The Traveler’s Guide on Escaping the Crowds in Thailand
It’s no secret: Thailand is now one of the hottest travel destinations in the world. This is good news for travelers who are looking for a tropical place with great beaches, friendly people, delicious food, and lots of fantastic attractions to explore. However, it does come with several downsides, one of which is that the country attracts thousands of visitors especially during high season. The large crowds do give Thailand a fun and vibrant atmosphere, but it can be disadvantageous for those who are looking for peace and quiet.
Fortunately, if you want to have a relaxing vacation in Thailand, there are several things you can do to get one. Here are some of the steps you can take to escape the crowds:
Get off the beaten path
Most of the tourists converge in the popular destinations like Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket, and Koh Samui. If you’ve already visited these places, or if you just really want to avoid the crowds, the best thing to do is to head off to lesser-known areas in Thailand like Khao Sok National Park, Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park, and Ko Tarutao Marine National Park. They might not be as popular as other destinations, but this doesn’t make them any less beautiful.
Choose the right season to travel
Thailand’s tourist season usually begins on November (which is when the dry season starts) and ends on April (which is when the country celebrates Songkran). This is also the time when winter sets in the West and many Western tourists head off to the tropics to escape the bitter cold. So, if you travel to Thailand in between these months, you’ll definitely have to deal with large crowds.
To avoid them, the best thing to do is to visit Thailand from May to October, which are considered to be low season months in the country. Just be warned: these are also rainy months, so be prepared to encounter rainstorms and relatively cold weather. The good thing about Thailand is that sunny days can still appear during the rainy season so, if you’re lucky, you’ll enjoy pleasant weather during your trip.
Pick the right time of the day
If it’s your first time to visit Thailand, you’ll most likely want to check out the popular places that many people are talking about, like Phuket, Phi Phi Island, and Phang Nga Bay. These famous destinations attract large crowds, but you can still have a relatively peaceful experience by visiting them as early as possible. Most tourists begin their tours mid-morning so, by choosing early-morning Phuket boat tours, you’ll get to avoid the hordes of people and enjoy a breathtakingly beautiful sunrise as an added bonus.
Select the right tour operator
Most tour companies in Thailand try to ramp up their profits by cramming in as many people as possible into one trip. As a result, you’ll end up sharing a boat or a bus with loads of other tourists and fighting for elbow room and breathing space. To stay away from this experience, make sure to choose the right tour operator. If you want to take a Phuket speedboat tour, for example, find a company that fills only 60 to 70 percent of the boat capacity. This gives you the assurance that you won’t have to deal with many other people and that you’ll enjoy a peaceful, relaxing trip.
Opt for a private charter
The best way to avoid crowds in Thailand is to charter your own vehicle. For instance, if you want to see Maya Bay (where Leonardo DiCaprio’s movie “The Beach” was filmed), why not get a private speedboat to Phi Phi Island? This way, you’ll get to visit Maya Bay as well as other nearby attractions like Monkey Beach and Bamboo Island without having to share your boat space with other people. You’ll also get to have full control over your itinerary, which means you can explore islands and attractions at your own time and pace.
Use these tips now to avoid the crowds and have a relaxing and unforgettable trip!