14 activities

Nestled between Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, and Malaysia, this truly majestic Kingdom has it all - from pristine beaches on the Andaman Sea and Gulf of Thailand, to stunning offshore islands, to striking interior mountains.

This exotic land is rich in historical intrigue, unique culture, and world-renowned cuisine. All travelers are bound to find something which piques their interest in this diverse country, whether it’s exploring mystic temples and ornate monuments, snorkeling or diving in clear, luminescent waters, hiking in lush national parks, wandering through bustling city streets, or just relaxing on a beautiful beach. There are ample opportunities to get to know the real Thailand, including Muay Thai, or Thai Boxing, as well as meetings with indigenous tribes.

Most tourists choose to visit Thailand from November through March, when the temperature is cooler and the landscape is lush and green following the monsoon season, which lasts from July through October. It is generally not recommended to visit during monsoon season, since a monsoon could mean anything from afternoon showers to major flooding, and boat services to some islands are limited or completely shut down during these months. However, September and October are actually great months to visit the north and Gulf coasts. And if you’d like to avoid the high costs that come with holidays during the high season, most beaches aren’t crowded from April through June, though the weather is hotter.

Cool Season

November — February

Average temperature 88-73 °F
29–20 °C

Average number of rainy days 1-3

Hot Season

March — June

Average temperature 90-75 °F
33–24 °C

Average number of rainy days 5–10

Rainy Season

June — October

Average temperature 88-73 °F
30–23 °C

Average number of rainy days 13–17

Average temperature

Average number of rainy days


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Available activities14

City walking10 items

Thailand is one of the top ten most visited countries in the world, and there are many reasons for this distinction. One is the mind-blowing city walking experience offered by Bangkok and other smaller cities in the Northern part of the country, like Chiang Mai, Chiang Pai and Chiang Rai. “One night in Bangkok makes a hard man humble” - remember this song? Be prepared to enjoy beautiful ancient temples, amazing river cruises and floating markets, crazy nightlife on Khaosan Road, delicious street food (Perhaps you’ll even be brave enough to try fried larvae or grasshoppers, which are actually pretty tasty!) and lively night markets. Shopping is also one of the must-dos, especially compared to Western countries.

Don’t miss the chance to visit Chiang Mai, a small town in the North, to crawl through gorgeous ancient temples. As the Thai say, "If you haven't tasted Khao Soi or seen the view from Doi Suthep, you haven't been to Chiang Mai." You’ll be amazed by a breathtaking, panoramic view of the surrounding mountains and hills. You can do a great variety activities there including funny cliff jumping and adventurous motorbiking!

As Thailand lies in the equatorial area, heat and humidity will be your regular company, so it’s best to have some things with you to make your walking easier and more comfortable!

  1. Good daypack

  2. Sunglasses

  3. Face sunblock

  4. Body sunblock

  5. Hats

  6. Camera (portraits and city views)

  7. Portable battery charger (for your phone and camera)

  8. Facial cleansing wipes

  9. Baby powder (good for absorbing sweat in your face and neck)

  10. Hand wipes

  11. Travel umbrella

Beaching9 items

Thailand is an absolute paradise for beaching. With a cheap, hour-long flight from Bangkok, you can reach a plethora of beautiful beaches to chill and relax, catch some sun, or cool down underneath picturesque palm fronds. There is a definite reason that the movie “Beach” was filmed in Thailand! Among top beaching destinations are numerous islands like Koh Phi Phi, Koh Tao, Koh Lipe, Koh Samui, Phuket, Koh Phanghan (famous for monthly Full Moon party) and Similan islands. Just don’t forget to protect yourself from the brutal sun!

  1. Body sunblock

  2. Face sunblock

  3. Sun oil

  4. After sun care

  5. Moisturizing spray

  6. Sunglasses

  7. Hats

  8. Hand wipes

  9. UV protection shirts

Snorkeling6 items

Of course, at the beach there is much more to do than simply relax. In Thailand, you have the opportunity to pursue an amazing snorkeling and diving experience! If you go snorkeling, you’ll see a variety of colorful fish, small reef sharks, turtles, stingrays and other beautiful underwater creatures. At almost every beach you can rent snorkeling equipment, but sometimes it’s really overpriced and of a poor quality. You can also opt for buying it right at the place, but it’s still overpriced! And, unfortunately, in Thailand you cannot return the items you have bought, nor can you exchange them. Thus, it is really recommended to bring your own equipment for a better, stress-free experience.

  1. Snorkeling set: fins, mask, tube

  2. UV protection shirts

  3. GoPro camera

  4. GoPro LCD display

  5. Hand buoy

  6. Anti fog pads

Scuba and free diving7 item

Scuba diving is also a must when in Thailand. Explore the Similan Islands (a national park where it is necessary to buy permits in advance), Kao Lak, Koh Tao, Koh Phi Phi, Koh Lanta and the Surin Islands.

In addition to snorkeling and scuba diving, Thailand offers a great chance to really challenge yourself and try freediving, a form of underwater activity that relies purely on divers’ ability to hold their breath. You can do this in Koh Tao, an island which is famous for it.

  1. Diving wetsuit

  2. Snorkeling set: fins, mask, tube

  3. GoPro camera

  4. GoPro LCD display

  5. Red filter (essential for deep blue water)

  6. Hand buoy

  7. Anti fog pads

Elephant riding11 items

Regardless of whether you are traveling solo or with kids, elephant trekking will be an unforgettable experience! These elegant, revered animals are Thailand’s national symbol. The easiest way take part in this is to visit an elephant conservation center for a day or more. Not only will you see how these animals are treated and raised, but you will have the chance to feed and ride them. Some of the camps even offer another fun excursion where you can learn how to produce paper with elephant poo. It may sound a bit weird, but it’s really worth it to learn how it works and to take part in this one-of-a-kind experience by creating your own souvenir post card!

  1. Motion sickness pills

    The roads are very bumpy so you may end up with a little bit of motion sickness. Don’t take pills, as they will make you sleepy. It’s better to use a lighter alternative like gummies or drops.

  2. Emesis bags

  3. Waterproof bag

  4. Light trekking sandals

  5. Jungle rain poncho

  6. High DEET insect repellent

  7. Travel towel

  8. Face sunblock

  9. Body sunblock

  10. Antiseptic wipes (if you have some small wounds, scratches)

  11. Universal injury relief ointment

Meeting locals3 items

If you visit Northern Thailand, then you really shouldn’t miss out on going to spend a day - or a few - with local hill tribes: the Akha, Lisu, Hmong and Karen. Meeting locals is one of the most exciting things you can do while traveling, and it really expands your horizons. What could beat exploring a completely foreign culture and way of living? It is one of the most mind-altering and eye-opening experiences you can have! If you travel from Chiang Mai, it takes a few hours to visit these villages. There will be lots of kids, so it’s always nice to have small presents for them as well as for the adults to forge a friendly connection, especially if you are staying for more than a few hours. Don’t forget to wear proper clothing (long sleeve shirts are better than tanks) to show some respect to the people. If you stay overnight, it might be a good idea to bring some food and drinks, like alcohol and cigarettes; in this manner, you should consult with your guide before you go.

  1. Good camera (portraits, object, landscapes)

  2. "Polaroid"-type camera

    Polaroid-type camera makes immediate pictures to present them as well. This camera is small, relatively cheap and allows you to produce photos immediately. One of the greatest options is by Fuji, as they recently issued a very good Instax model for shooting and getting images immediately.

  3. Small presents

Jungle trekking22 items

Thailand is a lush tropical country, so it has many beautiful national parks where you can go on treks of varying complexities - both short (1-day) and long (up to few days). Don’t forget that the rainforest is a huge ecosystem and every creature, even if it’s very tiny, can protect itself well! For example, leeches are not something you’d want to mess with. While leeches are not the absolute worst experience you could have, they’re still highly unpleasant.

Also, your typical hiking boots are not the best option in the tropical rainforest due its very high humidity. Since normal hiking boots are made of leather, some organisms could find them attractive and move in there. If this happens, then after only a few days of trekking, you’ll basically need to throw them away. When I was preparing for my first jungle experience, I searched far and wide to find the type of boots which would be the best for me. Then, I recalled that the US army had created jungle boots specifically for its soldiers when there was a war in Vietnam. I googled this and ended up buying a pair of these boots. After I did few treks in them, I realized that I had made a very smart choice. The boots are made with an artificial fabric and materials which get dry much quicker than normal hiking boots (which is ideal, considering humidity). They also have very good ankle support and they are tall, so you can wear your leech socks and you won’t be afraid of getting bitten. But of course, light trekking boots with synthetic material would be also a good option, especially if the trek is short.

Other items mentioned below are also musts for jungle trekking. Garbage bags, for example, could be very useful when you have a boat ride somewhere in the depths of the jungle. If you put all your bags in separate garbage bags and seal them with a sealing tape, it keeps them from getting wet if it’s raining. I usually use 2-3 garbage bags for each of my bags - a solution which costs much less than a raincover for your bags. Additionally, considering how heavy the rain in the jungles can be, a raincover won’t really help you at all!

  1. Good daypack

  2. Waterproof bag (might be even better option for rainy season)

  3. Anti leech socks (extremely important for rainy season)

  4. Jungle boots

  5. Light hiking boots

  6. Long hiking pants

  7. Jungle rain poncho

  8. Waterproof bags for camera and documents

  9. Good binocular

  10. Whistle

  11. Torch and headlamp

  12. Extra torch batteries

  13. Lighter

  14. Jungle knife

  15. Sealing tape

  16. Plastic bags

  17. Rope

  18. Adjustment to vertical peeing for girls

  19. GoPro camera

  20. Insect head hat

  21. High DEET insect repellent

  22. Antiseptic wipes

  23. Universal injury relief ointment

  24. Waterproof bandage

Mount hiking21 items

Doi Inthanon is Thailand’s tallest (2565 m) mountain. From the town of Chiang Mai, it’s about 100 km. The area of the Doi Inthanon Mountain National Park is covered with lush green forest. To complete this beautiful trek through valleys and jungles, you’ll need at least 2 days. As is usual for the rainforest, you’ll see lots of species of wildlife, birds, and you may even see some local people living in the villages nearby or enjoy some waterfalls on the way, and visit two impressive Pagodas near the summit.

  1. Good daypack

  2. Good hiking boots

  3. Jungle boots

  4. Long hiking pants

  5. Long sleeve shirt

  6. Trekking socks

  7. Jungle rain poncho

  8. Torch and headlamp

  9. Extra torch batteries

  10. Softshell jacket

  11. Anti leech socks (if rain season)

  12. Face sunblock

  13. Antiseptic wipes

  14. Waterproof bandage

  15. Lighter

  16. Knife

  17. Good binocular

  18. Travel towel

  19. Swimsuit

  20. Light sleeping bag

  21. First aid kit

    Pack all the essentials and extra items you might need as in the jungle you cannot get any help, so it’s extremely important to be prepared.

Caving12 items

Thailand is definitely a place where you can do amazing caving activities! You can either opt for a relatively easy excursion, such as the Chiang Dao Caves complex in the Chiang Mai area, or try some more advanced caving in the Tham Lod cave in Pang Mapha. Alternatively, even along the coast you can rent a canoe and visit some cave systems - for example, the Phang Nga Islands hold a few.

  1. Rubber boots

    The cave route is usually pretty slippery, so you won’t want to wear your running or hiking shoes or trekking sandals. None of these will help you. Instead, a pair of rubber slippers is the best option to crawl through the caves.

  2. Good socks

  3. Waterproof bag

  4. Grip gloves

    You’ll need them. Some parts of the route are equipped with a rope, and since it’s very humid and dirty in the cave, your hands will be wet and grimy. It’s always safer to have grip gloves when sliding on a rope.

  5. Torch and headlamp

  6. Extra torch batteries

  7. Lighter

  8. Knife

  9. Sealing tape

  10. GoPro camera

  11. Swimsuit

Surfing11 items

Frankly speaking, Thailand is not as famous for surfing as, for example, Indonesia. However, you can still find some nice swells from April to November, during the rainy season. Among the best breaks are Kalim Reef, Bang Tao and Karon beaches on Phuket Island.

  1. UV protection shirts

  2. Face sunblock

  3. Body sunblock

  4. Waterproof bandage

  5. Antiseptic wipes (if you have some small wounds, scratches)

  6. Universal injury relief ointment

  7. After sun care

  8. Quadcopter with camera

  9. GoPro camera

  10. Quadcopter for GoPro

Cycling15 items

If you enjoy cycling, then in the North of Thailand you can find some adventurous cycling tours through stunning rugged landscapes. The best time to go is from September to the end of February, with the busiest months being November through January, since this is cool season in the North. Some tours are on-road, others are off-road. Check your itinerary with your guide. Cycling is actually very popular among Thai (local) tourists.

  1. Cycling gloves

  2. Cycling sunglasses

  3. Cycling shoes

  4. Cycling padded shorts

  5. Cycling helmet

  6. Cycling jerseys

  7. Cycling softbag

  8. Cycling softshell

  9. Cycling waterproof jacket

  10. Cycling pedals

  11. Waterproof bag

  12. Face sunblock

  13. GoPro camera

  14. GoPro chest mount

  15. First aid kit

    Pack all the essentials and extra items you might need as in the jungle you cannot get any help, so it’s extremely important to be prepared.

Rafting and kayaking10 items

Rafting in a tropical climate is sure to be one of your most memorable experiences! Wild rivers, bamboo campsites, smiling Thai people, delicious local food, birds and wild animals around - excited? Right, don’t forget a few items to make the best out of it!

If rafting is bit too adventurous for you, you can opt for a more quiet option like kayaking or paddling in the rivers and lakes of the Northern Thailand. It’s better to go for it during the dry season from January to May. It’s ok if you haven’t tried it before; you can try it there for the first time. However, if you are experienced, you can choose more advanced routes by consulting with your guide

  1. Face sunblock

  2. Body sunblock

  3. Waterproof bag

  4. GoPro camera

  5. GoPro chest mount

  6. Good binocular

  7. Antiseptic wipes (if you have some small wounds, scratches)

  8. Sunglasses

  9. Swimsuit

  10. First aid kit

    Pack all the essentials and extra items you might need as in the jungle you cannot get any help, so it’s extremely important to be prepared.

Vaсcination6 items

Make sure you are up-to-date on routine vaccines before every trip. These vaccines include the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu shot. The following vaccination recommendations are taken from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) webpage.

  1. Hepatitis A

  2. Typhoid

  3. Hepatitis B

  4. Japanese Encephalitis

  5. Malaria

  6. Rabies

  7. Yellow fever

First Aid Kit6 items

Of course, Thailand is a country where you can have some qualified help. However, in some remote areas it will take a while to get proper treatment. Sometimes, not you but some of your traveling buddies might need help. Make sure you have something in advance against the following symptoms:

  1. Wounds, traumas, cuts

  2. Gastro problems like poisoning or heartburn

  3. Allergic reactions on sun burn, bites of insects, unusual food

  4. Fever and cold

  5. Motion sickness

  6. Strong painkillers

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