Adventure Travel in Thailand
When it comes to beauty, culture, and adventure, Thailand is Asia’s top destination. Thailand has had the unique gift of holding tightly to its heritage after avoiding colonialism, which means you won’t have to venture far to see vast farmlands, Buddhist temples, and rubber plantations. From the exotic cuisine to the tropical landscape, Thailand is booming with opportunity for any adventure-lover.
There aren’t many places where you can actually get in a waterfall and climb it to the top, but Chiang Mai’s Sticky Waterfalls are made of a unique limestone that creates a no-slip surface.
Is playing with elephants on your bucket list? Thailand offers places to play with elephants, swim with elephants, and even do yoga on elephants. Head to the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. There are many places to hang with elephants, but be mindful that some places are not as humane as others. The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary is a place that refuses to force their elephants to perform tricks or do any kind of show.
Adventure doesn’t stop with extreme activities. Thailand’s food stalls will offer you an adventure with every bite you try. The country is known for its sweet, spicy, tangy, and nutty food combinations, and even the cheap stuff will make your mouth water. The best places to order street food are in Chang Puak and Chiang Mai. Here you’ll find stir-fries, curries, vegetarian food, fruity beverages, and even Thai desserts.
Wind down with a thirty-minute foot massage on Loi Kro Road for only $2.50. This satisfying massage also happens to be a great place to people watch and soak in the Chiang Mai culture. After your foot massage, head to Club Corner for a beer buffet that will cost you just $3.50. This means for a little over three dollars you can enjoy all the beer you want from 6:30 p.m. – 9 p.m. Nature-lovers will appreciate the outdoor atmosphere and relaxing live music.
Krabi, Phuket, and Surrounding Areas
Start your day off right with a Thai iced coffee for less than two dollars. At the Tiger Cave Temple, which you can visit for free, there are 1,237 steps to the top of the mountain above the cave. At the top you will be able to see a massive, golden Buddha shrine along with an incredible view of Krabi far below. Fair warning—the steps are steep and not very wide, so the climb to the top is a tough one.
There is so much to experience in a popular place like Krabi, but you’ll want to venture a little further out for a more outdoorsy experience. For example, Phang Nga Bay is full of limestone caves and beautiful mazes of tall rocks. Take a canoe and go for a swim because you won’t find such a serene place anywhere else. This location is actually one of the few places where you are allowed to canoe on your own, so be sure to do so here.
For overall great island hopping, explore the Andaman Sea just off Phuket and Krabi.
Khao Sok National Park is another secluded area lesser known to tourists. Here you’ll find the world’s oldest evergreen forest and stunning limestone mountains. Take a bamboo raft through Cheow Larn Lake for the best view.
Be sure to catch the sunset at Khao Lak beach, which is one of Thailand’s quieter beaches with few tourists. The peaceful area features a vast white beach with unusually bright blue water.
Bangkok’s most famous destination is The Grand Palace. With gold buildings over two hundred years old, this is an unforgettable sight. You may want to re-visit the palace at night when it lights up for a more romantic experience.
Also in Bangkok, you must visit the Emerald Buddha and the Reclining Buddha in Wat Pho. Another beautiful temple is Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn.
The floating markets in Thailand are a bucket-list activity, and one of the best is the Taling Chan Weekend Floating Market in Bangkok. This market was only recently discovered by tourists, meaning it is a truly authentic and local experience.
For even more adventure, you will simply have to spend more time in this gem of a country. Visit Doi Inthanon National Park to witness the tallest peak in Thailand. Khao Yai National Park is home to Asia’s largest monsoon forest, and Sai Yok National Park has caves, waterfalls, and exotic animals. Explore the wildlife sanctuary of Khao Sai Dao and see the 16-level waterfall. Erawan waterfall provides seven tiers of waterfalls with each leading to a fresh water pool for swimming. The Thilosu waterfall is considered the most beautiful waterfall in Southeast Asia. There are so many more treasures in Thailand, including the ancient Khmer ruins and the historic Kanchanaburi province, but this sneak peek should have you scrambling to make travel plans to the fascinating country as soon as possible.