สวัสดี, Thailand!

The Thailand Experience.

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Taylor, Ophelia |May 2017 GBT 12:19

The days are short in Thailand. The sun greets you at 08:00 am and leaves blissfully after a day of happy but humid weather at 18:00 pm. No matter rain or shine, the temperature never changes. There’s something about the heat in Thailand that only those who have visited will really understand. It’s sticky warmth clings to you like a mosquito bite (these also come with the Thai package).

Upon my travels of Thailand, I learnt that the people there are probably the friendliest. You instantly feel welcomed and accepted into their unique and peaceful culture. The smile of a Thai woman is beyond this world. It’ll be the most sincere smile you’ll ever get from anybody. No wonder so many Englishmen take them home with them.

You can’t help but respect the Thai hospitality. Across the country, you’ll be treated well, especially if you wear a positive energy. They are very drawn to positivity, most likely because of its Buddhist influence. Ironically, however, the main Buddhist principle “hurt no living being” isn’t shared amongst all. Only 500m from the Big Buddha have chained elephants, exploited for the pleasure of tourists. I found that to be the most baffling, that a religion would allow these practices to take place so close to their sacred ground.

That aside, there are many pleasures a tourist can enjoy during their stay. An hour long Thai massage can be bought for 300 baht, this is only £6.00 to the British currency. Another reason Thai women are so admired and later taken care of by Englishmen. It would seem they are the one’s providing the real “happy ending”.

The scenery will undoubtedly blow your mind. I’ve never felt so close to paradise walking along Phi Phi beach. I can still smell the waves crashing into the beach shore. My favourite, Maya Beach, is a Goddess in its own right. The island’s omnipotence is really felt the second you step foot on land. As your eyes take in the prodigious beauty, you feel an inner desire to bow down to Maya. This will be the closest to a God you’ll ever meet- even an Atheist couldn’t resist.

The Andaman Sea is fierce. The power is felt regardless if you’re in the water or not. If you respect the Island it will be good to you. If not, well there are plenty of the land’s dynamic creatures to teach you otherwise. The monkey being one. Thailand’s monkeys are the true definition of “fearless”. They will approach you with ease, and won’t hesitate to take a bite out of you if you upset them. So make sure you pack a few bananas if you’re planning to visit Monkey Hill.

The food to the Western belly can take some getting used to. If I’m being honest, I didn’t enjoy much of the cuisine until I stumbled across Pad Thai. This scrumptious noodle dish will wake your soul and at only 100 baht (£2.00) you can’t go wrong.

It is very cheap in Thailand. Especially, if you are British. I stayed at one of the most luxurious hotels for only £190 for the week (in London that could be a night’s stay), yet despite the cheap cost, I was still treated like a Royal Princess; and waking up to the stunning view of Kata Beach was just the heaven I needed.

I did stay at one of Old Phuket Town’s Hostels for two nights. This was mainly for the experience, never having stayed at one before and wanting to meet new people as I was travelling alone. The lady who ran the Hostel, although the language barrier was difficult at times, went above and beyond all expectations. The saying “you get what you pay for” doesn’t apply to Thailand. For only £6.00 a night, I was offered a delicious meal and access to any facilities I needed.

There is something I should highlight to future travellers, especially women. Be careful in these Hostels. Yes, you can meet some great people from all over the world, but I was very nearly put in an unthinkable situation when drinking with a backpacker in the same Hostel. Luckily a Scott came to my rescue and I was able to enjoy the rest of the stay. I’d highly recommend if you are a young woman and travelling alone, upgrade to a private room if you are staying in one of these Hostels and remember not everyone is as they seem.

When surrounded by the right people, you will really appreciate the experience here. Observe and pay attention to everything. Thailand has a lot to show you if you let it. The beaches, people, food and culture is something everyone should wrap themselves in once they’re there. Visit with an open mind. Don’t dismiss the country’s poverty either, there is a lot to learn from it too.

Oh, and watch out for scooters!