11. Bangkok. I guess I had to stick it in here. For some it might be fun. Nah, I’m taking it out – this is my list. I’ll make it 11, but it’s not MY 11 – it’s just because others like it.
10. Pha-Taem – Ubon Ratchathani province, Isaan, near Laos.
9. Ubon Ratchathani or Si Saket for SongKran – the entire city is ROCKING. Everyone in good moods. Foreigners are a rarity so they get treated special. This might be the best place in Thailand to find decent Thai girls, most of whom have never seen the inside of a bar.
8. Phangna. Located just north of Phuket this place is very cool. It has an incredibly beautiful ferry tour that winds among the islands. There is also an incredible wat with caves and water running through it which you can KAYAK through! A very cool place. Don’t miss the supercool park, surrounded by steep cliffs. A very good time.
7. Krabi: Railay Beach – for the adventure climbing and photo opps. Also – don’t miss “Wat Tam Seu-uh” (Tiger Temple Cave) close to Krabi Town.
6. Ko Chang: Pronounced “chaong” – Really beautiful to see, not exactly beautiful beaches to swim in – rocky and shelly.
5. Ko Tao: Best Island to go to relax and just not do ANYTHING. Sit at your bungalow and read Hunter Thomson books and drink Beerlao.
4. Ko Phangnan: Full moon party. Need I say more? A monthly off-the-hook party that goes all night.
3. Ko Samui: Ko Samui is a really cool place during the slow season. During the high-season a bit nuts. I don’t go much during the high-season, just too much traffic and craziness. During low season the island has a nice feel to it. Slower and yet everything is still on offer. Incredible scenery and sunsets… I have a friend that meets girls at this Thailand dating site – and takes the best ones to Samui for a weekend. Inevitably, they go with him. Go figure.
2. Suan Mokkh – Buddhist forest temple in Chaiya, very pretty and if you have any interest in Buddhism you’ll love it. Ok, sure, it’s my personal favorite… it had to go on the list.
1. Patong Beach, Phuket: What can I say – everyone knows this place has EVERYTHING. Gorgeous scenery and places to explore, a city (Phuket town), a tourist city (Patong), tourist beaches, out of the way beaches, island getaways (Phi Phi), western food and great Thai food… It’s still cheap, though probably the most expensive place in all of Thailand to live. There are plenty of things to see and do and lots of infrastructure in place to handle a lot of tourists at one time – like during the high-seasons.
I’m a beach person – so most of my picks are great islands that I’ve come to love here. I have not even BEEN to Chiang Mai or anywhere around there. The closest I got to being north was Udon Thani, Nong Khai and Vientianne. I hope I can get to Ayuddya and the Chiang Mai areas sometime in the next year maybe. There is SO MUCH to see in Thailand it’s hard to spend the needed time in each place. I’ll get there…
Another couple years maybe.