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What to see in Thailand

Thailand Attractions

There is so much to see and do in Thailand that few visitors can resist returning. With an expansive coast line and gorgeous tropical islands, Thailand is justly famed for its wonderful beaches and laid-back lifestyle. Inland, there are the iconic sights of lush jungles, rolling hills and rice paddies. As a country of Buddhists, there is also an abundance of golden temples and beautiful, spiritually-inspired architecture. One word of caution though: to avoid the common fate of temple fatigue, visitors shouldn't try to see too many. They should rather concentrate on a few key attractions and spend some quality time in each of them.

In contrast is the buzzing atmosphere of Bangkok, whose neon lights and smoggy streets blend with gardens and floating markets to create a unique hybrid of old and new - at a frenetic pace.

One reason why Thailand is such a rewarding sightseeing destination is that it has retained its distinctive identity in the face of significant western influence. That makes visiting here an exciting and exotic experience, whether travellers are resort-loving beach bums or adrenaline junkies exploring hill tribes and river rapids. More good news is that Thailand is blessed with year-round temperate weather, so travellers can visit at any time - although in the months from June-October, rough sea conditions may make some islands unreachable via the ferry system.

Getting around is fairly easy and remarkably safe. An excellent bus network connects even far-flung towns with the major cities, while a comfortable sleeper train connects Chiang Mai in the far north with the capital Bangkok. Many people prefer to see the sights via organised tours and air-conditioned buses, but by doing so visitors risk missing out on the fun of getting between attractions, where they will encounter local people in unexpected ways.


Ayutthaya is the former capital of Siam, from 1350 until mid-18th century, and at one time was one of the largest cities in the world. The capital was relocated to Bangkok in 1768 when the Burmese…

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Chiang Mai Temples

Temple tours of Chiang Mai are a wonderful attraction for visitors. The old town is home to the most honoured temples and some tranquil Buddhist sanctuaries. The historic Wat Pra Singh holds the revered…

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Chiang Rai

Nestled into the lush mountains of northernmost Thailand, Chiang Rai is a hotspot for travellers who want to get a real cultural experience from their stay in Thailand. The region is home to the remote…

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Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

The Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is an escape from the Western-style shopping malls of Bangkok and a glimpse into the past, revealing the centuries-old way of life of the residents whose stilt-houses…

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Located 89 miles (143km) west of Bangkok, the town of Kanchanaburi has secured its position of infamy as the original site of the Bridge Over The River Kwai, where during World War II allied…

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Located 83 miles (135km) up a coiled mountain road from Chiang Mai in the extreme northwest of Thailand, Pai is an unlikely tourist attraction. The town has undergone a number of transitions from hill…

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Phang Nga Bay

The holiday spot of Phang Nga Bay is characterised by sheer limestone cliffs that jut vertically out of the emerald green water. The bay contains a fascinating collection of 3,500 islands, most of…

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Royal Grand Palace

The Royal Grand Palace is a popular Bangkok attraction. Construction of the palace began in 1782 and was completed in time for the coronation of King Rama I, and opened in 1785 to signify the end of…

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Similan Islands National Park

The Similan Islands have a reputation, even among the many Thai islands, as one of the world's top scuba diving sites. The intense blue waters are framed by white coral sand beaches, and are home to…

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Now a small city in southern Thailand, Sukhothai was once the seat of an ancient Siamese culture. The Sukhothai National Historic Park has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is dedicated…

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Temple of the Golden Buddha (Wat Traimit)

Dating back to the 13th century, the buddha at Wat Traimit stands nearly 10 feet (3m) tall, weighs over five tons and is believed to be solid cast gold, the largest gold statue in the world. It was…

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