5. Laid-back lifestyle: In the U.S., life is always crazy busy. Whether it’s work or juggling the kids’ itineraries, I never seem to find time to relax. In Thailand, the people are much more relaxed. Hopefully when I return to the U.S. some of that laid-back spirit will return home with me.
4. The outdoor markets: I absolutely hate to shop, but the outdoor markets for me are a huge favorite. The heavenly smells. Everybody trying to sell you their wares. Negotiating your best price, and then realizing you’re haggling over 50 cents. People from all over the world everywhere around you. What could be better?
3. Good cheap food: Ok, so I’m frugal; what’s wrong with that? I’ve always loved Thai food, but when you can eat for $1-$2 a person, how can you not get excited? Even if you eat in a reasonably priced local restaurant, it’s hard to spend more than about $15 for a family of four. When staying in budget on your RTW trip is a big concern, Southeast Asia definitely helps to balance out the prices elsewhere.
2. Beautiful beaches: I’m lucky to say that I’ve been to beaches all over the world. While I’m certainly partial to the sugar white sands along Alabama’s gulf coast, nothing compares to Thailand’s setting. Lovely sand, crystal clear water, and incredible rock formations are just some of the things that put the Thai beaches in a class all their own.
1. The Thai people: Let’s face it, the number one thing that makes travel great is the people you meet. How can people have such different opinions when visiting the same place? It always comes down to your encounters with the people you meet (read Kellie’s Italy 1 and Italy 2 posts). On this trip to Thailand, we only visited two places: the people of Khao Lak were all incredibly lovely while the people in Krabi were somewhat crabby. That being said, Thailand is called the Land of Smiles, and for good reason.
If you’ve never been to Thailand, consider putting it on your 2014 Bucket List.