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My sister and I headed to Thailand in June 2018 for a holiday. We started our Thailand journey in Bangkok. I wasn't really sure what to expect with Bangkok but after spending time there I have fallen in love!! We stayed at Furama Xclusive Sathron which was a nice 3 1/2 - 4 star property. Staff were lovely and the food was nice although it takes abit to get used to the Thai breakfasts and hard beds - definitely not the same as New Zealand!
Located on the corner of our property was a Unicorn Cafe - Yes you read that correctly, a cafe completely dedicated to unicorns! If you have children this is definitely a treat for them! Getting around Bangkok was relatively easy. The taxis you should take have meters and are cheap. The tuk tuks are a fun experience and you can barter the fare before using them.
Roughly 20 minutes from our hotel was he largest shopping centre in Bangkok - MBK. This place is 6 stories high and has something for everyone! At each of the stores you can barter with the prices and grab yourself some bargains! The 6th floor has a cinema, bowling alley, escape rooms and plenty of arcade games to keep the whole family entertained!
After joining a 14 day Topdeck tour we left Bangkok and overnight trained to Surat Thani, then ferried across to Koh Samui. Koh Samui was beautiful, the town came alive at night time and there was plenty to do! From there we ferried to Koh Phangan and were lucky enough to experience a full moon party. This was alot of fun and certainly something to tick off of the bucket list! Lastly we ferried to Koh Tao. Although I didn't get to see much of the town I did go on a full day snorkelling trip which was well worth it! Highlight - snorkelling with huge turtles and sharks! If you are a beach lover I would highly recommend spending time in Koh Samui, Koh Phangan or Koh Tao. After a short stop back in Bangkok we ventured up to Chiang Mai via overnight train. Chiang Mai is a hidden treasure, beautiful temples, lovely people and great shopping. Amora Chiang Mai was a beauiful property - the top out of all the places we stayed.
On our free day we headed to Kanta Elephant Sanctuary and spent the day learning to care for rescued Elephants. Absolutely NO riding of the elephants is involved. Here you learn what to feed the elephants, how to wash the elephants and how the sanctuary look after them. These elephants have had rough pasts but because they are domesticated they can no longer return to the wild. Kanta Elephant Sanctuary is a non-profit organisation that requires donations to take care of these gentle giants. This was the highlight of my trip. I spent the entire day hanging out with Elephants, feeding and bathing them, helping to prepare their rice balls and making sure they had everything they required.
Thailand is definitely a destination to put on the bucketlist!!