Yes, it can be tatty. But here are lots of day trips available, you can party in places like Patong, Phuket town and Phi Phi, and you can embrace the wondrous nature if you go west or south of Phuket to Rawai or Cape Panwa. It's the best of all worlds!
1. For the weather
Roz relaxes on the beach in Thailand
Us Irish love talking about the weather, it wasn’t until I was in Thailand I realised just how Irish I am. I commented on the great weather at every opportunity.
Locals advise that anytime between November and February is best to dodge the rain and soak up the Vitamin D. Even on cloudy days there was a need for factor 50..
One thing I have to mention is the type of heat. it wasn’t clammy humid heat; it was very dry with a cool breeze. Pretty perfect right?
2. For your taste buds
Roz explores the markets in Thailand
Of course the topic of food was going to crop up at some stage throughout this article. Being a huge foodie, I was in my element.
Exploring the markets with rows of fresh fish, curry pastes and woks on the go is a brilliant experience. The best food I ate was from the side stalls that I would never have imagined eating from and put to shame fast food outlets in the western world!
Definitely take a cooking course during your stay - in fact I did two! It's a great way to take home some culture and continue living and embracing the holiday long after it ends. It's also nice to have some proper Pad Thai Gung, Tom Kha Gai and curry pastes on your repertoire... the perfect excuse to bring up your adventures over dinner!
3. For your bank account
A taste of Thailand. Photo: Roz Purcell
The money situation was a huge pull factor for us.
I understand getting to Thailand is the expensive part, but once you make it (and stay money smart), you'll arrive home without the ‘fear’ of checking your bank account.
The most expensive part are the excursions and day trips, which came to approximately 2, 500 baht (€63) a pop, but when you think how much you are getting for that - a driver who picks you at your hotel, a speed boat to multiple islands, lunch, fresh fruit, tour guides all for seven hours! – it’s a pretty good deal.
The street food is unquestionably cheap for how good it tastes (60-100 baht or €1.50-€2.50), and the all important fresh coconut that streamed through our news feeds of holidays snaps will set you back only 30-40 baht (80c-€1).
A massage (well, a one-hour foot rub) cost around 300 baht (€7.50).
4. For your waistline
Roz Purcell cooks up in Thailand
Being active is always a priority for me, and I like to keep up my routine when away - it means I can eat more ice-cream.
Thankfully, activities are everywhere in Thailand, from open water swimming to surfing, yoga, Muay Thai (kickboxing) and hiking. You wont go home feeling like you need to detoxify yourself of holiday pounds!
Being really keen to immerse myself in the culture, I took on some Muay Thai sessions, its definitely an experience and one I would recommend if you like to push yourself! But if that’s not your thing, you can still get a bit of Muay Thai boxing in by attending a match. They're held most weekends in Patong and were a real highlight for us.
5. For the people
The floating market at Damnoen Saduak, Thailand. Photo: Kaveh Kazemi/Getty Images
The gentle nature of the Thai people made this trip for me.
I was very inquisitive about their mannerisms, and couldn’t believe how calm and friendly they remained - even when faced with a rude tourist or conflict.
Locals explained to me that their upbringing is centered around remaining calm and not worrying about the future - negative thoughts are discouraged and there’s never a Plan ‘B’, as Plan ‘A’ would always work.
I found it a refreshing attitude - I truly believe that being around this type of positivity for a period of time is contagious.
6. For Your mind
Long Boats, The Beach, Phuket, Thailand
Walking on the beach barefoot, surrounded by miles of clear blue ocean - it does something for your mind. The freedom, the carefree nature and spirit of the place and people will leave you coming home with no woes or worries.
There are countless ways to help you relax on your stay - not least the massages, which are literally within every 50 meters (they are the Starbucks of Thailand!).
However, I will suggest in opting for something other than a traditional Thai massage which I found out is heavily physical and spine-crackling!
Breathing is taking very seriously as part of life and there are multiple breathing classes and yoga schools to take part in during your stay, a nice way to unwind after a day of snorkeling or swimming.
7. For island-hopping
Roz in Thailand
Growing up, did you ever dream of that island with clear blue water and a single palm tree? Well, it exists. And there are lots of them.
On our day trips in Thailand, we got to explore both deserted tropical islands and the most touristy ones (Phi phi, Phang na bay, Maya Bay Beach). The islands are beautiful, but sailing between them is an experience to treasure.
Try andamanadventures.com or hire a traditional long tail boat!
8. For the Ladyboys
Tourists join dancing on stage with ladyboys at the Chiang Mai Cabaret show in 2012. Photo: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)
Thai ladyboys could teach us a lot here in Ireland. These are a confident group of people who embrace their individuality.
There are numerous PG-rated shows scattered across Patong, and nothing sums them up like the welcome notice: ‘You will arrive relaxed and leave feeling confused, as these women are more than a man than you’ll ever be and more of a woman’.
I can confirm that they truly were!
In general, ladyboys are hugely accepted in Thai society and there is no point made about their differentiation, something every society could learn from.
9. For your timeline
Roz and her sister Rachel in Thailand.
The blue skies, endless beaches and thick jungles are the ultimate backdrop to your holiday snaps. For any one who loves a good Instagram, Thailand offers the perfect light - a vital criteria for any blogger or selfie lover.
Even the Thai people themselves appreciate the importance of a memorable picture and never miss an opportunity to snap you! On excursions they have a dedicated camera man and a videographer following your every move, so they really catch all the best moments even under the water! So, spruce up those profile pictures!
10. For nature
This may annoy some people, but waking up to tropical birds singing or monkeys screeching really lets you embrace nature.how do you get shopping goat in goat simulator how to get rid of instagram shopping how much shopping is done online compared to in shops how to make shopping list on alexa how long is house of gucci things to consider when buying a house how to get a bot for online shopping how to sell on tv shopping when is late night shopping in blackburn what is ecwid shopping cart how to save money grocery shopping for one person how much did a house sell for how to set up a stall in a shopping centre what is meant by online shopping what to buy when grocery shopping on a budget how to find out how old your house is where is the best shopping in istanbul how to stop a puppy peeing in the house what is high street shopping what is a wishlist on shopping sites what does window shopping mean what shopping is near me how to log out amazon shopping app how to replace shopping cart wheels what is 1 2 10 shopping trick when does clydebank shopping centre close how to hack online shopping for free how to get from london waterloo to westfield shopping centre how do i save a shopping list on tesco how much does it cost to build a house where can you go thrift shopping where to buy plastic shopping bags how to verify domain instagram shopping how to beat the raptor in shopping cart hero 3 how to get approved for instagram shopping and product tags how to create website for online shopping