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Tips for Discovering the Heart of Thailand

26th November 2013

It is no secret that Thailand is an incredibly beautiful and fascinating destination. Crowds flock to the golden shores of Phuket and Koh Samui, while the bustling streets of Bangkok excite eager travellers of all ages. To truly discover the heart of the Land of Smiles, consider straying from the regular tourist trail on your next Thailand adventure. From hiking in the wilderness and visiting remote villages to sailing down the Chao Phraya River on an authentic rice barge, you can best experience the treasures of Thailand by wandering off the beaten track from time to time.

Here are five amazing activities to enjoy in Thailand.

Rock Climbing in Krabi

Railay Beach

Situated on the west coast of southern Thailand, Krabi is a town famed for its natural beauty and close proximity to unspoilt beaches and national parks. While it is significantly quieter than its neighbour Phuket, the word is spreading about this picturesque town. Accessible only by boat, take a ride to the pristine shores of Railay Beach. The surrounding spectacular limestone cliffs are perfect for climbing high over the emerald waters. Choose from a half day introduction to rocking climbing to a three day rock climbing adventure.

Try Unusual Street Food

Thailand Street Food

Traditional Thai cuisine is famed throughout the world for its unique combination of herbs and spices that result in fresh and vibrant flavours. While you are sure to be tempted with the more familiar dishes such as pad thai, it may be rewarding to branch out and embrace the unusual local delicacies. If you are feeling brave, try the fried crunchy crickets or worms or barbecued chicken feet. For something a little more bland, go for a fried quail egg or a fried banana on a stick. You might also find your cappuccino is made with coconut milk and your soft drink is served in a plastic bag.

Hike with the Hill Tribes

Thailand Farmer

To understand what life is truly like for villagers in remote Thailand, consider embarking on a hill tribe hike. Many tour groups operate treks through Thailand’s wilderness that will have you appreciating the true beauty of this diverse nation. Hike through verdant jungles, admire cascading waterfalls and spot the local wildlife. Have the opportunity to enjoy the warm hospitality of the tribespeople with an overnight village homestay. Highlights of your adventure may be bamboo rafting down a local river or sleeping in a traditional bamboo hut.

Visit a Fish Spa

Thailand Fish Spa

While you are holidaying in Thailand, be sure to take advantage of the affordable beauty services. Massages, manicures and pedicures are widely available and are often significantly cheaper than your home town. One of the latest beauty fads in Thailand is fish spas. This is where you can dip your toes into warm water filled with tiny Garra Rufa fish and have them nibbled on for 15 to 30 minutes. These little fish have no teeth, but will rather dine on the dead skin on your feet in a tickling manner. The results will be worth it with your feet feeling softer and smoother than ever.

Sail on a Rice Barge

Bangkok Rice Barge

A unique and delightful experience in Bangkok is sailing down the Chao Phraya River on a rice barge cruise. Take in the sights as you pass many of the city’s popular attractions, while enjoying the ultimate luxury onboard the refurbished boat. These authentic antique river rice barges are usually made of teak and iron wood, and have been carefully renovated to include stylish and comfortable sleeping quarters. Dine on sumptuous Thai cuisine as you take in the historical sites and fascinating landmarks of Bangkok.