Thailand is one of my most cherished and favorite countries in the world. It’s a country that needs no introduction in the world of traveling but it never gets old for me. From the incredible food, to the magical temples, to the picture perfect beaches, Thailand really is a match made in heaven for a honeymoon.
This itinerary will be slightly different than my Thailand travel itinerary which is more for a casual trip with friends, solo, or as a couple. This guide will be for those looking to go on their special trip to Thailand. A honeymoon means slightly nicer and more romantic destination, accommodations, restaurants, and the like.
As Thailand is a huge country, there is no one itinerary fits all. Everyone has different likes and wants but Thailand has everything to offer. I’ll list multiple itinerary ideas depending on the amount of time you have and the different islands that Thailand has to offer!
Why Thailand is perfect as a honeymoon destination?
Thailand is an ideal honeymoon destination for couples who want to experience a mix of relaxation, adventure, and cultural exploration. The country is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with crystal clear water and soft, white sand, making it the perfect place to relax and unwind after the stress of planning a wedding.
In addition to its stunning beaches, Thailand also offers a wide range of romantic activities and experiences. Couples can enjoy candlelit dinners, couples massages, and sunset cruises, all while taking in the stunning natural beauty of the country.
Thailand is also a great destination for couples who want to immerse themselves in a new culture. The country has a rich history and culture, with beautiful temples, colorful markets, and delicious traditional cuisine to explore. From visiting ancient temples to attending a traditional Thai dance performance, there are plenty of cultural experiences to be had in Thailand.
Finally, Thailand is a relatively affordable destination, making it a great option for couples on a budget. With a range of accommodations available, from luxury resorts to budget guesthouses, couples can choose the option that best fits their budget. Thailand is also world renowned for its food and you’ll have some of the best street food of your life for just a few dollars.
How many days do I need for a Thailand honeymoon?
Thailand is a big country with many different regions and things to offer. If you’re planning a typical 1-2 week honeymoon, there is no way you’ll see everything in Thaialnd. You’ll have to pick the areas that interest you the most and tackle them accordingly.
Don’t try to do everything at once and focus on certain areas. I always recommend people spend at least a day or two in Bangkok to see its beautiful historical sights. After Bangkok, you can either go straight to the islands and explore the wonderful beaches or break it up and venture north to areas like Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai which is more for nature and mountain beauty. Whatever decision you make, you won’t be disappointed.
For a honeymoon in Thailand, I think 1 to 2 weeks is perfect. Of course, if you have more time, that means you can see more things because there are easily enough things to last a month in Thailand. For the purpose of this itinerary, I will plan it out as a two week trip. If you have questions on how to structure a trip around your personal schedule, leave a comment below!
This honeymoon itinerary for Thailand will closely follow my ideal Thailand travel itinerary for those with 1-4 weeks in the country.
Should I visit the Andaman Sea or Gulf of Thailand?
It’s likely you’ll want to visit a beach area for your Thailand honeymoon. The most stressful question becomes which side of Thailand to visit?? You have the Andaman Sea on the west of the mainland and the Gulf of Thailand to the east of the mainland. Both sides of Thailand are well known and famous for its own things. Both sides are beautiful with idyllic beaches, a good vibe, and delicious food. But are you looking for parties on Koh Phi Phi, or the full moon party on Koh Phangan?
What time of year is it?
First thing you should consider is the time of year you’re visiting. Again, the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman sea enjoy opposite seasons. Nov to Apr, I would opt for Phuket and Krabi as it is the dry season whereas the islands of Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, and Koh Tao are in their rainy seasons.
It’s hard to imagine that there could be such a big disparity in the seasons given that the two seas are separated by such a small land mass in between. If you look at a map, the land area is only about 100 km from west to east but you have two completely different weather systems.
This doesn’t mean visiting in the wet season will mean constant downpours. I visited Koh Phangan in December during its wet season and only half of the time was it overcast/rainy. The other days were perfectly sunny and warm. Nevertheless, it’s just a total crapshoot because locals told me the whole month of November was just constant downpours. You just never know when you are in the tropics!
Which side has better beaches?
This is an impossible question to answer. I’ve been to both sides and found that both sides have incredible beaches on offer. However, I think the beaches on the Andaman sea side are more unique. The beaches in Krabi are characterized by their huge limestone cliffs. Beaches like Railay and Tonsai beach are incredibly photogenic and picturesque. Koh Phi Phi has the most idyllic beaches, especially if you make it to the smaller Koh Phi Phi Leh.
Further south of Krabi are many other islands like Koh Lanta and Koh Lipe which are much less touristy and even more beautiful in my opinion. Koh Lipe especially is probably one of my favorite islands in the country.
The gulf of thailand side also offers stunning beaches. Koh Phangan is my favorite and Koh Tao is world famous for its scuba diving. Koh Phangan is world famous for its full moon party that happens well at every full moon. Haad Rin Beach is transformed into a huge party that draws in people from all over the world. The party goes until the early morning hours and is epic.
Planning the Thailand Honeymoon
Thailand is an easy place to plan for. There are an insane amount of hotels and luxury properties for rent. The only question is how to decide where to spend your time and which resorts to stay in!
Where to go in Thailand for a honeymoon
Thailand is a big country with many different areas to visit. You are spoiled for choices when it come to picking between beaches, nature, big cities etc. If you are planning a honeymoon for two weeks, don’t expect to see everything!
In my opinion, for a perfect honeymoon in Thailand, you should plan to split your time between ocean and the beautiful inland landscapes. Ideally, you should stay in places that offer beautiful hotels and enough amenities for your special trip. Here are my favorite areas for a perfect Thailand honeymoon
- Chiang Mai
- Chiang Rai
- Koh Phangan (or any other island destination)
Getting around Thailand during your honeymoon
Getting around Thailand is incredibly easy and again affordable. Thailand is not a small country but it really isn’t that big of a country either. From Chiang Mai in the north to Hat Yai in the south is a 2.5 hour flight.
Bangkok, which is likely where many people will start their trips is midway between the south and the north. To get from Bangkok to popular destinations like Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai, you can either take a 1h flight or a 7h bus ride.
There are countless airlines like AirAsia, Bangkok Airways, Nok Air, Lion Air that make the regular flight from Bangkok to Chiang Mai. You can find flight tickets for as long as 500 THB at times for a one way flight.
You won’t find bus tickets for that much cheaper either so I recommend just flying. Similarly, you can also rent a car and drive around the Thailand. With one of the many trusted car rentals in Bangkok, a road trip through the country is also an incredible unique experience.
Similarly, you’ll find flights from Bangkok or Chiang Mai to the islands in the south like Phuket or Koh Samui for very affordable prices. I had all the time in the world to travel but I never looked anywhere else besides flights to and from. Once you get to the islands, there are also ferries that transport you between islands that are nearby. For example, there are regular ferries between Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, and Koh Tao in the Gulf of Thailand.
Best time to visit Thailand on a honeymoon
Thailand is a year round destination that you can enjoy. However, there are plenty of seasons to be aware of so you can plan for the optimal weather. Generally, November to April are seen as the best months of travel to Thailand. This is because cities like Bangkok and Chiang Mai in the north enjoy milder winter temperatures. By mild, I mean you’ll still get the hot 25-32 degree days but the humidity and the extreme temperatures (35+) are no longer there.
Bangkok in the summers when it is super humid and reaching 40 is unbearable and you’ll be sweating as soon as you walk out the door. Summer times also brings in a reduction of air quality which can make the cities much more smoggy than normal. On my trip in December, I was able to see total blue skies and no smog during my visit to Bangkok and Chiang Mai.
The islands in the south enjoy split seasons depending which side of the country you’re on. The Andaman sea to Thailand’s east enjoys the opposite season as the Gulf of Thailand. The best times to visit the Andaman sea (Phuket, Koh Phi Phi, Similan islands, Krabi) are between November and April. Conversely, the best time to visit the Gulf of Thailand (Koh Phangan, Koh Samui, Koh Tao) is April to October.
The Final Itinerary
For the final itinerary, this is how I planned the trip. To see our final itinerary, please visit his great travel itinerary spreadsheet. In addition, throughout this post, there will be links to other posts about Thailand that I’ve written for more reading and inspiration.
|Name of Accommodation||Where?|
|Day 1-4||Avani Riverside Hotel||Bangkok|
|Day 4-8||Na Narand Romantic Boutique Resort||Chiang Mai|
|Day 8-14||Anantara Koh Phangan||Koh Phangan|
|Day 11-15||Tropical Glamping||Nusa Penida|
Finally, if you would like for me to plan your trip, please contact me and I would be happy to help you with your dream honeymoon or just a regular vacation to the island of the Gods! I’ve planned many trips for people to South Africa, Greece, Italy, and more already so I have plenty of experience in this category.
Bangkok: Day 1-4
The trip starts in Bangkok. Thailand’s capital city is where many international flights arrive so it’s logical for most people to start their trip here. Bangkok is a city that really stimulates the senses. It is full on with its traffic, people, smells, sounds, and everything else. It can be supremely overwhelming to many people so if you know you are not a city person, I would spend less time here.
Even for a romantic honeymoon getaway, I would highly recommend to not skip Bangkok. It’s a wonderful city full of amazing food, enormous temples, and stunning rooftop bars. There are also incredible hotels throughout the city that are more than adequate for even the most romantic honeymoons.
However, it is a city filled with incredible food, beautiful temples, and is much more developed than I thought. Watching the Hangover 2 made me realize how terrible of a representation they made for the city.
Bangkok is just one of the best cities in SE Asia. I spent a week here because of COVID protocols and thought I would get super bored after awhile. It flew by and I absolutely loved every minute of it.
I spent most of my time in Bangkok visiting its incredible temples, eating delicious street food, and visiting the seemingly countless rooftop bars with absolutely amazing views of the city. I also took a day trip to the world famous Maeklong train market to get out of the city.
I cover everything in much more detail in my Bangkok travel guide post so make sure to read that if you want more information on Bangkok!
Best hotels for a Bangkok honeymoon
- The Siam Hotel – This luxury hotel features beautiful Thai-inspired design, a spa, and a swimming pool.
- Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel – This upscale hotel offers couples massages, a fitness center, and a rooftop pool with views of the city.
- Mandarin Oriental Bangkok – This iconic hotel is located on the Chao Phraya River and offers a spa, fitness center, and a variety of dining options.
- The Sukhothai Bangkok – This luxury hotel features a spa, fitness center, and a swimming pool with views of the city.
- The Peninsula Bangkok – This upscale hotel offers a spa, fitness center, and a swimming pool with views of the river.
- The Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok – This luxurious hotel features a spa, fitness center, and a swimming pool with views of the city.
- The St. Regis Bangkok – This upscale hotel offers a spa, fitness center, and a swimming pool with views of the city.
- The Rosewood Bangkok – This luxury hotel features a spa, fitness center, and a swimming pool with views of the city.
- The Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok at Chao Phraya River – This luxurious hotel offers a spa, fitness center, and a swimming pool with views of the river.
- The InterContinental Bangkok – This upscale hotel features a spa, fitness center, and a swimming pool with views of the city.
Chiang Mai: Day 4-8
From Bangkok, the next stop on the Thailand honeymoon itinerary is to visit the north. Chiang Mai is one of the most well known destinations in Thailand and it’s a fabulous place to visit on a Thailand honeymoon. It’s famous for its beautiful temples, laid back vibe, and delicious northern Thai food. It is completely different to Bangkok and the islands in the south. The weather, people, language, food, culture, and vibe are all different.
Chiang Mai is one of the most beloved cities in Thailand and I’d absolutely recommend not skipping over the north if you have the time. From Bangkok, I took a flight to the city of Chiang Mai in the north. Flights are readily available on numerous airlines and at bargain prices. I paid 700 THB for my flight (~$25).
Temples in Chiang Mai
Visiting the temples in and around Chiang Mai is the main sightseeing you’ll be doing. There are countless temples in Chiang Mai that it is overwhelming to visit all of them. I visited at least a dozen temples and after awhile you’ll surely get temple fatigue. I’ve listed the main temples that you must visit while in Chiang Mai below.
Wat Chedi Luang
With a history that is over 600 years old, Wat Chedi Luang is a must-visit if you ever plan a trip to Chiang Mai in Northern Thailand. It’s probably the most famous structure in Chiang Mai and is located in the very center of the old city walls.
The name Wat Chedi Luang translates to the Royal Pagoda or the Great Stupa Temple in English. The chedi (pagoda) ruins and the daily monk talks are worth the visit alone. The pagoda is massive at nearly 90 meters high and 40 meters across. It was actually once much larger before being destroyed by an Earthquake centuries ago.
Wat Phra Singh Woramahawihan
Built in 1345, the Temple is located on Sam Lan Road. It houses the North s most revered Buddha statue, Phra Phuttha Sihing which is enshrined in Vihan Lai Kham, a Chapel that features exquisite woodcarvings and northern style murals.
Located on Sam Lan Road, Wat Phra Sing’s Wihan Lai Kham is home to Phra Phutthasihing, Chiang Mai’s most sacred, Chiang sean-style Buddha image. During the Songkran festival, every April 13-15, Phra Phutthasihing is carried in a parade procession around town so locals can bath the image with scented water, which brings good luck according to a traditional belief.
I found this temple to be incredibly photogenic and if you’re going to take Instagram photos, this is definitely the place to do it!
Wat Doi Suthep
In addition to the Wat Chedi Luang, a visit to the mountain town temple of Wat Doi Suthep is an absolute must. Located up the mountains towards Chiang Mai’s east, this temple is perched high up on the hill overlooking the city.
This temple is one of the most famous temples in Thailand and is easily one of its most popular. To reach Wat Doi Suthep, you’ll need to either take a songthaew from the city, a scooter, or using the Grab taxi app. With a scooter, it’s just under a half hour to reach the summit of this temple.
Once you reach the summit, you’ll want to take the stair path up towards the peak. There are quite a few stairs here so if you are not able, don’t worry, there is also a funicular that makes the journey up for 100 THB.
Once you’re up to the top, you’ll see the incredibly immaculate and detailed temple. There is a huge buddha here as I’d come to expect from my Thailand temple adventures. It’s not quite as big as the temples in Chiang Mai or the big ones in Bangkok but I really liked that it was perched up so high in the mountains.
Chiang Rai White Temple
Located just outside of Chiang Rai, you will find the most visually stunning masterpiece of a temple in all of Thailand, the white temple. Essentially, this temple is what happens when you have a really rich person who doesn’t know what to do with his money. It is a privately owned and created temple by a prominent businessmen paying homage to his religion.
The white temple is incredibly immaculate with the most intricate detailing and views. The temple itself is not large like the temples in Bangkok but it photographs incredibly well.
The White Temple in Chiang Rai (Wat Rong Khun) is open 7 days a week from 8 am to 6 pm and the entrance fee is free of charge.
Make sure to cover up when visiting which includes shoulders. Girls will be extra tempted to let their inner Instagram influencer out which is expected but they will surely ask you to cover up your shoulders and such. For a honeymoon, the white temple would be an incredible place to take wonderful photos.
Chiang Rai Blue Temple
Chiang Ria is full of incredibly beautiful temples and to continue in the theme of the white temple, the next one you’ll want to visit is the blue temple. This is the newest temple in Chiang Rai and was definitely built with aesthetics in mind.
The entire temple is painted a immaculate shade of blue with beautiful gold embellishments. It photographs incredibly well and I’d recommend coming here in the morning hours to take the best photos before the crowds come.
Big Buddha Statue Wat Huay Pla Kang
Next up is the absolutely giant buddha statue of Wat Huay Pla Kang. This Giant white Buddha statue is 90 meters high with a viewing window on the 25th floor.
Let the pictures do the talking here!
From Chiang Mai, the next step is to fly to the islands in the Gulf of Thailand. From Chiang Mai, there are direct flights to Surat Thani, a city with easy ferry access to the Gulf of Thailand islands including Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, and Koh Tao.
Cooking class in Chiang Mai
One of the most popular activities to do in Chiang Mai is take a Thai cooking class at one of the many cooking schools in town. If you’re a fan of Thai food (like myself), then these classes will be the perfect day activity to help you learn how to cook Thai classics like Pad Thai and various curries, as well as do it in a fun environment. It’s the perfect activity to do as a couple and makes for an unforgettable experience on a honeymoon!
I did my cooking class with Zaab E Lee which I absolutely adored. The class consisted of a visit to the local markets where we purchased our ingredients for the day. This part was particularly interesting for me as I really got to learn about numerous different vegetables, fruits, herbs, spices, and chilies that are integral in Thai cooking. Thai cooking is very complex involving a bunch of ingredients, many of which I had never heard of before.
After the visit to the local market, we were driven to their local farm which doubles as a restaurant in the countryside. This farm was gorgeous with rice paddies, ponds, and traditional architecture all in tow. The cooking classroom was very inviting with. The space was open, filled with beautiful decorations and local artisan crafts.
We cooked five dishes in total and were able to choose which dishes we wanted to cook. I made the following:
- Spring roll
- Tom Yum Soup
- Pad Thai with Shrimp
- Green curry
- Mango Sticky Rice
We cooked each dish separately and it was so fun getting to learn about the wok and Thai cooking process. Most of the food was already pre-chopped and we just had to throw it into the wok and let it do its magic. This is good to know beforehand because Thai food seemed so easy to make after this class but I know that preparing and chopping ingredients would be a nightmare.
The entire class was an incredible experience. I had so much food, beers, and the hosts were incredibly friendly. In total I paid 1,000 THB for the entire day (from 8:30am to 3:00pm). I think in normal times outside of COVID, this would probably be closer to 1,500 THB.
Koh Phangan: Days 9-14
Koh Phangan is my favorite island in the Gulf of Thailand. It’s famous for the full moon party which was one of the first things I learned about Thailand (sadly enough) but it offers so much more. The full moon party is only in the very south of the island and occurs once a month. The rest of the time, there are ton of amazing beaches, fantastic hiking, and delicious food to eat.
Koh Phangan is also home to various luxury properties suitable for a honeymoon like the Anantara on the northeast of the island. If you want a more resort heavy island, the larger Koh Samui next door to Koh Phangan is for you. Many others prefer to stay in the Phuket and Krabi side for their Thailand honeymoons but I actually prefer the Gulf side.
Rent a scooter from one of the many places in town and cruise around the island in style. This is my preferred way to get around all of Thailand (except Bangkok) and I’d highly recommend it for Koh Phangan.
Where to stay in Koh Phangan
I spent a week in Koh Phangan and traveled extensively around the island. There are many areas to stay in Koh Phangan and I will list those out here.
Haad Rin: This is the bottom tip of Koh Phangan. There are a few resorts here as well as many hostels and budget guesthouses. The full mon party happens on Haad Rin so expect the place to get packed during that period. Haad Rin is far from the rest of the island so I would recommend staying here if you are going to the full moon party, or want to stay somewhere away from everything (and don’t plan to leave much).
Thong Sala: The main port town of Koh Phangan is Thong Sala. There are plenty of budget and mid level accommodations in the main town .The night market is in town which provides an array of delicious Thai food for cheap. Thong Sala is also well located in the middle of the west side of the island thereby making it easily accessible to the best beaches and restaurants.
Haad Salad Area: For the best beaches, I loved the area in the northwest of the island. Haad Salad was my favorite beach. This is also the area that many expats stay as there are plenty of charming cafes, restaurants, and long term accommodation here. There are also plenty of dive shops for those looking to visit famous dive sites like Sail Rock.
East side of Koh Phangan: The East side of Koh Phangan is home to very nice beaches with a much more remote vibe. Haad Sadet beach in the Namtok Than national park is incredibly stunning. The views from Plaa’s restaurant was absolutely stunning.
Bottle Beach Viewpoint
For the best views of Koh Phangan with an added hike, visit the Bottle Beach Viewpoint in Koh Phangan’s north. You can drive close to the entrance point with a scooter and then walk another 20 minutes through the bush to the viewpoint. From the viewpoint, you have a stunning view of Bottle Beach and the Gulf of Thailand!
Visit Koh Tao Island
If you have a few more days, I’d also recommend visiting the island of Koh Tao. It’s world famous for its diving although the corals have seen better days with the onset of climate change. Prior to the COVID-19 Pandemic, Koh Tao was known as an absolute factory for open water courses. It was packed with dive schools and the dive and party lifestyle was the way here. It was so overpacked with diving that almost a third of all open water certifications in the world were done in Koh Tao. That is absolutely insane.
The island is much smaller than Koh Phangan and many people prefer this vibe. Koh Tao can be reached by ferry from Koh Phangan, Koh Samui, or Surat Thani. The quickest way to reach Koh Tao from Bangkok is to fly to Koh Samui and take the ferry to Koh Tao.
Angthong Marine National Park day trip
One of the most amazing things you can do in the Gulf of Thailand is to take a day trip to the nearby archipelago of Angthong Marine National Park. Angthong consists of 42 different islands and reminds me a bit of my time in Raja Ampat in Indonesia (although Raja was more beautiful).
The day trip typically begins early in the morning, with a pickup from your hotel or resort. From there, you will be transported to the pier where you will board a ferry or speedboat that will take you to the park. The journey to the park takes about 1-2 hours, depending on the mode of transportation and the location of your hotel.
Upon arriving at the park, you will have the opportunity to explore the various islands and participate in a variety of activities. These may include snorkeling, kayaking, and hiking. The snorkeling is particularly popular, as the waters around the islands are home to a wide variety of colorful marine life, including tropical fish, coral reefs, and sea turtles.
After a day of exploring and activities, you will have the chance to relax and unwind on one of the beautiful beaches in the park. You can sit back and enjoy the view, or take a dip in the cool, clear waters. As the day comes to a close, you will board the ferry or speedboat and head back to the mainland, arriving back at your hotel or resort in the evening.
Day by Day Thailand Honeymoon Itinerary
Here is a breakdown of the day by day Thailand honeymoon itinerary
Day 1: Land in Bangkok and explore the city
Day 2: Full day Bangkok
Day 3: Bangkok day trip to Amphawa Floating Village
Day 4: Bangkok to Chiang Mai
Day 5: Full day Chiang Mai
Day 6: Full day Chiang Mai
Day 7: Day trip to Chiang Rai
Day 8: Chiang Mai to Koh Phangan
Day 9: Koh Phangan Full day
Day 10: Koh Phangan full day
Day 11: Day trip to the Angthong Marine National Park
Day 12: Full day in Koh Phangan
Day 13: Full day Koh Phangan
Day 14: Return to Bangkok and fly home
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