Thailand Itinerary for two to 4 Weeks (North + South Highlights)

Thailand Itinerary for two to 4 Weeks (North + South Highlights)

From the jungle-clad mountains within the north to the beach-lined islands within the south, Thailand is simply full of glorious puts. It’s moderately a large nation regardless that, so if you wish to pattern all it has to provide inside a couple of weeks, you’ll wish to practice a just right direction.

On this instance itinerary, I’ll run you via probably the most well-liked locations in Thailand. It’s a vintage Thailand itinerary combining cultural, nature, and coastline highlights.

This itinerary is perfect for backpackers or any individual touring independently and searching for a mixture of journey/tradition and rest.

I urge the use of it as a kick off point and making your individual changes in accordance with your pursuits and time to be had.

Instance Itineraries

Phase I: Bangkok to northern Thailand

Thailand Itinerary for two to 4 Weeks (North + South Highlights)

1. Bangkok (part or 1 day)

Since maximum guests fly into Bangkok, it’s the most obvious place to begin.

Only one caution: in the event you haven’t been to a town moderately like Bangkok ahead of, it may be somewhat of a surprise to the senses!

It’s very chaotic with a large number of site visitors — and a lot of smells and sounds. Bangkok isn’t at all times love to start with sight, particularly when vacationers have simply suffered an extended world flight.

I if truth be told assume Bangkok is astounding, however chances are you’ll to find it more straightforward to comprehend on a moment seek advice from. That’s why I like to recommend making a short lived preliminary prevent, then exploring it extra totally on the finish of your Thailand day out.

Use your first (part) day to get via your jet lag, acclimatize to the new climate, and to take your first dive into the improbable Thai delicacies.

Take a look at a couple of attractions just like the temples of Wat Phra Kaew and Wat Pho, or seek advice from the vacationer district round Khao San Street (it’s cheesy however a laugh).

On my first ever Bangkok seek advice from I went on an improbable bicycle and boat excursion. This was once an excessively at ease method to see the native and distinctive facet of Bangkok. I’m Dutch and we like driving bicycles… however I do know that we’re bizarre like that, so then again right here’s a beneficial tuk-tuk excursion that can take you to a number of native markets and temples.

If you would like see Bangkok grew to become as much as 11, cross to Chinatown. It’s a massively colourful position and superb for images and random exploration. Or stay it for later if you would like ease into issues slightly.

2. Bangkok > Sukhothai (1 day)

It’s time to look some historical temples!

There are two large complexes of temple ruins in Thailand: Ayutthaya and Sukhothai.

Ayutthaya is very easily simplest 2 hours from Bangkok. Then again, it is going to be busier with day-trippers and it’s additionally inside of a town. I really like Sukhothai somewhat extra because it’s in a extra open area.


From Bangkok, take a bus or educate to Sukhothai (about 8 hours). I moderately like taking the educate because it’s great to observe the landscapes throughout the window and also you’ll get a pleasing preview of rural Thailand.

Spend an afternoon exploring the temple ruins of Sukhothai, then keep the night time there or head on immediately to Chiang Mai.

On the other hand, take an afternoon day out from Bangkok to Ayutthaya after which take the 12+ hour in a single day educate to Chiang Mai. You save time through touring most commonly at night time, and the sleeper educate counts as a a laugh commute enjoy as smartly. 

E-book transportation for this itinerary

3. Sukhothai > Chiang Mai (3+ days)

Chiang Mai is also Thailand’s second-biggest town, but it surely’s manner extra at ease than Bangkok. It’s additionally very affordable, with probably the most best-value lodging round.

You’ll be able to see how one can get to Chiang Mai right here.

Doi Suthep temple in Chiang Mai

You most likely received’t fight to fill your time, as there are many issues to do in Chiang Mai. You should definitely walk the night time markets, cross on day journeys within the space, seek advice from the Elephant Nature Park, cross on a Thai cooking route, or cross on a hill tribe trek (those are typically 1 or 2 days however can also be longer).

Chiang Mai could be very easygoing and there’s such a lot to do right here, which is why I feel it’s great to devote a minimum of a couple of days right here.

Just about all travellers I meet in Thailand love Chiang Mai. It’s an ideal springboard for exploring the north of Thailand.

4. Chiang Mai > Pai or Chiang Dao (3+ days)

The place to move subsequent from Chiang Mai?

Neatly, there are a number of choices.

If you’re a backpacker taking a look to have some a laugh, believe a prevent within the small mountain the town of Pai. It’s a cool little the town a number of the rice fields and wooded area hills, and it’s full of comfy hipster cafés and eating places.

The hostels in Pai are just right a laugh, regardless that in the event you’re extra into nature, then would possibly take a liking to its many riverside bungalows and boutique guesthouses. Pai is a touristy position, so no longer the most productive in the event you’re made up our minds to ‘see the actual Thailand’, but it surely’s a very easy position to be. Pai has scorching springs, waterfalls, and a small canyon within reach.

For those who’re searching for someplace extra secluded, then town of Chiang Dao makes for a just right choice. It has a quieter setting and more than a few small-scale sights. It’s a gorgeous position to enjoy some jungle and mountain surroundings.

Any other a laugh journey is to hire motorbikes and trip a loop throughout the thinly populated Mae Hong Son space. Alongside the best way, you’ll be able to seek advice from the epic Tham Lod Cave, or keep the night time within the Cave Hotel the place native spelunkers will display you several secret caves.

5. (Not obligatory) Chiang Rai (2 days)

Chiang Rai is a smaller town than Chiang Mai and makes for any other just right base for temple visits, trekking, and bicycle rides across the space. It’s a pleasing add-on if in case you have a while to be had! There are some just right issues to do in Chiang Rai province, equivalent to creating a day-trip to the hilltop the town of Mae Salong.


Phase II: Bangkok & Andaman Coast

This itinerary is all about seashores, islands, and nationwide parks. You’ll be able to do it by itself or tack it onto the former northern Thailand itinerary.

6. Northern Thailand > again to Bangkok (2 days)

For those who’re coming from the north, dip backtrack into central Thailand. You want to take the educate backtrack, or if you wish to velocity issues up somewhat, take a home flight with the cheap provider equivalent to AirAsia.

After such a lot of enjoyable days in Chiang Mai and Pai, you’re in a greater state to dive deeper into chaotic Bangkok. You want to seek advice from the floating markets, see a Muay Thai combat, discover Chatuchak Weekend Marketplace, or take a meals excursion.

And now that you simply’re now not jet-lagged and nonetheless contemporary off the airplane, you could wish to examine the Bangkok nightlife extra carefully as smartly.

7. Bangkok > Krabi (2 days)

It’s time to visit the coastline! Take a educate to Surat Thani, and from there commute onwards to Krabi.

On the other hand, you’ll be able to fly to Surat Thani with AirAsia, which additionally provides all-in-one tickets with flooring switch services and products to Krabi or the islands.

You’ll be able to keep in Krabi the town, however higher but, keep in Ao Nang as this will likely put you proper alongside (or very close to) the coastline. Whilst increasingly more busy and dear, chances are you’ll wish to cross to within reach Railay Seashore as smartly. It’s the well-known Thai coastline that has tall karst cliffs on all sides. Talking of cliffs: Krabi is famed for rock hiking, so in the event you’ve at all times sought after to take a rock hiking route, now’s your likelihood.

Via the best way, the native government have begun the use of a ticketing gadget to keep watch over customer numbers to Railay, and longtail boats also are now simplest allowed to dock in a single space (it is a just right factor). Once more, Krabi can get very crowded, particularly in top season, however a large number of folks do love the surroundings so much. If you’re feeling it’s too busy round those portions, believe escaping to the islands like Koh Lanta, Koh Ngai, Koh Jum, and many others.

8. Krabi > Khao Sok Nationwide Park (3 days)

Wean your self off the coastline (there’ll be extra of that quickly!) for a thrilling jungle excursion.

Whilst maximum issues in those itineraries can also be achieved independently, it’s best to seek advice from Khao Sok Nationwide Park on an arranged excursion. You’re going to cross into the jungle accompanied through a information who can indicate the flora and fauna and different attention-grabbing issues, and also you’ll have the ability to cross on a ship trip deep into the park.

I feel it’s a waste to ebook whole Thailand vacation excursions the place the entirety is arranged for you as it’s such a lot more straightforward (and typically) inexpensive to devise the entirety your self. However whilst an unbiased traveller I feel Khao Sok is one thing this is definitely worth the cash because it’s filled with stories and one thing you’ll be able to’t get by yourself.

Khao Sok Nationwide Park excursions

You’ll be able to make a choice from more than a few 2- and 3-day adventures. View Khao Sok excursions at GetYourGuide or see Khao Sok excursion choices on Viator.

I don’t counsel simplest doing an afternoon day out, which can simplest get you to the outer fringe of the park, however I recommend going for three days to do it correctly. This 3-day Khao Sok day out contains an in a single day keep in a jungle treehut, a longtail boat cruise on Cheow Lan Lake, a cave seek advice from, lunch at a bamboo raft area, and a moral elephant enjoy.

9. Krabi > Koh Lanta (3 days)

Whilst the island of Koh Phi Phi is probably the most well-known at the Andaman coast, it’s additionally simply the busiest and costliest. It additionally has a name for over-the-top-parties which, whilst no longer inescapable, do give the island a distinct vibe than others.

You want to nonetheless make a handy guide a rough prevent there, however I like to recommend going to Koh Lanta as an alternative for a extra at ease setting. Koh Phi Phi has possibly gotten somewhat too well-liked, whilst Koh Lanta has more room and extra issues to look across the island.

For the reason that development of a bridge, you’ll be able to simply achieve Koh Lanta through minivan from Krabi. You’ll be able to additionally take a ferry from Krabi, which is slightly slower, but in addition slightly extra scenic.

For those who’re searching for a perfect boutique inns on Koh Lanta, take a look at Bambie Boutique House & Lodge. Test costs at Expedia or at

On the other hand, you have to cross to some of the less-visited smaller islands like Koh Kradan, Koh Jum or Koh Lipe, regardless that a few of these are somewhat additional away.

E-book transportation for this itinerary

Phase III: The Gulf Coast

10. Krabi > Koh Phangan (2 days)

Famed for the Complete Moon Birthday celebration, Koh Phangan is the most important birthday party island in Thailand. To not be pigeonholed, it additionally has a stupendous quiet facet that’s a lot much less recognized. It’s any other nice island to spend a couple of days.

11. Koh Phangan > Koh Tao (2 days)

Koh Tao isn’t just a good looking island in its personal proper, but it surely additionally occurs to be the scuba diving capital of Thailand.

For those who’ve ever sought after to offer it a take a look at (or do the 4-day Open Water certification route), you couldn’t ask for a greater position to do it. It’s a rather small island, and whilst very advanced, it has maintained a comfortable setting.

12. Koh Tao > Bangkok (final days)

Take the ferry from Koh Tao to Koh Samui, from the place you’ll be able to get a handy guide a rough flight again to Bangkok. You probably have time left (and didn’t lengthen your keep at any of the stops, which chances are high that you probably did), you’ll be able to then proceed to discover Bangkok or take day journeys within the space. Imagine going to Kanchanaburi or Khao Yai Nationwide Park to cap off your Thailand itinerary.

On the other hand, you have to skip the Gulf Coast and head east as an alternative. From Bangkok pop right down to the small the town of Trat, then take a ferry to Koh Chang or Koh Kood. Those islands are (nonetheless) fairly much less densely advanced and make for a fascinating choice possibility. 

Itinerary making plans guidelines

The right way to shorten the direction

The above itinerary is meant for 4 weeks if you wish to do all of it. I feel a month is if truth be told the easiest period of time for exploring the entire primary attractions in Thailand.

You probably have 3 weeks, then practice the sections on Bangkok and northerly Thailand, however then select both the Andaman or the Gulf Coast to your final week at the seashores and islands.

You probably have 2 weeks, then do Bangkok, Sukhothai and Chiang Mai in week one. From there, fly right down to some of the southern coasts for every week of nature and seashores.

How are you able to plan your individual itinerary?

Thailand has such a lot to provide that you’ll be able to simply make your individual plans or even improvise throughout your day out. Since transportation in Thailand is really easy and lodging so to be had, it’s simple to make a decision to stick longer, take facet tours, and even utterly adjust your plans.

Nonetheless, it’s just right to have a minimum of a coarse plan, particularly if it’s your first time in Thailand otherwise you’re new to touring on this a part of the arena.

I like to recommend testing a number of Thailand itineraries equivalent to those introduced right here and the use of them as a template. Analysis other puts, see how more than a few locations attach at the map, and create a direction in accordance with what puts appear to passion you maximum.

Once I first travelled in Thailand, I adopted a regular itinerary just about 70% of the best way, however made more than a few tweaks primarily based by myself commute objectives.

How are you able to plan a one-week day out in Thailand?

Is one week sufficient to look Thailand? To be truthful, I don’t know!

I am getting a large number of emails from folks making an attempt to craft an ideal 6-day whirlwind Thailand itinerary, however I haven’t traveled on this manner myself.

I’ve spent a minimum of a few weeks on every of my journeys to Thailand, so I used to be no longer within the mindset that I needed to see up to imaginable inside only some days. The logistics of a one-week day out additionally get much more treasured with much less room for errors or delays, making it more difficult to counsel a ‘very best’ direction.

If you’re feeling there’s a large number of force for your one-week Thailand day out to look or do up to you’ll be able to, then it’s going to make sense to ebook an arranged excursion.

What’s the very best time to commute in Thailand?

If you’re in Thailand for a short while and want the elements to be ‘very best,’ chances are you’ll need to cross within the vacationer top season of November to February. However outdoor of those months, you’ll produce other benefits equivalent to decrease prices, extra to be had lodging, and less crowds.

Be mindful there’s a wet season in Thailand. Extensively talking, the rainiest months are from September to October. The monsoon has a distinct duration on every coast regardless that: more or less Would possibly to October at the west coast and September till December at the east coast.

How are you able to get round in Thailand?

Don’t concern an excessive amount of about commute logistics as there are at all times quite a few choices. Necessarily all puts you’d ever wish to seek advice from as a vacationer are hooked up through public bus, educate, or handy native excursions.

To know the way to get from A to B in Thailand (and to ebook bus or educate tickets on-line), I like to recommend the use of the native reserving platform 12Go Asia.

What are the most productive puts for first-timers?

In truth, there are such a lot of puts in Thailand which can be nice whether or not it’s your first seek advice from or your 10th. However Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Kanchanaburi, Ayutthaya islands like Koh Phangan, and the inns on Phuket are extremely well-liked locations. You’ll be able to learn extra about Thailand commute locations right here.

Past Thailand

Making plans to commute the broader Southeast Asia area?

For those who practice the primary portions of this direction, you’ll be able to attach this seamlessly to Laos by means of Chiang Rai and the border at Huay Xai. You’ll be able to input Laos both through bus or the so-called gradual boat.

Will you find yourself within the south of Thailand? Then you’ll be able to simply lengthen your day out to Malaysia or Indonesia.

Some vacationers skip Ayutthaya and Sukhothai and as an alternative commute from Bangkok to Siem Reap in Cambodia to look the temples of Angkor Wat.

For those who’re making plans a day out via Southeast Asia, be sure you see my Southeast Asia itinerary recommendation.

Some hyperlinks is also associate hyperlinks, which means I would possibly earn fee from merchandise or services and products I like to recommend. For extra, see web page insurance policies.

Posted DEC 09, 2022
· Remaining Up to date Dec 09, 2022

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