A country with a unique culture, picturesque beaches and famous cuisine – it doesn’t get much better than a holiday to Thailand. But with so many amazing marvels, you may be left wondering what to see first. Well, that’s where we come in.
From intricate temples to world-famous islands and unforgettable viewpoints, we’ve narrowed down the top nine places to visit in Thailand, so you don’t miss out on any of the country’s must-see attractions.
Phi Phi Islands
Let’s kick things off with one of the most famous islands on the map – the stunning Phi Phi Islands. Here you’ll find Maya Bay, the island’s top tourist attraction after its role in the hit 1999 film ‘The Beach’.
Yes, you may have seen it on the big screen, but it’s just as beautiful up close. Nothing will quite prepare you for views of white sand leading to inviting waters accompanied by a backdrop of perfectly placed limestone cliffs.
But with its Hollywood status comes lots of tourists – so if you’re after more of a secluded experience, we suggest visiting early morning or after 5pm as it is usually less crowded.
The Grand Palace
The Grand Palace in Bangkok is a good enough reason to drag yourself away from the beach. This visual spectacle is quite the attraction, encrusted in gold and decked with ornate structures – the palace has been Bangkok’s best-known sight since it was founded in 1782.
That’s not all you can expect from a visit here though, in fact The Grand Palace is actually a group of buildings. You’ll also find a Buddhist temple and throne halls within the palace’s complex, so there’s plenty to see. There’s also a dress code, so make sure you dress accordingly.
The Full Moon Party
If you’ve come here to sample the nightlife, the Full Moon Party is the place to let your hair down. Taking place on Koh Phangan Island each month, on the night of the fullest moon, keep this event in your calendar.
With sands filled with fire dancers, glow in the dark faces and plenty of places to grab a drink, nights here are legendary. The festivities continue well into the night too, so if you plan on staying out late enough to witness Thailand’s amazing sunrise, this is your chance.
As the name suggests, you won’t only be sharing the sand with tourists here. That’s right – this beach on Phi Phi Island is also home to wild monkeys, mostly because the beach is home to fruit, seeds, crabs and leftover snacks.
The monkeys aren’t the only appeal though – the sand is just as beautiful. What’s more, if you love snorkelling, the beach has plenty of underwater species worth discovering – we’re talking clams, clown fish and parrot fish to name a few.
James Bond Island
James Bond Island, or as it’s formally known Phang Nga Bay, certainly has star appeal. Made up of rocky peaks projecting from the emerald-coloured waters and underwater caves, the place is simply mesmerising. Plus, it’s not every day you can say you’ve walked in the footsteps of James Bond.
Koh Tapu is the most recognisable cliff, standing 20 metres high in the middle of the sea, you can’t miss it. Whatever you do, don’t forget your camera so you can capture these views forever.
This group of nine islands are best-known for their underwater adventures, considering they rank among the top diving and snorkelling sights in the world. But they’re not only known for their underwater beauty – the scenery above the water is just as impressive.
If you do decide to go diving, you’ve got a lot to look forward to. The species and sub-species found in these waters are so diverse that each time you enter the water you’re bound to see something new. Crabs, lobsters, shrimp, sponges and giant clams are just some of the things you may encounter.
Wat Tham Seua
Wat Tham Seua or Tiger Cave Temple is a sight to behold during your time in Thailand. Located close to Krabi, this attraction is not only a meditation centre, but it’s also an architectural wonder. Encircled by large trees with mountains on either side, it’s worth the 1,256-step climb.
And if you’re wondering where its nickname came from, legend has it a tiger once lived in the cave and it became sacred when locals began honouring it. However, the real centrepiece of this place of worship is the 18-metre-tall Buddha, which sits proudly on the top of the temple.
Koh Nang Yuan viewpoint
Although Thailand is full of stunning viewpoints, Koh Tao’s steals the show. Koh Nang Yuan is one of Thailand’s most recognised views and it all comes down to its jaw-dropping beauty. It’s a 20-minute uphill climb to the top, but the vistas that greet you will make up for it.
If you’re wondering how to get here, a 10-minute boat ride from Koh Tao’s main island is the quickest and easiest route. Like most tourist attractions this spot can get a little crowded so if you’re going up there to take photos, you may want to avoid making the trip during peak times.
Located north of Bangkok, you’ll find the UNESCO World Heritage City, Sukhothai. This former capital is one of country’s longest standing settlements and is to home to some of Thailand’s oldest art and architecture.
Made up of restored temples and monuments, the place has become one of Thailand’s must-see tourist attractions. With a name which translates to ‘dawn of happiness’ this place is exactly that with its quiet surroundings featuring ruins, lakes and bridges.
So, which Thailand attraction will you tick off first?