So, you’re planning a trip to Thailand…The Land of Smiles offers pristine beaches, buzzing wildlife, top-notch cuisine, friendly locals, and inspiring culture. Here’s a list of our Thailand travel essentials to help you pack for your trip!
An obvious first choice, sunscreen is a Thailand essential. The sun can be brutally strong all over the country. No matter if you’re in the hills of Chiang Mai, or soaking it up on the beaches of Koh Phangan, you’ll need to cover up. Make sure your sunscreen is Oxybenzone and Octinoxate free to protect ocean life.
Wide Brimmed Hat
A wide brimmed hat is a great addition to your sun protection protocol. We get it, you’re going to be busy exploring the villages, jungles, and beaches of Thailand. But carrying along a wide brimmed hat can save you serious skin damage when you forget to reapply that sunscreen after your third dunk in the ocean. It’s great for long periods of sun exposure, and be sure you’ll have plenty of that.
A quick-drying towel is a beautiful thing. They are light weight and compact, making for great backpacking companions. Often times, hostels don’t provide towels, and even if you’re given a bath towel, you’ll still want one for the beach. A quick-drying towel will make sure you’re not lugging around a soaked rag with you on your travels.
Sandals are an essential in Thailand. Almost every establishment or home you encounter will require you to take off your shoes upon entering. This is a custom all over Thailand, and wearing sandals or slip-ons will save you tons of hassle trying to untie your sneakers every time you step foot in not only a temple, but a restaurant, cafe, or public bathroom.
Long flights can wreak havoc on your body. Bringing something as simple and cheap as a lacrosse ball with you can help alleviate tightness and knots that form from sitting too long. Throw one of these in your bag and hit your back, neck, and legs when things get a little too cramped for you. You’ll thank us later.
A GoPro or any water-proof camera is a great addition to your gear. Thailand is filled with experiences that require you to get in the water. Whether you’re scuba diving, kayaking, or just going for a swim, having a water-proof camera with you can help you get some breathtaking footage.
Thailand is a country where cash rules. Although you may be fine paying for your coffee with a credit card in the States, you’ll want to have plenty of cash on you in the Land of Smiles! We were rarely able to use credit cards in Thailand, as many tours, transportation, and establishments only accepted cash. Especially if you are wanting to buy from local shops and markets, you won’t have the opportunity to use plastic. Having some extra cash on you goes a long way. But don’t fret, there are plenty of ATMs in cities, towns, and even some small villages.
Speaking of coffee, you’ll want to have your fair share in Thailand. Maybe we’re bias, but the coffee is some of the best (and cheapest) you can get. Local shop owners all know how to make a great latte, cappuccino, and coffee. Bring along a small reusable cup so that you don’t find yourself throwing out a bunch of plastic lined paper cups.
Reusable Grocery Bag
There’s so many opportunities to shop at local markets in Thailand. Whether it’s food, drinks, or souvenirs, bringing a reusable bag can seriously reduce the amount of waste you produce when engaging with this beautiful land.
Carrying a journal or notebook has been an absolute essential on our travels. For many of us, traveling is a time of inspiration, and making time to jot down those ideas, thoughts, and feelings that arise, is a really beneficial act. There’s going to be a ton of beautiful moments you’re going to want to remember.
Charming Shark Necklace
Thailand has a way of making you feel like life’s a breeze, but sometimes traveling can be stressful. Bringing a piece of jewelry that helps you stay grounded goes a long way. Before you go, put on the Charming Shark “Beaded Up” necklace, and anytime you are feeling overwhelmed, take a deep breathe for every bead you count, and remember to go with the flow!
Written By: AJ Letterel