The Amazing Thailand.

Planning a trip is exciting but can be stressful.  Personally, before a trip I put in a lot of research about the country, culture and tourists must-knows.  This is typical stuff that I look into before take off.  Let me know if any of this is helpful or if you would like me to add more.


Country Facts:


Population: 67,959,000

Religions:  Theravada Buddhism which makes up 95% of the population.

Ethnicities: Thai

Time Zone: ICT (UTC+7)

Main Industries: Agriculture, Manufacturing and Tourism

Random Facts:

  • Muay Thai Boxing is Thailand’s national sport and is known as the “art of eight limbs.”
  • A Garuda (half eagle/half human symbol that represents birth and heaven for Hindu and Buddhists) is their royal and national symbol.
  • Thailand means “land of the free”.
  • The Thai government is a constitutional monarchy, like England.
  • Showing disrespect to the Thai Royal family can lead to jail time.
  • It is the largest distributor of rice in the world.
  • The siamese cat is native to Thailand.

Itinerary:  My plan for a 16 day trip in Thailand.

Bangkok (3 days)

  • Wah Pho Temple (with giant reclining Buddha)
  • Wat Arun and surround temples (see from Chao Phraya River)
  • Grand Palace
  • The many street markets surrounding these temples!
  • Amphawa Floating Market ( I did not get the chance to go here, it is a ways out of Bangkok but is the best floating market, so I have heard, near Bangkok)

I did not see much of the night life here so I am sorry I can’t give you any recommendations!

Stay: CheQinn Hostel, 6 bed dorm ~ $10 (USD)/night (highly recommend it)

Koh Samui Island (5 days)

  • Na Muang Waterfalls
  • Big Buddha (do a scooter ride there, beautiful!)
  • Lamai Beach (where we stayed our first night)
  • Chaweng Beach (most popular beach in Koh Samui
  • Scooter rides around the whole island (takes about 1hour)
  • Hin Ta and Hin Yai (rocks naturally formed in the shape of male and female genitalia on Lamai beach)

I know there is more you can do and see in Koh Samui, but we found the animal exhibits kind of sad looking and we were pretty ‘temple-ed out’ at this point in the trip.  After all, the main attraction is relaxing on the beaches.

Stay: Deluxe Beach House, 7-8 people in a 4 bedroom house ~ $150(USD)/night (we found this on, so you might have to search a bit to find one too)

Tonsai Beach, Krabi (4 days)

  • Rent Sea Kayaks for the day (many islands/small caves to venture to)
  • Koh Phi Phi Snorkeling Island Hopping excursions (see costs section for more details)
  • Tiger Cave (outside Krabi)
  • Ao Nang Beach (for tourist shopping and good food)
  • Shell Fossil Beach (I didn’t get to see it, but I have heard good things, however it does cost 200Bhat to see.)
  • Rock Climbing on Tonsai Beach
  • Long tail boats delivering lunch to Raliey beach

This was my hippie paradise.  We spent most of our time relaxing in the sun and snorkeling.  The Tiger cave was pretty cool and I highly recommend the hike to the mountain top temple there, it was an amazing view.

Stay: Mountain View Resort, 2person room ~ $23 (USD)/night (good for how cheap it was)

Chang Mai (4 days)

  • Muay Thai Boxing matches.
  • Night Bizarres
  • Tiger Kingdom
  • Eagle Ziplining (see costs section for more details)
  • Partara Elephant Camp (it is the best in Chang Mai)

This city has more to offer then what we did, it was the end of our trip so checking off some major bucket list items was our focus.  Word to the wise, save your time with elephants for Chang Mai.  A great website to help you:

Stay: House No. 11, 2 person room ~ $13(USD)/night (highly recommend it)


For the whole trip, excluding my to and from airfare from South Korea, cost 850,000won ($700 USD).

Daily Costs (food, transportation, shopping): avg. $40/day

Accommodation: ~$180

Sea Kayaking: 400 Bhat for full day ($11 USD)

Koh Phi Phi Snorkel/Island Hopping Excursion: 1,000 Bhat ($43 USD)

Tiger Kingdom: 2,400Bhat ($68 USD)

Eagle Ziplining (Gold Package): 2,400 Bhat ($68 USD)

Partara Elephant Farm: 5,8ooBhat ($162 USD) This may be more then others, but it is because they are an actual refuge for these elephants. You are basically paying to not be a idiot tourist, spending money on agencies that might abuse or mistreat the animals. 

Transportation:  This is one thing I did a bad job of tracking, sorry! From what I remember taking a tuktuk in Bangkok is expensive.  We took the skyway system, it is clean, cheap and easy to use!  On the islands/beach stays we rented scooters and took long tail boats everywhere.  They are fairly cheap, but you should bargain with boat drivers to guarantee a fair price.  Domestic flights were really cheap, we usually bought ours 4-5 days before we wanted to fly out and never had any issues.

Want to know more?  Follow my adventure, starting in Bangkok.

Websites I use to find my information:


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Courtney French's Clinical Experience

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