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Rainy Season Traveling in Thailand

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  • Rainy Season Traveling in Thailand

    Where to travel during the rainy season in Thailand

    Thailand’s weather is generally defined by three seasons: hot, wet, and cool. Travel buffs often watch out for the rainy season in Thailand, which typically spans from May to October. But before you scrap your travel plans, what if we tell you that the rainy season could be an ideal time to travel around Thailand? Well, if you don’t mind a bit of rain, the tourist crowds are thin, flight tickets and accommodation are cheap, and nature is lush and green. Without further ado, here are the places to travel to during the rainy season in Thailand to make the best of your trip.
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    Chiang Rai
    Thailand’s northernmost region, Chiang Rai, is home to stunning mountain ranges and a vibrant Lanna culture. The province tends to be cooler and drier than central Thailand because of its high latitude. So the rainfall is shorter and less intense. Plus, the mountains and lush jungle views are right out of a postcard after a downpour.
    • What to do?
      Chiang Rai is well-known to be the nation’s art capital. So, while taking shelter from the rain, visit the local temples and museums to see the intricate architecture of the temples and immerse yourself in the artworks of the best artists in Thailand. The must-visit temples at Chiang Rai are the White Temple (Wat Phon Khun) and the Blue Temple (Wat Rong Suea Ten). You can also visit the Baan Dam Museum, aka the Black House Museum, which displays an eclectic mix of traditional northern Thai buildings with unconventional architecture. Chiang Rai is also home to several hill-tribe communities, including Karen, Akha and Lisu. While there, visit the Longneck Karen Village to learn about the Karen culture. Are you visiting during August-September? You’ll experience the traditional Akha Swing Festival, typically celebrated for four days.
    • Where to stay?
      In Chiang Rai, you can choose to stay in world-class hotels set against a backdrop of lush jungles and mountains. Feel one with nature at the Four Seasons Tented Camp Golden Triangle Hotel, one of the most eco-friendly hotels in Thailand. Or, you spend your night at Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp and Resort, where you can enjoy various activities such as elephant camp experience, countryside tour, cycling, or taking a long tail boat down the Mekong river. But, if you want to be cost-efficient and stay right in the city centre, book a room at the Mora Boutique Hotel where you can easily access all the city attractions!
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    Koh Samui

    The islands of Thailand are renowned for their palm-lined beaches and crystal-clear waters. However, the tides can be high during the rainy season, and the sun doesn’t always shine. But don’t fret. The excellent news is Koh Samui, Thailand’s largest island, only experiences brief downpours. So, if you don’t mind a bit of rain, you’ll still find plenty of things to do in Koh Samui!
    • What to do?
      If the weather forecast does not predict heavy rain, we recommend you to visit Lamai Beach, Chaweng Beach and Bophut Beach. These picturesque beaches are your perfect beach destinations with white sands and clear waters. The best part is that the beaches should not be as crowded as the season! If the water activities are unavailable due to the rain, you can sit back, relax, watch the tides, or grab a meal at the local seaside restaurants. The island is not only home to immaculate beaches but also modern cafes serving heavenly food and coffee – which is a perfect destination for rainy days. Visit the Fisherman’s House x Sasatorn Coffee for organic and clean Melbourne-style food and drink that is both innovative and artisanal. Want to dine with a view? Head to Vikasa Life Café, which serves tantalising International cuisine made with fresh local ingredients with a stunning beach view. At this café, both the scenery and dishes are a feast to the eyes!
    • Where to stay?
      With many places to stay in Koh Samui, we’ll spare you hours of browsing and recommend hotels with impeccable service and facilities. Melati Beach Resort & Spa is a beachfront hotel set in the shopping area of Koh Samui; only a few minutes drive from the Thongson Bay Beach and 15 minutes from Chaweng beach and its nightlife and entertainment venues. But if you are seeking privacy and a peaceful getaway, spend your night at The Ritz Carlton Koh Samui, a 5-stars seaside resort located on the private sunkissed bay in Choeng Mon Beach. Want to be a stone’s throw away from the beach? The Banana Fan Sea Resort lies on top of the famous Chaweng Beach. So, you can easily monitor the weather to go out for a sun-tanning once the sun comes out!
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    Last but not least on our list is another place in the north of Thailand, Pai. The mountain-trimmed town of Mae Hong Son is known for its laid-back ambience, and it is perfect for a budgeted trip since the town has cheap accommodation, restaurants and souvenir shops. Moreover, Pai in the rain is truly a sight to behold, especially early in the morning. The mountains of Pai are blanketed with the morning mist while the rays of sunshine reluctantly shine in.
    • What to do?
      The best mode of transportation to explore the hippie town is on a motorbike. However, remember to carry a raincoat with you just in case it rains. Also, driving safely is essential since the rain can make the roads slippery. If you do not know how to drive a scooter, you can hail a songthaew which is a local mini truck. Pai is famous for nature activities such as hiking (Pai Canyon) and its waterfalls (Pambok waterfall and Mo Paeng waterfall). The Pai Canyon has the most fantastic view of the sunset, just 5 minutes walk up the stairs from the entrance. Even if it’s cloudy, the mountain view after the rain is simply unparalleled. However, if you plan to hike up the ridge trails, please be cautious since the rain can make the pathway slippery. If these destinations are hard to reach due to heavy rainfall, you can opt to go café hopping in Pai. Doesn’t sipping hot coffee on a rainy day sound amazing? Your first stop should be Cafe De Pai, one of the most popular cafes in Pai, located in the middle of the walking street. On top of its delicious coffee, the café is famous for its fantastic breakfast with huge portions. The next café to visit is Coffee in Love, a café with the best view in Pai. The fairytale-like café perfectly encapsulates the Pai nature scene. Last but not least on our list is Fat Cat, a local restaurant serving delicious whole, homegrown and vegetarian food. You can also choose the type of milk- cow, soy, and coconut milk- according to your liking with your coffee!
    • Where to stay?
      The small town has several cheap accommodations for tourists to stay in. If you would like to book a luxury stay, check out Pai Island Resort, located within a quiet terrain surrounded by the mountain range. Are you a partygoer? If so, book a room at the Rim Pai Cottage, a calm villa right off the walking street!
    Last edited by Tripadvisor; 08-06-2022, 12:30 PM.

  • #2
    Things you can do in Thailand during the rainy season
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    What to expect during the Rainy Season in Thailand?
    The rainy season in Thailand can be a bit daunting, it usually runs from May till October and that is why, if you will be visiting Thailand during rainy season, following these tips will make it easier for you to survive -and yes, have fun – during what will be some of the hardest rain you have ever seen.

    How Much Rain is There and How Long Does it Last?
    In Thailand on most days during the rainy season, the heavens will open and torrentially rain, but only anywhere from 15 minutes to a few hours. Roads will flood, small streets will become impassable and, if you are caught outside in it, prepare to be drenched. But….a few minutes later, or sometimes a few hours, the rain will stop, the sun comes out and the rain dries up. In many areas of Thailand, but particularly in Bangkok, what only an hour ago was a one-foot flood will magically disappear to a few damp spots on the sidewalk. It’s amazing how fast it happens. Now on how to survive Thailand’s rainy season:

    Carry Flip Flops
    If you watch Thais during the rainy season, few will ever walk outside when it’s pouring rain wearing nice shoes. Instead, most Thais will always have a pair of cheap rubber flip-flops with them, or a pair tucked in their desk drawer at work. You can walk on wet and dirty streets in rubber flip flops, and just wash your feet when you get home. Plus, you are not staggering around in heels on slippery wet streets (for women), risking breaking your ankle by falling down holes and that is because Thailand’s streets are not paved well.

    Carry an Umbrella
    Obvious but, for many westerners, not so much. When a Thai says, “carry an umbrella”, they mean carry an umbrella every time you leave your house for every minute of the rainy season.

    Don’t Take Taxis in Bangkok
    If you are in Bangkok and it rains, the natural reaction if you are a foreigner is to take a taxi. Don’t. Not unless you want to spend (and I am not exaggerating) an hour in a taxi to move two blocks. Bangkok’s horrendous traffic jams are legendary. During the rainy season, when it is raining, they are at a complete standstill. Don’t waste money sitting in a taxi, going nowhere. Take the sky train, underground, or sit in a shopping mall enjoying a cup of coffee until the downpour is over.

    Need to Get Somewhere Fast? Motorbike Taxis
    If you get caught somewhere during the rainy season and are not close to a sky train station or underground, the only way to get somewhere fast when it is raining is by motorcycle taxis. Yes, you will get wet (but carry a lightweight plastic raincoat and it’s not too bad) but motorcycle taxis will go anywhere in any weather and, weaving their way through traffic jams at a standstill, they will get you where you need to go.

    Discover Thailand’s shopping malls
    One of the godsends of the rainy season in Thailand is shopping malls. All over the country, even in small towns, shopping malls make the rainy season more bearable. In Bangkok of course, where there are more than 150 shopping malls with more opening every year, you are never far away from one. So, when it rains, run into the nearest mall, along with most of the rest of Bangkok, and enjoy an hour of window shopping, taking photos, eating lunch, having a cup of coffee – anything to keep you dry inside and out of the foot-deep flood right outside the front door.

    Visit Indoor Tourist Attractions
    Bangkok’s most famous tourist attraction is the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew. Stunningly beautiful on a sunny day, it is miserable if you get caught in the rain in the rainy season, as everything is outside. If you will be visiting Thailand during the rainy season, keep a close eye on the weather and, if rain looks likely, plan your day for indoor tourist attractions – in Bangkok, Jim Thompson House is beautiful, Bangkok’s Art and Culture Center is a wonderful art museum and it is right next to the sky train with covered walkways to get to it, and Vimanmek Palace (the world’s largest teak building) is stunning.

    Don’t Paddle in High Water
    Every day in Bangkok when it rains, I see foreigners paddling around in foot-deep water as they are too impatient to stay inside until it stops raining. There’s a reason most Thais don’t paddle around in flooded streets
    In Thailand, even in Bangkok, streets are not laid well and neither are sidewalks. What may have been a normal-looking flat sidewalk half an hour ago, under a foot of sudden flood water, can suddenly be a street of developing potholes. In high water, you can’t see holes until you’ve stepped in them. Stay indoors. It’s safer.

    Don’t Drive in Flooded Side Streets
    Again, like any place in the world, it can flood if it’s raining hard. If you’re driving and it’s pouring down, don’t pull down a beginning-to-flood side street to try to miss the traffic. A Western friend did that, and, within three minutes, the water rose rapidly up to the bottom of his car door. His engine spluttered and stopped, and there he sat in two and a half feet of water, stranded in his car. Don’t let that be you. The main order of the day in Thailand in the rainy season, and something Thais are superb at, is having PATIENCE. If it’s pouring with rain – wait a few minutes. Although it looks like Noah’s Ark will be floating by soon, it won’t. Within half an hour, the rain will have stopped, the floods subsided and life in Thailand will go on as normal. Meanwhile, you have stayed inside, nice and dry, until it has stopped.

    Know Your Emergency Telephone Numbers
    It’s common to see accidents during the rainy season, and hospitals all over the country are busy with cuts, bruises, and breaks. The rainy season is a particularly dangerous time for old people and children, and so it bodes well to know your emergency numbers in case a situation suddenly arises whereby you need to provide assistance.

    Here are some important numbers, which can be dialed straight from your phone:

    Emergency call center (Police, Fire, Ambulance): 191
    Police: 191
    Fire Brigade: 199
    Ambulance: 1554
    Tourism Police (English, French, and German languages): 1155
    Highway Police: 1193

    All in all, the low season can be a lot of fun. Most of the time you won’t have anything more to endure than a leaky roof. If you have respect for the elements and for nature, there is no reason you still cannot enjoy yourself. Stay safe and healthy!