Everything you need to know before visiting Thailand

Well hello to you my reader chums! Thailand is a beautiful country that should be on everyone's bucket list to see at least once in their lifetime. Its crazy capital city, beautifully-crafted temples, picture-perfect islands and some of the friendliest locals you'll ever meet are a few reasons to visit.

Everything to know before visiting Thailand


Thailand is wonderful in so many different ways but before you visit, here are a few things you need to know.

Traffic is crazy 

Everything to know before visiting Thailand

I don't think anything prepared me for the crazy traffic Thailand had. There were millions upon millions of motorbikes with a combination of tuk-tuks, cars, coaches, lorries and every other vehicle on the road. What surprised me the most was the number of motorbikes, pollution and how dangerous the driving was out there. If you're going to hire a motorbike, be very wary especially if you're in the bigger cities. On the islands, traffic has a more slow pace so it's safer to hire one there. Alternatively, tuk-tuks are their version of a cheap taxi and you can usually haggle a price with the driver. Or, Grab is the app to download out there, as it's their version of Uber, and depending on which area you're in determines the Grab price. For example, in Chiang Mai Grab's were really cheap but I found them to be much more expensive in Phuket.

It's a very hot climate

Thailand is undoubtedly hot all year round and has a dry and rainy season. The dry season is from November to February and rainy season is June to October. The dry season is the hottest time to go with temperatures reaching 40 degrees and more, and usually the busiest time for tourists to visit. The rainy season is still hot but rain is more prominent which will naturally make the air cooler.

Everything to know before visiting Thailand

As it is so hot, it's really important to stay protected from the sun and that means suncream, a hat, SPF lip balm and bug spray.

Everything is super cheap

The real cost when travelling to Thailand is the flights. Once you arrive there, everything is dirt cheap. You can get dinner for the equivalent of a pound, and accommodation, taxis and excursions for very low prices. You can really do the trip on a very low budget, especially if you stay in dorm hostels and eat street food.

The currency 

In Thailand, their currency is Thai Baht. £1 is around 40 Thai Baht, and although the exchange rate can go up and down, it's best to figure money out with that ratio in mind. When you add things up out there, you'll realize how insanely cheap things are! You can change up Thai Baht before you leave home, at the airport or take it out at an ATM - there are loads around.

Visas

Something you need to check before you go is visas. If you're from the UK, you get a free entry without a visa up to 30 days but if it's anything longer than that, then you'll need to get a tourist visa. My boyfriend and I were there for 5 weeks so we had to apply for a tourist visa which was around £35 each. Always check as you don't want to be queuing up on arrival to buy one!

The country is very touristy

One thing that really surprised me about Thailand was just how touristy it really was. The majority of the country was westernised with its food scene and there are hundreds of tourists centres available wherever you travel in the country. There you can book tours, excursions, plane tickets, boat tickets and more.

Although the level of tourism does take away the authenticity appeal of Thailand, you still can't help but fall in love with the beautiful country, its locals and sights.

Choose the right animal sanctuaries


Everything to know before visiting Thailand

As Thailand is so heavy in tourism, they try to make a lot of money off wild animals such as elephants, tigers and monkey as often tourists haven't come close to them before - and therefore would pay for an encounter. However, there are a lot of companies in Thailand that abuse animals in some way in order to put on certain shows and tours. If you do want to visit an elephant sanctuary, for instance, I wrote all about how to choose the right elephant sanctuary.

Don't expect the food to be served at the same time

Everything to know before visiting Thailand

In local family restaurants and cheap eateries, don't expect your food to come out together if you're dining with someone else. As traditional Thai food is all cooked fresh, in smaller eateries, they usually cook meals one by one.

Family restaurants are the norm

A lot of restaurants will be run by Thai families and those on the cheaper end will often have families on duty the whole time - and their kids too. You'll see toddlers running around, mothers nursing their children and babies sleeping. Smaller restaurants feel like you're dining in a family home and it's strange to get used to at first but very comforting and authentic.

Carry your own tissues and sanitizer 

Public toilets in Thailand are completely different to what we have back in the UK. Picture dingy beach public toilets but worse. Quite often, public toilets in Thailand don't have toilet paper or hand wash that it's important to carry your own if you want to stay clean. Also, in some public places, you'll come across a squat toilet which is literally a hole in the ground.

Take probiotics and stomach relief medicine

Restaurants and vendors in Thailand don't have the same health and safety regulations than we do in the UK and Europe that often it's not prepared in the cleanest fashion. As this is the case, your stomach won't be prepared for this bacteria and could result in you getting ill. To prepare your stomach, take probiotics a few weeks before you go and whilst you're there, and if you still do get sick, ensure you have enough stomach medicine.

Experience the street food scene


Everything to know before visiting Thailand

Thailand is renowned for its street food scene. Wherever you go in the country, you'll discover street vendors selling a selection of fresh food from traditional Thai noodles dishes to pancakes. The street food scene is the best way to eat cheaply when in Thailand and taste authentic flavours. However, do be wary of which stall you're eating from, as some stalls are more hygienic than others.

Insects and lizards are common

Thailand is a hot country so you'll need to get used to bugs and lizards outside and in your hotel room - especially if it's cheaper accommodation. Invest in bug spray or for a longer period of time travelling, the anti-mosquito bracelets.

Jabs 

Before you head to Thailand, you'll need to check with your Dr what jabs you may require. My Dr gave me Hepatitis A and Typhoid, and my boyfriend also got the Meningitis vaccine. It all depends on what you've already had - but it's better to be safe than sorry. You don't want to get very ill that far away from home!

Be respectful


Everything to know before visiting Thailand

Thailand is the land of smiles but it's also home to plenty of different temples. If you decide to go temple hopping (which you 100% should), be respectful and dress appropriately. That means covering your shoulders and knees and more often than not, taking off your shoes. As a sign of etiquette, you should always take off your shoes when being asked. This could be outside a local home, restaurant or shop.

I hope you enjoyed this post. When are you visiting Thailand?

Thank you for reading <3


Lilibeth of New York Brow Shaper review

Well hello to you my reader chums! Brow shaping or hair removal is always something I'd rely on waxing or shaving for, that when I heard about this brow shaper I couldn't wait to see what it was all about. I was kindly sent the shaper to review and share my opinion with you guys - and I can honestly it's become my go-to gadget.

Lilibeth Brow Shaper review#

What is the Brow Shaper?

The Lilibeth Brow Shaper is designed to remove unwanted hair quickly and painlessly. The portable tool (with its folding head) can be used for brows, upper lip, peach fuzz and hairline. It's handy to get rid of any unwanted hair with its precise stainless steel blade. The shaper also doubles up as hair removal and dermaplaning tool. It lifts dead skin away whilst removing unwanted hair leaving behind smoother skin.

How does it work?

The shaper is more simple to use than you think! Ensure you've got clean, dry skin, then pull the skin tight. Place the shaper at a 45-degree angle and use short, gentle strokes with no extra pressure. It's all about being soft-handed and delicate.

My overall thoughts

Initially, I was quite hesitant on using the shaper and it took me a few tries to get the technique down for the best results. However, once I got the hang of it, I fell in love with the product. It removes hairs with ease wherever on the face and came in handy to tidy up my brow area. I've also found that it's ideal for sensitive skin. As it contains a hypoallergenic precision-engineered stainless steel, it's designed to not cut or irritate the skin. This was a big relief as I was nervous about cutting myself when using the product.

Lilibeth Brow Shaper review

As it has a foldable head, it makes it perfect for travelling around with. When I was backpacking Asia, it would have really come in handy instead of using tweezers to pluck my eyebrows here and there. The Shaper itself is tiny, the same size as an eyeliner pen that you could easily slip it in a makeup bag.

I would highly recommend this Brow Shaper to everyone! It's the handiest thing to have at home when you have a few stray hairs here and there or to get rid of any peach fuzz. It's easy to use, great to travel with and one of those investments that'll come to use in the most random of times.

If you'd love to treat yourself to a Lilibeth Brow Shaper, you can get 10% off with my code 'Della10' at the checkout.

I hope you enjoyed this post! Have you heard of the Lilibeth Brow Shaper?

Thank you for reading <3

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

Well hello to you my reader chums! If you saw my previous Thailand island guide then you'd know how much I absolutely adored Koh Tao. It was a little bubble of paradise for 3 days and I loved exploring the small, quiet island. If you've added Koh Tao to you're agenda and unsure what there is to see and do, you've come to the right place.

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

Koh Tao is a quiet hub for snorkelling, the clearest waters, vacant beaches and breathtaking sunsets. It's an island of dreams, and I could easily have soaked up all its glory for longer than 3 days.

What to see and do

Hire a motorbike and explore


The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

Koh Tao is a fairly small island compared to its neighbours, however, having a motorbike gives you easy access to find the more secluded and tucked away areas. You could easily ride around the entire island in over an hour, it's really that small. I loved venturing around the island by bike, we were able to go up steep roads, find some pretty cool viewpoints and see every nook and cranny of the island. It really gives you another sense of adventure and allows you to blend in with the locals.

Snorkel in Shark Bay 


The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

Shark Bay is one of the prettiest and most exclusive beaches on the island. The sands and waters are literally picture perfect and something everyone dreams of on a beach. Shark Bay is renowned for snorkelling hence its name and it's often included on day trips you can book around the island. You can either book one of those tours, or grab your goggles and take a swim from the beach. I would say, however, getting to the beach can be quite tricky as the only direct route is through resorts. But, you can walk through the rocks/water for about 5-10 minutes to reach it from a small beach next to it. The walk although slippery is completely worth it once you reach the powder white sand!

Experience both Freedom Beach and Ta Toh Bay

Freedom Beach and Ta Toh Bay are attached by a long boardwalk over the rocks which means you can easily switch from one to the other. Freedom Beach is more popular and busier than Ta Toh Bay, however, it's still not busy at all. There were the fewest amount of people on Freedom Beach and I loved that. The waters there were also some of the clearest I saw on the island and made a great spot for swimming and snorkelling.

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

Ta Toh Bay was a breath of fresh air and even quainter than Freedom Beach. It's like Freedom Beach's quieter neighbour with the same beautiful sands and waters. It's the perfect place to catch that sun and chill out. 

Climb to the John Suwan viewpoint

This has to be one of my highlights of Koh Tao. Although the climb to the top is rather strenuous and steep, the view makes it completely worth it. John Suwan viewpoint has a 50 baht entry fee and is probably a 10-20 minute journey depending on your fitness level. I personally found it quite tough as I didn't realise how rocky the climb would be and I was wearing the completely wrong clothing.

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao


Once at the top, I was blown away by the view. The viewpoint showed a 360 view of Shark Bay, Freedom Beach and Ta Toh Bay. From that level, it looked even more stunning than being on the beach and I cannot get over the view. I felt on top of the world (and a little out of breath).

Browse the hub of Sairee Beach 


The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

Sairee Beach was the more 'tourist' hub of Koh Tao and probably the busiest part of the island, however, it is one of the coolest. There is the best selection of restaurants, cool Instagram worthy bars and places to relax. It's a lovely little hub to walk around, visit the local shops and watch the sun go down. The area also has some really funky accommodation places that it would be a prime place to stay if you like the hustle and bustle of island life.

Where to eat

Koppa Coffee Bar and Restaurant - Koh Tao is home to some of the quirkiest and candid coffee places in Thailand. Every place we went to promoted the eco-friendly way of living and it really made my heart soar. One of the places that became our regular morning breakfast spot was the Koppa Coffee Bar and Restaurant. The restaurant serves up a really versatile menu including pancakes to porridge for breakfast, a lovely selection of smoothies, wholesome lunch options and more - and there's a pool free to use for customers. It's also located steps from Chalok Baan Kao Bay.

Ananas - Ananas was a quaint and slightly french inspired restaurant with a Bohemian vibe. It offered a selection of classic Thai dishes, lovely western food and great smoothies!

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

Oishi Kaiso - For any Japanese food fans, this is a lovely restaurant tucked away around the Sairee Beach area. Although serving up sushi and all things Japanese, we actually dined in there for their Thai dishes. It served up one of my favourite Panang curries in Thailand - and was super cheap also.

Gecko Republic Jungle cafe - We stumbled across this cafe (which is actually a hostel) after a drive on the motorbike and it looked so cool we couldn't help to go in. The restaurant offered a mouth-watering tapas menu with plenty of vegetarian and vegan options - and the most delicious drinks. I could have eaten the only menu but we only tried a few dishes. I would highly recommend the red pepper dish and flatbreads.

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

Getting around 

Koh Tao is quite a hilly island, however, you are able to get around on foot as it really is that small. Although, for more of an adventure, I would recommend hiring a motorbike to get around as it can make the really hillier areas easier to reach for and allows you to go off the beaten path a little more.

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao


Things to know before you go 

  • Koh Tao is a very small island and can only be reached by boat which you can easily book online or at a local tourist centre,
  • I'd recommend packing a good pair of walking shoes for the more hillier areas of the island, especially John Suwan's viewpoint. 
  • Some beaches are harder to reach including Shark Bay, however, every beach you go to is dreamy. Freedom Beach had the clearest waters on the island and is a prime snorkelling spot.
  • The island is renowned for its snorkelling and diving scene and there are plenty of diving schools to book tours.
  • Wherever you stay on the island, everything is quite easier to get to. For a busier environment, stay around the Sairee Beach area, or if you prefer a chill one, Chalok Baan Kao Bay, Freedom Beach and Shark Bay are really quiet areas.
  • The food scene on Koh Tao is incredible and you'll never want to stop eating!
  • Be respectful of the island's eco-way of living and don't litter.

The ultimate 3 day guide to Koh Tao


I hope you enjoyed this island guide. When are you travelling to Koh Tao?

Thank you for reading <3




Thailand island guide - which to choose?

Well hello to you my reader chums! On any trip to Thailand, you can't miss out on the incredible island scene. Picture crystal clear waters, powdered white sands, an electric party scene and secluded hideaways - the islands are dream worthy. Whether you want to relax or party till sunrise, there's a Thai island for you, and if you're unsure where to visit, here's a little rundown.

For the chilled break

Koh Lanta 

Koh Lanta is an island I absolutely adored and left wanting more. Despite tourism being present, it wasn't crowded in the slightest and there were secluded areas as you ventured around the island, including vacant beaches and the long road stretches. Koh Lanta isn't a massive island, however, to explore it all, I'd highly recommend hiring a motorbike to find the quietest spots.

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

Koh Lanta's beaches were some of my favourites in Thailand! The waters were honestly like a bath and I could have easily spent hours soaking up the sun and drinking cocktails on the soft-sanded beaches. Everywhere had a lovely quiet vibe and the pace of life was slow and chill, perfect for a relaxing few days. Koh Lanta is also known for its rainforests and nature park, that you get the combination of both nature and beaches on your trip.

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

To get to Koh Lanta, you can either get a boat from Krabi or Phuket as main ports or the many surrounding islands. Booking a boat can easily be done at any tourist centre and the timetable is usually pretty regular.

Koh Tao

Koh Tao is like the miniature version of  Koh Lanta with the same level of beauty. The island is renowned for its incredible diving and snorkelling scene due to its location and insanely clear waters. If you're a water baby it should be top of your list!

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

I loved exploring Koh Tao; it's that small, you could easily ride around the island on a bike in an hour, but you'll come across the most beautiful beaches, quaint eateries and swimming spots. I've honestly never seen such clear water and thinking back to it now makes me want to re-live it again and again. 

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

There were busier areas on the island, I suppose you'd call them the 'tourist spots' but where we stayed it wasn't heavily populated and we got to experience that slower pace of life.

Likewise, with Koh Lanta, you can get a boat from Krabi or the surrounding islands. We got a boat from Koh Lanta to Koh Tao.

Krabi

Krabi I would describe as the gateway for different day trips, depending on where you're staying of course. We stayed in Krabi Town which gave us easy access to the more touristy places to go, and cheap day trips to the beautiful surrounding beaches. For example, we took a day trip to Railay beach and the surroundings were stunning.

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

If you stay in the more beachy areas of Krabi, then it's likely to be a little busier than Krabi Town. The town was incredibly quiet with only a handful of restaurants, bars and tourist attractions to fill the time that the day trips are the highlight for me.

For the best package holiday spot

Koh Samui

If you're backpacking or not, and would like a more package holiday type vibe for your island leg of the trip then Koh Samui is a perfect choice. Koh Samui is one of the larger islands in Thailand, and if you'd like to explore it all fully a mode of transport is essential.

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

Koh Samui's beaches are practically built on resorts which I was quite surprised about, however, made it the ideal holiday spot to lap up the sunshine and drink cocktails. Like every island, there are more party areas including Chaweng to quieter areas such as Choeng Mon and Maenam Beach. It all depends on what you want for your holiday break. I stayed near Bohput Beach, which was also right next to Fisherman's Village - the cutest hub of restaurants, shops and bars.

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

I managed to get a feel of the majority of beaches on the trip, and my boyfriend and I drove to each on our bike. It gave me a real insight into the island and I'm excited to share it all on a beach guide.

Koh Samui can be reached by plane or boat, depending on where you're coming from of course. The airport is very small, but one of the most complimentary I've ever been to.

For the party goer

Phuket

Phuket is one of the largest islands in Thailand and pretty well known for a bustling party life, powder white beaches and sunbathing galore. There is more to Phuket than first meets the eye with its quaint old town and rich history to learn. However, the majority of people go there to party and enjoy the beaches and I can see why. Patong is the heart of Phuket's busy lifestyle with plenty of bars day and night to choose from, whilst Kata and Karon Beach are the quieter neighbours with a lighter party scene. 

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

As Phuket is quite big, where you stay is vital to what you want to do. If it is partying, then stay near to Patong Beach, or if you still want to party but not go crazy, choose one of the quieter beaches.

You can fly to Phuket from pretty much anywhere and domestic flights are easy to book. If you're coming from other Thai islands, you can book a boat from one of the tourist centres.

Phi Phi 

The prime party island of Thailand, Phi Phi is known for its late night beach parties and endless bars. The party vibe in Phi Phi is something you probably won't experience anywhere else. It's wild, crazy and everything a good night out should be.

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

Although it's predominately known for partying, there is a quieter side in the day fro beautiful beach days, day trips and good restaurants. You can really get the best of both worlds if you explore the right way.

Koh Phangan

Thailand island guide - which to choose?

As the key spot for a full moon party, Koh Phangan should be top of every party goers list. The full moon parties are only on certain days so if you really do want to do it, research before your trip otherwise you'll miss out (like we did). Other than the full moon, the island is a hub for cool bars and restaurants, and also has one of the most chill vibes ever.

I hope you enjoyed this island guide. Which ones will you add to your agenda?

Thank you for reading <3

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand

Well hello to you my reader chums! Pai is Chiang Mai's northern secret, located a 3-hour drive from the city. The small town is surrounded by mountains, has a couple of prime sights to see and is home to some of the cutest eateries. I heard of Pai when researching Thailand and am glad I added it to our itinerary as both of us fell in love with the quaint town.

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand

Pai, I would describe as the smaller Chiang Mai with all its good bits. It's a very quiet town and although quite heavy with tourism, is incredibly peaceful to walk around and explore. If you've never heard of Pai or are keen to add it to your agenda, here is everything you need to know.

How do you get there?

Getting to Pai is easier than you may think. You can either book a bus online or at any local tourist place, and hop on from the local bus station in Chiang Mai. Pai only has one bus station and it's located right in the centre of town, whereas Chiang Mai has three so be mindful before departure. The journey to Pai from Chiang Mai takes around three hours and it can be quite a bumpy journey, especially for those who are car sick. The bus ride has about 300 sharp turns - I'm not even joking! I would highly recommend buying car sickness pills if you suffer from motion sickness.

Where to stay

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand

I was quite surprised about the amount of accommodation available in Pai, that booking a place to stay was incredibly easy. My boyfriend and I stayed at the D2 Pai Resort which was located up a hill and around a 15 minute walk out of the main town. The resort had individual thatched huts in a lovely natural setting, which was super lovely and calming.

Things to see and do

Despite the small size, Pai has a lot of things to see and do. I was there for 2-3 days and loved experiencing everything the town had in store.

Pai night market - Thailand is renowned for its food markets and Pai had one of my favourites whilst travelling. It runs along the main street in town and is packed with food variety. The market offered lots of different cuisines including the classic Thai, Mexican, burgers and yummy baked goods. It felt like I was going to a food market in the UK - just a lot hotter!

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand

White Buddha - The White Buddha is one of the town's main symbols and stands high in the mountains. It's definitely a tourist attraction that you should add to the agenda - and makes the 353 odd steps to the top, worthwhile. The view up the top is beautiful and gives you a look at the mountains and essentially, all of Pai.

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand
Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand

Hot Springs - The hot springs were my favourite thing in Pai and made for a relaxing afternoon. It's located quite out of town and you'll need to take a taxi or motorbike to visit, however, the journey is worth it. The hot springs are beautiful! There are several different pools of all temperatures to relax in and the scenery adds to the serenity vibe. The further left you went, the hotter the pools got.

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand

Local villages - Pai is quite a rural town and there are a lot of locals who inhabit the outskirts. If you take a motorbike round or a long walk, you'll come across the local villages and meet some of the friendliest folk.

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand

The river - Pai's river is located around 10 minutes from the main town's street and is a beautiful spot to hang out. You'll find a few hotels around the river and also see locals swimming and tourists floating along on rubber rings. It's lovely to sit, have a drink and take in the surroundings.

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand


The food scene - One of the things that really impressed me about Pai was its restaurant scene. If you're vegetarian or vegan, it's the place to be. There was a variety of food everywhere, and it offered some of the quaintest eateries in Thailand. I loved chilling in the cute coffee shops and trying to pick from the wild food scene. Pedlar, for example, was the sweetest brunch spot that served some of the best French toast I've ever eaten.

Everything you need to know about travelling to Pai, Thailand

Getting around 

As I mentioned, Pai is quite small so to explore the main town area you can easily get around on foot. However, to reach the Buddha and Hot Springs, they're a bit too far out to walk to, especially f you want to go from one to the next that I'd recommend hiring a motorbike. If you have more of a budget, you could hire a taxi instead. I found we were able to walk back to town from the Buddha (it took around 20-30 minutes) as it's all downhill. However, walking to it is another battlefield as it's located up a steep road plus the steps to the top. 

I hope you enjoyed this Pai guide. Are you planning to add it to your Thailand agenda?

Thank you for reading <3

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

Well hello to you my reader chums! Chiang Mai was my favourite city in Thailand. The city had the calmest and friendly appeal, with plenty of sights, good food and the quaintest streets to browse. I heard a lot of good things about Chiang Mai prior to our trip and that's why I booked 5 days there. The 5 days we spent exploring could easily have been extended as it's such a beautiful and large city. If you're heading there soon, here is everything you can get up to in 5 days:

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

Visit an Elephant sanctuary

Visiting the elephant sanctuary was my favourite day in Chiang Mai and probably one of the highlights from our entire trip. Elephants are my favourite animals and seeing them playing in a happy environment was the sweetest thing. In Thailand, it can be quite tricky in identifying which sanctuaries actually take care of the elephants, and what ones, unfortunately, harm them. I've written a post all about how to choose the right sanctuary.

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

I went to the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary in Chiang Mai and it was around a 1 and a half out of the city, set in the jungle. I booked a full day trip, so we departed from the hotel about 8am and got home around dinner time. The day trip was incredible and I'd highly recommend doing it. The full-day tour included the opportunity to get up close and personal with the elephants, feed them, make their food and learn about animal care. I also got to bathe the creatures and go in a mud bath with them. It was a beautiful experience!

Attend a cooking class

Thai food is incredible and learning about how to make it is a must when you're in the country. I went to Smile Organic Cooking School, located just out of the city and loved the full experience. I booked Dan and me a morning session and the teacher picked us up from town. They first took us to the market to see where they buy the ingredients and then drove us to the farm. The cooking school was attached to an allotment, and upon arrival, the teacher gave us a tour of the allotment and showed us everything they grow there.

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

After a tour, the lessons began and it was so much fun! We got to pick a few dishes including Pad Thai, a curry of our choice (I chose Panang), a soup and curry paste. It was really interesting learning the fast-paced technique of Thai cooking and all the ingredients that are included. We got to use plenty of fresh ingredients, spices and flavours, and the results were delicious. I loved being creative with the flavours and learning new recipes.

Go temple hopping

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

Thailand is a hub for beautiful temples and Chiang Mai is no exception. As there are quite a few temples in the Old City, I'd recommend dedicating an afternoon/day to explore them all, soaking up the city as you go. There are small to large temples including the Wat Phra Singh, Wat Pha Tao and probably the most impressive, Wat Chedi Luang. Each temple is unique to the next and always decorated to the finest of details.

Visit the weekend night markets 

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

Thailand is renowned for its night markets and Chiang Mai is famous for having some of the biggest. Every weekend, the night market lights up on Saturday and Sunday night for the walking street. They sell everything from freshly cooked food, ice cream, hand made clothes, nick nacks and souvenirs. It's a cool hub to browse, and free activity to do of an evening if you're on a budget.

Explore the Old City

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

The Old City soon became my favourite part of Chiang Mai. If you look on a map, the square is the Old City and is a beautiful place to browse. As you walk around, you'll see the traditional temples, cute restaurants, quaint cafes, bars and candid markets. It's really the loveliest of places with a chill vibe. Every person you come across is super friendly and the sights are enough for a sweet afternoon stroll.

Get a traditional Thai massage 

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

If you're looking for a bit of relaxation on your trip, a traditional Thai massage will do the trick. In Chiang Mai, you'll find massage places everywhere, where you can get a full hour massage for a couple of pounds. Even if you're on a budget a massage is easily affordable and can be a great way to end the night after a day of walking. There are also plenty of other spa treatments available for the cheapest of prices.

Enjoy the street food

5 day guide to Chiang Mai - what to see and do

Street food is the norm in Thailand and you can't go to one of the biggest cities without sampling its street food. You'll see vendors selling it everywhere from traditional Thai dishes to pancakes and western food. It's usually dirt cheap and can be some of the yummiest foods you try.

I hope you enjoyed this Chiang Mai guide. Have you visited Chiang Mai?

Thank you for reading <3