24 hours in BANGKOK

(Updated April 2020)

After another stopover in Bangkok on the way back from my travels through Cambodia, I’m now ready to share my best tips in this brand-new 24 hours in…-post.

As usual, it’s meant for just a layover or a very short break on a trip through Thailand.

The row of Chedis at the Royal Palace in Bangkok, a landmark not to be missed during 24 hours in Bangkok

Of course, in 24 hours you’ll see just a fraction of all the attractions this bustling mega-city has to offer. So if you’re staying longer or want to try out more, check out the Bangkok-section in my Thailand-post.

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ISLAND HOPPING in THAILAND: Koh Phi Phi, Koh Lanta, Koh Jum

Reportedly, there are about 1430 islands in Thailand – obviously not all of them inhabited, but sadly, many of them crowded. Charmingly, some of the Thai islands come in clusters and are therefore easily accessible when island hopping.

Andaman Sea in Thailand

The most idyllic way of island hopping is done by the traditional longtail boats.

While formerly, most of Thailand’s islands were uninhabited, more and more have been developed for tourism. However, since the most famous and popular ones are not automatically those that have the most beauty and serenity in store, with a little research – and a tip from me – you can still find your tropical paradise far from the party crowds.

 

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KRABI and AO NANG – the gateways to paradise

So while I thought places like Ayutthaya, Sukhothai, and Chiang Mai were touristy, thus in an amene way, I didn’t know the half of it till I came to Ao Nang.
It must have been a nice place, albeit today, it is far too crowded.
However, it is the gateway to the paradise of the islets and isles scattered in the Andaman sea.

 

Longtail Boats at the coast of Ao Nang, Krabi, Thailand

Ao Nang’s strongest suit is being a gateway to the countless isles scattered in the Andaman Sea.

 

The city of Krabi, however, is not much more than the central hub for the adjacent beaches and islands and doesn’t have much to offer. However, waiting for your ride or flight, you can spend half a day checking out the few unspectacular sights.

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CHIANG MAI – glorious home to 300 temples

There are over 300 Buddhist temples in the glorious city of Chiang Mai! If I had the chance to visit only one place in Thailand, it would definitely be Chiang Mai.

Temple in Chiang Mai, Thailand

One out of 300 of Chiang Mai’s Temples.

 

For the number and variety of those breathtakingly beautiful houses of worship, for the lovely coffee shops, for the charming little shops, for the good massage places, for the fact that they offer language lessons, for the perfect mix of traditional and historical and modern and hip.

Did I make myself clear? I love this place!

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SUKHOTHAI – 200 temples at your choice

Sukhothai took me by storm: The incredible number of remnants of the glorious times when the city was Siam’s capital is just surreal.

 

The archeologic park of Old Sukhothai, Thailand

The archeologic park of Old Sukhothai is a place of magic and surreal beauty. Best discovered cycling since this way you don’t miss even the tiniest detail of the ancient grand art.

 

Since it would be a big mistake to limit your visits to the archeologic park in the city center, Sukhothai is best explored cycling; this way, you get to all the sites you like to see – and there are quite a few: Almost 200, to be precise.

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KAMPHAENG PHET and PHITSANULOK: two (un)necessary detours

Actually, I’d visited Kamphaeng Phet and Phitsanulok for different reasons: The first – although metaphorically as well as geographically a bit off the beaten tracks – is a nice break from the large tourist crowds. Although there is a wonderful archeologic site hidden in what seems to be a bewitched forest, most visitors skip Kamphaeng Phet altogether.

 

Archeological Park at the center of Kamphaeng Phet, Thailand

At Kamphaeng Phet, you even don’t have to go to the archeological park – there are majestic ruins to be admired right in the center of the city!

 

Phitsanulok cannot be avoided when travelling from Sukhothai up north by train. But it’s totally okay to keep this phitstop rather brief.

 

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Guide to the enchanted town of AYUTTHAYA and a day trip to LOP BURI

Ayutthaya is a historic wonderland less than 90 kilometers north of Bangkok.

 

Wat Lokayasutharam

 

Many do visit this enchanted place packed with an incredible number of ancient ruins from the times when the city was Siam’s proud capital. However, I recommend spending at least two days to really take the ancient glory in – and to include a half-day trip to Lop Buri.

 

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