Thailand highlights - Indochina Travel

Bangkok – The Royal Grand Place

For any first time experience in Asia, Bangkok is truly an assault on all the senses of every description: a riot of colors, smells, sights, sounds, tastes and touches. A bustling metropolis of some 10 million people will show its most exhilarating and exciting experience. Once here, travelers will be attracted by the glamour of Bangkok by night with amazing illuminated monuments and enjoy the sights and sounds of this dynamic city in day time by visiting renowned Wat Po. Full of great things to see, Bangkok offers grandeur and magnificent golden shrines include the Royal Grand Palace, the chanting and walking silently Buddhist monks, the traditional Thai way of life at the bustling Damnoen Saduak floating market or a glorious cruise out of central Bangkok through scenic landscapes it has to offer.

Chiang Rai – The Golden Triangle

Further to the North East lies the province of Chiang Rai. Founded in 13rd century, Thailand’s most northern city, Chiang Rai worth the journey to such a destination with special architecture and history in a mix of Thai and Burmese styles. Here is where you see a variety of impressive attractions include the notorious Golden Triangle where the 3 countries of Thailand, Myanmar and Laos meet at the confluence of the Mekong and Ruak rivers; the Northernmost point of Thailand in Mae Sai, where you can cross into Burma for a tour of the town of Tachilek, and shop for some excellent bargains in the market there; add on an afternoon boat ride on the Mekong River and you can visit Laos too – visit all three countries in one day!

Chiang Mai – The most charming city

Known as the most charming city of Thailand, the Northern city of Chiang Mai is where ancient wonders coexist with modern Thai style. Chiang Mai is a really unique place, very much on the tourist trail with all the convenience that affords but with the warm, welcoming atmosphere of those rare unspoiled secret spots you all search for when you travel. It is a place still very much in touch with its past, a wonderfully rich living culture, sincerely warm and friendly people, ancient traditions and festivals that punctuate the year with color and wonder, a lush fertile region that provide a delicious and varied cuisines. Chiang Mai also offers a wide variety of options from world class golf – there are 5 excellent courses within 45minutes from the city – through soft adventure to the more sedate and traditional such as shopping from Chiang Mai’s many artisans, temple tours, cooking classes and massage-spa.

Krabi – Lovely beaches & off chore islands

Krabi province lies further to the South, and offers a selection of beaches to the east of the town on the mainland. Ao Nang is the most famous and well established of its beach resort areas, but the hotels and beaches on the Railay promontory offer even more seclusion. Krabi offers fine beaches and lovely offshore islands. The local government here strictly controls matters to preserve the natural beauty of the area, banning jet skis, motorized water sports and such. The islands of Phi Phi and up and coming Koh Lanta also fall within Krabi’s borders, although these both take some effort in getting to. From Krabi Airport, the transfer to Lanta can take 3 to 4 hours by road and ferry, but the lovely beaches and resorts on offer make the journey worthwhile.

Koh Samui – The famed beach retreat

Among Thailand’s islands in maintaining a broad appeal for everyone, Samui is unique and worth for a tropical beach holiday when it is well covered in coconut palm trees, and local building regulations that forbid building anything taller than they are. Around the island lies a selection of beaches from the lively East coast Chaweng or Lamai to other quieter tropical hideaways. This island is famous for an amazing a trip to the neighboring Ang Thong national marine park, home to 42 islands featuring lime stone massifs, tropical rainforests and deserted beaches. The Ang Thong islands rise from the sea and form dramatic formations, creating an incredible natural marvel. Visiting KohSamui fishing villages is an attractive travel activity for visitors as they have chance to learn about the local lifestyle at the seaside and experience it by themselves. This pretty island offers a selection of deluxe and luxury hotels and resorts, bars and restaurants and nightlife that any beach breaker has to look for

Ayutthaya – The charming former capital

The charming former capital of Ayutthaya, located in the valley of the Chao Phraya River is a must see destination after visiting Bangkok. Taking a journey on a long tail along the leisure river, visitors will feel the timeless atmosphere of glamour ancient ruins of pagodas and temples. Here they explore the unique Thai architecture, religion and culture in general, and open the gateway back to the glorious past of Southeast Asia. Its remains are characterized by the prang (sort of stupa) and big monasteries. Most of the remains are temples and palaces, as those were the only buildings made of stone at that time. Though only a few remains might give a glimpse of the impressive city they must have seen, this ancient city is mysterious and glamour enough to attract and tempting for a day trip.

Kanchanaburi – The historic River Kwai

Just a few hours to the West of Bangkok lies an undiscovered gem: Kanchanaburi province. Its most famous attraction is the Bridge over the River Kwai and the Death Railway to Myanmar with its most recent history dating back to World War II as well as associated museums. Easy to access to spectacular waterfalls, national parks and jungles, mountain caves, beautiful reservoir lakes and ancient ruins, Kanchanaburi is also a favor place for outdoor activities such as excellent golfing, jungle treks, river rafting and climbing. Here visitors have a great chance to make friend with Thailand’s friendly giants, the tamed elephants and take an elephant ride through the lush forested scenery and take a walk around these peaceful and sacred historical ruins.

Sukhothai – Dawn of happiness

Another Northwestern Province well worth visiting is Sukhothai, whose name means “of happiness”. This province was founded in the 13th century and became the kingdom’s first capital, overseeing a period known as the golden age of Thai history, thus it’s promising to be mysterious and amazing for visitors to explore. It offers two ancient historical parks of Sukhothai and Sri Satchanalai that dated back to the 13th Century and one of Thailand’s golden ages under the renowned King Ramkhamhaeng, who created the Thai alphabet and laid the foundation for modern day Thai politics, the monarchy and religion. Here, travelers can spend relaxing time having a sumptuous local organic lunch served in traditional Thai style while taking a panoramic view over immense rice fields or visiting the seasonal orchid greenhouse, learning how to make ceramic and textile and join it all its traditions and daily works has to offer.

Koh Lanta – Another beach destinations

A small town feel of Koh Lanta consists of 52 islands including the largest; Koh Lanta Yai, a Thailand’s Southern tropical island offering scenic beach and rainforest beauty. It is an ideal beach destination for those who are looking for a complete peaceful and quiet hideaway from bustle cities. Distinguished from many beaches in Thailand, Koh Lanta brings unspoiled nature with mountainous and rugged in southern areas, dotted with its green forested hills, pristine beaches, abundant coral reefs, crystal emerald water and traditional lifestyle, provide a charming retreat in every details.

Phukhet – Pearl of the Andaman

Known as the ‘Pearl of the Andaman’, Phuket is home to some of the finest beaches in Asia that offers a variety of beach resort destinations while having a wide variety of accommodation choices to suit every taste and pocket. Although Phuket is a popular destination for international visitors, it still keeps its incredible attraction, with its taste of paradise. Not only a beach break area, Phukhet also provides its fine selection of tours to discover its long-standing history and beach culture. Arriving here, you will forget the date, spending all days for swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, sunbathing, and relaxation on the fine sunny sandy beach. There’s no schedule, no hustle-and-bustle, no reason to be in a hurry. Several of the offshore islands are also worth exploring, as indeed is Phuket town with its old Sino Portuguese architecture that dates back to the island’s tin mining era.

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