Visa on Arrival for Indians

The Indian passport isn’t as powerful as the US or British Passport. Yet, we have at least over 30 countries offering Visa On Arrival for Indians(VOA). Although VOA is a boon, do not forget that you would still need to satisfy all the VOA conditions laid down by each of the countries above. The number of days offered for VOA, Visa Fee, proof of funds and the required documents may differ from one country to another.

Visa on Arrival for Indians:

Here’s a list of affordable countries offering Visa On Arrival for Indians –

1.Thailand – The Backpacker capital of the world has misty mountains, pristine beaches, thick forest, water sports, amazing Thai food and romantic honeymoon destinations.

Visa on Arrival - Thailand

2. Laos –  Unlike it’s neighbor, Thailand, Laos is relatively less visited or less crowded. The food, the beaches and the history would draw you in.

3. Cambodia – “Angkor Wat”, enough said!

Cheap Holiday Destination - cambodia Angkor wat

4. Sri Lanka – Pristine beaches, historical places, Buddhist temples, the scenic mountains and tea estates. A must visit for Indians.

Visa on Arrival for Indians - Sri Lanka

5. Nepal – The hill country is akin to India in Food and Culture. It is famous for the snow peaked Himalayan ranges, Shiva Temple and the spicy food.

Visa on Arrival for Indians - Nepal

6. Bhutan – A Paradise. Bhutan values nature and culture. The country is deep rooted on the values and beliefs of Buddhism.

7. Indonesia – The country has volcanoes, Bali – one of the famous honey moon destinations, Hindu temples and amazing night life.

Visa on Arrival for Indians - Indonesia

The following exotic countries are for the luxury savvy, and a bit above the backpacking budget and in fact these are few of the best honey destinations…

1.Seychelles

VIsa on Arrival for Indians - Seychelles

 

2. Maldives

VIsa on Arrival for Indians - Maldives

3. Mauritius

VIsa on Arrival for Indians - Mauritius

Top 5 Cheap Holiday Destinations for Indians

Traveling on a budget under 50,000 Indian Rupees is a real challenge for Indians and it is the major show stopper for Foreign travel. You would be surprised to learn that overseas travel is cheaper than domestic travel. A trip to Sri Lanka or Nepal is cheaper than a trip to Jammu and Kashmir or the Andaman Islands. Here is a list of Cheap Holiday Destinations for Indians,you could consider for your budget trip…

Cheap Holiday Destinations for Indians

#1. Nepal:

Cheap Holiday Destinations for Indians - Nepal

The hill country had long been a friend of India. The land locked country is adorned with snow peaked Himalayas, pagodas and temples of prehistoric origin, thick forests with rich vegetation and White water rivers. The streets are colorful – adorned with the Buddhist flags, dusty with the roadside mud rising up to your nose and few roadside shops selling musical instruments and artistic paintings. You could spot most of the Kathmandu women being modern and stylish. The men are no less, sporting suits and turbans. The narrow streets are busy with the rickshaws cutting through the traffic, and the old fashioned Maruthi 800 as “Taxi For Hire”. The “Momos” are a feast in the local food. Nightlife isn’t bad. There are few casinos, line up of bars and plenty of cheaper street food to sample.

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Destinations

  • Pokhara
  • Kathmandu
  • Lumbini
  • Chitwan National Park

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Adventure activities

  • Trekking – Annapurna circuit
  • Everest Base Camp
  • Bungee Jumping
  • White water river rafting
  • Mountain Flight
  • Jungle Safari
  • Zip Line

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Currency: 1.5x (as per the current exchange rate. Eg: 10,000 INR would approximately fetch you 15,000 NPR)

Language: Nepali, Hindi and English

Capital: Kathmandu

#2. Sri Lanka:

Cheap Holiday Destination - Srilanka

The Island country, “Pearl of the Indian Ocean“, features a coastline of palm trees with pristine beaches and a string of water sports activities to indulge in. The country is perfect for backpackers and the romantically skewed honeymooners! The train journey from Kandy to Nuera eliya is a bliss not to be missed – for, the lush green tea estates, mountains and waterfalls offer a stunning picturesque Sri Lanka! Sri Lanka is certainly an affordable place for fun and leisure, and is certainly one of the cheap holiday destinations for Indians! Forget getting a approved Visa. Indians are eligible for Visa on Arrival for 30 days!

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Destinations

  • Colombo
  • Negombo
  • Dambulla
  • Kandy
  • Anuradhapuram
  • Sigiriya
  • Neura eliya
  • Galle
  • Unatwana
  • Bentota
  • Hikkaduwa
  • Mirissa

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Adventure activities

  • Trekking and Hiking
  • Diving
  • Snorkeling
  • White water river rafting
  • Whale watching
  • Hot air ballooning

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Currency: 2.19x (as per the current exchange rate. Eg: 10,000 INR would approximately fetch you 21,900 Sri Lankan Rupee)

Language: Sinhalese & Tamil (official) ; English (also spoken)

Capital: Colombo

#3. Vietnam

Cheap Holiday Destination - Vietnam Halong Bay

“Vietnam War”, a war to remember! Vietnam is an ideal place for backpackers. You can experience misty mountains, challenging trails, cruise ride on the Halong Bay, a beautiful train ride, Night Life, ATV tours and the white sandy beaches of Phu Quoc. Exploring Vietnam on Motorcycle is an interesting alternative as well. Vietnam is becoming one of the backpackers heaven! Dog meat is a delicacy in Vietnam!

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Destinations

  • Hanoi
  • Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC)
  • Ha Long Bay
  • Phu Quoc
  • Da Nang
  • Sa Pa Terrace
  • Hoi An
  • Mekong Delta
  • Hue
  • Nha Trang

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Adventure activities

  • Trekking
  • Kayaking
  • Over night Cruise
  • Pub crawl
  • Scuba Diving
  • ATV Tours
  • Party Boats

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Currency: 334x (as per the current exchange rate. Eg: 10,000 INR would approximately fetch you 33 lakhs 48,000 Vietnamese Dong) How does it feel to be a king? 🙂

Language: Vietnamese (official) and English (should get you around)

Capital: Hanoi

#4. Cambodia

Cheap Holiday Destination - cambodia Angkor wat

Indiana Jones” “Laura Croft – Tomb Raider” – Ring a bell?  These movies were shot in Angkor wat, an ancient temple in Cambodia. The ancient temple is an architectural marvel. The temple has numerous references to Indian gods and Inscriptions.Cambodia is one of the economically poorest countries in South East Asia. Commuting by public transport could pose a challenge. However, the country side is beautiful and Koh Rong, the beach at it’s best. Siam Reap has a string of bars and night clubs to hang around.

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Destinations

  • Siem Reap
  • Phnom Penh
  • Sihanoukville
  • Battambang

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Adventure activities

  • Country Side tours
  • Cycling & Biking
  • ATV tours
  • Scuba Diving

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Currency: 334x (as per the current exchange rate. Eg: 10,000 INR would approximately fetch you 33 lakhs 48,000 Vietnamese Dong) How does it feel to be a king? 🙂

Language: Vietnamese (official) and English (should get you around)

Capital: Phnom Penh

#5. Thailand

Cheap Holiday Destination - Thailand - Chiang Dao

Thailand is the backpacker’s paradise in the world. Thailand is truly stunning and is one of the safest countries to travel. Thai people are welcoming and there aren’t much scams that rip you off. Thailand has stunning islands, sizzling nightlife, misty mountains and most of all THE THAI CUISINE. The Street food would make you drool. The country has an amazing infrastructure. Phuket, Krabi and Koh Lanta are few of the best honeymoon spots in Thailand.

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Destinations

  • Bangkok
  • Pattaya
  • Hua Hin
  • Phuket
  • Krabi
  • Koh Lanta
  • Koh Phi Phi
  • Koh Samui
  • Koh Tao
  • Koh Phangan
  • Chiang Mai
  • Chiang Rai
  • Pai
  • Chiang Dao
  • Kanchanaburi

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Adventure activities

  • Country Side tours
  • Cycling & Biking
  • Snorkeling
  • Scuba Diving
  • Kayaking
  • Surfing
  • Mui Thai Boxing
  • Zip Line
  • Canoeing
  • Bungee Jumping
  • Full Moon Party
  • Jungle Party

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Currency: 0.53X (as per the current exchange rate. Eg: 10,000 INR would approximately fetch you 5,000 Thai Bhat)

Language: Thai (official) and English (should get you around)

Capital: Bangkok

Travelling under 50,000 INR is a cake walk to these countries if you could plan your travel well in advance, say 3 to 6 months. Remember to watch out and book tickets on Promo Sales (discounted airfares). AirAsia, Spice Jet and Air India are few of the carriers to watch out for. Air Asia serves Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. Spice Jet serves Sri Lanka and Air India serves Nepal. You could include Jet Airways to Nepal if you have air miles to redeem. Also, the budget in consideration here is under the assumption that you would be willing to look out and book cheaper accommodations.

Island Hopping in Phuket

Island Hopping in Phuket is an activity you cannot miss and in fact one of the top things to do in Phuket! Phuket is one of the best places you cannot afford to miss on your trip to Thailand. Phuket is famous for its nightlife, beaches, diving, snorkeling and Island hopping.

Island Hopping in Phuket - Tourist Enjoying a casual Swim - Koh Phi Phi Island Hopping
Tourist Enjoying a casual Swim – Koh Phi Phi Island Hopping

The tour operators organizing the Island hopping offer snack, soft drinks, a wonderful buffet feast lunch with a good collection of fresh sea food, Snorkeling and Kayaking. There are several tour companies offering day trips to several islands. A single day trip is no good to cover all the islands. Look out for the tour companies (that’s the easiest. they are available every where) and select tours that interests you. The packages offered are almost same price across companies, however, if you could negotiate, you might draw better deals.

Island Hopping in Phuket:

A list of the beautiful islands available on island hopping in Phuket…

  • Poda Island
  • Chicken Island
  • Railey beach
  • Tub Island
  • James Bond island
  • Koh Phi Phi – Maya Bay, Monkey Beach, Viking Cave, Pileh cove
  • Koh Lanta
  • Phang nga Bay
  • Tachai Island (between Surin and similan Islands)
  • Rok Islands
  • Koh Panyee
  • Similan Islands
  • Racha Island
  • Coral Island

Must Visit Islands: Koh Phi Phi, Coral Island, James Bond island ( if you are short of time, make sure you visit at least these three islands)

Island Hopping in Phuket - Tourists getting ready for an adventurous jump from the ferry
Tourists getting ready for an adventurous jump from the ferry
Island Hopping in Phuket - Canoeing to James Bond Island
Canoeing to James Bond Island
Island Hopping in Phuket - Canoeing to Bat Caves - James Bond Island Hopping
Canoeing to Bat Caves – James Bond Island Hopping
Island Hopping in Phuket - Underwater View - Snorkeling - Koh Phi Phi Island Hopping
Underwater View – Snorkeling – Koh Phi Phi Island Hopping

Backpacker friendly for longer stays: Koh Lanta is a stunning island, perfect for a honeymoon in Thailand or to rest your souls at backpacker hostels. The island is not as crowded as it peers, has good food and a decent night life. Moreover, the beaches are serene and the water is crystal clear. It is one of the best backpacker destination in Thailand.

Cost: Every Island hopping in Phuket, must cost you roughly around 1500-2000 THB. Remember to skout around for the best prices before choosing the best operator.

Have you been on any of these Island Hopping Trips? Care to share your experience, photos or tips?

Thailand Itinerary – 10 days to sample the paradise!

Thailand – The Grandeur!

Thailand is a paradise in the South East Asia, you may not want to part with on your return! The country has bluish green waters, white sandy beaches, misty mountains, river cruises, Mui Thai boxing, famous night markets that draw their curtains at dawn, beautiful floating markets for the early risers, shopping for the needy and the rich, the china town, historical temples, Grand palace and the list goes on and on… You would be amazed by the Infrastructure – the roads, the high rise building, the malls; the food – street food, farm fresh fruits and the sweet cold tender coconut; and the green countryside.Drawing a Thailand Itinerary is a unique experience and could never be generalized!

What’s your traveling type?

I would never forget my first trip to Thailand. It was an exhilarating trip and i was hardly interested to fly back. I was crazy enough that i was hunting for jobs in Thailand in the online portals. Thai at Don Muang Airport and all my way back by flight! Well, have learnt to move on…

You would need to figure out the kind of Thailand you want to explore – Adventure (Diving, Cycling etc.,), Foodie, Night Life, Laid back holiday on the mountains or the beaches etc.,

You could couple few places of your interests. Debutants should plan a Thailand itinerary of at least 10 days to sample the Thai culture, Food, Night life & the rest.

Thailand Itinerary

I have been over thrice to the backpackers capital and yet, i feel incomplete wanting to explore more. Check out the list of destinations to explore and Things to do in Thailand... A sample Thailand Itinerary for 10 days which would cover Night life, Cultural tourism, Mountains, Cafe, Street Food, Massage and Cycling:

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Destinations: Bangkok, Pai, ChiangMai, Phuket, Pattaya

Duration: 10 Days

Day #1 : Arrive at Bangkok

  • Visa on Arrival for Indians
  • Check in to Backpacker hostel in Khoa San Road (The backpacker ‘s area)
  • Wat Po
  • Wat Arun
  • Grand Palace
  • Massage
  • Chatuchak Weekend Market (if your trip includes Bangkok on a weekend)
  • Patong Night Market
  • Nightlife (optional)

Day #2: Arrive at Pai late afternoon (By flight or Night bus from Bangkok)

  • Take bus to Pai from Arcade bus station from Chiang Mai ( or mini van – better minivan)
  • Check in to pai Accommodation
  • Sight seeing
  • Night life

Day #3: Pai Sight Seeing & depart at noon towards Chiang Mai

  • Chiang Mai check in, night life and stay
  • Grand Canyon, Chiang Mai
  • Street food
  • Massage

Day #4: Chiang Mai

  • Tiger Kingdom, Night Safari, Temple (doi suthep), mon cham – take a day tour.
  • Night Life, Street food
  • Overnight stay in Chiang Mai

Day #5:

  • Cycling day Trip
  • Overnight stay in Chiang Mai

Day #6:

  • Early morning checkout
  • Take flight to Phuket – direct flight 2 hrs (reach around afternoon)
  • Reach phuket
  • Night life, Over night Stay

Day #7:

Day #8:

  • Phuket to Bangkok & Bangkok to Pattaya
  • Reach in the evening… Pub, night life

Day #9:

  • Pattaya day trip – Koh lan (Coral Islands) by boat
  • Pattaya Night Bazaar
  • Overnight in pattaya

Day #10:

Pack bags.. leave to Bangkok. Fly home

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Things to do in Thailand – Destination, Festivals and Activities

Things to do in Thailand

Ever heard of the “Thai Massage”? It’s the perfect stress buster to kill that acute backache. Go ahead and surrender yourself to a skilled masseuse, to enjoy a stress free nap. Thais’ are renowned for their massage therapy, just as the Chinese for Acupuncture. A traditional Thai Massage could cost you around 150 THB on a minimum. Mark it as one of the top things to do in Thailand.

Have you ever been spellbound by deep sea diving, snorkelling or any of the water sports activities? Thailand has a perfect spot for your dream adventure.

Are you bored of your home cuisine? Go, take a leap of faith, treat your taste buds with the Thai Cuisine.

Are you an adrenaline junkie? Thailand caters to all categories of adrenaline junkies. Bungee jumping, Sky Diving, Deep Sea Diving, Jet Ski, River Safari, Jungle Safari, Cycling, Mui Thai are a few to name.

Are you a Party Goer? A Beach Lover? A Night Owl? – Thailand is a stunning country offering most that you would crave for. Sandy white beaches, sizzling night life, trekking, cycling, diving, snorkeling, island hopping, boat rides, the pool tables, hookah, beautiful train rides, cool winter nights at mountains, deep forests, tigers and lions, big snakes, yoga, surfing, Mui Thai and an amazing cuisine well known for! Choose your destinations in line with your interests, to make an unforgettable holiday. Here is a list of destinations and an array of things to do in thailand you could opt for –

[section_title align=”center” text=”DESTINATIONS”]

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Beaches / Islands: 

  • Koh Phangan
  • Koh Samui
  • Koh Tao
  • Koh Lanta
  • Koh Surin
  • Phuket
  • Krabi
  • Koh Phi Phi
  • James bond Island (covered in island hopping)
  • Ang Thong National Marine Park (covered in island hopping)
  • Koh Lan
  • Hua Hin

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Mountains/ high altitude

  • Chiang Mai
  • Pai
  • Mon jam / Mon Cham
  • Chiang Rai
  • Chiang Dao

Nightlife

  • Pattaya
  • Bangkok
  • Phuket
  • Koh Phangan

Festivals

  • Songkran (Thai new year)
  • Lantern Festival – Yei Peng

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Infamous Parties

  • Full Moon Party
  • Half Moon Party
  • No Moon Party
  • Saramonella waterfall party
  • Boat Party
  • Jungle Party
  • and many more

Diving, Kayaking, Snorkeling

  • Koh Tao
  • Koh Samui
  • Koh Phangan
  • Koh Surin
  • Phuket
  • Krabi

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[section_title align=”center” text=”DESTINATION OPTIONS”]

The suggested destinations below offers a mix of City trips, Night Life, Cool weather at the mountains, Beaches, Island hopping and Water Sport activities. The suggestions were limited to 4/5 places assuming a trip of 10 to 15 days. It is impossible to cover all things to do in thailand on a short trip. Prioritize your interests and identify the destinations.

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Destination Option #1: Bangkok, Pai, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Pattaya

Destination Option #2: Bangkok, Koh Phangan, Koh Samui, Koh Tao, Pattaya

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Destination Option #3: Bangkok, Phuket, Krabi, Koh Lanta

Destination Option #4: Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Pai, Mon Cham, Chiang Rai

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A sample 10 days itinerary

 

Thailand Visa for Indians – Visa on Arrival

THAILAND VISA FOR INDIANS: 

Thailand Visa for Indians has been one of the most touted tourist visa. Despite 30 countries offering Visa on arrival for Indians, Thai Visa has managed to out-beat its peers.  Indians travelling with a valid Indian Passport are eligible for Visa on Arrival (VOA) TOURIST VISA at Bangkok Airports. You could enter Thailand at Bangkok via “Don Meung Airport (DMK)” or “Swarnabhumi Airport (BKK)”.

Airasia operates from DMK airport. Premier airlines such as Thai Airways, Jet Airways, Air India etc and the budget airline Spice Jet operates from BKK airport. VOA is available at both airports. Off late, with increased inflow of Foreign tourists, both DMK and BKK are packed with visitors seeking VOA.

[quote align=”alignleft” name=””]1. No ATM before Green Channel

2. Visa Fee – Payment in THB[/quote]

If you have a connecting flight to any other domestic destination in Thailand, allow ample time for VOA at these airports. Given the current circumstances, it might take you 60-90 minutes to secure a Visa. Remember to convert currency before paying Visa Fee.

Money Exchange counters are available near the Visa On Arrival counters. Please note that the Money Exchangers will not accept cards for payment. Also, there are not ATMs’ before the green channel.

It is advisable to convert your currency before reaching Thailand. At least convert enough INR to get 11,000 bhat for an individual player.

Philippines Tourist Visa For Indians

Visa on Arrival for Indians: Indians or Indian Passport Holders are eligible for Visa on Arrival in Thailand for a period of 15 days, if the following conditions are met…

Thailand VOA for Indians - Thai Flag

  1. The entry is strictly for Tourism. Visitors with TOURIST VISA are strictly prohibited from working in Thailand.
  2. The Visitor’s Passport must be AT LEAST valid for 6 months and should have minimum 3 blank pages.
  3. The visitor has to and return tickets within 15 days, inclusive of the entry and the exit date. The return ticket has to be a ticket to fly out of Thailand. It is not necessary that the return ticket has to be India. Eg: You could fly to Bangkok and have a ticket to Cambodia or Vietnam within 15 days.
  4. Confirmed Hotel/Accommodation bookings.  The address of your accommodation would need to be filled in the VOA form as well. If you are planning to visit more than one place, you can mention the first address of your stay in the form. However, you need to produce valid and confirmed bookings for your duration of stay in Thailand.
  5. Solo Traveler needs to show proof of funds of 10,000 Bhat and Group Travelers or Family needs to show 20,000 Bhat as proof of funds for your expenditure in Thailand.
  6. VISA Application Fee is 1,000 Bhat, which needs to be paid in Thai Currency only.
  7. A Passport size photograph (recently taken) needs to be affixed in the VOA form along with details of your stay and return ticket information.

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[service icon=”warning-empty” title=”” text=”Never Jump your Visa. Violators are strictly dealt with by the Royal Thai Immigration”]

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FACT SHEET:

Capital : Bangkok

Languages : Thai (Native) & English (Widely Spoken)

Currency : THB (Thai Bhat)

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[service icon=”warning-empty” title=”” text=”To Speak ill of the Royal Family or the King is punishable by Law”]

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Things to do in Chiang Mai – Day trip to Mon Jam

Chiang Mai is one of the best tourist destinations in Thailand, renowned for its weather, cultural heritage and laid back nature. There are numerous things to do in Chiang Mai to keep a traveler amazed and occupied.

Things to do in Chiang Mai – A Day trip to Mon Jam

Mon Jam (or) Mon Cham is one of the top things to do in Chiang Mai. Mon Jam, located at 50 KM from the Chiang Mai city center, on top of a beautiful hill offers stunning views of the hills and valleys around. The spectacular place is ideal for camping, trekking and family picnic.

The cool weather and spicy Thai food under the bamboo huts offers a luxurious laid back leisure day. You could see an impeccable line up of colorful flowers adorning the hill top, grown cabbages and vegetables, step cultivation on the hill sides and the passing white clouds seemingly at your reach. Mon Jam is spectacularly picturesque and a natural selfie spot for many.If you are lucky, you may spot the hill tribals dressed in colorful traditional attire.

Things to do in Chiang Mai - Women in Thai Traditional Attire
Women in Thai Traditional Attire
Things to do in Chiang Mai - Mon Jam - Cafe
Mon Jam – Cafe
Things do in Chiang Mai - Colorful tiny flowersMon Jam
Colorful tiny flowers

You cannot miss the strawberry farms all along the way to Mon Jam from Route 107 and line up of few sit outs for lunch along the cool flowing river. The hilly road is a bit narrow and steeper throwing a challenge at the driver!

The restaurant and the cafe on the hill top offer a variety of tasty Thai and Western food.

Things to do in Chiang Mai - Mon Jam Restaurant
Mon Jam Restaurant
Things to do in Chiang Mai - Mon Jam - Lovely Couple
Lovely Couple

Mon Jam is one of the best day trips at Chiang Mai and is certainly worth a visit! The best way to commute is to tag along with your Thai friend or look out for a travel company offering group tours. Make sure to descend the hill before sunset, for driving is a real challenge down the hill!

Chiang Dao – The city of Stars on a Misty Mountain!

Chiang Dao – Go for the Stars!

Chiang Dao in Thai translates to “City of stars”, which is famous for the limestone caves “Chiang Dao Cave“, a must visit attraction in the vicinity.

Chiang Dao - View from Highway 107
Chiang Dao – View from Highway 107

Chiang Dao is famous for the Wildlife Santuary as well. Its a small laid back town, where you can have a peaceful retreat. There are few amazing trekking opportunities as well.

I visited Chiang Dao with a friend of mine. We drove down to Chiang Dao from Chiang Mai. The road trip was a bliss. We paused at Mon Jam on the way to Chiang Dao. The narrow road which cuts through the forest all the way to the mountain top of Chiang Dao, was a scenic beauty.We opted Home Stay on the mountain. The weather was cool, freezing to be precise, as we ascended the hill. Imagine a shower in the freezing weather! I was shivering! I could feel my kidney shivering in the sheer cold, or was it my liver?! The water was a limited source to be fetched from all the way down the mountain. We saw tankers fill up the water tanks and tower. We saw an young couple, must have been Chinese, who had brought their bikes too. I was dumbstruck, if bikers could really cycle in such steep altitudes!

The Home Stay had numerous huts to let out, but had only two occupants at the time of our visit. The huts were basic, but more than you could ask for! The beds were comfy with a think blanket to survive the cold nights and fitted with mosquito nets. Regardless, we did find no mosquitoes! The sit out was beautiful with amazing views. The misty mountains, birds chirping, freezing weather and the sun set  view from the sit out was a seducing combination.

The host, a couple, prepared us a wonderful Thai dinner. I had the opportunity to sample “Nampeek“, a very hot and spicy powdery mix, prepared from many herbs. I was told that Nampeek is available with small prawns as well. It was a treat to my taste buds! Nampeek is mixed with white/plain Rice. The establishments atop the mountain are supposed to switch off the lights beyond 9 PM, to let nature be and we had limited mobile connectivity, which was an added bonus!

The host made us a sumptuous breakfast the next morning – with boiled rice, Thai egg soup, bread and Coffee.It was a peaceful retreat, an escape from the chaotic busy city life!

It’s a perfect place for honeymooners, if luxury isn’t really on the cards. There were few accommodations near Chiang dao cave. But, i would recommend choosing a home stay on the mountains.

Chiang Dao - On route to Chiang Dao Home Stay
On route to Chiang Dao Home Stay
Chiang Dao - Entry from 107 route to Fang
Chiang Dao – Entry from 107 route to Fang
Chiang Dao - Our Room
Our Room in Chiang Dao Homestay
Chiang Dao - A cafe on the Mountains
A cafe on the Mountains
Chiang Dao - Another view of our Sit out
Another view of our Sit out
Chiang Dao - Baan View Doi Luang - View Point 1
Baan View Doi Luang – View Point 1
Chiang Dao - Baan View Doi Luang - View Point 2
Baan View Doi Luang – View Point 2
Chiang Dao Homestay View
Chiang Dao Homestay View
Chiang Dao - View from our Home Stay
View from our Home Stay

How to reach Chiang dao?

Distance : Approximately 90 KMs from Chiang Mai

Transportation options: 

  • Motor Bike or Car, if you have a valid driving licence that can be used in Thailand
  • Rented Car – Should cost you around 1500 THB from Chiang Mai
  • Public Transportation – By Bus – Chang Puak Bus terminal. Look out for buses that leaves to Fang. Its better to check with your resort/hotel receptionist as to where you need to alight exactly

The road from Chiang Mai to Chiang Dao is well built and scenic too. It may take you around an hour to two, depending on the traffic and your speed.

On our way back to Chiang Mai, we were lucky enough to spot a beautiful place to have food along a river. There were many Thai families who have come on a picnic and a good number of foreigners taking a nap after a heavy lunch. If you happen to go by a car or a motorbike, it’s a place you will not miss to spot! Few pics below…

click here for more pics

Why Thailand? What happens in Thailand, Stays in Thailand!

Why Thailand?

Well, this is the worst question, i have been bombarded with on numerous occasion. The smirk, i could never stand it! People have their notions and it’s difficult to outlive them; if you know what i mean. What one does in Thailand, is purely personal. “Why Thailand & What happens in Thailand, Stays in Thailand”, isn’t that right? Thailand, in my experience, has everything you could crave for. Why Thailand? Well, Why not Thailand? Here are #10 reasons for you not to miss that backpacking trip or honeymoon to Thailand.

Why Thailand - Traditional Thai Dance
Traditional Thai Dance

#1. Safest Backpacker Capital: Thailand is the land of dreams. You can have all that you have desired for. Thailand caters to all kinds of tourists and it’s no a brainer that its the “Backpacker Capital of the world“. It’s one of the safest country to backpack, let alone female solo backpackers. My wanderlust got aggravated after my first visit to Thailand and i have been visiting ever since. I have never been cheated or robbed  in Thailand. Well, i might have been luckier. However, the percentage of such incidents is very less relative to other destinations. Are you scared of solo travel? Is this your first overseas leisure travel? Do you want to try backpacking? Well. you must start with Thailand. Its a country you will fall in love with exponentially, as you visit more!

Why Thailand - Boats along the Shores
Boats along the Shore

#2. Nightlife: The best of all in Thailand is it’s nightlife. That’s why Thailand is one of most touted destinations for parties! Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya, Koh Phangan, Koh Samui and even Chiang Mai offer a raving night life! “Full Moon Party“, probably the most notorious party on earth happens in Koh Phangan every full moon night. Black Moon Party, Saramonella Party, Waterfall party, Boat Party, The Jungle Party and a lot more… Thailand plays host to western style parties at it’s best! No wonder, its well known for Bachelor and Bachelorette Parties! The Thais’ have taste and style!

#3. Street Food: Be it Bangkok, Chiangmai, Chiangrai, Koh-Phangan, Phuket, Krabi, Koh Tao, Koh Samui or Pattaya, Thailand offers you the best street food. You could eat roasted duck, chicken, pork, sea food such as fish, crab, octopus, squid; insects such as grasshopper, ants; reptiles such as scorpion – all for a budget price. You could get two barbecue sticks of assorted dishes for as low as 20 bhat! If you are a vegan, you could choose to have the vegetarian noodle soup or the fresh fruits such as Mango, grape, pomegranate and tender coconut. Thai cuisine is one of the best in the world, and street food is the best place to sample it!

#4. History: Thailand has a rich cultural history. The palace, temples, the people’s belief in Buddha and the religion reflects it’s deep rooted culture. You would be marveled by visiting Wat Po, Wat Arun, Floating markets and other places of historical significance.

Why Thailand - Golden Statue Guard
Golden Statue Guard at the Royal Palace, Bangkok
Why Thailand - Floating Market Scene
Floating Market Scene

#5. Adventure & Beyond: The Backpacker capital has umpteen adventure activities in store. Cyclists find it a heaven to cycle throughout the country. There are many cycling specific routes and few of the roads have dedicated cycling lanes as well. There are many a beautiful islands and scenic diving spots to enjoy the underwater world!

Bungee jumping, trekking, sky diving, snorkeling, Kayaking, Kite surfing are other activities you can choose.

#6. Thai Cuisine: The Thai food is one of the famous cuisine around the world. Freshly used herbs, spices and meat makes you drool over the food. There are numerous cookery classes organized throughout the country. Foreigners flock in groups to sign up for those classes to master the art of cooking Thai food. Try – Thai Lemon grass tea & Namprik rice (Mix of herbs and in few cases with small prawns. Spicy food that makes your taste buds go haywire!)

#7. Traditional Thai Massage: The Thai Massage has carved a name for itself. Just as the cuisine, the traditional massage is believed to have healing powers. There are few established institutions imparting traditional Thai Massage therapy. A decent traditional Thai Massage should cost you around 800 bhat; however, there are few starting over 300 bhat. It’s rejuvenating.Why not try the massage?

#8. Medical Tourism: Thailand is well known for Medical Tourism as well. Cosmetic surgery and Dental Surgery are the most sought after. Medical treatments are expensive in the developed countries. People seeking medical surgeries fly to Thailand to have it done at a cheaper price. Acupuncture is yet another medical treatment being offered by few medical institutions.

#9. Tailoring: Well, this is odd! Thai’s have a wonderful hand at tailoring Suits and Blazers. You would realize their expertise, the moment you step in to Bangkok Airport or Don Meung Airport – look at the amazingly tailored Royal Thai police uniforms! There are many a tailoring establishments to get your Suits ready in 2-3 days, few of which offer online appointments.

#10. The best of South East Asia: Thailand is the best tourist destination in all of the South East Asia. Thailand promotes tourism at its best. The people are welcoming. Nature offers its best at Koh Phangan, Koh Tao, Koh Lanta, Koh Lan, Chiang Dao, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai. Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket and Krabi offer amazing night life. The food, culture and the easy going English across the country, makes it a place – best not to miss in a life time!

Why Thailand - Victory Monument
Victory Monument Night Scene

[quote align=”” name=””]Why Thailand ? Go Explore and Indulge to reveal it’s beauty[/quote]

Boracay Island – The Best Romantic Destination you could dream!

Boracay Island is the unique identity for the Philippines. Known for its “White Beach” and the “Puka or Shell Beach”, cupids from all over the world flock here for their romantic honeymoon. Boracay Island is the best honeymoon destination in all of the Philippines.

Are you an Indian? Would you love to travel to Boracay Island on a romantic trip? Indians need to secure a valid tourist visa to the Philippines. Read more…

How to Reach Boracay Island:

Well, to reach Boracay Island from Manila, there are various domestic carriers waiting to fly you.

You have two options  –

  • one, to fly to the nearest Caticlan airport which is expensive
  • two, Kalibo airport which is cheaper but a bit distant at 1.5 – 2 hours driving distance

From the airport, reach out to Caticlan Jetty Port, to take a short boat ride for 15-20 mins to reach Boracay Island.

There are private vehicles, shared Air-conditioned mini vans plying the road between the airport and the port. Some companies offer end to end packages. The mini van from Airport to Port, the boat ride and the trike to your hotel at Boracay (for return too…). Well. if you are a backpacker, you don’t need to take the package and you could manage it by booking at the entry points individually (helps you save you cost). The fares as listed the airport are below…

Boracay Island - Transportation Rates
Boracay Island – Transportation Rates

Attractions on the Boracay Island:

Boracay is the place for honeymooners and party-goers. The main attraction in Boracay is Station 1, Station 2, Station 3 and the Puka Shell Beach.  Station 1, 2 and 3 have been highly commercialized – you could find souvenir shops, pubs,coffee shops, restaurants, garment shops, fruit shops, dive shops and almost anything you could think of. “D-Mall‘ is a name well known in the circles. Take a stroll from Station 1 to 3, you would understand how commercial it is!

Regardless of the commercial activity, the beach along the station is pristine, white sandy and the water is crystal clear. You could spot travelers hurrying out to board boats for island hopping, water sports, or lazying out a cool swim along the shore. The place is scenic and picturesque – “the post card pictures”.

The Station 1, 2 and 3 are illuminated for the night life with a line up of bars and pubs. It’s so colorful sporting laser lights and ripping your ear off with rock music. You could find people of all ages flocking towards the beach – all the time!

Boracay Island - Beach Castle
Beach Castle
Boracay Island - Beach Adventure
Beach Adventure
Boracay Island - Happy Kid
Happy Kid
Boracay Island - Boracay Adventure Boat
Boracay Adventure Boat
Boracay Island - Boracay Beach View
Boracay Beach View
Boracay Island - Boracay Station 1 beach Walk
Boracay Station 1 Beach Walk

Puka Beach / Shell Beach: Puka beach is less crowded and not commercialized as the white beach. Take a trike for 150 pesos or a shared trike to reach Puka Beach. Its a perfect destination for Wedding Photographers!

Boracay Island - On route to Puka Beach
On Route to Puka / Shell Beach
Boracay Island - Puka Beach Enterance-tuktuk
Puka Beach Enterance – TukTuk
Boracay Island - Puka Beach Enterance
Puka Beach Enterance
Boracay Island - Puka Beach View 1
Puka Beach View 1
Boracay Island - Puka Shell beach view 2
Puka Shell beach view 2

Click here for Boracay in Pictures

Have you been to this Postcard picturesque island? Care to share your experience or tips to enjoy a trip to this Island? Please share your comments in the section below…