Love me or hate but this is an unfiltered, non-edited post based on my own experience. Being overwhelmed by my tip I feel the need to share this with others. I’m happy if you had a different one but this is why I’m not going back to the touristy side of this country.
And I really mean it! Until the point that you are not even sure if you are laying down at the most beautiful beaches of South East Asia or taking a nap in the middle of the Time Square. People will be literally walking over you, poking your eyes with the selfie sticks or posing for a picture with someone’s butt right in front of your face. Also get ready to hear screaming babies, drunk tourists and, of course, someone throwing up next to you. That actually happened quite often due to the long boat rides from island to island. Ok, I’m guilty of the puking part too. Seasickness is not my best friend.
If you are staying in an all-inclusive 5-star resort, you can skip this part. But if you are a backpacker, solo traveler or on a tide budget, read up. Everything comes in comparison. Thailand is a very affordable country in general, but prices are at least doubled in the touristic places. I am talking about the cost for home stays / food / massage services / clothes. Comparing the north Thailand to Krabi / Phuket area makes it very noticeable how the cost for everything goes up.
#3. Less culture
Northern Thailand has its untouched cultural vibe which is completely gone in the South. If you want to see the real Thai head to the north bypassing all the popular areas. Gorgeous temples which you will be able to enjoy the peace and quiet atmosphere.
To find beautiful beaches but not so touristy chose islands like Ko Pangan or Ko Chang. You will still enjoy the wonderful clear blue-green waters and nature without the millions of tourists. If you can, stay away from the Koh Pi Lei , Bamboo and especially the Koh Pi Pi. Remember the splendid views from the movie “The Beach” with Leonardo Di Caprio? Frankly, you won’t find that place looking as expected. Island Phi Phi Leh Island is literally ruined by tourists. I hesitated even to get off the boat and walk on that island. Nowadays it looks more like a giant open market rather than a sacred beach.
#4. Way too commercial
When traveling I love to mingle with the locals. I feel that this way you can truly get a chance to explore the foreign country. Interaction with the native people of the visited country gives you an authentic flavor, touch, sight of what this place is really about. The touristy Thai has lost it. You will be just a part of the touristy crowd who comes and goes by thousands.
Highly touristy places mostly have big hotels and hostels for the stay. I prefer doing something in the middle. I avoid the hotels because I’m not here for vacation, I’m here to explore. I see no point of paying big money if I only spend the night and gone all day. I don’t do hostels either. Because 10 people in the room are not my kind of stay. I am aware of the private rooms in hostels, by the way. However, tons on extremely socializing party people is not ideal for me. Sorry, all the hostel lovers, you hate me already, I know. I opt out for the home stay. For the same money as hostel you get your own room, assistance with getting around, priceless recommendations, and , in most cases, home made a meal. I think it’s the winner.
Thailand is an amazing country and I am happy I was able to visit it. It was on my dream list for a few years now. My exploring began from the North and ended on South. I am afraid if it was the other way around I might have cut my trip short. I loved Thailand enough to consider going back for more exploration. However, the big touristy spots indeed will not be on my map. If you want to experience the authentic beautiful Thailand make sure to plan your trip accordingly and read lots of reviews.