8 Incredible Destinations in Thailand
Thailand is without a doubt one of the most stunningly beautiful places on the planet. Of course, this huge South-East Asian country is known for being a hotspot for backpackers and digital nomads, but it’s about so much more than that! We’re talking about culture in bucket loads, indigenous wildlife, sea so blue it will blind your eyes, and sand so white you can’t quite believe it. From the huge misty mountains to the paradise islands in the south, Thailand is where Mother Nature did some of her best work, for sure!
Of course, it’s impossible to visit every single part of a country this big, so let’s talk about 8 of the most beautiful places in Thailand, to help narrow down your choices.
Thi Lo Su Waterfall, Tak Province
If you love a waterfall, you’re in for a treat with this one! Certainly, one of the most stunningly beautiful waterfalls on the planet, Thi Lo Su is a huge 300 meters high, and tumbles down a huge limestone cliff, towards the Mae Klong River below. The waterfall is situated in the Um Phang Wildlife Sanctuary, so you’re getting wildlife into your visit at the same time. UNESCO agree this is an amazing spot, and one of the most beautiful in Thailand.
Koh Bon, Similan Islands National Park
Located in the far west of the Andaman Sea, you will find an archipelago of islands, called the Similan Islands. Within that archipelago you will find Koh Bon. Remember your camera for this one! The coastline around the island is rugged and steep, but the beaches are truly divine. If you love to dive and snorkel, grab you gear and head out, as this island is famous for its colourful and diverse marine-line, including different type of shark, and manta rays.
Phu Chi Fa, Chiang Rai
Photo Credit: Phuket Photographer, License
The misty mountains of Northern Thailand are certainly there to be explored, and Phu Chi Fa is one of the most iconic. You’ll need to take a two-hour drive north of the large town of Chiang Rai, to the border with Laos to visit the cave. From there you will trek around 750 meters to the summit of the mountain, with members of a local tribe as your guide. As you gaze out across the misty scene before you, it’s not hard to understand why Thailand is considered so mystical, especially if you are lucky enough to visit at sunset or sunrise.
Emerald Lake, Koh Phi Phi
Located in Ang Thong National Marine Park you will find several undeveloped islands which are so blinding in their natural beauty, it’s hard for your eyes to focus. Of course, Koh Phi Phi was made famous by the film, The Beach. Maya Bay, the beach which was made famous by the film is currently closed to visitors, to allow the beach to recover from the mass tourism which came in that direction after the film’s release, but the surrounding islands can still be accessed by boat. Emerald Lake is found within the Ang Thong park, and it literally glows emerald green! Around the lake you will find huge limestone cliffs and tunnels which snake deep underground.
Sam Phan Bok, Khong River
Located part way along the Khong River, you will find Sam Phan Bok, a huge canyon which is often compared to the Grand Canyon, albeit much smaller! You can see the canyon much better if you visit out of the rainy season, so between January to April is the best time to go. As with most canyons and mountains, there are many local legends which surround Sam Phan Bok, and it’s great to learn about them from local guides.
Koh Nang Yuan Lookout, Koh Tao
Just a short boat ride away from Koh Tao, you will arrive at a small island called Koh Nang Yuan, an island which is volcanic and stunningly beautiful. If you want to scuba dive, this is one of the best spots to do it in all of Thailand, but the lookout point is also a famous place to head. It will take you around 15 minutes to walk to the summit of the lookout point but be ready to have your breath knocked right out of you! On a clear day you will be able to see right over to Koh Tao, and over the impossible blue of the sea.
Tham Lot Caves, Northern Thailand
Northern Thailand is famous for its huge cave systems, and probably even more so after this year’s dramatic rescue of a group of young Thai footballers near to Chiang Rai. Tham Lot Caves are a series of very old and awe-inspiring caves, which date back to pre-historic times. These caves are the former home of the Lawa Tribe, and they show that beauty doesn’t need to be about trees or beaches, and it can be something much more rugged too.
Elephant Park, Chiang Mai
We all know that you shouldn’t ride elephants in Thailand, but if you want to visit these huge and majestic creatures in a sustainable way, head to Elephant Nature Park, close to Chiang Mai. This is a huge sanctuary or elephants which is set in a beautiful natural area. Here you’ll find elephants, both old and young, and many have been rescued from the tourism industry in other parts of the country. You’ll be able to learn all about them, watch them bathing and eating, and engage with them in person. An amazing experience!
These are just eight of the most beautiful places to visit in Thailand, with countless more besides.