It’s not just the beaches and colorful streets that make Thailand such a wonderful place to visit. Called “The Land of Smiles” for a reason, this country is full of friendly people and unique places to discover. Whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation, Thailand will not disappoint. A perfect destination for those who want to experience the beauty and culture that this country has to offer. With its rich history and stunning landscapes 4 weeks in Thailand is sure to be unforgettable.
Start in Bangkok
Considering it will be the first place you fly into, you’ll want to spend a couple of days in Bangkok to get adjusted to the time difference and explore. After you catch a taxi to your hotel and once you’re settled in, grab a tuk-tuk to Khao San Road. Here you can grab a bite to eat, shop a little, grab a beer, and talk to other travelers. It’s a busy, bustling party street, so make sure you know your hotel’s name, address and phone number before you get there.
Tip: Always agree to taxi and tuk-tuk prices before you go to your destination.
The next day, explore some of Bangkok’s temples. The most famous one is the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew), located in the Grand Palace complex. Get there as early as possible to avoid the crowds – it opens at 08:30am. It costs a small amount to get in, but it’s worth it. After a couple of hours here check out the Chatuchak Weekend Market. It’s huge, and there’s amazing food, drink and unique stores as far as the eye can see. You can also head to Chinatown for some more traditional stores and street markets.
For the first few days in Thailand ( I stayed at a hotel next to Khao San Road, which was fine for getting situated but not ideal if you’re traveling alone. You can definitely find cheaper places further away from the main sights and bustle of Bangkok , even though I didn’t think the area was that dangerous even at night. If you want to have a unique experience, consider staying in an apartment or house for rent. You can find some really nice places on Airbnb with spectacular views of the city and surrounding areas.
4 weeks in Thailand 4 weeks in Thailand 4 weeks in Thailand
Head to Ayutthaya
After spending a few days in Bangkok, it’s time to head north to Ayutthaya. Here you’ll see ancient temples and the ruins of a once-great city. There are over 300 Buddhist temples in Ayutthaya, so if you have time take your pick– all are worth seeing! I recommend renting a bike and taking a self guided tour. But beware of the local stray dogs– they will chase you and they will bite you! The last thing you want is a hospital visit when you’re so far from home.
After a day around the city, grab a bite to eat at a floating restaurant. It’s a great way to experience Thai culture and the food is delicious. Be sure to try some of the local delicacies, like Tom Kha and Pad Thai .
At this point in your trip you should be about 5-6 days into your 4 weeks in Thailand.
Tip: Bathrooms cost a few cents, so make sure you have spare change handy.
Next, Chiang Mai
You don’t need long in Ayutthaya so we recommend getting back on the train and heading towards Chiang Mai next. It’s famous for its temples, night markets, and relaxed atmosphere. There are a lot of college students and expats here.
There’s so much to do in Chiang Mai we recommend at least 4 full days here. Rent a moped and ride the mountain up to famous Doi Suthep. Then spend a day visiting Elephant Nature Park and learn about the rescue foundation, and help wash and feed elephants. If you’re staying in a warm month make sure you grab a hotel with a pool, it’s a great respite after walking around the city all day.
One of the best things I did in Chiang Mai was take a cooking class. We got to stop at a local market, watch our guide bargain and then go back to a farm and pick our own fresh, organic ingredients. It’s a great way to learn about local traditions, and impress friends and family when you get home.
Including travel, you should be around the end of your two week mark. of your 4 weeks in Thailand.
From here head north towards Pai, a small town in the mountains with a hippy vibe. It’s known for its tea, good food and relaxed atmosphere. The best way to get there is by bus from Chiang Mai (around seven hours). There are some great places to stay in Pai like Warm Up Hostel or Nature Retreat where you can chill out next to one of their three beautiful swimming pools.
Pai is a great place to just wander around and take in the sights and sounds of the town. There are also some great day trips to be taken, like waterfalls, hot springs and hikes. If you’re feeling adventurous, go white water rafting down the Mae Hong Son River!
Tip: When making plans, remember travel can be stressful and in a big country take up to a day or more depending on your mode of travel. Include extra time into your trip planning for getting from A to Z.
Now Head South
Time to board another train and continue heading south along the coast of Thailand. From here you can choose between Krabi town or Ao Nang beach, both are equally fun places with plenty of things to do. Ao Nang is the more touristy option as Krabi has a heavy Muslim influence and it’s very quiet there during Ramadan .
Tip: The train/bus ride is long but worth it, as you get non stop views of the countryside. I definitely recommend bringing a book, a backup charger for your phone, some games and a small blanket if you have the space. It’s worth the upgrades to bigger rooms/comfier seating if available.
I recommend staying in Ao Nang for at least two days so you can explore all that’s to offer. The town center is filled with markets, shops, restaurants, bars and great places to grab a quick massage. There are also a few beaches to choose from, each with its own unique charm and coral reefs waiting to be explored.
If you’re looking for some adventure, take a day trip out to the nearby islands. You can charter a longtail boat (hello, classic pictures!) for the whole day or go on an organized tour. The options are endless and you’re sure to find something that suits your fancy.
4 weeks in Thailand is halfway through, and it’s time to explore the south.
Find Krabi National Park
If you’re looking for some relaxation after all the exploring, we recommend a visit to Krabi National Park . The park is only a short drive from Ao Nang and is filled with jungle, waterfalls and limestone cliffs. It’s definitely worth spending a day here to take in all the natural beauty.
Enjoy the Islands
With over 1400 islands to choose from, there is something for everyone in Thailand. If you’re looking for a tropical island getaway, we recommend heading to the south and exploring some of the smaller islands. They offer white sand beaches, crystal clear waters and amazing snorkeling opportunities.
Phuket is the most popular island in Thailand and is home to the world famous Patong beach . It’s well known for its parties, expensive nightlife and vibrant atmosphere. It’s a great place to spend New Year’s Eve or just stop for a few days on the way back from your Thailand adventure .
I personally prefer a more chill vibe than Phuket, so I opted for the island of Koh Samui . It’s a great place to relax and take in the stunning views. There are plenty of activities to keep you busy, like snorkeling, diving, kayaking and hiking. You can also just lounge by the beach or pool all day if that’s more your thing.
Koh Tao is another favorite of mine. It’s a great place to learn how to scuba dive, with some of the best instructors in Thailand . You can also try your hand at freediving or even surfing if that’s more your thing!
Lastly we recommend Koh Phangan for those looking for something unique and different from all other Thai islands. Its main claim to fame is the infamous Full Moon Party, which is a massive all night party that happens on the beach. If you’re not into partying, there are plenty of other things to do on the island like hiking, diving and snorkeling.
Hopefully you’ve become enchanted with this beautiful place after 4 weeks in Thailand. Once you’ve got your fill of island life, you can grab a cheap flight out of the Phuket airport and head back to Bangkok. I recommend booking a hotel for a couple of nights so you can grab one last Chang beer and local dish before heading home. This also allows gives you wiggle room for travel time and any potential setbacks.
No matter what your interests are, Thailand has something for everyone! With its rich culture, amazing food and incredible scenery, there is never a dull moment in this beautiful country.
What else would you like to know about spending 4 weeks in Thailand? Let us know in the comments below!