A tourist’s guide to the Land of Smiles: helping you prepare for your first holiday in Thailand

Does discovering the hidden gems of Southeast Asia sound appealing to you? With a complete change of scenery, a rich past, lush nature and delicious, varied gastronomy, Thailand is a destination full of unforgettable memories.

Discovering Thailand, An Exceptional Nature-Driven Country

Historically known as the Kingdom of Siam, travellers enjoy discovering the many aspects of Thailand from its mountainous boundaries in the North, all the way to the white sandy beaches in the South. This Buddhist country has an amazing array of flora and fauna on its beaches, mountains and in the rainforests. In Thailand, you will find state-of-the-art cities like the vibrant capital Bangkok, paradise islands like Ko Samui, Koh Lanta and Koh Tao, over 30,000 decorative Buddhist temples and even floating markets.

Many ethnic groups live in the mountains in the north of the country. Chiang Mai is the most attractive city in the region, as it is the home of the remarkable Doi Inthanon National Park. In this part of Thailand, you may also have the chance to experience touching moments: the city offers many excursions to the surrounding elephant sanctuaries.

In central Thailand, where most of the population lives, near the great Thai river Chao Phraya, you can enjoy a breath of fresh air on the great plains with their endless rice fields. Don’t miss out on the Erawan National Park and its 7 waterfalls either!

Southern Thailand offers very different but just as heavenly landscapes, such as national parks and exotic vegetation. To make the most of all the small islands, we suggest you rent a scooter, the most popular local means of transport and practical for all terrains. Southern Thailand is also the perfect place for hiking or just relaxing on the beach. The crystal-clear turquoise waters of the coastline make it feel like the perfect paradise, with private beaches ensuring an unforgettable experience.

Or why not go exploring in Phang Nga Bay among the caves and towering limestone karsts that jut out of the sea? Look for the playful gibbons, or watch the majestic birds spread their wings above your head.

Phuket province is a popular tourist destination, as travelling there is very easy. Families can enjoy the change of scenery and the variety of activities, while younger people come to party and celebrate the full moon.

About Thailand

Population: approximately 69 million inhabitants
Area: 513,120 km²
Capital: Bangkok, with 8.5 million inhabitants (14 million in the metropolis)
Languages: Thai
Currency: Baht
Religions: Buddhism (almost 94%), Islam and Christianity

What To Do In Thailand? Dive Into The Local Culture

Thailand, often referred to as the Land of Smiles, is known for the warm hospitality of its inhabitants and its beautiful nature. You will find yourself surrounded by lush flora, opulent royal palaces, historical ruins, Buddhist temples and numerous statues of Buddha anywhere in Thailand.

Buddhist temples are open to everyone, but to enter you must take off your shoes as a form of respect. It is possible to meditate in these places, but you can also learn a lot from them. Wat Pho, one of the largest and oldest temples in the capital is among the most magnificent. You’ll come across more than 300 buildings if you visit Chiang Mai, while in the Phuket Province, the Wat Chalong temple and the Big Buddha are must-sees for sure. In Thailand there are 30,000 temples to visit, all very different, you really are spoilt for choice!

Did you know?

During the dry season from November to May, you can go diving in some of the most beautiful spots in Southeast Asia. Thailand offers a variety of choices. During this time of the year, the underwater visibility is exceptional, especially on the Andaman coast. You can dive all year round in other places such as the Gulf of Thailand, a very popular destination for all underwater ecosystem lovers!

Thailand, Land Of Celebrations And Flavours

Thailand is also a country where you can indulge in the flavours of Thai cuisine! You couldn’t possibly visit Thailand without trying its renowned worldwide food.

During your stay, don’t miss the chance to try out the local produce. Discover the many colourful and savoury meat, fish and even vegetable dishes. Take your time to try the delicious local street food; you’ll certainly get a portion and a half! As well as trying these Thai specialities at a really good price, you also get to meet the locals and share their culture – a privileged and authentic moment.

Your culinary journey wouldn’t be complete without a trip to a hallmark experience on a floating market though, would it? This is a local way of life; one you must discover. Thai people exchange goods, flowers and produce, with the most amazing colours and smells, in an unbelievable amount of rowing boats.

You’ll be able to enjoy a Full Moon Party in the Phuket Province, but you can also take part in releasing floating lanterns at night, during the Loy Krathong Festival of Light.

Did you know?

Sometimes in Thailand, it is better to go by boat. This is the case in the south of the country and around Phuket Island, where you can admire the wild coastline and wildlife from the water.

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