Top 5 Thailand Experiences

by Lia Holloway on 26 September 2014, 09:09AM

Thailand is a diverse and beautiful country with so much to offer. After a recent trip to Bangkok, Kanchanaburi and Hua Hin, here are my Top 5 favourite experiences!

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1. Shopping, Bangkok
Shopping in Bangkok is a marathon sport. The options are endless and the shops seem to go on for miles! From the luxurious mega shopping complexes to the pop up road side stalls there is something for all tastes and budgets. The Bangkok Skytrain is very easy to navigate and a fantastic way to travel between shopping centres. Plus the cool air-conditioning is a warm welcome in the tropical climate!

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2. Markets, Bangkok
Visiting the markets in Thailand is a uniquely wonderful experience. No matter which market you visit from the floating markets to the flower markets, it is the perfect opportunity to meet the always smiling locals and get an insight into their way of life. Plus you can pick up some great souvenirs or sample delicious street food. Make sure to practice your haggling skills as it is not considered rude to ask for a discount. In fact, the general attitude here is something along the lines of ‘if you do not ask, you do not get.

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3. ElephantsWorld, Kanchanaburi
Journey off the regular tourism path to the town of Kanchanaburi. This rural area of Thailand is home to ElephantsWorld, a non-profit organisation which functions as a “retirement home” for elephants. Here you have the option to take part in feeding and bathing these majestic creatures, planting and gathering crops or preparing special food for the older elephants. There are various packages available ranging from day trips to overnight stays in quaint cottages along the Kwai River. An absolute highlight is watching the elephants enjoy their bath time in the river as they playfully splash you.

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4. The Bridge over River Kwai, Kanchanaburi
Take a walk across the well known black iron bridge which is still in use today. The bridge was constructed by prisoners of war as part of the Death Railway connecting Thailand and Burma. The journey on the Death Railway train is a beautiful scenic ride but also allows you to appreciate the harsh terrain faced when building the track. Watch the landscapes flash by with rows of tapioca and teak trees in front of ragged hills across the horizon.  Stop in at the Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum, dedicated to memory of all the men and women who worked and died making this railway in WWII. You will have the opportunity to walk through the mountain cutting and better comprehend how it derived its name and the sacrifice made by the men who made it. Surrounded by stunning tropical rainforest this is a peaceful yet humbling experience that’s not to be missed on your next Thailand adventure.

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5. Phraya Nakhon Cave, Hua Hin
Although the trek through the Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park is not for the faint hearted, this is a truly rewarding experience. Hidden in the cave is the Kuha Kharuehat pavilion which looks particularly mystical as the sunlight falls across it from a circular hole in the cave ceiling. Surrounding the pavilion are trees and vegetation creating a picture perfect place of tranquillity. The pavilion was built at the end of the 19th century for the visit of King Chulalongkorn the Great (Rama V). Later, King Prajadhipok (Rama VII) and the present King of Thailand, King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) also visited the cave.

For more information on Thailand visit Tourism Authority of Thailand

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