I usually plan out all my trips in advance. I’m a bit of an organisation freak you see, I don’t want to go anywhere unprepared, in fear of missing out on anything important! So I see when I want to travel, buy the airline tickets, then set up an itinerary, check out hotels online in advance, to avoid hefty price tags and disappointment, and prepare any info, maps, equipment etc I need prior to all the travelling. I leave prepared and ready for a new adventure!
Thailand was exactly the opposite of that… I wasn’t planning on going and had never ventured towards this part of the world before in my life. I had just had a horrible break up only a few months before, and I had just started dating my now full time partner in crime ;). He had planned to go on a 2 month trip (January to March) to Thailand, Laos and Cambodia earlier on in 2015, and I had already decided I could not make the trip with him. I was after all still recovering from my previous emotional baggage, I was unprepared, unvaccinated and under-budgeted. I knew a lot of people would not approve of me going on such a journey, or dare I say it, adventure, after going through my previous ordeals. I had made up my mind… I would stay home, play it safe, save money for another trip later on during the year, and patient wait…. That plan lasted about two weeks into my boyfriend’s trip. I couldn’t take it, I had to go!!! Anyone who has the travel bug (or the love bug) understands the feelings I had – seeing photos of a loved one on his own adventure in such a beautiful country, WITHOUT YOU!!! It ate me up on the inside; I couldn’t take it anymore!!! So one fine day (with the help of a couple of amazing friends – you know who you are!!), I decided… I’m going to GO!!! So I started making plans…. When should I go, when can I get my vaccines sorted, how do I get my VISA?!? I basically set up all of it in (barely) three weeks! Got my jabs, bought the tickets, and surprised my bf with the news – I’m COOOOMINGGG!!! Thankfully, his response was a hugely positive one! (there’s always that fear you’ll get a sort of “meh” reaction, isn’t there?? lol) So off I went on my newest, most daring adventure yet – THAILAND!! I was going to spend three weeks in the amazing country and I was ECSTATIC!
First things first… I got my vaccines done. This is what you definitely need when travelling to Thailand (and the two vaccines I got):
- Hepatitis A
Some travellers also choose to get a Rabies vaccine especially if they’re travelling to the jungle, as well as Malaria tablets (although I was told it’s best to just avoid mosquito bites but using DEET spray and staying away from places with stagnant water – malaria tablets can make you feel quite sick :/).
Bought tickets to Thailand from Emirates – I was relatively broke, so I was careful to get the best deal – check with Etihad, Turkish Airlines and Emirates – the latter was the cheapest option, also providing the best travel times for me.
Bought a backpack from sportsdirect.com and off I went! Packing was a breeze! I was going to Thailand in mid-February – March, so the weather would be ideal – nice and warm. I packed shorts, loose and light harem pants, t-shirts, a good pair of trekking shoes, a pair of beach sandals and a couple of hoodies! That’s about it – OFF WE GOOOO!!! Left the island on February 14th and I would be in Thailand on the 15th! My original plan was to travel to Thailand, and maybe spend a few days in Cambodia, just to see the Angkor Wat complex in Siem Reap; in the end, we decided that exploring Thailand would be enough for three weeks. We would just have to return to Cambodia to see the beautiful temples another time. Oh well…
This is a loose plan of how I set up my Thailand Experience:
- Chiang Mai
- Khao Sok National Park
- Koh Lanta
- Koh Samui
We would spend a couple of days after my arrival in Bangkok, exploring the city, its gorgeous temples and palaces, and its surrounding sites. We would then catch a flight to Chiang Mai, the largest city in Thailand’s north, spend a few days there before catching another flight to Krabi, where we would first visit the Khao Sok National Park. After this we would get some beach time, moving towards Krabi’s gorgeous secluded beaches, then travelling to the island of Koh Lanta for some quiet time. We would be ending my three week visit with a few days in Koh Samui (one of Thailand’s most manicured and touristy islands), finally flying back to Bangkok for some last minute souvenir shopping, and a quick visit to a Buddhist temple to get an authentic Sak Yant bamboo tattoo (hihihi), before heading back to little ole’Malta!
So, that’s how, and why I travelled to Thailand in the beginning of 2016. I will be going through the places we visited in detail, adding some of the photos I took on my journey, as well as any tips and tricks I learned on the way, as I go along.
Follow the blog and my Facebook page to travel with me to this lush South-East Asian gem – keep an eye open as I will be continuing with Part I – Bangkok in the next few days!
Happy reading and remember – not all those who wander are lost!