When it comes to white sandy beaches and clear blue water, Thailand is almost always the top destination with hundreds, if not thousands of tropical islands and coastal beaches spread across the country. However, not every Thailand beach will give you the same experience as each of them have their own personality and uniqueness.
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Here are 5 steps or ways to make sure you have the time of your life on your next beach trip in Thailand.
1. Choose your island or beach wisely
You can make or break you experience if you choose the wrong kind. If it's a touristy, bustling one you are looking for, then there are plenty of options for you like Phuket, Pattaya, Hua Hin or even Koh Samui. Looking to party? Koh Phangan is calling your name. Love diving? Then Koh Tao in the Gulf of Thailand or one of many tiny islands such as the ones in the Andaman Sea are your best bet. Don't be shy to search beyond the popular ones though because Thailand is littered with dozens of tranquil and semi- undiscovered islands for those looking to experience a slice of paradise without the overcrowding of tourists. To name a few good ones:
- Koh Mak
- Koh Tachai (closed until further notice)
- Koh Kood
- Koh Lanta
- Koh Nang Yuan
- Koh Talu
2. Enjoy local food and drinks on the beach
This might seem obvious but we've seen many people skip this or only eat comfort food like sandwiches or burgers. So find a restaurant that sits close by or on the beach and order yourself some mouth-watering Thai food such as fried rice, pad thai or som tum. Anything seafood is always a good idea.
Kick it up a notch by sipping on a few chilled beers or cocktails as the sun goes down. This is the perfect way to get some well-needed R&R at the beach in Thailand.
3. Get to know the island and the locals
The next step in making your beach trip memorable is to make an effort in interacting with the locals to get a feel of the true island life. Talk to them about their daily life and ask for tips or directions to hidden gems of the island. The beach isn't the only thing that makes an island. Maybe there is a picturesque viewpoint hidden somewhere deep inside or a phenomenal waterfall lurking beyond the beaten paths – the locals are sure to know about it. Even if they don't, having a conversation with them will make you new friends, learn about their culture and give you great stories to share back home.
4. Mix it up
A truly memorable island or beach experience is one that incorporates different styles. Make sure to combine adventure, relaxation, cultural exposures and even some partying if the destination has the option. Here are a few suggestions:
- Go paragliding over the clear blue waters
- Dive or snorkel among the beautiful marine life
- Hike your way up to stunning viewpoints of the island
- Tour the surrounding waters of the island and multiple beaches by the local long-tail boats
- Be daring and try fire limbo on the beach
Too much of one thing is never a good thing so combining different experiences can really enhance your trip and make it extra memorable.
5. Learn to ride a bike
Some of the islands in Thailand are undeveloped and the only way to get around is by a motorbike or scooter. We wouldn't recommend giving it a go on the island if it is your first time riding a bike. We've seen and heard plenty of horror stories where travelers had serious accidents, which can really mess up your trip. So definitely learn to to ride a motorbike before you get there – perhaps in Bangkok first. You'll be able to explore the island and its different beaches a lot more with a bike. Alternatively, you could hire local taxis (songtaews) but that can get quite expensive with one way fares going as far as $20-$30 or maybe even more.