A fellow Glam Globetrotter, and friend, Corey Finjer, recently embarked on a two week adventure in Thailand. She and a friend, started the trip with a night in Bangkok, then ventured up north to Chiang Mai, followed by island hopping to Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, Koh Phi Phi and Koh Lanta.
I’m dying with envy just thinking about it. Because I’ve never been to Thailand — and it’s high on my list — I asked Corey, a die-hard, savvy traveler to put together her list of Top Ten Thailand “Musts.” What follows is a top-ten insiders guide to traveling Thailand.
1. Skip breakfast at your hotel and get a scallion omelet over rice w/sweet chili sauce on the street & an iced coffee. Make sure to choose street food close to the university in Chiang Mai.
2. Get your hotel’s card, including address, in Thai before you head out. Have them write down where you’re going for tuk tuk drivers (and the cost).
3. Find an elephant home that loves their animals and then swim with them and their one-ton, eight month old baby in a river.
4. Book your flights ahead of time in high season, but if you don’t, embrace the longboats, buses, trains, ferries, mini-trucks, sidecars, etc., because your pictures and stories will be better. And, more often than not, you’ll get there faster with a better view.
5. Do splurge on at least a couple of stunning, tranquil hotels and do nothing more than lay by the pool & order lunch (Thank you Langham Place Samui).
6. Select which restaurant you’re going to eat in based on the number of shoes outside.
7. Remember that haggling is all good, but spending an extra couple hundred baht translates into a few dollars (and trying to go back to find anything in rows & rows of market is a nearly impossible task).
8. Get an amazingly indulgent couple hours of treatments in a luxe spa and then spend $10 on the beach for the same thing with the sunset.
9. Choose which island you go to next based on which ferry let’s you sleep in, but still gives time to lay on the beach when you get there (11:30am:Phi Phi to Lanta).
10. In the end, what made it so good was just having no plans. If you meet someone interesting, sit on the dock, share a Singha and stories, and just see where you end up.
What do you think of this list? Comment if you have questions for Corey and we’ll make sure she gets back to you. Trust me, judging by her photos — you’ll want to do Thailand exactly as she did.
XOXO Travel Girl