Possibly Asia’s most popular tourist destination, Thailand has much to offer any type of visitor. Yes, its palm-fringed sands are simply breathtaking, but there’s much more to the country than its beautiful beaches. Observe the area’s wildlife, from elephants to cheeky monkeys; delve into the frenetic street life of Bangkok, a city where skyscrapers sit beside temples and the night is always young; and submerge yourself in spirituality at an architecturally impressive temple.
British passport holders arriving by air or land can enter Thailand for 30 days without a visa and U.S. citizens entering the country for 30 days or less do not require a visa, although it’s important to ensure that passports are valid for at least six months beyond the entry date.
Thai baht is the official currency of Thailand.
A good backpack to carry each day’s essentials will be useful when in Thailand, as might some insect repellent and sunscreen. Temperatures tend to range between 18°C and 35°C, with the warmest being from April to June, so this should indicate that layered clothing is the best approach. It’s useful to note that while visiting temples or religious sites, you must respect the rules and cover up. This means long trousers or skirts that fall below the knee, long sleeves, and no sandals or flip flops.
The official language of Thailand is Central Thai, although you may find that English is fairly common – especially in tourist hotspots – as it is a popular second language during schooling.
Family is very important in Thailand and you may notice that extended families live very close to each other. Showing respect is also something that Thai people take very seriously and they do this by taking gifts while visiting each other’s houses, removing shoes before entering homes and publicly disrespecting someone is absolutely not acceptable. Public displays of affection are generally avoided, and touching the head of another person is a no-go, as this is thought to be the most spiritual part of the body. The same goes for feet – they are thought of as dirty and low, symbolically. Ensure you don’t point towards anyone with your feet or aim your soles in the direction of any statues depicting the Buddha.
Tipping is not mandatory in Thailand, but it is always very much appreciated.