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Thai food, culture, spirituality and beaches – what more does one need! Thailand one of the leading tourist destinations of the world, is an affordable, affable and amazing getaway, where the natural beauty combined with its wildlife and adventures, the golden Buddhist temples enclosing quiet and reverence and hordes of shopping and eating preferences make it irresistible.
Whether it is the glittering urban centers that are packed with modern amenities, shopping destinations and eateries, rural Thailand with its endless paddy fields or the wilderness of the forested pristine islands, Thailand evokes excitement, wonder and at some times sheer disbelief.
Bangkok – The vibrant capital city of Thailand is a cauldron of a fast paced city buzzing with a happening night life, restaurants, shopping centers and the usual humdrum of a busy capital city. However, it is also where palaces, canals and splendid temples come to life. The city attractions include the Grand Palace and its sacred Wat Phra Kaew Temple, the large reclining Buddha at the Wat Pho Temple, the Wat Arjun Temple with its steep steps. The Jim Thompson House and Vimanmek Palace are a pleasant old world contrast to the high rise buildings towering the city skyline.
View the city on a tuk tuk, cycle or on foot, or take the canal tours. Watch in amazement the cultural performances or pamper yourself with therapies and spas. Go crazy shopping at the MBK Mall, Emporium or Banglamphu market or enjoy an entourage in the whole sale market of Pak Khlong Talat. Gorge on the street food at Khao man kai or try out the various restaurants that serve up authentic Thai food.
Pattaya – Pattaya on the eastern coast is primarily known for its beaches. One of the most visited tourist destination, Pattaya packs it with a punch. The high rise condos, all day and night open clubs, shopping malls and cabaret bars, Pattaya has managed to move ahead of the ‘only beaches’ tag. A hub for popular adventure sports the beaches are busy with parasailors and jet skiiers. The Wat Phra Yai Temple with its 18m tall Buddha statue, Walking Street with its brimming bars and the Nakula Bay with its fabulous beaches and the Sanctuary of Truth are some of the other attractions of the city.
Chiang Mai – Surrounded by mountains and green countryside the city of Chiang Mai is much quieter than Bangkok. Chiang Mai with its central walled city that encloses some 30 temples with beautiful staircases, wood carvings and glided umbrellas is the city’s main attraction. The capital of the Lanna Kingdom till 1558 the city outside the walls is home to the Nimmanhaemin Road known for its galleries, cafes and signature cooking of local cuisine. Acting as a base for trekkers the city also boasts of the traditional khantoke (low tables in pavilions) style of eating and the Night Bazaar is famous for the traditional handicrafts.
Phuket – The island of Phuket is popular amongst tourists who like adventure. Snorkelling, swimming, parasailing, canoeing, diving, yatching, freediving, windsurfing and many other sports find way in the lurid beaches along the islands shoreline. Phuket market as well as the cosmopolitan food makes Phuket a favorite with travellers.
Krabi Province – The stunning islands and landscapes that make up Krabi are any naturalist’s delightful wonder. With limestone topography and excellent beaches, Krabi dazes one with its absolutely breathtaking scenic views. Some of the popular islands in the province include the Phi Phi Islands, Ko Jum, Ko Hong, Ko Lanta and more. The Ban Ao Luek, Huay Toh Waterfall, Fossil Shell Beach are some of the many attractions that can keep one in Krabi forever.
Thailand spoils its tourists with many options. One can visit the UNESCO city of Ayutthaya, Chumphon Archipelago for its pristine beaches, Sukhothai for its splendid ruins, or the once quiet island of Ko Chang, the multi-cultural town of Mae Sot or the national reserves and parks that are home to some of the world’s most amazing wildlife species and natural landscapes, such as, the Tarutao National Park, Khao Sok National Park, Khao Yahi National Park and more.