shape of a whale tail in the middle of the ocean. Koh Phangan was a great island, we absolutely loved it and recommend it to everyone as an alternative to some of the more over-crowded Thai islands.
Why Thailand is Called the Land of Smiles
We love meeting locals when we travel and Thailand was no exception! The people here are so nice and friendly. Funnily enough, we had an amazing experience with a couple of Thai people who ran a pharmacy in Koh Phangan. We bought a sim card to use Wifi on our phones and ended up running out of money on the sim card.
The website was all in Thai and we couldn’t understand how to use it. We went into the pharmacy and asked if they could find the button to switch it into English. In the end, they helped us for 30 minutes, translated everything and even charged our phone with money from their account – because you need a Thai account to charge a sim card.
Although it was such a small thing, they were so nice and we felt so humbled meeting them. Every local person we got into a conversation with was super friendly and kind. We loved the Thai people and it makes sense why Thailand is known as the Land of Smiles.
Our Travel Tips for Thailand
Our first tip for Thailand as a travel destination would be: don’t listen to other people’s recommendations. I know that sounds contradictory as you’re reading our travel tips but try to find out things for yourself.
People have different tastes and enjoy different things. Sometimes people will tell you to pass on a place because they didn’t like it. But maybe you will like it – so check it out for yourself. There’s so much to see and do.
Thailand is also a place where bargaining is a part of daily life. It’s a big part of the culture and people are ready to negotiate with you on prices.
The Thai people are gentle and Thai culture does not believe in raising your voice over small matters. If you raise your voice and get angry, when bartering at the shops for example, they may laugh as a way to calm the situation and to avoid being disrespectful.
We had so many great memories from our trip! Thailand is a place that is impossible not to have great memories. One special moment for us was when we were in the north of Thailand visiting natural hot springs. This place was filled with giant, colourful butterflies. As we sat there, in this magical and heavenly place, a butterfly came and sat on Sapir’s finger.
It was incredible and we felt so connected to nature in this moment. I think that small memory is something we will cherish for a lifetime. Thanks for reading our article on why Thailand is still an amazing travel destination!