Your Guide To Visiting Thailand For The Very First Time

5.09min read

Published 4 November 2021


Thailand has the best beaches, stunning temples, mountain areas and unique cuisine. With so much to do, it's hard to know where to start. Here's our guide to Thailand for first timers, full of tips of the best places to visit.  


Places To Visit  


When flying to Thailand, you'll land at one of the two main airports (Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) or Don Mueang International Airport (DMK)) servicing the capital city. For retail therapy head to the city's malls or night markets or sample traditional Thai food at one of the many delicious street food vendors or fine dining restaurants. The city boasts a number of magnificent temples including the Grand Palace, which is home to The Temple of The Emerald Buddha, which surprisingly is not listed a a UNESCO World Heritage Site.   


Just off Thailand's west coast, Phuket is world-renowned for its pristine beaches and views of the Andaman Sea. With palm fringed beaches, Phuket is Thailand's most popular tourist destination and the best place to stay in Thailand for first timers.

At night, Phuket comes alive and is the ultimate place to party - especially Bangla Road that bustles with beer bars, go-go bars, live street performers, and beach clubs.

two wooden pool lounge seats under a nipa umbrella surrounded by palm trees in the shore of Phuket beach


Krabi is home to some of most stunning beaches in Southern Thailand.   However, Krabi offers a much more secluded and laidback experience. Here, you can stay at one of the beach resorts where you can spend your day relaxing on the beach or by the pool. Krabi is also known for its kayaking, rafting, snorkelling and diving.  

Chiang Rai  

Thailand's Northern-most region, Chiang Rai, is the gateway to The Golden Triangle. Here, the Mekong and Ruak rivers meet to form a natural border between Thailand, Myanmar and Laos. The region is covered in green tropical forest and mountain terrain.  

The city of Chiang Rai itself is filled with temples. You should definitely check out the  Blue Temple which stands out thanks to its stunning blue colouring and exquisite carvings 

the front view of the blue temple before night with a motorcycle taxi parked in front of it

Chiang Mai  

Chiang Mai is known as Thailand's wellness capital. The largest city in Northern Thailand, it's the place to go to for wellbeing and spirituality. The city is overflowing with over 300 Buddhist temples or ‘wats.'

By far the most famous and most sacred of these temples is Doi Suthep, it sits on a mountain top overlooking the city.  

After healing your mind and spirit at one of the temples, heal your body with a massage head to one of the city's high-end day spas. We recommend “Let's Relax”, one of the city's oldest and best day spas, offering a range of treatments such as body scrubs, massages, reflexology and a hot stone massage.  

Koh Phi Phi 

Koh Phi Phi is the ultimate escape from reality. Made up of six small islands, Koh Phi Phi has exhilarating underwater adventures if you're prepared for a bit of island hopping. It is also a party paradise, grab your friends and jump onboard one of the many party boats and enjoy island paradise. 



RELATED: 12 Next Level Thailand Resorts You Need To Stay At 

Things To Do  

Visit Elephant Sanctuaries   

These are where retired elephants go to live out their lives in peace. Here you can experience washing and feeding these glorious animals. If you are travelling with the kids, this is something they will love.   




Visit Markets  On The Water

For an authentic local experience, visit one of Bangkok's floating markets. Here you will find the water lined with small wooden boats. The smell of spices fill the air and will instantly have your taste buds craving one of the many local authentic Thai food delicacies, pastries and desserts on offer. The markets are perfect for you to soak in the unique colours and embrace Thai culture. Be sure to grab yourself a souvenir to remember your trip.  


Get An Authentic Thai Massage   

Exploring Thailand can really take it out of you. With lots of walking, sweating and maybe even partying, no one can blame you for feeling a little drained. One of the best ways to regain your energy and refresh your body is through a Thai massage. This practise dates back thousands of years and is quite different from the massages you get at home.


Things To Know  

Best Time To Visit  

Any time of the year can be a great time to visit Thailand. The country is a land of three seasons each with their own unique benefit and appeal.  

November to February is considered the cool season. With cooler temperatures and a drop in humidity, this can be an excellent time of year to explore.   

 March to May is known as the hot season. The perfect time to head to one of Thailand's sandy beaches and soak in the sun.  

May to June is the green season, an ideal time to visit the country as the rain provides you with the opportunity to see the Thai countryside in lush glory. If you want a beach holiday at this time of year, head to the Gulf Coast to somewhere like Koh Samui for a bit more sunshine.

Times to avoid? For Chaing Mai, it is best to avoid mid-February to early April. This is the burning season when air quality is quite poor. If you're looking to visit Phuket, Krabi or Koh Lanta, the rainy season is from May to October. In the Gulf islands such as Koh Samui, the rain is heaviest in October and November.


yummy food place on a banana leaf in the streets of Thailand Market

Respect the Royal Family  

In Thailand, the royal family is incredibly well respected. So much so, that any disrespect towards the royal family can result in you being sent to prison. Be careful, not to step on any form of cash! All currency has the face of the king and standing on it is considered a criminal offence.  


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