Thailand Vacations

One of the most notorious destinations in Asia, Thailand is a dazzling puzzle comprising turquoise lagoons, tremendous beaches, breathtaking unique seascapes, traditional villages, ancient temples, ruins, modern noisy and crowded cities. Your Thailand vacations will be simply fulfilled with just about everything your imagination may imagine. Besides spectacular sea views, beaches and islands, Thailand is also known as the “Land of Smiles”, an old habit that reflects today into the warm and welcoming culture that is present here.

Thailand Vacation Rentals and Boutique Hotels

Thailand Vacations: Things to see while on vacation in Thailand

Thailand Geography

Positioned in the south-eastern part of the Asian continent as the heart of the region, Thailand has natural borders with its neighbors: mountains with Myanmar, Mekong River as border with Laos and partly with Cambodia, Dongrak Mountains forming the rest of the border with Cambodia. The Thailand’s boundaries are settled on the tropics, thus under the tropical climate regime, with high temperatures and monsoon rains during May, June and July. The Thai central plain is abundantly fed by the Chao Phraya River, giving birth to extensive rice cultures that became the “rice bowl of Asia”.

Along the Isthmus of Kra the landscape features mangrove swamps. A splendid collection of beaches and islands is displayed throughout the trimming line of the Gulf of Thailand and Andaman Sea, among which Phuket shines as the most popular. Aforetime an important trading route, nowadays a great tourist itinerary, the Thai coast hide spectacular national parks and wildlife reserves, historical ruins, luxuriant forests, magnificent jungle waterfalls and lovely beaches.

The Thai islands are internationally famed primarily for their glorious beaches, some of them for the heaven like scenery and others for the party facilities. Since there is a plethora of islands to choose from for Thailand vacation, we are just going to name the most important with their most prominent characteristics.

Ko Samui, the first Thai destination for beach tourism, owes its popularity to the relaxing vibe, white sand beaches, affordable accommodation, jungle waterfalls, secret coves and virgin beaches. Ko Samui, also, hosts some yearly festivals like the Ten Stars Samui Art Party, Buffalo Fighting Festival and traditional fairs that attract arrays of tourists. Sport enthusiasts will find interesting the Samui Regatta or the Triathlon annual event.

Ko Pha Ngan is somehow an antagonist destination, on one side a peaceful place with isolated virgin beaches, serene atmosphere, reasonable luxury resorts, meditation retreats and spas. On the other side, a major entertainment venue in the region, particularly during high season, thanks to the legendary by now Full Moon Parties. A Thailand vacation should absolutely include Ko Pha Ngan, if not for one of the reasons listed above, for a sunbath or moon bath and some swimming on the world-renowned Hat Rin beach.

Another popular tourist destination for a Thailand vacation is Phuket. And it is among the most popular destinations because of its picturesque beaches, shopping facilities and flourishing nightclubs, golf courses and historical monuments. It’s worth mentioning that diving and snorkeling here is simply exceptional.

Ko Tao (Turtle Island) is internationally renowned as scuba diving mecca and is a perfect destination for hikers and rock climbers. But, Ko Tao is most probably best acquainted for Ko Nangyuan, a famous and postcard ideal group of 15 islands interconnected through white sand ribbons.

Ko Phi Phi is truly a slice of Eden, with its paradisiac white sand beaches, tropical stunning sea views and sharp rocky cliffs floating graciously in emerald sparkling waters and lagoons. The twin bays of Ao Loh Dalum and Ao Ton Sai are a scenic, heavily photographed spot, inviting to rest and reverie.

Thailand Landmarks

Having a rich history behind, the Thai kingdom preserves temple complexes, palaces, monuments, ruins and museums. Not to mention the abundant wild life and gorgeous park reserves, tropical islands, emerald waters, each gifted with natural wonders from waterfalls to coral reefs. A Thailand vacation must absolutely include as many landmarks of the area as possible. Depending on preferences some of them might be:

Wat Arun, also called Temple of Dawn is one of Bangkok’s most ancient temples nestled in grandeur and magnificence. The temple conceived next to the Chao Phraya River is a symbol of the Khmer architecture, equally splendid under the bright sun light or under stars shining lights. Its impressive 80 m high tower or parang, is the highest in the country and is entirely covered with pieces of colored Chinese porcelain, offering stunning views over the river and Bangkok. Wat Arun is one of the most revered Thai temples, as being among the six-highest ranking Royal Temples.

Wat Phra Kaew, also named the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, is established inside the Grand Palace and considered to be the most important in Thailand. Wat Phra Kaew dates to 1785 and shelters the Emerald Buddha, an impressive Buddha statue hand sculpted in a single piece of jade. The temple includes also pagodas and holy constructions adorned with statues.

Wat Pho or “Temple of the Reclining Buddha”, the largest and oldest in Bangkok, the highest ranking among Thai Royal Temples, is hosting the famed gigantic reclining Buddha. The Buddha has no less than 46 m length and 15m high, is plated in gold and symbolizes the passing of Buddha to Nirvana following death. The Temple of the Reclining Buddha exhibits the most complex collection of Buddhas in Thailand, with over 1000 images, gathered from abandoned temples of Sukhothai and Ayutthaya. This temple is considered to be the place of birth of the Thai massage and has the best massage school in Thailand.

Wat Rong Khun or The White Temple is a newer temple erected in 1997, in Chiang Rai and gains quickly notoriety as one of the most photographed and noticed temples in Thailand. As the name states, the temple is entirely white, symbolizing Buddha’s purity, and pieces of glass were inserted in the gypsum, symbolizing Buddha’s wisdom.

A Thailand vacation would be incomplete without visiting the Khao Yai National Park, the most popular national park in the country and the third largest, a UNESCO world heritage site. Khao Yai is a perfect place for wildlife watching, houses about 300 birds species, one of the largest hornbills population in Thailand, mammals including elephants and bears and also reptiles like Chinese ratsnake, Reticulated python or Ahaetulla prasina. Khao Yai dispose of about 50 km of hiking trails, many easy accessible waterfalls, among which Haew Narok Waterfall, having 150 m altitude.

Erawan National Park is one of the most popular in Thailand, thanks to a seven-stage waterfall that is its major attraction. You can climb the waterfall and even have a bath into these turquoise green natural pools or explore the caves that this gorgeous park hides inside.

Thailand Culture

Besides spectacular sea views, beaches and islands, Thailand is also known as the “Land of Smiles”, an old habit that reflects today into the warm and welcoming culture that is present here.

Thailand is a world of diversity, includes Indian cultural influences, Chinese cultural influences and other Southeast Asian influences. Being the most Buddhist country on earth, 95% of the population belongs to Theravada Buddhism, the Buddhist religion and life philosophy has had a tremendous impact on the Thai culture. Thai people show a strong desire for “refinement” meaning they make efforts to avoid rude or inappropriate behavior and their typical attitude is serene, smiling and friendly.

Thai people respect the notion of personal space and manifesting affection in public is not acceptable in general, just between family members or close same sex friends. Avoid touching someone else head, as this is taboo in Thailand, avoid pointing at things or persons, it is considered rude, avoid using left hand for passing things. Great respect is paid to elder persons and Buddhist monks. Among the most prominent values of the Thai culture are the self-discipline, respect and non-conflict.

The population of Thailand shares a strong cultural identity and traditions, impulsed by government, today the local beliefs, celebrations, cuisine and arts play a strengthen role.

Family is the focal point of the Thai life and extended families are encountered quite often, children are taught to respect the family and maintain close relations. Women are respected in the Thai culture and equality of rights is one of its core values.

Sanuk is an important pillar of the Thai culture, it encompasses the humor and the playfulness as way of life. La joie de vivre is crucial for the Thai life style. A concept that the whole world should embrace too.