Central America vs Thailand

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean Central America vs Thailand

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1. Posted by kimvdg (Budding Member 18 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

My boyfriend and I are looking at taking 2-3 months at the end of the year to visit either Central America or Thailand. Our hearts are set on both and we can't decide. Has anyone visited both and recommends the one over the other. I love sea, sun and sand as well as culture and seeing a new way of life.
Any tips - really appreciated!

2. Posted by bentivogli (Respected Member 2398 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Not hindered by any experience with the former, I'd say that 2-3 months is a bit much for just Thailand, while it makes for a decent amount of time to see a part of SA. If you love sun and sea, however, your options in SA are scarce, and mainly limited to Brazil and bits of Venezuela.

3. Posted by kimvdg (Budding Member 18 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Thanks - but I was thinking more on the lines of Honduras, Mexico and Guatemala more than South America. Also if we chose Thailand - we would probably hop over to Australia and New Zealand too.

4. Posted by fruitcake (Budding Member 10 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

I am hopefully heading to Central America myself soon, so can't offer any insight into what its like.

However ihave been to Thailand a couple of times and around S.E Asia. If ya go to Thailand for a a few months its possible to hop into Laos and Cambodia, Vietnam as well so there plenty of scope for travelling around if 3 months in thailand is too long.

S.E Asia is very easy to travel around, you can get by speaking English and is very touristy,. I went about 7 yrs ago when i was 20 and at that age that part of the world was paradise.

If you can cope with the hoardes of gap year students then i can highly recommend it S.E Asia

However, Central America sounds like it has what you;re after as well....hmmmm ....dilemma!!! good luck with your decision but whatever you decide - ya know your gonna have a wicked time;)

5. Posted by 89GF (Budding Member 8 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

If you like sun and sand (and maybe Diving) Roatan, and island off the coast of honduras, is probably the place for you! I went there last year and absolutely LOVED it. Cool place. Costa Rica also rocks for enviro stuff, and awesome beaches. I visited the Pacifc coast and mountains and it was cool too.

Never been to thailand but all my mates have, and they love it. Thailand and Costa Rica are meant to be quite similar, except of course for the starkly different cultures.

Either way you will win, if you come to Oz come to Canberra and tell me all about thailand, ill buy you a beer!

6. Posted by bentivogli (Respected Member 2398 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

oops, sorry; misread your post...

7. Posted by ashy (Budding Member 34 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

I have travelled around SE Asia for the last 3 years in a row! I've been to Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia, Burma, and Indonesia. I thought about going back this year, but decided to travel somewhere new this time... I chose Central America. I'm gone from April 8th - June 10th. I'm travelling through Costa Rica (this will be my second time there), then going to Nicaragua, Honduras, Belize, and Guatamala.

South East Asia is amazing, and there's a reason why I have continued to travel back there! It's cheap, the weather is great, there's lots to see and do, it's easy to get around, lots of people speak english, the food is tasty, the parties are good, and the beaches are some of the best in the world!

I decided to try Central America this year, because I'm looking for a new challenge! I've only ever been to Mexico, and Costa Rica, in Central America, but have had wonderful experiences in both, and I find myself curious what the rest of the countries are like!

I think no matter where you go, you'll have a great time! What time of year are you planning on going? If you have any questions or need any info, let me know! I'd be happy to help

8. Posted by Piecar (Travel Guru 1162 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

Hey there. I've spent plenty of time in Central America. I write about it on another travel website. I have to say it is a fantastic place to keep yourself interested for months at a time, and the six countries that make up the place have plenty of interesting differences. From Tikal to the Darien Gap, there is something to see. Taking a chicken bus down some road to a small village is terrific.

It is almost tailor made for English speaking travellers in this way...You can start in Belize to get used to the far more laid back atmosphere of CA. Yet you are still speaking english. A couple of days later, you head off to Guat, a couple of hour bus ride west, and you are into a whole other world. You can go as fast or slow as you like. The Packer's highway, or just bumping town to town.

Honduras and Nicaragua are almost untouched by massive tourism. Unspoiled by trinkets (Okay, not completely true. There is a trinket or two.)and even slower paced than Guat. Everybody knows about Costa Rica.

The Caribbean side, fantastic diving. The Pacific side, fantastic surfing.

It's cheap. and cheap to get to. There is no downside.

Unless you hate Spanish, I guess.

9. Posted by kimvdg (Budding Member 18 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

GREAT! thanks - this is so helpful. So, what should a daily budget be then in Central America (I think I'm decided on CA). Also - does anyone have a route that they did and that was brilliant. Hostel suggestions and great dive schools will also be greatly appreciated!

10. Posted by 89GF (Budding Member 8 posts) 11y Star this if you like it!

I went for 6 weeks on a trip which also included a week in Cancun ($$$$$) and I spent $3200 AUS in that time, averaging $75 AUS a day. That was for all busses, accom, food, beer and souveneirs/presents for people at home (that cost me a few hundred bucks). We didnt hold back either, eating at good restaurants every night, drinking plenty of beer every night, hiring scooters, a couple of days scuba diving, going to ruins etc.... We had no budget, we just spent spent spent. We would have been hard pressed to spend more than this without buying copious amounts of souveneirs.

Cheapest countries - Guatemala, mainland Honduras + Utila, El Salvador,
Slightly more expensive - Costa Rica, Roatan, Mexico
Most Expensive - Cancun

Good dive shops, cant even remember which one I used. I dived off Roatan and it was stunning. Just go to the island, head down to Sundowners for some beers and you'll meet someone who can hook you up with a dive school.