Tropical Frouit on boat of Floating Market in Thailand
Tropical fruit on boat at The Floating Market in Thailand.

I’m a traveller with quite a few destinations I have yet to check off my list. So it would make sense to not waste my precious travel budget visiting the same places twice. However, there is one country that lured me back for a second time in just three years…Thailand.

Thailand makes for a great tourist destination because the cost of food, accommodations and nearly everything else is relatively inexpensive. Getting around by train or tuk tuk which is a local two wheeled taxi, is relatively easy and the locals are quite nice and friendly. It’s not called the “land of smiles” for nothing.

I remember the exact moment that I decided that I had to visit Thailand. I came across a photo on a friend’s facebook feed that showed her posed next to a giant, living, breathing tiger. For an adrenaline junkie like me, this looked like something I just had to do.

To take pictures with tigers, the most popular place to go is the Tiger Temple in Kanchanaburi. I went there on a soggy, rainy day and sloshed through mud to see my tiger buddies. A trip to see the tigers is made easier as many tour companies have created trip packages that make a stop there.

Animals are everywhere in Thailand and taking pictures with them is a popular tourist pastime. Besides, tigers; getting up close and personal with snakes, going on an elephant trek or cuddling up to giant lizards on the beach is something that I welcomed.

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If your idea of fun doesn’t include anything with big teeth or scales, don’t count Thailand out. The country can also be a haven for yoga enthusiasts and those who enjoy going to spas. Neighbourhood spas are on every corner offering Thai massages from head to toe.

My last trip to Thailand included time in the capital city of Bangkok, a few nights in the coastal town of Phuket and one night on the secluded island of Yao Noi. Bangkok is known for its vibrant street markets where you’ll find bargains galore on a variety of t-shirts, shoes, bags and dresses. For those who are adventurous with trying new cuisine, a bit of the street food will be a memorable experience.

Of course, eating from a street food vendor with a cart isn’t for everyone. Thailand has plenty of restaurants offering a variety of cuisines that are sure to suit everyone’s fancy. Additionally, those who eat only halal foods will find plenty of outlets catering to them as well. Be sure to try Tom Yum Soup, which is a Thai staple. It’s my favourite.

My absolute must see attractions in Thailand include; the Tiger Temple, for a personalised picture with a tiger, The Floating Market for eye-catching souvenirs, Bangkok’s Emporium Shopping Complex, where you’ll find a 5-star grocery store with gold carts, MBK Mall, an electronics junky’s dreamland and the FantaSea Show in Phuket.

For your next vacation, why not visit Thailand to experience some of the magic that it has to offer first-hand?

Visit Thailand for a memorable experience that may find yourself adding it over and over again to your list of ‘must see’ places.

Happy travels!

By Alona Ballard

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