Thailand has long been a traveller’s dream; full of exotic places to visit, misty mountains, beautiful temples, culture, history, cuisine, amazing scenery, wildlife, and of course, those famous Full Moon parties, and whilst it is certainly a well-trodden backpacking route, it is one which will remain in circulation for a long time to come.
If you have two weeks to spare and you’re thinking of heading off to explore some of Thailand, then the following rough itinerary should be able to point you in the right direction. Of course, you’re certainly not going to see all of Thailand in two weeks, this is too large a country, with far too much to see and explore within such a short space of time, but you can at least give yourself a large snapshot of what Thailand is about, and in the future you could always return and explore a little more.
You will probably fly into Bangkok, as the largest international airport is situated in this busy and frenetic city. Stay in a hotel for a couple of nights and get your bearings, get over your jetlag, and head out and explore this wonderful city. Yes, it’s loud and yes, some of it is brash, but it has to be experienced. The night-life is legendary, the shopping is amazing, and there are also some fantastic temples to explore, such as Wat Pho.
Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand
Eight hours away from Bangkok by road you will arrive in the gateway city of Chiang Mai. This is a popular destination for those wanting to explore the mountainous northern part of the country, with its dramatic scenery, hill tribes, and outdoor adventures. You will also find many digital nomads working in Chiang Mai, as this is one of the cheapest places to live and work in this way.
This is Thailand’s second largest city, however there is a very laid-back vibe around the place. There are some fantastic restaurants to try some authentic cuisine, and some beautiful temples to check out, like the stunning Doi Suthep.
Pai, Northern Thailand
From Chiang Mai you can head to Pai, one of the most scenic destinations in the country. This is a popular backpacking destination, so you will probably meet lots of new people exploring, just like you are. The vibe is laid-back, and the mountainous scenery is simply jaw-dropping.
The Thai Islands
You spent the first week being the intrepid explorer, so you are entitled to a bit of chill out time in literal paradise. You will no doubt be aware that Thailand is known for its stunning beaches, and the islands are dripping in a total castaway vibe.
From Chiang Mai you can fly to Koh Samui with one flight per day, and it takes just an hour and a half to arrive in paradise. This is obviously one of the most famous islands in the country, with those stunning beaches we were talking about, and the chance to hop to other nearby islands, such as Koh Phagnan, with those famous Full Moon parties, and Phuket, with its loud and brash nightlife.
The islands have many opportunities for fun and relaxation, with nature walks, diving, snorkelling, beach time, and temples. Don’t be fooled into thinking there is no culture and tradition on these islands, because it is everywhere you look, despite the tourism.
So, that’s it, your two weeks in Thailand are up. When will you return?