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Top 10 Things to Do in Thailand

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From tropical islands and jungle-covered mountains to floating markets and ancient ruins, Thailand has long been the top destination for travelers from around the world in Southeast Asia, offering plenty of magical things to do. The problem any traveler faces when visiting Thailand is narrowing down the list of things to do in Thailand. To enrich your Thailand trip, here are 10 must-try activities that will be cherished experiences forever.

1. Experience a Traditional Thai Massage

If you’ve never experienced an authentic Thai massage before, you might be surprised – it’s a great way to kick the tires of the day. A traditional Thai massage is not a relaxing massage with essential oils. Massage specialists usually apply deep pressure to your body using all parts of their body, including their hands, elbows, and knees, to stretch your body and improve the flow of energy in your body. Every town and city in Thailand is guaranteed to have a great number of massage parlors at very cheap prices averaging $6-10 per hour. It is one of the most comfortable things to do in Thailand with friends.

Thai Massage in Thailand
A Traditional Thai Massage

2. Take the Death Railway Train to Explore the Dark Side of Kanchanaburi

The Thai-Burma Railway is also known as the Death Railway because over 100,000 people died during its construction. Kanchanaburi, where the railway is located today, is a popular tourist destination with dense forests and also a haven for backpackers. Visitors can take a train ride on a historic journey across the famous Bridge on the River Kwai to learn about the hidden dark past. The 415-kilometer Death Railway was built by allied POWs, mainly from Britain, Australia, and the Netherlands, under Japanese forces.

Thai-Burma Death Railway
Thai-Burma Death Railway

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3. Enjoy a Wonderful Tiffany’s Show

Founded in 1974, the Tiffany’s Show Pattaya is the first true ladyboy show in Southeast Asia. It runs for 75 minutes and is one of the crazy things to do in Thailand. The programs are mainly from New York’s Broadway classics, showing the customs of all over the world, especially the Oriental color. The Tiffany Theatre is magnificently decorated, with a capacity of 1,000 people. The superb performances, coupled with the world-class sound and lighting equipment, provide a perfect experience for the audience.

Tiffany Cabaret Show in Pattaya
Wonderful Tiffany Cabaret Show by Ladyboys

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4. Admire the Splendid Grand Palace in Bangkok

The Grand Palace, the residence of the Thai royal family, is a massive complex of ancient buildings (28 in total) in Bangkok, which was built in 1782. The Grand Palace, modeled after the old imperial palace of the former capital city Ayutthaya, is the best-preserved imperial palace, the largest, and the most ethnic palace in all dynasties. The Grand Palace gathers the essence of Thai architecture, painting, sculpture, and decorative art, known as the “Complete Collection of Thai art”.

Bangkok-Grand Palace
Splendid Grand Palace

5. Get Up Close and Personal with Adorable Wild Elephants

Elephants are the national symbol of Thailand and interacting with elephants is one of the most interesting things to do in Thailand with family. Thailand has established several elephant sanctuaries to provide rehabilitation services for rescued elephants. Visitors can take a stroll with the wild elephants at the Elephant Nature Park on the outskirts of Chiang Mai, feed them, bathe them under the guidance of carers, and play with the elephants in the small river. You will learn about the living conditions of elephants and their living habits in the reserve.

Elephant Jungle Sanctuary in Chiang Mai
Elephant Jungle Sanctuary in Chiang Mai

6. Hop through Some of the World’s Most Beautiful Islands

Thailand is a natural vacation country, with soft beaches, charming islands, and beautiful waters. Island hopping has to be one of the most romantic things to do in Thailand for couples. Take a long-tail boat trip with your beloved and explore as many beaches and islands as you can. Located in the Andaman Sea, Phuket, Thailand’s largest island, is a paradise for scuba divers and parasailing enthusiasts. 

Phuket - Phi Phi Islands
Phi Phi Islands on Phuket

Part of Krabi, Phi Phi Don, Thailand’s prettiest island, is a sun-drenched place with white sand beaches, azure blue waters, and stunning natural caves. Koh Samui, Thailand’s third-largest island, still retains its original flavor by not overdeveloping it. Visitors can hike in the mountain rainforest, cool off in the lush coconut groves, take a speedboat to snorkel in the crystal clear coves nearby…

☛ See also: Thailand Islands Guide

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7. Watch an Exciting Muay Thai Fight

Muay Thai, a legendary fighting skill, is a sport known for its strength and agility. It mainly uses the human body’s eight limbs, namely, fists, legs, elbows, and knees, as eight weapons to attack. Of course, Muay Thai is a kind of martial arts. The decisive condition for a Muay Thai master to win is the combination of his skills, strength, resourcefulness, and spiritual strength. Competitions are held in almost every major city in Thailand, but the best competitions are usually held in Bangkok. Lumpinee Stadium is the best place to watch Muay Thai. You can even take a simple Thai boxing lesson if you are interested.

Muay Thai Fight Thailand
An Exciting Muay Thai Fight

8. Jump in a Boat for a Visit to a Floating Market

Thailand is rich in watercourses, which provide a prerequisite for the prosperity of floating markets. Bangkok has some of the best floating markets, the largest and most famous being the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market. The market gets busy early in the morning and you have to get there as early as possible. There are boats selling porridge, noodles, and other snacks in the market, where visitors can enjoy breakfast.

Damnoen Saduak floating market in Bangkok
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

Boats carrying fruits and vegetables zip through the narrow tropical tree-lined canals. On the boat, the women pedlars, wearing distinctive straw hats, are shouting their wares. At peak times (7 am to 8 am), such small merchant ships and passenger boats could cause traffic jams on the canal, creating a lively scene. The fair usually lasts from early morning until about 2 p.m.

9. Take an Interesting Thai Cooking Class

A cookery class in Thailand, one of the most rewarding things to do in Thailand, is a great way to not only discover the best things to eat in Thailand, but also learn how to cook them at home. Most Thai cooking classes start with fresh ingredients from a wet market, so you can easily learn about the main ingredients of Thai food. Pick a few dishes that interest you most, such as Pad Thai (Stir-Fried Rice Noodles), Mango Glutinous Rice, etc., and make them with the guidance of an expert chef. When you enjoy the Thai dishes that you have made yourself, you will feel so proud.

Thai Cooking Class Thailand
An Interesting Thai Cooking Class

10. Embark on A Street Food Journey

The easiest way to taste Thai food is to take a street food tour led by a local foodie. There are many different kinds of street food in Thailand. Every street in every city has stalls selling various light meals, such as Pad Thai (Stir-Fried Rice Noodles), Moo Ping (Thai-Style Grilled Pork Skewers), Som Tam Thai (Green Papaya Salad), Tom Yum Goong Soup (Sour & Hot Seafood Soup), and Thai Banana Pancake. A street food tour is one of the must-do things in Thailand for singles, families, and couples, which will greatly help you learn about Thai cuisine and culture during your trip, and help you find your favorite Thai dishes.

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