Thailand is known as the Land of Smiles and it sure brought smiles to our faces while we explored three of it’s cities. We visited in the hot, humid summer months, but loved every bit of our trip! Read below to learn more about this great country!
Bangkok airport was our hub for this trip as we flew in and out of this airport 6 different times (both international and domestic flights throughout our time there). It’s a clean, organized and easy airport to traverse, in our opinion at least! Traveling by train is a more economical choice, but takes time. If you’re like we are – we’ve got a financial budget, but also a TIME BUDGET, since we are not full time travelers.
We landed in Bangkok from the States and caught our connecting flight with Asia Air to Chiang Mai, in northern Thailand. We spent three nights in this little city and experienced some authentic Thai cuisine, culture and wildlife! Our adventures included:
Walking through a local market…
Taking a Thai cooking class with The Thai Cookery School …
(Want to know how to make this delicious dish? Click here for the recipe!)
Enjoying a traditional Thai Massage at a wonderful spa …
and (my favorite!) spending an entire day helping at The Elephant Nature Park …
I have to mention our great accommodations in Chiang Mai – Vanilla Place Guest House. The owners are very hospitable. The prices are right. The breakfast is (small, but) good. The rooms are safe, clean and functional.
From Chiang Mai we flew back to Bangkok’s airport and then continued on to Koh Chang, a tiny island near the border of Cambodia. July is Koh Chang’s low season as it is very rainy. However, we were willing to take a gamble and go anyway. It paid off for us as prices are much lower this time of year AND we had two days of mostly sunshine, with only quick (albeit, torrential) rains showers. We divided our two full days between three places – a local restaurant and bar, our bungalow’s porch and the beaches. Yes, there are other activities on the island, but we wanted to soak in the island spirit of Koh Chang as much as possible!
We stayed at Paradise Palms Resort and loved it! It’s not your typical resort, which is what we loved the most! This family run property has only 4 bungalows – all with ocean views! No crowds here! Ahhhh!
Saffron on the Sea was fantastic from start to finish – every meal, every drink, every sunset! We spent LOTS of time here chatting with the staff and other travelers.
The beaches were both rocky and sandy … an interesting sight around each corner.
Departing paradise was tough. Nonetheless, we flew back to Bangkok’s airport (I told you we were in and out many times!). We hailed a taxi and drove to our room at the Courtyard Marriott. We try to stay local when possible. However, Bangkok’s hotel prices were higher than the smaller cities and towns of Thailand. Therefore, we booked this hotel with points we’ve earned from prevoius business and leisure travel. This worked nicely for us because we are both weary travelers in large cities – we prefer small towns and livestock to skyscrapers and taxis. We only had one night in the city, so we didn’t have time for much, but we did venture out for drinks on the river. Then, it was back to our snug room, high above the noise and craziness of Bangkok.
We departed the next morning from (you guessed it!) Bangkok International Airport.
Whomever dubbed Thailand the Land of Smiles got it right! Beaches, elephants, amazing food and friendly faces all add up to an unforgettable place!
DO YOU HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT OUR TRIP, OR CREATING YOUR OWN ADVENTURES IN THAILAND? Leave a comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, I’d love to help!