final thoughts – thailand

must do:

  • phuket/patong – grab a big group and stay at the himmaphan 
  • phi-phi island tour or stay – a must. stay in railay beach if you can 
  • damnoen saduak but hire a car for the day
  • soi38 and all the street food you can find (includes fresh juices)
  • soi cowboy or khao san road – bangkok has some weird fun 
  • a tuk-tuk ride during rush hour
  • muay thai boxing – so awesome!

can skip:

  • nikki beach in phuket
  • bangkok scams – just do your research and you’ll be fine
  • russians – they are buying out the beach towns and it’s getting a little ridiculous 
  • western food – don’t even bother

the longer version…

skip krabi, head to railay beach or one of the phi phi island hotels.

phuket and bangtao are awesome for getting villas and partying. there’s also an amazing elephant conservatory that you should check out.

ride bikes in phuket. why not.

drink coconuts everywhere.

there are basically no rules in the pharmacies so you can get whatever you need/want for your trip. birth control, malaria, sleep aids, whatever.

cabs in bangkok are super cheap but make sure they use a meter. don’t bother with the guys who want to negotiate flat rates. that said…the elevated train in bangkok is great, we suggest you just learn the stops and walk.

final note on bangkok transportation; you must ride a tuk-tuk. especially during rush hour, its bonkers.

make sure you get a sim or a cell with international data so you can do research on the fly. mentioned it before that this will come in handy for all international travel, but in thailand you’ll want to make sure places are legit – i.e. don’g get scammed.

eat the street food everywhere just make sure it’s hot/grilled. it’s cheap-cheap and delicious. we had better meals on the streets than we did in restaurants.

the top floor of most malls have some of the best “restaurant” food you’ll find in the city. pretty much always a mish-mash of vendors selling different items and as close to street prices you’ll find indoors (can be almost as good too). most work on a voucher or value card system so you can basically go to the different vendor stations, pig-out, pay at the end.

malls are big and beautiful and you’ll likely find attractions and events taking place. they’re nice breaks from the sun or noise, but don’t buy anything. if you want something go to the markets and negotiate.

cruise the river in bangkok but take the pub trans boat versus private. much cheaper, same views, less potential for scams.

go out to the floating markets but don’t get talked into the expensive power/engine boats. ask your driver ahead of time to take you to a paddle boat, cheap cheap and a more authentic feel.

if you’re going out to the floating markets go to the tiger zoo. i dare you to pet/feed the big cats. i nearly pee’d my pants with the cub.

eat some weird stuff, do some weird stuff. for example, we didn’t go to khao san road in bangkok but then again we didn’t really have the party in us coming out of the binge of nye.

muay thai in bangkok is a must do. don’t go to lumpee stadium even though it’s newer and bigger it’s further away and we had an awesome experience at the older stadium in the city.

if you’ve been walking and you’re hot in bangkok stop and get fresh pomegrated juice on the street. it’ll change your life.

beaches in ao nang are gross, skip it.

keep in mind we had a bad experience, but i would say to skip the custom tailors. if you really want solid stuff made go to vietnam (more to come on that in an upcoming post)

thai are honest people, but in every society there are bad seeds. they’re all pushy when it comes to sales so don’t be turned off. have fun negotiating and walk away if something feels wrong.

chacha massage in sukhimvit. this place has no website or reviews to link to but here’s a review – run, don’t walk. it’s the best freaking foot massage in the entire world.

get a thai massage. the thai massages are crazy awesome and cheap cheap.

would recommend sukhimvit when staying in bangkok. it’s a nice neighborhood with just the right touch of shady.

go to the palace in bangkok. we never made it, due to our scam, but heard it’s legit.

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