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Where to stay and go in Thailand

Highlights of Thailand

With a wealth of natural wonders and man-made marvels, colourful culture and fine food, not-to-mention some spectacular beaches, holidays in Thailand offer a slice of paradise. Set in the heart of south-east Asia and snaking down to the Malay Peninsula, the country has it all - dreamy jungle landscapes dotted with colourful villages and magnificent temples, fascinating cities, fine food and renowned hospitality, and some of the most breathtaking beaches in the region.

Idyllic islands hug the country's coastline along the Gulf of Thailand in the east and the Andaman Sea in the west and feature a huge range of accommodation from simple thatched beach houses to luxurious resorts. Travellers can experience the exotic charm of hill tribe villages around Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai in the north, or explore marvellous Khmer temples and monuments. In Thailand's heartland, the fast-paced capital, Bangkok, is awash with fascinating old temples and palaces, while a wealth of national parks also means the country offers some spectacular areas of natural beauty and bountiful wildlife.

From elephant treks to ancient jungle-entangled ruins to remote desert islands - Thailand's well-developed tourism network has made its areas of tropical paradise accessible to everyone. Wherever you go you are guaranteed to sample some great food and experience service with a smile.

Idyllic islands

Thailand encompasses hundreds of tropical islands so there are plenty of beach paradises to choose from. Ko Samet and Ko Chang in the northern Gulf feature white sands and glorious green interiors and are the closest islands to Bangkok. While the beautiful coconut islands of Ko Samui, Ko Phangan and Ko Tao in the southern Gulf are known for their scenic beauty and diving. On the Andaman coast, travellers can discover the white crescent beaches of Thailand's largest island, Phuket, and the dramatic karst-backed sands of Krabi province.

Ko Samui

Ko Samui and its sister islands form part of a stunning tropical archipelago in the southern Gulf of Thailand. Studded with coconut palms and virgin forest, the islands' rounded limestone shores rise out of the Gulf, indented with perfect crescents of white sand. The main island of Ko Samui is Thailand's third largest island and has its own airport. Travellers looking for upmarket villas and mid-range hotels and spas will find plenty around the stunning beaches of Chaweng and Lamai.

Phuket

Sitting pretty off Thailand's Andaman Coast, Phuket is the country's largest island and was the first to develop a tourist industry so it's a great place to stay if you like your slice of paradise to come with all modern comforts and conveniences. Despite the proliferation of sophisticated resorts and family-friendly hotels, the island has not lost its charm. The restaurants serve some the best Thai cuisine of all the islands and national parks protect the island's virgin rainforest. Along with great facilities, the island has some interesting museums and monuments, as well as a few good golf courses.

Krabi

The beaches and islands of Krabi Province boast some of the most spectacular scenery in Thailand. Phanghan Bay, between Krabi mainland and Phuket island, has stunning limestone karst formations that form a fantastic backdrop for a tropical holiday. Ko Phi Phi and Ko Lanta are two of the most famous of the islands, but there are more than 150 dotted around the coast that can be easily visited by boat.

Culture, history and colour

Bangkok

The cosmopolitan capital Bangkok is bursting at the seams with life, buzzing with tuk-tuks and markets, dotted with elaborately-decorated stupas and full of fascinating sightseeing prospects. Spending a few days here is a must for any traveller who wants to get to grips with Thai culture and history. Head for the old town area, known as Ratanakosin, hugging the banks of the Chao Phraya River, for a delightful dose of culture and temples.

Chiang Mai

In the north, visitors can discover colourful hill-tribe villages, jungle-enveloped ruins and temples, and tuck into some of the best red and green curries in Thailand. The lush region of mountains, valleys and rivers around Chiang Mai has an almost mythical quality, and the city itself is an important stop on any cultural tour of Thailand.

Ayutthaya

This World Heritage city was the royal capital of Siam between the 14th and 18th centuries and is the perfect place to explore Thailand's deep and fascinating history. The city is brimming with temples, shrines and ruins, most of them contained within an island surrounded by rivers and canals. Here you'll find countless stone Buddhas and once-illustrious Khmer-influenced palaces.

Natural splendour

Khao Sok National Park

Thailand is blessed with some of the most beautiful scenery in Asia and has a wealth of national parks to protect its natural bounty. The area of Khao Sok National Park in southern Thailand has one of the oldest rainforests in the world, where limestone mountains and deep valleys are blanketed in rich and exotic flora and fauna. Explore the lakes, caves and waterfalls on a nature trek, go in search of monkeys, clouded leopards, tapirs and sun bears, and get up close to an elephant at Elephant Hills Jungle Camp. The camp offers luxury tents and floating lodges that make a perfect base for exploring the park.

Remote retreats

Ko Phi Phi

Ko Phi Phi Don has several luxury resorts, but if you want to really get away from it all, the smaller island, Ko Phi Phi Lee is a magical paradise and has a stunning turquoise lagoon hidden behind limestone cliffs, which was famously featured in the film The Beach.

Ko Lanta

Part of a scenic archipelago off southern Thailand's Andaman seaboard, Ko Lanta features mile-upon-mile of pristine palm-fringed beaches. There are a few resorts lining its western coast offering seclusion and luxury. Flatter than its neighbouring islands and covered in tropical vegetation, visitors can get back to nature trekking in its ancient rainforests, exploring its waterfalls and caves, or diving the coral reefs beneath its aquamarine shores.

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Holiday Place Exclusives

These hotels have been carefully hand-picked as excellent Thailand hotels. Each offers it’s own unique perspective but also outstanding value.

michael

Michael Priest

Far East Product Manager

Great for families…

centra by centara phu pano resort krabi

Centra by Centara Phu Pano Resort Krabi

Holidays from £739 per person

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Somewhere for couples…

manathai surin phuket

Manathai Surin Phuket

Holidays from £729 per person

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All inclusive…

apsara beachfront resort and villa

Apsara Beachfront Resort and Villa

Holidays from £1149 per person

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Places of interest in Thailand

Depending on the type of location you want, the kind of facilities you'd like to find and the proximity to certain attractions, we have a good number of areas for you to choose from and stay at during your holiday.

Whether you want a pumping and energetic beachside retreat, a tranquil setting in a secluded cove, a hillside resort perched in the midst of nature, or a strategic central location close to civilisation and buzzing city life, nightclubs, theme parks and other kinds of leisure attractions, we can advise you on the best places for you.

Choose from our selection of handpicked places and be based right at the place that's most ideal for you and your travelling party

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