Escaping the city

  • Posted onFebruary 21st, 2014

Koh samet2Bangkok is an amazing city and there is no fear of running out of things to do or see, and, well, places to party! But, as with any big, bustling city, there is often the urge to leave for a day or two and experience a different pace of life. Fortunately Bangkok is also in the perfect position for a day trip or weekend getaway.

Here are some of our favourite ideas for a weekend away from Bangkok:

Hua HinHit the beach!

Thailand is known around the world for its paradise beaches and while many of the most popular resorts are way down in the south of the country, there are still some stunning coastal towns, islands, and beaches to be found within driving distance of Bangkok.

Hua Hin is a popular choice among sun loving Bangkokians. This picturesque beach town may not have the neon draw of Pattaya, its seedier rival, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing going on here. A family friendly beach, lots of fantastic seafood restaurants, and some very laid back bars and cafes make it the perfect alternative to the downtown Bangkok.

Koh SametExperience the Island Life

While many Bangkok newbs head to Koh Chang for a taste of Thai island life, those in-the-know go straight to Koh Samet. Protected as part of Khao Laem Ya – Mu Ko Samet National Park, much of the island is totally unspoiled and some of the beaches are postcard quality. The island also offers a variety of vibes, from quiet romantic resorts to all-action party spots.

AyutthayaExplore Ancient Thailand

Way back before the invasion of the Burmese, in 1767, Ayuthaya was the proud capital of Thailand. While much of the city was burned down at the time, there are still many ancient sites and ruins to marvel over, including Wat Yai Chaimonkorn, with its large stone Buddha statues, draped in bright orange robes, and Wat Phra Mahathat, where you will find the iconic Buddha head with growing trees wrapped around it.

A UNESCO World Heritage site, Ayuthaya is a little over an hour from Bangkok and can be reached by bus, taxi, or more romantically via boat, up the Chao Phraya River.

KanchanaburiBrush up on your military history

Home to the Bridge over the River Kwai, Kanchanaburi is a a great place to learn some of the local stores from WWII.  Here you’ll the JEATH War Museum, located within the aging grounds of a small Thai temple, the Thailand-Burma Railway Museum, where you can learn all about the Death Railway which was painstakingly built by prisoners of war, and of course, the infamous Bridge over the River Kwai.

If you’re purely interested in exploring the museum and cemeteries, then Kanchanaburi can be done as a day trip from Bangkok, but if you’re feeling more adventurous there are several resorts and outdoor activities available.

Khao YaiBe one with nature

Khao Yai National Park is just two hours from Bangkok, and offers some scenery that couldn’t be a greater contrast to the capital. Mountains, waterfalls, and even vineyards, are all there for you to explore.

For those feeling active there are hiking trails, rafting, kayaking, water tubing, and even go-karting available. For those looking for something more chilled you can explore the massive Chockchai Farm, enjoy some wine tasting, and watch the parade of bats at the caves during the evening.

Khao Yai is an enormous place and best enjoyed booking and organized trip or guided tour from Bangkok.

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