Thailand - Frequently Asked Questions
From local currency and visas to weather and appropriate attire, we answer all your most frequently asked questions on travelling in Thailand.
Table of contents
- When is the best time to go?
- Do you need a visa?
- How can I get there?
- What is the local currency and what currency should I take?
- What is there to see and do?
- Where are the best beaches?
- What is the best way to travel around the country?
- What should I wear when visiting ancient temples and Buddhist pagodas?
When is the best time to go?
Thailand's tropical climate means it experiences both sunshine and showers throughout the year depending on where you go. But, generally the best time to visit the country is between December and April, when the weather is warm but not oppressively hot, and there is little rain and less humidity.
Do you need a visa?
Tourists arriving by air or land can spend up to 30 days in Thailand without a visa. For stays of longer than 30 days, tourists must get a visa before travelling.
How can I get there?
Thailand is one of the most accessible destinations in south-east Asia, with direct flights from key UK airports.
What is the local currency and what currency should I take?
Thailand's national currency is the Thai Baht. One baht is divided into 100 satang. The exchange rate is roughly 52 baht to the pound. Bank notes come in denominations of 20,50,100, 500 and 1,000 baht, with 100 baht being the most commonly used. Coins come in 25 and 50 satang, as well as 1, 2, 5 and 10 baht. There are no fees or charges to exchange currency into baht in Thailand, so it's usually cheaper to wait until you arrive before changing your sterling. Look out for FOREX exchange booths, which accept all major currencies. There are lots of ATM machines throughout Thailand and you can use debit or credit cards in most mid-range and high-end hotels.
What is there to see and do?
Historic ruins, ornate temples, floating markets and breathtaking scenery are the main attractions in Thailand. In Bangkok, the old town, is home to some of the city's most interesting landmarks including heavily-gilded temples and the ornate royal palace. Former royal capital Ayutthaya is just north of Bangkok and its centre, rimmed by rivers and waterways, is crammed with 400-year-old temples and palace ruins. South-west of Bangkok, you can explore the famous floating markets to get a flavour for local Damnoan Saduak is the most popular. In northern Thailand, experience, the bustling night bazaar in Chiang Mai and sample some of the best curries in South-east Asia. Chiang Mai is also a good base to visit the lush mountains and colourful hill-tribe villages. Head south to explore Thailand's idyllic palm-fringed beaches and islands. On the western seaboard, Phuket and Khoa Lak offer powdery sand and lush landscapes, while the islands of Ko Samui, Ko Tao, and Ko Phangan, in the east, are just as appealing. For remote beauty, the islands in the national marine parks are a Ko Similian and Ko Surin off the west coast, or Ang Thong National Marine Park in the east. For pristine nature and wildlife, the area of Khao Sok National Park in southern Thailand has one of the oldest rainforests in the world harbouring monkeys, clouded leopards, tapirs and sun bears.
Where are the best beaches?
Thailand has some of the most beautiful beaches in Asia, and with a long coastline stretching along the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea, not to mention numerous islands, there are plenty of idyllic stretches of sand to choose from. But for the best slices of paradise, head to the Thai islands in the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. On the western seaboard, the largest Thai island of Phuket has beaches to please all tastes - from quiet, remote stretches of sand to bustling coves with plenty of watersports and great tourist facilities. Ko Phi Phi Don and its smaller sister island are known for their picturesque scenery, with fine white sands backed by limestone karst peaks. Ko Samui, in the Gulf of Thailand, is said to have some of the most stunning beaches in Thailand - Chaweng and Lamai are the most popular.
What is the best way to travel around the country?
There are domestic flights between the capital Bangkok and Chiang Mai, Phuket and Ko Samui but many travellers choose to make use of the trains, buses or ferries. Trains connect many of the Thailand's key areas and buses serve much of the country and are very cheap - although journeys can be long. Another option for road travel is a shared taxi, which will often be faster than going by bus and can be very cost effective for small groups. Ferries operate to the major islands, with some of the most popular routes being between Don Sak and Ko Samui, and Krabi??? to Phuket. Within the major cities and towns you can hire taxis or tuk-tuks to get around. You can also hire a bike in places like Ayutthaya and cycle your way around. If you don't want the hassle of arranging your own transportation, organised tours are an excellent way to go. There are many of these available, so speak to us about arranging any special tour or excursion.
What should I wear when visiting ancient temples and Buddhist pagodas?
It's best to show respect for the local religions and culture, especially when you're visiting temples and pagodas, with the general advice being to dress conservatively. This means wearing long trousers (at least three-quarter length) and a top that covers your shoulders. You may also be required to remove your shoes when entering a temple or pagoda. Clothing that's lightweight and breathable will prevent you from becoming too uncomfortable in the hot and humid climate. You may also be required to remove your shoes when entering a temple or pagoda.
Thailand Holidays Browse all
Soak in the vitamin D with a stay on the popular Patong Beach and enjoy a completely stress free holiday with the luxury of all-inclusive
- Ideal for both families and couples with a range of facilities and services catering to all travellers
- A relaxed atmosphere within a few minutes of buzzing Patong
- Beachfront with all rooms facing the sea
Make memories that will last a life time on the tropical island of Phuket with this beautiful beach-side resort
- Free transfers, free wifi and one free dinner for two
- Family friendly resort with an impressive pool side restaurant and food to match
- Easy reach of lively Patong
Treat your family to an adventure with memories that will last a life time on the island of Phuket
- Perfect holiday spot the whole family
- Idyllic beachfront dining opportunity
- Dream location on one of Phuket's most popular beaches
Enjoy a paradise of beaches, jungles and islands in secluded Khao Lak at The Leaf on the Sands by Katathani
- 500m from Nang Thong Beach
- Three outdoor swimming pools including a swim up bar and separate kids pool
- A fantastic value boutique gem, suitable for romantic couples and families alike
Escape from the daily routine with an incredible Thai adventure to the islands of Phuket and Koh Phi Phi
Leave the stress behind with this amazing opportunity to visit some of Thailand’s stunning tropical islands
- Spacious studio and suites accommodation in Phuket
- Discover where ‘The Beach’ with Leonardo DiCaprio was filmed in Koh Phi Phi
- Both hotels are in ideal locations to explore the surrounding tropical paradise
Nothing compares to Phuket for a tropical break, whether you're looking to relax on the beach, dive in the Andaman Sea, or take in the vibrant nightlife
- Tranquil location but an easy journey to buzzing Phuket Town
- Studio living with kitchenette, living room and separate sleeping area
- Breathtaking views across the Andaman Sea
Soak in the vitamin D on Phuket’s sun-kissed coastline with a stay the Rawai Palm Beach Resort, a matter of steps from...
The Seaview Patong is blessed with the ideal location to be situated only 5 minutes from the famous Patong Beach with...
Situated on the sea front Kantary Bay Hotel is offers breathtaking views over the calm tranquil waters of the Andaman...
Located within lush tropical gardens and designed in contemporary Thai style, Krabi La Playa is a great value option in...
The Leaf on the Sands boast a great location both near to the centre of Khao Lak and just five minutes stroll from the...
Rembrandt Hotel Bangkok is a stylish modern hotel located in the Sukhumvit area of Bangkok giving you easy access to...
Located on the popular island of Phuket and in the heart of the buzzing Karon resort is the charming Phuket Orchid...
Experience the sights and sounds of Thailand's 'City of Angels' with a stay at the centrally located Narai Hotel....
Discover the vibrant city of Bangkok with a stay at the Century Park Hotel. Offering an ideal location close to the...
A stylish new hotel with families in mind, the Centra by Centara Maris Resort Jomtien makes an ideal base to explore all...
Talk to a specialist
Call 020 7644 1755 to speak with our award-winning travel consultants.
Opening hours 09:00 - 21:00 GMT
Related articles for Thailand
Thailand NewsBrowse all Thailand News
Travellers can now choose to stay in one of a range of large luxury beach-side villas that Elite Havens has added to its portfolio in Thailand. The new five-and-six bedroom beach-front villas are the first properties to be featured in the company’s new collection on the tropical Thai Gulf island of Koh Samui.
Rosewood Hotels & Resorts has announced the opening of its first resort in Southeast Asia. The Rosewood Phuket in Thailand is located on the beachfront at Emerald Bay, and has 71 pool pavilions and villas that face the sea and boast private infinity pools. To celebrate its opening, the hotel is offering the "Charms of the Andaman" introductory offer.
A new executive chef has been appointed at the Banyan Tree Phuket in Thailand. Ian John Thomason, from the UK, has taken over the role at the luxury hotel. The British chef has worked at numerous renowned kitchens from The savoy and the Sofitel London St James, to the Sheraton Grand Laguna Luxury Collection Phuket and Luxury Collection, Naka Island, Phuket.