Thailand is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations, with cities like Bangkok, Chang Mai, Ko Suami and Phuket attracting millions of travellers every year. Thailand boasts a majestic and varied landscape, with a wide range of activities to suit every kind of traveller. Here’s a couple things to keep in mind when travelling throughout Thailand.
Thailand’s varied landscape means that there’s something for every kind of traveller. Majestic coastlines provide the opportunity to kick back and relax, or explore in a variety of ways. Boats, scuba diving and kiteboarding are just some of the numerous activities open to traveller. Travellers must of course take care that any activities they book are done through credible companies or you may find yourself out of pocket. Additionally, reputable companies will help to ensure that any activities you book through them are only carried out in safe conditions. Use your discretion in deciding when situations are too unsafe to participate in.
Shopping in Thailand can range from department stores, to market stalls – some of which float. This diverse nature means that many travellers are presented with a situation they may be unaccustomed to, namely bargaining. How successful a traveller can be bargaining depends on many factors, but having good manners and a sense of humour can get you a long way! A good strategy is simply to ask about an item to get a ballpark amount, and bargain from there. Walking away may get you a deal as shopkeepers drop prices in an attempt to lure you back. Be aware that not all shopkeepers play a fair bargaining game. Many will attempt to take advantage of travellers. If you decide an item is not worth the asking price walk away, and avoid confrontations with shopkeepers.
Full Moon Party
Attracting thousands every year, the Full Moon Party is not for the faint of heart. Set in Koh Phangan, the parties have become infamous with the beach filling with between 10,000 – 30,000 tourists. The parties feature copious amounts of alcohol, and a night time beach party which lasts until the early hours of the morning. Whilst many boast of the fun they’ve had at Full Moon Parties, caution must be exercised. When attending these parties ensure you always remain in a group, or know the whereabouts of your group at all time. Furthermore, watch out for your drinks with drink spiking and illicit drug use being a big issue at these parties.
Tips to staying safe in Thailand
- Try to travel in a group whenever possible, but especially at night
- Before departing check with your doctor what vaccinations or medications you may require. Common recommendations include vaccinations for Hepatitis A, Typhoid, Yellow Fever and Malaria tablets
- Take out comprehensive travel insurance
- Road accidents are particularly common throughout Thailand, pay extra attention when around busy roads and use a helmet where possible
- Be aware that Thailand has a distinct culture, traveller should be wary that behaviour which is tolerated here may be perceived as offensive in Thailand
The Australian government recommends that travellers exercise a high degree of caution when travelling to Thailand, and should avoid any travel to the following regions: Yala, Pattani, Narathiwat and Songkhla. For more information of government travel updated visit Smart Traveller.