I am travelling to Thailand sola (backpacking) on December and I could use some advise regarding things to do and places to see. I ll stay in Bangok for a couple of days and I will then head South for island hopping. I am thinking of Ko Thao, Ko Phi Phi, Ko Pha yan (for the full moon party) and Ko Lipe. Do you have any tips for beaches/places to stay in these islands or suggestions for other islands? I do not really want to go to very busy/touristic places full of bars and clubs. I am seeking for quite beaches, with nice beach bars and areas with more alternative types of tourism but not extremely isolated as I am travelling bymyself. Also is it easy to meet people there? Any tours you would recommend?
Thanks in advance
Once you get to Thailand you can obtain tours through local travel agencies. There are many travel agencies in Thailand! On these tours you will meet other fellow tourists. Most of the tours start off on 9 or 10 seat passenger vans. Travel agencies will have a selection of popular tours you can choose from. Read up on Thailand before you leave on your holiday.
December is high season. You may have to book hotels ahead of time, especially close to Christmas. When you ask for hotel suggestions also mention how much per night you want to spend on a hotel room. In Bangkok if you have a hotel near the Skytrain route you can use that overhead rail service to get around the city. There is also cheap rail service between the airport and the Pratunam area. At Phaya Thai you can switch to the Skytrain for a ride close to your hotel.
Have you sorted out your visa requirements yet? If and how you enter Thailand depends on the country you come from and the passport you are using.
Even if you are in areas with bars and nightlife such as in Bangkok or Phuket doesn't mean you are obligated to venture into these bars. You will see more nudity and crudeness on beaches in Europe than on the streets of Phuket, Pattaya and Bangkok.
Check out Hua Hin. Easy to get to from Bangkok. Not as expensive as Phuket and nearby island areas. Less hassle with local transportation. You can use the train to get to Hua Hin or even a bus.
If you really want to avoid people (more tourists in an area usually means cheaper hotels) you can check out this place - Koh Sukorn. (I have never been here - I like having people around!)
Wait until you get to Thailand before you change any money over to Thai baht. You will get a better rate that way. Bank money changers available at the airprort 24 hours a day. Check out a travel guide or two from your local library on Thailand and actually find your locations on maps. See if you can fit in a little time for Chiang Mai and northern Thailand instead of only beach areas. When or if you book bus rides do it from real bus stations not from Khao San Road travel agencies. KSR travel agency booked buses seem to have the most problems with theft and breakdowns.
Thank you very much.Very useful info