My husband and I took a 15 day tour with Gate 1 Travel. We added a week on in the beginning and an extra week at the end.
The accommodations were all 5 star and our Guide Tim was by far the best guide I have ever had. She went out of her way. I ofcourse enjoyed all the Temples and Palaces. Especially the shopping. All in all it was the trip of a lifetime.
1. Expect crowds
2. Expect scams
3. carry your shoes when visiting Temples (My husbands were stolen by an old man in business attirre), Dont trust the old guys they have had the most practice scamming.
4. If anyone walks up to you and in English says can I ask you a question or do you speak a particular language, act like you dont understand and walk away, con artists
5. Dont go off with anyone you meet on the street ie: Ping pong show etc)
6. You will need more money than you think, things are the same or more than I pay at home
7. someone will try to steal from you daily,
* I had a knife pulled on me, I made it clear I was going to fight back and he took off
*some one clawed my arm on a crowded sidewalk trying to steal my watch, didnt get it.
*third time On the bus from the airport in Phuket to the hotel the security tape was cut and all 5 couples luggage was robbed.
*4th Other tourists, poolside in Phuket my husband went out of site to the bar to get a drink, I was quietly sitting in the pool so the American Army family didnt see me there when they ran down and tried to steal my bag . I caught them got loud and they ran off. that really irked me that an American Military family would be such ugly Americans abroad.
8. Baby wipes---need I say more
9. Ladies dont wear shorts. We had one lady on the trip who could not cop a squat properly on the squat toilets and BM'ed all over her shorts. Yeah that was embarassing when the driver had to get her luggage out so she could change.
10. Nice ankle length Tshirt dresses are the best thing to wear.
11. Dont be the ugly American
12. Learn some travel phrases, show some respect for the people and culture.
13. You will get dehydrated, I was terribly swollen for the entire trip and 1 month after I got home.
14. I ate what ever I wanted from where ever looked interesting and never got sick. Depends on your resistence
15. Dont dress like you are going on a Safari and walk around with your camera around your neck and a map in your hand.... (no better way than to mark yourself as a tourist ripe for the picking)
16. Cabs- always have the hotel call the cab for you, they make a note in their log of cab name and # in case anything happens to you. Also get a hotel card with hotel address, I can not stress this one enough. So the next cab knows where to bring you back to.
17. Renting of Scooters and Harleys. I advise against it. I saw 3 western tourist crashes while I was there. I picked up enough Thai to understand when the old geezer would ride by on a rented Harley, that the cute little Thai girls they were trying to impress thought they were passed it old prats.
18. No matter what anyone says. If you see an item you like and you are ok with the price buy it. You may find similar elsewhere but not the same. Still kicking myself for not buying more sarongs in Bangkok.
18. Go, Do and See everything. The only limitations to you is you. I do recommend always having a partner. If you want to see the ping pong and dart show go, you will have stories for life. dont let anyone guide you there or you will get hit hard with severe prices you cant get out of.
19. No one likes drunks. The drinks are so watered down, I think it would be hard to get drunk, But if you succeed you are cruising for a bruising.
20. Bring extra memory cards for your camera. We took 1100 pics.
Have a wonderful trip and email me with your questions.