Thailand is really a popular destination in South East Asia and my very first asian destination I traveled to. I still know exactly how unbelievable excited I was when my sister and I got the idea to go for a two week holiday somewhere and my sister suggested Bangkok. We just booked two weeks beforehand but still got a relatively low price for the plain tickets.
This happened in the year 2015 and when I look back, I just want to punch myself in the face because actually I did almost everything wrong that you can do wrong on this trip!
Starting with the LUGGAGE: I went to Thailand with my leo-print suitcase from the brand “Titan”. NO JOKE!! I regretted this decision very very quickly as everyone was watching me with my leo-printed suitcase taking some tuk-tuks to my desired destinations. Of course all Thais thought this girl must be super rich! With my student budget on my bank account I was definitely not.
LEARNING: I still suggest everyone to just take a backpack to travel asian countries and many more. It’s super convenient and you learn that there is really not much that you need to carry around with you.
ACCOMONDATION: My sister and me decided to try Airbnb and booked an apartment in Bangkok. I’ve already used Airbnb back in Germany for several times and made super cool experiences. I still really suggest Airbnb but what we did wrong was booking an apartment for the whole two weeks of our trip in Bangkok. Only a few days after we booked it we realised that we also might want to travel a bit in Thailand (two blonde girls, damn! :D). So we wasted a lot of money for double bookings as we went to Koh Samui for 5 days with an layover in Surat Thani, where we also had to book a room as we missed the last ferry to the island.
LEARNING: I really hate planning and my experiences so far are that nothing will be like you planned it. So when I go traveling now, I roughly plan a loose path and just book an accommodation for the first few nights when I reach my destination. I don’t plan the whole trip and book everything in advance. This is also really not more expensive and it gives you so much freedom to decide everyday where you want to go and what you want to see.
ACTIVITIES: We started our trip in Bangkok where we decided to see all the touristic attractions in the first days. Visiting the temples and sight seeing spots in this massive city we quickly realised that this is not what we wanted to experience from the city. The spots are usually not that cool as they sound and there are soooo many tourists everywhere and thais just aggressively want to sell you there stuff.
LEARNING: Luckily this was something we realised very quickly: we wanted to experience the actual charms of the city. So we explored not only the financial sector of downtown Bangkok, but also the slum areas and hidden streets far away from every touristic spot. That was the moment I fell in love with the city and the authenticity of this foreign culture. I really recommend everyone of course to see some cultural touristic attractions, but also try to explore the city as it is and as it lives.
What about you guys? Do you have any tips to get the most out of a city trip?