Royal Twin Pagodas on top of Doi Inthanon Mountain, Chiang Mai, Thailand

The Globetrotting Diaries: A Memorable Journey Through the Land of Smiles

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I travelled to Thailand in May of 2019, heading to the vibrant city of Bangkok, the entertainment town of Pattaya, Chiang Mai, which is known as the Rose of the North and home to the highest mountain in Thailand, Chiang Rai, which is rich in historical and cultural sites, and the beautiful island of Phuket.

Thailand is truly an Asian destination you don’t want to miss and one you may consider visiting more than once. You’ll find that hotel accommodations range from 3-to-5 star properties. On my trip, I stayed at a Signature Pool Villa at Banyan Tree Phuket, which was a pampering experience. It featured a private pool with a floating breakfast in the morning, which made my stay a memorable one.

White Temple in Chiang Rai. (Credit: Amelia Chee)

Across the country, the food is bursting with flavor with chilies and fish sauce. It’s scrumptious, affordable and visiting the food street vendors at night markets while rubbing shoulders with the locals is an adventurous experience. The Lanna-style cuisine in Northern Thailand is especially memorable. You’ll find temples across Thailand, such as the White Temple in Chiang Rai, which is one that will live on in my memory for many years to come. The intricate artwork and craftsmanship is well-worth a visit to Chiang Rai to see. 

Making friends with elephants. (Credit: Amelia Chee)

Visiting an elephant sanctuary gave me a chance to learn how the elephants are cared for. I had the chance to interact with the friendly and playful baby elephants and bathe the elephants by the waterfalls, which was fun. Taking a Mekong River cruise to visit the Golden Triangle was also an experience I really enjoyed. Built along the river banks is the famous Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp and Resort, a 5 star property, which overlooks the scenic Golden Triangle, where Thailand, Laos, and Myanmar meet. I wrapped up my three-week stay on Phuket, the largest island in Thailand. Phang Nga Bay is characterized by limestone cliffs and rock formations. Swimming in the cool water was one way to enjoy the beauty of the island and to beat the heat. 

Thai people are friendly, warm, hospitable, respectful, and polite. Thailand is indeed the Land of Smiles. It’s an easy destination to visit, as English is widely spoken and there’s a lot to offer for every foodie, adventure lover, and luxury traveller. It’s really one of my favourite countries.

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Amelia Chee
Amelia Chee

Senior Destination Specialist, Asia — Born and raised in Brunei Darussalam, Amelia has over 20 years of experience in travel and pursues it not just as a passion, but a lifestyle. There's never a dull moment in travel and no two days are the same. What makes travel such a phenomenal undertaking is its ability to expand our horizons. It not only enables us to marvel at the world's greatest wonders, but also to engage with its multitude of cultures. Amelia has travelled extensively throughout Asia, including Japan, India, China and Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates.

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