Thailand

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The land of smiles

Thailand is known as the land of smiles, thanks to the welcoming nature of the Thai people. But there’s so much more to the country than friendly faces. In fact, it’s impossible to sum up Thailand in a nutshell, because every part is different.

Buddhist culture

At the heart of everything, there are shrines, temples, and monasteries known as ‘wats’. The seeds of Buddhism were planted in the country at the start of the 13th century, and a crop of holy sights spreads from border to border.

Bangkok

Mixed in with the religious landmarks is one of the world’s most hectic capitals. Bangkok is a strobe-like city, where motorways have 12 lanes, markets have upward of 15,000 stalls, and restaurants are so concentrated, you’ll never be more than 50 metres away from one.

Beaches and islands

Then there’s the coast. In the Krabi province alone, there are 150 kilometres’ worth of beaches. The sandy slithers here are all backed by photogenic rock formations. The backdrop in the Khao Lak area is just as much of a sight for sore eyes. The beaches in this part of Thailand get swallowed up by national parks a few hundred metres from the shoreline. On Phuket island, meanwhile, there’s a real mix. While the crowdless beaches in Mai Khao let you live incognito for a while, the ones in Patong invite you to a permanent party.

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Phuket

There are a lot of threads in Phuket’s tourism tapestry. The island is just off Thailand’s southwest coast and its capital, Phuket Town, is an animated city of early-morning markets and beeping tuk tuks.

Khao Lak

On Thailand’s southwest coast, Khao Lak is in the business of recharging batteries. The beaches are completely unfurnished, so all you get is long runways of powdery white sand. And the waters here attract scuba divers from around the world. The sea is mineral-water clear, so visibility can reach up to 30 metres.

Krabi

Krabi’s distinctive limestone cliffs line the region’s 150-kilometre coastline, biting out of the sea like incisor teeth. The rocks play a central part in Krabi’s tourism industry, too. Sunbathers come from all over the world to bask on the blonde beaches beneath them and climbers come to scale them.

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Online savings - Refers to an online discount of 10% on August and 9% on September & October on holidays and applies to the basic adult cost before supplements. Available on package holidays booked online departing between 1st May 2014 and 31st October 2014 Online discount only applies to package holidays booked on firstchoice.co.uk and does not apply to flight only, accommodation only and tailor made flight+hotel bookings. Online discount is not combinable with free Child Places.

Save up to £400 per couple on September & October holidays – Saving offer applies to new bookings only on selected Thomson package holidays booked on thomson.co.uk. Offer applies to holidays departing between 01 September & 31 October 2014 and is subject to limited availability. Savings is against brochure price. Excludes flight only, accommodation only, cruise, Thomson Ski and any other bookings. Additional supplements may apply. Saving is based on a minimum of 2 adults travelling. Thomson reserves the right to withdraw or change this offer at any time. We reserve the right to change or withdraw the offers at any time.

Free child places - Free kids offer applies to new bookings only, on selected summer 2014 holidays, subject to limited availability. Only 1 free kids place is available in each selected hotel room or selected apartment type or villa with 2 full paying adults. Other children must pay the full brochure price. Available on First Choice holidays only. Free child places may not be combinable with other discounts.