Where to Go in Thailand Published: 12/18/2012
Thailand continues to be one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. This is hardly surprising as the country has so much to offer the tourist. Visitors to Thailand can expect year round sun, and the laid-back attitude of the Thai people to life is contagious. There is a lot to see in a visit to Thailand but here are a few suggestions worth considering.
Phuket is arguably the most popular of the Thai islands, and it is the largest. Some people have travelled to Thailand many times, but they have never gone beyond Phuket. There is plenty to do here and there are some superb beaches. In recent years Phuket has become increasingly popular as a health and fitness destination with people coming here to learn Muay Thai, yoga, or meditation. Of course, it is with water sports that this island really leads the way.
Hua Hin is a beach resort area that is in between Phuket and Bangkok. This area is where the Thai Royal family likes to holiday, and despite a great deal of development in recent decades this continues to be a place of outstanding beauty. Nearby Cha-Am is another beach resort that is more popular with Thai families than foreign visitors but that is part of its charm.
With over 10 million residents, Bangkok is one of the most important cities in the world. Despite its immense size, this place somehow manages to remain friendly and relatively safe for visitors. Bangkok has some of the most impressive department stores in Asia, but it also manages to mix plenty of traditional venues alongside the modern. No visit to Thailand is complete without spending at least a couple of days in Bangkok.
Pattaya is sometimes referred to as sin city and with good reason. This beach side resort is just an hour away from Bangkok, so it is a popular getaway. Until the Vietnam War, this was a quiet fishing village, but then girly bars began to appear to provide a bit of R&R for US soldiers. Pattaya is now a city with literally thousands of bars and some of the wildest entertainment venues on the planet. In recent years, there has been an attempt to make this more of a family destination, but the adult entertainment remains as popular as ever.
Chiang Mai is the main city in Northern Thailand, and it offers a different experience from Bangkok. Book lovers will have a great time in this city because there are so many second-hand bookstores selling English language material. This city is also a great place to join a class such as Thai language, yoga, Muay Thai, Thai cooking, or meditation. Chiang Mai has its seedy side, but this tends to be the place to go if you are looking for a bit of culture. This city is also the gateway to most of the hiking tours for Northern Thailand.
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