10 Best Places for First-Time Visitors in Bangkok, Thailand

A bucket-list destination for many, Thailand and its natural exotic charm is an absolute treat for anyone in search of anything. From tropical rain forests to delectable street food, epic nightlife and parties to ancient sacred temples Thailand has it all.

The beaches also a staple amongst most people’s list also never ceases to inspire. Being a popular destination Thailand also has great flight and connectivity options alongside a wide range of lodging facilities and options.

So, if you’ve manifested this next holiday to Thailand and finally want to pull the trigger on in then here is our quick guide on the 10 BEST PLACES FOR FIRST-TIME VISITORS IN THAILAND.

Bangkok

aerial photography of high-rise buildings under cloudy sky

The capital of Thailand that most people immediately envision in mind when they intend on having their holiday plan based in a cosmopolitan setting.

The city of Bangkok is all there is and more to what people see and hear about it. The fast and flashy nightlife and party circles, vibrant street life with great street food and also what most people don’t realize is that Bangkok is an exceptional gateway to find and visit some of the country’s most famous temples around.

The city also has provisions for some extravagant shopping at Siam Paragon and travel-inspired Terminal21, as well as a number of traditional floating markets.

For those crazy about shopping and also for those in search for an experience, head to Chatuchak Market which is one of the largest outdoor markets in the world which is a maze of nearly 8000 stalls that sells everything there at local prices.

Other major places to visit here are Lumpini Park which stands out as a green oasis in the middle of the city flaked by towering concrete buildings.

The Grand Palace is also a must-stop that also houses the Wat Phra Kaew Temple or The Temple of the Emerald Buddha. The Royal Reception Halls and Wat-Pho are also definite places to stop by.

Ayutthaya

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Located 80 kilometres North of Bangkok, Ayutthaya was Thailand’s capital back in the 14th century.

Located inside the Sukhothai Historical Park, Wat Mahathat is by far the most famous temple in Ayutthya and is surrounded by many ruins including 26 other temples and a royal palace.

The city of Ayutthya in 1700 AD was once the capital of Bangkok and the largest city in the world.

The temple in the premises of the park is a UNESCO World Heritage site and Wat Mahathat is the biggest and most impressive structure here that consists of an ordination hall and living quarters and even though the tower spire collapsed long ago the remnants are still stunning and definitely worth a visit.

Chiang Mai

green grass field under white clouds during daytime

For those in search of a more country side escape along the misty jungle mountains of Thailand should definitely visit Chaing Mai.

A great way to explore more into the wild side of Chiang Mai would be to tour the Doi Inthanon National Park here which is an extension of the Himalayan Mountains.

The area of Chiang Mai is also home to one of the most active Buddhist temples in Thaiiland is home to the Wat Phra Singh and the beautiful Wat Phra Doi Suthep.

The Wat Phra Doi Suthep temple here is a must stop visit when you visit Chiang Mai and is one of the most sacred temples in Northern Thailand. The temple was founded in 1383 and has a 17-meter-tall Buddha statue that people can see from miles away.

The top of the temple here is decorated with a golden spire and inside a replica of the Emerald Buddha in on display.

Koh Samui

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Koh Samui is “The Quintessential” Thai island. The second largest island in Thailand it was where the original backpackers, full moon parties and cheap huts all started.

With time however Koh Samui has become in to this luxurious and modern island that features some of the best resorts, hotel, spas, restaurants and party circuits.

It is a great spot for anyone ranging from first timers, families, honeymooners and especially for people in search of great Yoga and Spa destinations.

It is quite easy to access with the presence of its own airport and spots like the Wat Phra Yei Temple, Big Buddha Statue, Chaweng Beach and Grandfather’s Rock are great places to visit here.

Phuket

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The largest and the most prosperous island in Thailand, Phuket is one for the glitz and glamour. Six Star Resort, world renowned plastic surgeons, celebrity chef restaurants it’s all here.

If uber-luxurious and extravagant are you thing, then this is the place to be in Thailand. Apart from all the crowd, Phuket still maintains some of the best beaches with stylish sun-bathers and hype beach bars.

Some great areas here include Patong, which provides for one of the best night life and some incredible Buddhists monuments can be found around Chalong Bay.

Krabi

bird's-eye view photography of island

The province of Krabi is made up of over 200 islands and is home to some of the best beaches in Asia. The province is also characterized by steep vertical limestone and are especially popular among the climbing enthusiasts.

Amongst the most beautiful beaches here can be found on the Koh Phi Phi islands. Koh Phi Phi is a great destination to stop by whether you intend on travelling alone or with your friends.

The island here has a young and energetic atmosphere and of the 6 islands here with Koh Phi Phi Don being the largest and also the busiest, you’re definitely assured clear water with ideal opportunities for snorkelling and diving.

The most iconic spot here on this island is probably Maya Bay which you could probably recognize even on your first visit here, is more or less filled with tourists and visitors every day.

However, if you want to beat the crowds and go on your own adventure here then it is advised to hire a boat – which is surprisingly cheap and affordable – and visit the neighbouring islands of Monkey Beach, Bamboo Island and Mosquito Island. 

The Thung Teao Natural Park is also another great place to explore in the Krabi province which is filled with natural pools and virgin vegetation.

The Grand Palace

Wat Phra Kaew Travel Guide - BestPrice Travel

Wat Phra Kaew also known as The Emerald Temple or The Grand Palace is one of Thailand’s most famous and sacred temples and is located inside the Palace Grounds.

The Emerald Buddha here is carved from a single block of Jade and is considered the protector of Thailand.

The changing of the Buddha’s seasonal cloak here is considered a highly important ritual and is only allowed for kings to perform them.

The temple here was completed back in 1784 and is part of the nearly 100 plus building found within the premises of the Palace. 

Pattaya

green trees near body of water under cloudy sky during daytime

Located less than two hours away from Bangkok and known to many as synonymous as Bangkok, Pattaya is definitely one of the most popular and most visited places in Thailand.

Once a sleepy old fishing town Pattaya is now a magnificent tourist destination where travellers flock from around the world. Beaches like Hat Sai Khew, Koh Somat Beach and Koh Larn are some definite places to visit while you’re here and also take part in some activities like parasailing, wind surfing or simply taking a glass bottom boat ride to view the Coral reefs here.

The Wat Phra Yai Temple, Chanthaburi Sapphire Mine and Siam Pattaya are some interesting sites to add to your travel plans here.

Chiang Rai

white temple, Thailand

Situated on the border of Myanmar and Laos, the city of Chiang Rai is famous for its Khun Kon waterfall which is situated in the Lam Nam Kok National Park.

Also famous here is Wat Rong Khun or The White Temple. In its original state was almost in ruins and what we see today is actually the restoration project of visual artist Chalermchai Kositpipat.

It is without a doubt an incredible piece of architecture and art in itself and the completed project is slated to have nine buildings which will also include living quarters for monks.

Inside the temple complex is a sort of art gallery and the other building have been designated as training rooms and meditation centres. 

Wat Tham Pla is also another famous temple here where visitors can expect to find thousands of wild macaques in caves, the stairway to which is flanked by Naga serpents.

Wat Mahathat

Wat Mahathat, a photo from Ayutthaya, Central | TrekEarth

Located inside the Sukhothai Historical Park, Wat Mahathat is by far the most famous temple in Ayutthya and is surrounded by many ruins including 26 other temples and a royal palace.

The city of Ayutthya in 1700 AD was once the capital of Bangkok and the largest city in the world. The temple in the premises of the park is a UNESCO World Heritage site and Wat Mahathat is the biggest and most impressive structure here that consists of an ordination hall and living quarters and even though the tower spire collapsed long ago the remnants are still stunning and definitely worth a visit.

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