One year over Thanksgiving break, a few friends and I went to Thailand. I had all week off of work already, but I couldn’t take any extra vacation so close to the holidays. So I decided to pack as much as I could into the time I had. If you have the option, I would recommend spending one extra day in each city than what I have outlined below. But few of us live with an excess of money and vacation days to spend on traveling, so I want to show those that can only take one week off of work that it’s possible to see Thailand in 10 days. You will be busy, but you’ll also enjoy the trip of a lifetime!
10 DAY THAILAND ITINERARY
FRIDAY: Board flight
SATURDAY: Arrive in Bangkok + Explore
SUNDAY: Explore Bangkok + Board overnight train
MONDAY: Arrive in Chiang Mai + Explore
TUESDAY: Elephant Excursion
WEDNESDAY: Travel to Phuket + Explore
THURSDAY: Day Trip to Koh Phi Phi
FRIDAY: Explore Phuket + Begin your journey home
SUNDAY: Arrive home
From Atlanta, Thailand is literally halfway around the world. While you’ll be traveling for quite a while, you don’t lose much sightseeing time on the front end of your trip. Domestic flights between cities are fairly inexpensive, and Ubers around town are a few dollars per trip. It may not be expensive to get around the city, but be prepared that it takes forever! The traffic in Bangkok is just the worst. To save on a night of hotel stay, my group opted for an overnight train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, but I would advise you to do your research before booking.
WHY YOU SHOULD CAREFULLY BOOK AN OVERNIGHT TRAIN
We weren’t expecting a first-class journey on the Orient Express, but we did expect a touch more class than we got. On board, both walls of the train car were lined with bunk beds. Okay, not a big deal. We thought we would have a cabin with just the four of us, but everyone had stayed in hostels before. I got my luggage settled on the rack at the end of the car, and we all piled in one bed to hang out and share photos from the trip so far. I quickly had to find my luggage again because I was freezing! Even with several layers covering my toes to my neck, I still shivered all. night. long.
After eating and drinking a few of the snacks I brought, it was time for a bathroom break. I opened the door to see the roll of toilet paper on a rope nailed to the wall. Then I looked over the toilet to see the tracks rushing by underneath. There was no need to flush because everything just went through THE HOLE IN THE FLOOR. I went to the sink to wash my hands, but there was no running water. Listing all of these things still doesn’t capture the musty smell and obvious wear and tear on all the train car contents. Each of the windows had this little decal on them that reminded me of the Capitol logo from The Hunger Games. I mentioned this to the group and stated definitively that Effie Trinket would NOT be pleased!
Afterward, I searched YouTube for other travelers’ experiences on Thailand’s trains. I saw nothing like my overnight ride. The bathrooms, beds, and food were all much higher quality. An overnight train is a great way to maximize your time on a short trip, but I would advise doing thorough research before finally booking your ticket.
WHAT TO SEE AND DO
In Bangkok, we visited the Wat Pho temple, took a boat tour, drank bubble tea, and saw the city at night from 63 stories up!
When we got to Chiang Mai, we explored downtown, got massages, and played with rescued elephants!
Once we made it to Phuket, we ate the best ice cream, photographed the colorful Old Town buildings, and took a ferry to Koh Phi Phi!
Have you done a whirlwind trip to Thailand in 10 days and have some tips? Share them below!
See the travel highlight video from my trip here!
Also, don’t forget to Pin this post so you can find it again later!