Island paradise and jungle adventure, wild party venue and spiritual retreat, Thailand is as many-headed as one of its own naga water serpent statues - and as beautiful. This heart-shaped nation, with its streamer of coastline trailing south across the Malay Peninsula, draws some 30 million visitors a year, who come from around the world to experience the multifariousness of Thai culture. If you were to travel nowhere else but Thailand your whole life, you’d hardly exhaust the joys and experiences the country holds out to its guests: relaxing beach holidays on pure white sandy shores, hedonistic all-night dancing under a pearly moon, safaris through rainforests where tigers, leopards, and wild elephants roam, buzzing city breaks in sleepless Bangkok, or adventure holidays with dawn-to-dusk caving, rock climbing, snorkelling and scuba diving, all set amid the stunning scenery, warm smiles and moreishly delicious food for which Thailand is famous.
Test your mettle in Bangkok, the vast, fizzing metropolis that’s home to more than one in ten Thais, and where the gold-roofed halls and temples of the Grand Palace rub shoulders with nightclubs, floating markets and street eateries vending scorpions on sticks. Visit the ancient capitals of Thailand: ruined Ayutthaya, preserved in haunting tumbledown stone on its river island, and Sukhothai, a maze of temples and palaces eight hundred years old. Head north to Chiang Mai and the pretty hill-ringed town of Pai, or south to the coast and beachy islands which are Thailand’s traveler trump cards: Krabi and Phuket, Koh Lanta and Koh Pha Ngan. Or get close to nature in one of the country’s wildlife-rich national parks. It doesn’t matter whether your ticket is a crazy Full Moon party or a feast of temple-hopping: Thailand will provide, entertain, and, with its tantalizing peep-show of cultural richness, have you returning again and again for evermore immersive experiences of this magical land.