10 Top Tourist Attractions in Thailand. Thailand is the most popular tourist destination
in Southeast Asia, and for a reason. You can find almost anything here: crystal
blue beaches, thick jungle, great food, cheap beach front bungalows and some of the best
luxury hotels in the world. There is something for every interest and
every budget. As the only Southeast Asian country never
to be colonized, it is also studded with incredible cultural and historical sites, including ruins
that stretch back hundreds of years. And despite the heavy flow of tourism, Thailand
retains its quintessential identity with its own unique culture and history and a carefree
people famed for their smiles. The only trouble with planning a trip to Thailand
is narrowing things down to a few sights. It helps to start with the most popular tourist
attractions in Thailand, which include. 10: Similan Islands. Made up of nine primary islands and two far-flung
ones, the Similan Islands archipelago is one of the most popular diving destinations in
the country. Situated off the coast of the Phang Nga Province
in southern Thailand, the waters surrounding the islands boast gorgeous coral reefs and
underwater rock formations that take on many unique shapes. Experienced divers particularly enjoy hot
spots like East of Eden and Elephant Head Rock. 9: Full Moon Party at Haad Rin. The infamous Full Moon Party is an all-night
beach party that takes place in Haad Rin on the island of Koh Phangan. It has grown from an improvised wooden disco
for about 20-30 people in 1985 to a major event that draws a crowd of about 20,000-30,000
every single month. If you’re not on Ko Pha Ngan during the
full moon, don’t worry: there are other parties to be had, including Half Moon, Black
Moon and Shiva Moon party. 8: Thai-Burma Railway (Death Railway). The two-hour train journey along the notorious
Thailand–Burma Death Railway from Kanchanaburi, via the Bridge over the River Kwai, to Nam
Tok is one of Thailand’s most scenic and most popular train rides. Though the views are lovely, it’s the history
that makes the ride so special. During WWII, the Japanese built the railroad
to connect Yangon, the then-capital of Burma, with Bangkok, enlisting POWs and Asian laborers
in a horrifying and deadly race to the finish. Today, only a portion of the original rail
line is in operation. 7: Ayutthaya Historical Park. Also known as Ayutthaya Historical Park, this
popular tourist attraction contains the ruins of the second capital of Siam, which was founded
around 1350. By 1700 Ayutthaya had become one of the largest
cities in the world with a total of 1 million inhabitants. In 1767 the city was destroyed by the Burmese
army, resulting in the collapse of the kingdom. Fortunately, renovations that began in the
late 1960s restored the once-vibrant city to much of its former glory, allowing visitors
to experience the eclectic array of architectural styles that can be found amid its grid-like
patterns of moats, roads and canals. 6: Mu Ko Chang National Park. Located in the Trat Province of eastern Thailand,
this exquisite national park is made up of more than 50 islands. Without a doubt, Ko Chang is the most notable
of the bunch and is famous for its steep peaks, lush jungles and relaxed atmosphere. White Sand Beach is where people from around
the world congregate to have a great time. The islands also feature white sand beaches,
premium snorkeling and diving sites and many waterfalls. From fishing to dining to kayaking, there’s
something for everyone here in Kog Chang. Though still far quieter than islands like
Phuket or Ko Samui, it’s probably better to go now than later. 5: Northern Hill Tribes. Northern Thailand is home to several interesting
and colorful ethnic minorities, known as the hill tribes. Most of the hill tribes have migrated into
the region during the past 100 years from the Asian interior and have largely preserved
their traditional ways. It is possible to go on a trekking tour and
visit one of the numerous villages where they are happy to receive tourists. Since most are rural and poor, any economically
uplifting opportunities are welcomed. 4: Railay. Also known as Rai Leh, this popular rock-climbing
destination is located in the Krabi Province on the coast of the Andaman Sea. Accessible only by boat, Railay boasts a variety
of exciting attractions. Its more than 700 bolted rock-climbing routes
are a major draw. However, there are also several stunning beaches,
and visitors can also explore a series of caves. Accommodation on Railay ranges from inexpensive
bungalows popular with backpackers and climbers, to the renowned jet-set resort of Rayavadee. 3: Grand Palace. As the official residence of the kings of
Siam — and, later, Thailand — since 1782, the Grand Palace is perhaps the most famous
attraction in the bustling city of Bangkok. Situated on the banks of the Chao Phraya River,
the walled-in complex contains a compelling series of pavilions, halls, wats and other
buildings interspersed with vast lawns, lavish gardens and stately courtyards. Of the many sights here, Wat Phra Kaew, or
the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, is probably the most memorable. 2: Phang Nga Bay. Located just over 95 km (60 miles) from the
island of Phuket, Phang Nga Bay is one of the top tourist attractions in Thailand and
one of most scenic areas in the country. It consists of beautiful caves, aquatic grottoes
and limestone islands. The most famous island in the bay is a sea
stack called Ko Ping Kan (more commonly known as James Bond Island) which was featured in
the James Bond movie “The Man with the Golden Gun”. A popular way of visiting Phang Nga Bay is
by sea kayak as they are the only way to get inside the grottoes and sea caves. 1: Ko Phi Phi. Phi Phi is a beautiful archipelago located
in the Krabi Province not too far from Phuket. Ko Phi Phi Don is the only island in the group
with permanent inhabitants while the smaller Ko Phi Phi Leh is famous as the filming location
for the 2000 movie “The Beach”. Travelers go here enjoy the beaches and to
participate in a variety of water recreation activities, such as snorkeling, scuba diving
and kayaking. As a result of the masses of tourists, Ko
Phi Phi is becoming less and less attractive but for now it is still a very beautiful place
to visit.