Few destinations in the world offer as much honeymoon romance as Thailand. To make things even better, you get more for honeymoon money here than almost anywhere else. Quantity, service and value are unsurpassed. The rich history and culture of centuries are on display and so are may touches of tomorrow. There is a wide variety of things to do, both for couples who seek adventure and for those who just want to relax and enjoy each other after the wedding.
You’ll be surrounded by beauty and smiles wherever you go. From the rolling hills of Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai in the North to sparkling beaches of Phuket in the South you’ll find more to do than you can fit into one honeymoon. Ride an elephant, kayak over rushing rapids, take a spin in a typical “tuk tuk,” visit ancient temples and shop till you drop. Luxury is affordable here, so take advantage of it!
Begin in Bangkok which is a bustling microcosm of everything in the Kingdom. This sophisticated capital is a perfect combination of a sophisticated metropolitan city and a truly relaxing resort. Look up and you’ll see modern sky scrapers, sleek clubs and restaurants and the architecture of the future. Look down and you’ll see ancient customs and culture on display in food stands, street markets, river traffic and colorful costumes.
Scenic and sensual beauty surround you. Daily discoveries delight, and every day is a happy honeymoon adventure.
Thailand has an astounding selection of things to see and do. Couples who love adventure can go zip lining over rain forests, hike into the jungle, ride an elephant through the forest, kayak along rushing rivers or ride a bicycle to see small towns. Those who like to rest and relax can sun on a pristine beach, take boat rides to see the sights, enjoy the luxury of treatments at some of the world's finest spas, or shop to their hearts content for items to decorate their new home. You can do something unique every day and there will still be plenty left over for an anniversary trip! Bangkok and its environs offers a microcosm of what there is to do throughout the country. Here are a few things you shouldn't miss:
- RIDE ON THE SKY TRAIN: The quickest, easiest way to get around seeing Bangkok's exciting sights. It whisks you over traffic jams below while offering great views of the city, the temples and the river.
- JIM THOMPSON HOUSE AND MUSEUM: Jim Thompson, an American who settled in Thailand, started the Thai silk export industry and collected wonderful pieces of Asian art. His Bangkok home, a collection of typical Thai houses, is now a museum with a pleasant restaurant, garden and shop on the grounds. It's an ideal place to cool off, shop for fine silks, and see the exquisite Asian sculptures and paintings.
- GET TO KNOW AN ELEPHANT: Elephants are revered in Thailand and there are many places to see and study them up close. Just outside Bangkok, you can visit ELEPHANT STAY to watch elephants and their babies being cared for, bathed and exercised. You can even watch elephants painting! If you like what you see, you can stay for a few days to help with their care and feeding. At the PATARA ELEPHANT FARM just outside Chiang Mai in the Northern part of the country, you can make an elephant "your own" for a day. Some couples have given each other presents of this experience and a few have even married here! After lessons on elephant health and care, you are assigned your very own elephant to bathe, lead and ride through the jungle to a waterfall. A typical Thai lunch is spread out on a giant palm frond. You can swim with your elephant, then ride back to camp together on his back. No matter where you go, it will be a day that make memories to share forever!
- SHOPPING SPREES: Shopping is a sport here, and prices are so good that some couples wait until they get to Thailand to buy engagement rings and wedding bands. You can shop 24/7 at everything from street stalls to modern malls. Wonderful things to buy include decorative items for your new home, clothing, silks for everything from clothes to curtains, and antiques. The price is right and the quality is excellent. Here are a few great places to find the best quality at reasonable prices. Anita's Silks offers the experience of two generations to help you select fine silks at fair prices for clothing or decorating. Johnny's Gems displays gold jewelry with precious and semi precious stones, or they will make or copy whatever you like. Silom Village Trade Center has a good collection of quality souvenirs, original costume jewelry, resort wear and acces- sories in a picturesque shops. Sprawling markets such as weekend Chatuchak with 8000 vendors to visit and street stalls, such as the night market on Khao San Road, are the places to bargain. But in Thailand, you get more than your money's worth on almost every purchase!
- TREAT YOURSELVES TO A COUPLES MASSAGE: Massage is a part of Thai life. Thai masseurs are world famous. One of the very best places to indulge in spa treatments is at "Chi" in the Shangri La Hotel which is one of the most spacious and luxurious spas in town. Scented treatment rooms, especially double ones, are unusually tranquil and comfortable. Treatments are ultra relaxing and sensuous. Couples feel as pampered as can be after a day of sports and sightseeing. You'll dream about it afterwards!
- RIDE A TUK TUK: Take a spin on this Thai trademark, a three wheeled car/bicycle that carries people, produce and other outrageous items through busy streets. Window shop if you're in a traffic jam. Tuk Tuk tips: Only use them for short trips and set the price and destination before you enter.
- FILL YOUR ROOM WITH FLOWERS: Add to honeymoon romance by filling your bath with orchids from the Flower Market which is minutes away from the Grand Palace. Decorate your room with beauty and color for pennies.
- CRUISE THE CANALS (KLONGS): Water taxis will take you from point to point along the river or to special places like River City Shopping Mall. Or, hire your own boat for a hour to get a glimpse of typical life along the river.
- SIAM NIRAMINT THEATER: Thailand's art and culture are on display at this amazing spectacular performed on the world's largest stage. The enchanting Kingdom of Thailand is portrayed by 150 exquisitely costumed performers who dazzle and delight as you learn about Thai history and thrill at the exotic staging. Dinner can be included.
Tips and Advice
Honeymoon Fast Facts:
- OFFICIAL LANGUAGE: Thai
- CURRENCY: Bhat. Banks are open weekdays from 8:30 a.m.- 3:30 p.m.
- COUNTRY CODE: 66. If you need an English speaking operator, dial 1133.
- ELECTRICITY: 220 volts, 50 cycles. Most outlets take 2 flat prongs.
- DRIVING: Drive on the left. It's better to use public transportation in Bangkok where public transportation is easily accessible and reasonably priced. In smaller towns, drive with care as other drivers may not.
- DRESS: Light, cotton clothing is best. Long pants or skirts and un- revealing tops are required for visits to temples. International resort wear is acceptable for most clubs and restaurants.
- DRINKING WATER: Drink bottled water outside your hotel.
- TIPPING: Tipping isn't generally a custom in Thailand, but is always appreciated for stellar service! Taxis usually round up the fare for their "tip," and hotels/restaurants add a 10% service charge in place of additional gratuity. If you do tip for exceptional service, 10% will be apreciated at restaurants and 20-50 baht for bellboys, porters, etc. If you get an incredible massage, leave 20-100 baht for the masseuse. If restaurants don't add the 10% charge, definitely add it to the bill.
Honeymoon Travel Hints:
- SPLURGE ON A HOTEL ON THE RIVER, because a luxury honeymoon is affordable in Thailand! and ask for a room with a river view. You'll never tire of watching the river traffic or the beautiful sparkling lights by night.
- BOOK A HOTEL NEAR THE SKY TRAIN: This will make getting to major sights and attractions easier and quicker. You'll be able to pack more fun into your stay.
- USE TAXIS: Hourly rates are affordable. Hire one for a day of easy sightseeing and shopping but get a list of where you want to go written in Thai before leaving the hotel. Establish the rate before entering the taxi and tip the driver 10%. Ask in advance and expect to pay more for English speaking drivers.
- RESPECT THE ROYALS: It is against the law in Thailand to disrespect the royal family, including stepping on currency bearing an image of the king. Therefore, the royal family should generally just be avoided as a topic of conversation, to be safe. Also, be sure to stand whenever the Thai national anthem is heard (everyone else will stand too, so just take the hint!)
- TEMPLE ETIQUETTE: Dress conservatively when visiting temples - i.e., women should wear pants or long skirts that cover the shoulder and knees, and men should avoid tank-tops and swim trunks. Avoid flash photography, remove shoes before entering temples and don't sit with feet facing the buddha, because this is considered disrespectful (you don't want to point or expose the bottoms of your feet in Thailand). In temples, sitting cross-legged is best.
- ATM: Change a small amount of money in the airport to cover the taxi ride to your hotel. If necessary, change your pin number to four digits or more before leaving the USA. Otherwise, Thai ATM's will not work.
- BARGAINING: Shops have fixed prices but markets and street stall vendors expect you to bargain. Smile, never raise your voice, joke and have fun to get the best price.
- SAFETY: As in any exotic destination, stay aware and use common sense! Pickpockers often target tourists. Remain wary of anyone who suddenly wants to befriend you with sweetheart offers, lest they be trying to lure you into a con. With that being said, most of the people are quite friendly and hospitable, so keep your wits about you but don't be afraid to meet the locals and soak up their culture!