10 Days In Thailand: A Detailed Thailand Travel Itinerary

sunset-koh-samet-thailand

Thailand is awesome! I totally get why this is the first country in Southeast Asia where (mass) tourism really took off. The people are incredibly friendly and the food is delicious. Thailand is a cheap country to travel, though probably nowhere near as cheap as it was 10 years ago.

The nature in Thailand is beautiful and varied with mountains in the North and tropical islands in the South. There is lots of culture (Ayutthaya, Sukhothai and Kanchanaburi) and traveling in Thailand is easy!


My 10 day Thailand travel itinerary

Let me begin by explaining that my 10 days in Thailand actually consisted of 3 trips. Jup, I entered Thailand 3 times during my 5 month trip, something that probably sounds familiar to many travelers.

Since Bangkok is a major travel hub in Southeast Asia, chances are pretty much 100% you’ll end up there at least once. I ended up on Don Muang Airport 3 times! Which isn’t a particularly good thing, Don Muang is actually one of my least favorite airports (nothing is worse than Manila Airport though, read here why).

10 days in Thailand thailand itinerary 10 days 10 day thailand itinerary 10 day itinerary thailand


10 day Thailand itinerary: travel map

I spent a couple of days in Bangkok and a week on Koh Tao, so I haven’t nearly seen it all… But I guess that can be said for all the countries I visited, there is always more to see and do!

If you are interested in the costs of a trip to Thailand, check my budget breakdown post. For our 10 day itinerary, travel info and the accommodations I stayed at, keep reading!

Also read this great 3 week Thailand itinerary


Trip 1: Days in Thailand: 2,5

Day 0: traveling from Cambodia to Thailand

10 days in thailand

This doesn’t really count as a Thailand day because I spent pretty much the entire day at the Thai-Cambodian border at Poipet and only arrived in Bangkok around 10pm. I was pretty happy to find Au Bon hostel and fall asleep in seconds…

Where to stay in Bangkok: Au Bon hostel

Our first accommodation in Thailand was the Au Bon hostel. The hotel is only a 5-10 minute walk from Khao San road, the main backpacker area. I actually liked that the hotel was in a quieter area (yes I realize this makes me sound old;-).

The room we had was tiny but clean, comfy bed and good shower. You can get free tea and coffee in the lobby. And the most delicious banana crisps, so yummy! I may have eaten an entire jar by myself…

Agoda rating: 8
Price paid for a night: 600THB (€16/$18).

Day 1: exploring Bangkok

A good night of sleep works wonders and it was time to explore busy Bangkok! Having visited Hong Kong, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh and Phnom Penh, I was curious what Bangkok would be like.​

10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around
A high-rise building in Bangkok
10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around
Narrow streets with restaurants in Bangkok

Bangkok was a bit of a blend between all those interesting cities… High-rise buildings like in Hong Kong but also narrow streets where you can find countless restaurants with tiny tables and chairs like in Hanoi.

Street food on every corner like in Ho Chi Minh and the occasional stench from the gutters, reminding me off the infamous open sewage system in Phnom Penh.

But I shouldn’t compare, Bangkok is unique and so are those other amazing Asian cities!

Nevertheless, Bangkok is definitely a mix between old and new, between modern and tradition and between ‘West’ and ‘East’. I was surprised, not in a particularly positive way, by the amount of Starbucks cafes and fast-food chains. Who would want to eat a burger when you can have delicious Thai food… Anyway, I am rambling.

On my first day in Bangkok I visited Wat Pho, a large Buddhist temple complex, most well-know for the huge Reclining Buddha statue. The entrance fee for Wat Pho is 100bath per person, this includes an information leaflet and a small bottle of water. Speaking of water, make sure to take enough water with you, particularly in the hottest months of the year (March – June).

There is much more to see at Wat Pho besides the Big Buddha, the entire complex is filled with beautiful  statues and buildings.

Thailand in 10 days 

Nevertheless, the famous Reclining Buddha is impressive, over 15 meters high and 46 meters long!

Reclining Buddha in Bangkok Wat Pho bring a scarf

After our visit to Wat Pho we needed to cool off, so we explored a couple of shiny and air-conditioned malls in Siam, a luxury when it’s 40 degrees Celsius outside! I particularly liked Terminal 21, a shopping mall where each floor is completely build in the theme of a famous city in the world. We visited Tokyo, Paris, London, Istanbul and San Francisco in a mere hour!

10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around 10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around

For dinner we headed to Khao San road to eat Pad Thai for the first time! Prepared on a tiny street cart by a friendly old Thai lady for 35 bath, it was delicious! Just writing about Pad Thai makes me hungry…

Pad Thai Bangkok - street food what to eat in Thailand

Day 2: more exploring in Bangkok

Another day of exploring in Bangkok, starting with breakfast at Saneh, recommended by a friend of mine who spent 4 months living in Bangkok. I definitely wouldn’t have found this place on my own! I walked along the canal, had some coffee at Cafe De Canal, did laundry at Smile guesthouse before heading to Terminal 21 to check out some more shops (but mainly to make use of the air-conditioning) and see a movie.

Also check out: 7 great places to visit near Bangkok

10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around

From Thanon (Thai for major road) Ratchadamnoen Klang you can easily catch a local bus to the malls in Siam, which will costs you a mere 6,5THB! This website is helpful in getting around in Bangkok.

The BTK, the sky train of Bangkok, is also a very convenient way to get around the city and reminded me of the DLR in London. Of course there are tuktuks and taxis as well, but in the end I preferred the buses because it’s how the locals travel (we were often the only foreigners in the bus, surrounded by Thai) and it’s much cheaper too!

10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around

In bus #59 to Don Muang Airport the bus driver didn’t speak any English and didn’t understand where we wanted to go (which was kind of obvious since we were both carrying around a big backpack and daypack), but he motioned us to sit so we did. It took a couple of stops before a nice English speaking Thai girl boarded the bus and translated between the bus driver and us.

When everything was sorted out and we had paid 23THB each we drove on the bus for an hour and when we arrived at Don Muang airport (which wasn’t very obvious), the bus driver made sure to signal us to get out. Good times:-)!

Where not to stay at DMK Donmuang Airport 

DMK Donmuang Airport Hostel basically has 2 things doing for it: it’s cheap and very close to the airport. Other than that I don’t particularly recommend staying here unless you have a really early flight from Don Muang airport. We had a flight at 8.20am and thus needed an affordable hotel close to the airport and that’s just what DMK was. No more no less. Check-in after 6pm and check-out before 9am. Basic room, no blankets and shared air conditioning. Reasonably clean though and inexpensive.

Oh, what’s really great is the nearby 7-11. I recommend stocking up on food and snacks there because at Donmuang Airport you can only find really expensive food and drinks…

Agoda rating: 5,8 (the pictures on Agoda look a lot better than the room we stayed at).
Price paid for a night: 600THB (€16/$18).

Day 3: traveling from Bangkok to Laos

10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around

As I mentioned above, DMK Donmuang Airport Hostel isn’t a particularly nice place to stay but it’s within walking distance of the airport. It made catching our early flight much easier.

You can read all the details about getting from Chiang Rai to Huay Xai in my 2-week Laos itinerary.


Trip 2: Days in Thailand: a little over 30 hours…

Travel through Thailand day

10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around

This doesn’t really count as a Thailand day because I was really just passing through, but I did want to include it because it shows just how much of a travel hub Bangkok is!

From Laos we took the night train to Don Muang Airport. Well, technically we boarded the night train in Nong Khai after a short train ride from Thanaleng, the only train station in Laos. But anyway, we took the train, spent the morning at Don Muang Airport and boarded a flight to Singapore.

"<yoastmark


Trip 3: Days in Thailand: 6,5

Day 4: traveling from Langkawi (Malaysia) to Surat Thani (Thailand)

10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around

The 3rd time I entered Thailand I finally spent some time there, almost a full week! I entered the country from Malaysia, all the way down south at a tiny Thai village called Sadao-Dannok. Because of a delayed train it was one of my longest travel days, you can read all about it in my Malaysia travel itinerary.

"<yoastmark

Where not to stay in Surat Thani (train station)

Another not so great hotel and one I would gladly have skipped. But after a long journey from Langkawi in Malaysia, made even longer by a train that was delayed for 4 hours, I was pretty happy to have finally arrived at Surat Thani train station. The plan was to take the night boat to Koh Tao, but because of our delay that plan fell through. Ah well, that’s travel too! Things don’t always go the way you planned.

Anyway, arriving at Surat Thani train station around midnight wasn’t ideal but I was glad there was at least a hotel around where we could finally get some rest…

Queen Hotel happened to be that hotel and it was cheap but not very good. It was actually pretty terrible: dirty, dark and old. But there was a bed and I was so tired I probably could have slept anywhere.  I think we spent less than 8 hours in the hotel. Bottom line: not recommended unless you have no other option;-).

Agoda rating: 5,5 (it was actually pretty funny to check the pictures on Agoda, they are a perfect representation of the condition of the hotel..).
Price paid for a night: 250THB (€7/$7,50).

Day 5: Scuba diving on Koh Tao10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around

Luckily I could relax on beautiful Koh Tao for a week after this long travel day, where I did my PADI Advanced Open Water Course and stayed at the most luxurious accommodation of my five month trip: the Tarna Align resort, with my very own semi-private pool with ocean view. It was a great way to end our 5 month trip…

Where to stay at Koh Tao

Hotel 1: Jomthong Guesthouse

I stayed here because this accommodation was included in our Advanced PADI package. But even if you aren’t scuba diving, I can totally recommend staying here though, it’s a nice, clean place in a very central location.

The manager is friendly, the room was very big and light. We even had a big balcony and the bed was comfortable. The hotel was around the corner of Impian Divers, our dive school, and there were lots of restaurants around.

Agoda rating: 7,5 (it’s actually nicer than the pictures on Agoda!)
Price paid for a night: we didn’t pay at the hotel, we paid the dive school for our PADI course which included 2 nights at Jomthong Guesthouse. The price I found on Agoda on a random date was 850THB (€23/$26).

Hotel 2: Tarna Align resort

Last but certainly not least, we stayed 2 nights at the brand new (in May 20150) Tarna Align resort. By far the fanciest place we stayed at during our 5 month trip.

Tarna Align Resort Koh Tao Thailand

We definitely ended our trip in style! The price per night was way more than we usually paid for accommodation. However, it was awesome to stay at this beautiful resort with semi-private pool. Worth every Baht!

Service was impeccable! A hotel jeep picked us up from the dive school after we had finished our course. And on the last day of our stay, we were driven to the pier to catch the night boat to Surat Thani.

We had booked a ‘regular’ room for 1 night and a room with a semi-private pool for our final night. However, we got upgraded for our first night and got to stay at the room with the pool for 2 nights, lucky us!

Best place to stay on Koh Tao Tarna Align Resort luxury stay

There were two massive beds in our room, beds that felt like they were made out of clouds. There was a waterfall shower, five kinds of towels and bathrobes and the semi-private pool with an ocean view…

We ordered dinner via room service, just because we could and had never done that before:-). Breakfast was very extensive and prepared to your preferences (scrambled eggs, omelet, boiled, poached, you name it;-). It’s the most luxurious hotel I have ever stayed at and I loved every minute of it. Yes, it’s a lot of money to spend on a room… Nevertheless, for us it was the perfect way to end our phenomenal 5-month trip around the world!

Agoda rating: 8,5
Price paid for a night: 3240THB (€88/$98)

Koh Tao Thailand Surat Thani

Day 9-10: traveling from Koh Tao to Bangkok

10 Days In Thailand: How To Get Around

The last long travel day (or days actually) of our 5 month trip. We traveled by night boat from Koh Tao to Surat Thani and from Surat Thani to Bangkok. Because of an unknown reason the night boat didn’t dock at the pier in the center of Surat Thani. Instead, the boat stopped at a pier a few kilometers away from the city center.

On the plus side, all passengers were hushed into tuktuks which drove us to the city center without additional charges. Nowhere on the internet have I found any stories about the boat not docking in Surat Thani center. Apparently this was an unusual situation!

Anyway, we made it to Surat Thani where we ate some more delicious Thai food and waited for our tuktuk ride to Surat Thani Airport. We got on a plane to Don Muang airport (visit #3), took a shuttle bus to Suvarnabhumi Airport and got on our flight home…

Note: in July 2016 I took another trip to Thailand and visited Ayutthaya, Kanchanaburi, Sukhothai, Chiang Mai and Koh Samet. Read more about my second trip to Thailand here.

Thailand 10 day itinerary


That’s our Thailand itinerary, I hope this post will help you plan your trip to Thailand! Below you can download our 10 day Thailand itinerary and the accommodation we stayed at during our trip (only the ones I recommend). Feel free to ask any questions you may have by leaving a comment or sending me an email!

Looking for more travel planning resources? Check out the Phenomenal Globe Travel Planning Library and my Travel Resource page!

Thailand is a wonderful country with interesting culture, beautiful nature, friendly people and delicious food. Read everything you need to know about getting around in Thailand on Phenomenal Globe Travel Blog. Thailand is a wonderful country with interesting culture, beautiful nature, friendly people and delicious food. Read everything you need to know about getting around in Thailand on Phenomenal Globe Travel Blog.

15 Comments

  1. March 11, 2016 / 1:20 pm

    Oh, your photos make me miss Thailand. It’s the most amazing country, especially when it comes to the food! Thank god for Thai restaurants abroad 🙂

    • Lotte
      Author
      March 11, 2016 / 2:57 pm

      Haha agreed Miriam! The only downside to Thai restaurants abroad it that it’s so much more expensive than in Thailand;-)

  2. March 12, 2016 / 5:12 pm

    This Thailand place has been coming up quite a bit in my travel circles. It looks like such an exotic place. Great post, amazing info. It’s already on my to-go-to-list 🙂

  3. March 13, 2016 / 5:30 am

    I love Thailand and I would have been crying after 5 months in SE Asia, too! Great information and going to check out your Malaysian itinerary, too. I give you a lot of credit for doing the Poipet land crossing with Cambodia. I opted for a cheap Air Asia flight…just didn’t want to deal with the scams. 😉

    • Lotte
      Author
      March 13, 2016 / 2:47 pm

      Haha, yes, I am terrible at saying goodbye… They were tears of gratefulness mostly, but I was sad to leave SE Asia behind. I’ll be back though;-). Let me know if you have any questions about the Malaysia itinerary!

      In hindsight taking a flight would have saved us a lot of hassle and a lot of time too! Luckily we did make it across the border in the end.

  4. March 13, 2016 / 6:24 am

    Thanks for putting together a range of different trip itineraries Lotte. We haven’t made it to Thailand yet, though everyone’s talking about how amazing it is so we’re hoping to get there soon.

    Haven’t really touched any of Asia yet because we’ve been based in the US for so long, so now that we’ve moved home to Australia, hoping this will give us the base we’ve been waiting for to explore Asia. Thailand here we come!

    • Lotte
      Author
      March 13, 2016 / 2:43 pm

      Very welcome Meg! SE Asia is a long way to go from the USA, I can imagine you don’t just hop on a plane for a visit;-). Australia on the other hand… lots of (cheap) flights available to Bangkok, hope you can do some exploring around Asia soon!

  5. March 13, 2016 / 8:08 am

    Very interesting–thanks for a great resource on transportation in Thailand! We’ve been wanting to visit Thailand for so long–the mix of old and new definitely sounds enticing as does the Pad Thai! That photo made my mouth water just from looking at it!

    • Lotte
      Author
      March 13, 2016 / 2:39 pm

      Very welcome, glad you like the post Jenna:-) Pad Thai is delicious and I hope you can get a taste of it very soon when visiting Thailand!

  6. March 13, 2016 / 6:48 pm

    This is really great information. Most travelers to Thailand don’t just stay put in one city and it takes a lot of research to find all the appropriate ways to get around. We mostly used the skytrain in Bangkok, walked, or took taxis, then we flew between cities to save time.

    • Lotte
      Author
      March 14, 2016 / 9:29 am

      Thank you Laura! I loved how efficient the skytrain in Bangkok was! It was cold though, with the freezing air-conditioning;-P

  7. March 14, 2016 / 4:32 am

    Living in Singapore, I don’t know anyone who hasn’t been to Bangkok for a short getaway. Your post proves that Thailand is great for a long stay too! Although I haven’t heard of Koh Tao yet, your photo definitely makes me want to check it out. (I clicked on the resort, it looks unreal!)

    • Lotte
      Author
      March 14, 2016 / 9:32 am

      Living in Singapore, that’s really cool! The Tarna Align Resort on Koh Tao was a great stay, and if you are into diving Koh Tao is an excellent place to be.

  8. March 17, 2016 / 12:00 pm

    Thailand is a completely otherworldly experience. There’s so much scents and sights, a varied array of colour and sounds – I loved every bit of all my experiences there. Chiang Mai and the beaches and rock formations around Phuket are worth paying a visit too! THE FOOD IS MORE THAN GREAT especially if you’re an avid fan of spicy food!

    • Lotte
      Author
      March 23, 2016 / 9:37 pm

      Yes, there is definitely more to see in Thailand! And I love spicy food…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *