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    Hello all, I'm backpacking around Thailand with a friend for three months (from Febuary to May), and was wondering if anyone has done the same as a gap year student, and would have any advice/recommendations for good places to visit/etc?

    Would be great to know if anyone else is going around that time too!

    Thanks
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    hey..I'm from Thailand (Bangkok)
    You must go to Chiang Mai..it's in North and it's like second capital city of Thailand...people there have different cultures. There are loads of temples in there and you can go uphill to see different tribes of people
    But if you want to be in little hotter area...go somewhere in southern beaches
    And yeahh one more.....on April 13th..there is Thai New Year.......where people plays water like throwing water on each other and alll. I recommend you should go to Chiang Mai during those time.
    For Bangkok, there are loads and loads of shopping places you should go but you should ask for huge amount of discount (tips!!).
    I realy have no idea what else to recommend..coz I only can think of these right now
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    (Original post by charlottea)
    Hello all, I'm backpacking around Thailand with a friend for three months (from Febuary to May), and was wondering if anyone has done the same as a gap year student, and would have any advice/recommendations for good places to visit/etc?

    Would be great to know if anyone else is going around that time too!

    Thanks
    I'll be watching this thread - I'm not going till midjune and even then I'm only going for 2 half weeks - I'd love to have as much time as you to get around.

    Out of interest, will you be relying on a rudimentary Thai-English pocket phrase book? Cause I anticipate some problems on my end.
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    I'm beyond jealous, I loved Thailand so much. Travelling there is just, like, the funnest thing imaginable.

    Chiang Mai is fab- if you go there PLEASE stay at Julies Guesthouse- most amazing hostel I've ever been to (and the cheapest), google it.

    Ko Phangan is really fun and you meet loads of people there (full moon party island). Word of advice- if you rent peds with no experience, chances are you WILL crash it. You might not hurt yourself, but they'll charge you extortionate amounts of money for the odd scratch on the bike.

    When you're in Bangkok try to leave the Khao San, and force the taxi drivers to use the meters- otherwise they'll overcharge you.

    When you get buses make sure you don't put anything valuable in the hold, because it'll def get stolen, even if you have a lock on your bag.

    Also all of this is in Lonely Planet which is definitely worth investing in. I used mine to kill mosquitoes.
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    Thanks a lot everyone, this has made me all the more excited to be going! Definitely will be hard to be away from home for 3 months though...
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    also, would you say you came back a "different person"?
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    (Original post by charlottea)
    also, would you say you came back a "different person"?
    Physically yes tanned
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    You will also be easily pickpocketed so don't use so feeble bag like Longchamp and never keep lots of money in one place.
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    ah thailand, amazing bangkok is great if you're looking for trips i'd head to ampawa, it has a floating market which is way less touristy than the main ones and does a great fireflies trip at night on the river :] krabi is really nice as well in the south, a little quieter but is a nice retreat just snorkelling and sunbathing for a few days if you need a detox. speedboat to phiphi from phuket is a another trip that is worth it, the scenary is beautiful and the trip overall is great fun plus we got it for around £20 which included lunch and drinks all day. as someone else said chiang mai is meant to be great, haven't been myself but i have friends who went to visit tribal villages and general trekking in the area to temples and such like and said it was the best part of their holiday. beware of pickpockets and as long as you keep general wits about you, you'll be safe oh and if the taxis aren't metered, which most aren't even if they advertise they are, MAKE SURE you set a price otherwise you will be broke for the rest of your trip have fun!
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    (Original post by charlottea)
    Hello all, I'm backpacking around Thailand with a friend for three months (from Febuary to May), and was wondering if anyone has done the same as a gap year student, and would have any advice/recommendations for good places to visit/etc?

    Would be great to know if anyone else is going around that time too!

    Thanks
    Hey just saw this. One of my friends and I are going out there on Feb 7th until June 7th and thinking of doing Cambodia/Laos and Vietnam in that time as well. Probably be doing similar things in thailand as you. What have you got planned?
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    (Original post by PaddyD15)
    Hey just saw this. One of my friends and I are going out there on Feb 7th until June 7th and thinking of doing Cambodia/Laos and Vietnam in that time as well. Probably be doing similar things in thailand as you. What have you got planned?
    Ah Cambodia. I love that place.
    Siem Reap isn't too far from the Thai border and it's full of culture but also brilliantly live-able in. 6 months there! Fantastic.
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    I was out in SE Asia for 6 months last year and Thailand for 2 of those, I'll reply to this later when I have time
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    (Original post by JumpingJonny)
    I was out in SE Asia for 6 months last year and Thailand for 2 of those, I'll reply to this later when I have time
    Did you visit Cambodia..?
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    (Original post by cazzy-joe)
    hey..I'm from Thailand (Bangkok)
    You must go to Chiang Mai..it's in North and it's like second capital city of Thailand...people there have different cultures. There are loads of temples in there and you can go uphill to see different tribes of people
    But if you want to be in little hotter area...go somewhere in southern beaches
    And yeahh one more.....on April 13th..there is Thai New Year.......where people plays water like throwing water on each other and alll. I recommend you should go to Chiang Mai during those time.
    For Bangkok, there are loads and loads of shopping places you should go but you should ask for huge amount of discount (tips!!).
    I realy have no idea what else to recommend..coz I only can think of these right now
    chiang mai's the best. we do get a lot of backpackers though...
    songkran :love: 3-4 days of water fights. i've only ever been in chiang mai for the new year, but people always say that other cities aren't as "crazy" about songkran.

    OP, definitely go up to see different hill tribes. ohh, i think it's the black lahu's that celebrate their new year around feb 20th-ish, and all they'll be setting off fireworks and firecrackers all night. it gets really annoying and you won't get any sleep whatsoever.
    if you want to go to like elephant shows/tiger kingdom/flight of the gibbon/night safari -- you can find it all in chiang mai.
    you should definitely go down south to some of the beaches as well, koh samet is quite nice and you can take a bus from bkk to rayong and from rayong take a boat.
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    Going to Thailand would be awesome, so jealous!

    How much money you think you'd need for a 2 month trip? excluding flights.
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    (Original post by pink giggle)
    chiang mai's the best. we do get a lot of backpackers though...
    songkran :love: 3-4 days of water fights. i've only ever been in chiang mai for the new year, but people always say that other cities aren't as "crazy" about songkran.
    I have never been anywhere else during Songkran holidays reason being my mom is from Chiang Mai and my grandmom has a house there but I have not been to Chiang Mai many years now since I went to study in India (for 4 years).
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    Woo im going in less than 5 weeks! 16th of feb to 2nd of may. This is my plan http://www.travelpod.com/travel-blog...0492/tpod.html any one got any advice about where to stay, must sees ect?
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    (Original post by Friend.)
    Ah Cambodia. I love that place.
    Siem Reap isn't too far from the Thai border and it's full of culture but also brilliantly live-able in. 6 months there! Fantastic.
    Yeah it looks incredible. The only problem with Cambodia and Laos is malaria tablets which get pretty costly. To be honest, I really don't know much about it what would you recommend going to see if you were there for 2 weeks?
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    malaria really isnt a problem in SE-Asia, I spent 6 months there and met like one person who caught it and they took the tablets!!! Sometimes the side effects of the tablets are worse than actually getting maleria too!!

    SE Asia is amazing,

    Trekking in Chiang Mai is awesome
    Koh Chang = amazing!
    Siem Reap & Angkor Watt spectacular!!
    Laos - possibly one of the best places in the world!!

    ENJOOOOOOOOYYYYYYYYYYYY I'm jealous
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    (Original post by PaddyD15)
    Yeah it looks incredible. The only problem with Cambodia and Laos is malaria tablets which get pretty costly. To be honest, I really don't know much about it what would you recommend going to see if you were there for 2 weeks?
    I only took Malaria tablets in one part of Cambodia I visited, Ratanakiri, where it's medium risk. There is a slight risk if you're going to villages or into the countryside. If you do need anti-malarials, doxycyline is a great one for Cambodia. It's extremely cheap and there is no tolerance yet.

    Because I'm not really here on holiday, I'm pretty busy anyway.
    In Siem Reap you can go to the Angkor temples and watch the sunrise/sunset for US$20 for 1 day. There's the Tonle Sap lake and the floating villages with boat trips out. There are villages you can visit, a museum, a silk farm, a ceramics centre, markets (including the Night Market), you can get tattoos, go to many a bar with ridiculously cheap alcohol. You can visit orphanages, go for camping trips into the countryside.

    In Phnom Penh, there is the Tuol Sleng genocide museum, and the Choeung Ek killing fields are close. You can visit the silver palace, some pagodas and go to one of the markets, especially the famous Russian market.

    Sihanoukville is the party capital - I found it mostly to be full of young, drunk westerners. If that's your thing, go ahead. The beaches are quite good for chep food and drink and swimming. There are a crazy number of street sellers. There are bars, clubs, pubs and lots of pool parties. There are trips to go snorkeling/diving while staying on an island in a wooden cabin.

    Ratanakiri was really interesting. It's quite rural and there are loads of minority villages to visit, I was able to stay over in a hammock in one village. There's a crater lake that everyone swims in and a place to ride elephants.

    It took me just under 4 weeks to go around Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Sihanoukville and Banlung. There's plenty to keep you busy in two weeks
 
 
 
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