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Thailand has so much to offer travellers! From it’s bustling capital to it’s temples, ruins and beaches. From it’s warm and friendly people to it’s world renowned cuisine. Thailand is both a cultural feast and a treat for the senses!
Delightfully chaotic Bangkok is Thailand’s vibrant capital city and home to over 8 million people. Adorned equally by imposing skyscrapers and impressive shrines, always-busy Bangkok is divided by the Chao Phraya River, whose name means “River of Kings”. The Chao Phraya feeds a network of canals on both sides of the city where colorful floating markets come to life and boats are a common means of getting around. Because of this, Bangkok is sometimes referred to as the “Venice of the East”.
Throughout Thailand you can find an impressive display of unique architecture characterised by spires, sloping gable roofs and ornaments, but the Royal Palace in Bangkok might just be the most impressive of them all with its intricate and ornate design.
Also found inside the Royal Grand Palace complex is temple Wat Pho, and within it it’s famous Reclining Buddha. Covered in gold leaf, this statue measures 15 meters high and 46 meters long and is one of the largest Buddha statues in all of Thailand.
Pictured here is a giant Yaksha or temple guardian, keeping watch outside Wat Phra Kaeo, royal chapel within the Royal Grand Palace complex. Yaksha are mythological beings generally thought to be benevolent spirits and protectors of the Earth, and of treasures.
Just a short day trip north from Bangkok is Ayutthaya. Founded in 1350, it was the second capital city of Siam after Sukhothai and it was once a major destination for international merchants. However, the glimmering city was burnt almost completely to the ground in 1767 when the Burmese invaded. Today, Ayutthaya is an archaeological ruin and an impressive hybrid of Siamese, Khmer, and Sri Lankan architecture.
En route to Ayutthaya and definitely worth a visit is the Bang Pa In Summer palace. Located further north along the Chao Phraya River it was originally constructed in 1632 and previously used by Thai Kings. It later fell into disrepair but was restored in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. It is largely a tourist attraction today with buildings that were mostly erected in the late 19th century.
Often, first-time travellers to Thailand like to couple visiting one of the big cities (like Bangkok or Chiang Mai) with visiting one of the country’s world-famous beach resort areas. And among the most beautiful of these areas is Phuket (other well-known beach resort areas in Thailand include Krabi, Koh Samui, and Pattaya). Phuket is an island sitting in the gorgeous Andaman sea, just to the west of the Thai mainland. Following the devastating tsunami of 2004 it has been rebuilt and is just as beautiful as ever!
From Phuket, one can take a day trip through the breathtaking Andaman Sea via speedboat. These tours provide an amazing opportunity to snorkel with tropical fish in sparkling, turquoise waters.
You’ll be surrounded by awe-inspiring, green-covered cliffs and monoliths that just seem to jut out of the sea from nowhere.
Jump into a traditional long-tail boat to get a close-up view of sea caves or, if you dare, even swim or kayak inside of them!
Eventually, most speedboat tours from Phuket end up in the Phi Phi Islands at Maya Bay. Stunning in it’s own right, Maya Bay at Koh Phi Phi Don was made even more famous by the movie “The Beach” starring Leonardo DiCaprio and as soon as you visit, you’ll easily see why the movie’s producers chose this place to epitomise paradise. It’s that and more!
We hope you’ve enjoyed your tour of Enchanting Thailand in Photos!
All of the photos shown here are original photos taken by Destination Dan.
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