When people come to vacation in Thailand they always talk about Bangkok and the south of the country, but so many tourists often ignore the gem that is the north. You have beaches in the south and many beautiful islands, but they don’t have jungles, trekking and herds of elephants and these are some of the many things you will find in the north of Thailand. There are hill tribe people and numerous villages and there, you get to see the real Thailand and the real Thai people. Let’s look at some of the best and fairly unknown places in the north that make it a place to be on your bucket list.
- Uttaradit is a large town with a funny sounding name and a lot of tourists decide to come here just on the strength of that. The train drops you right in the centre of town and from there you can explore. The wonderful thing about Uttaradit is that it is very affordable and is the perfect place for quiet and nature. There is the famous Sirikit Dam just outside town that boasts a massive man-made dam and a wonderful national park. Entry is free and once in, there is so much to see. There is also a driving range for those of you who like to hit a few balls and a full eighteen hole golf course and it’s so inexpensive. There are many hotels and resorts where you can stay for as little as five dollars.
- Mae Sai is the northern most point of Thailand right on the border with Myanmar. You will get to meet both Thai and Burmese people in the town and it has a fantastic market where everything is for sale at bargain prices. Everything is the same price for foreigners and Thai which is quite different from the south of Thailand. Proper Thai massages are available and you can book them through your hotel or just buy gift day vouchers and use them to enjoy a massage whenever you want. The menu’s are fantastic and you will get to experience both Thai and Burmese food.
- No trip to the north would be complete until you visit the ancient city of Chiang Mai. This is probably the most popular city for tourists after Bangkok. If you like temples, then this is the place for you as it boasts over three hundred temples, the famous Doi Suthep and many excellent night markets where you are sure to find the bargain of the century if you haggle. Haggling is half the fun.
So, next time you travel to Thailand, think about the north of the country and what it has to offer. The above list is but a few of the great places you can visit and there are many activities available like elephant riding, trekking through the amazing jungles and learning to cook real Thai food. Go on, explore the real Thailand. You won’t be disappointed.