Thailand has been on the backpacker trail for centuries now and that can only mean one thing: it is fantastic! 60 million Thais live in the country as big as France, a sixth of them in the capital Bangkok. The country shares borders with Laos, Cambodia, and Malaysia and no two parts of the country look the same. The sheer vastness of the country makes mobility an absolute necessity, which is why car hire is a good idea. Vehicles are available from the Bangkok airport as well as the major tourist centre.
You can travel Thailand all year-round without having to pack much more than a few t-shirts and a bathing suit as temperatures never drop below 18°C, but beware that during April, the hottest month of the year, temperatures regularly climb way past 30°C in the shade, which, combined with the humidity, makes it almost unbearable.
Most international airlines fly into Bangkok, so this is most likely the starting point of your tour. So after you pick up your hire car, begin your journey. Spend a few days in the city which has a fascinating atmosphere created by the sharp contrast of post-modern metropolis, evident in the modern business district and shopping streets, and ancient Siamese culture, mostly prevalent in over 400 remaining Wats (Buddhist temples) and the Grand Palace, the former residence of the King of Siam.
Other cities of interest are Khon Kaen, Chiang Mai, Chonburi, and Samut Prakan.
As far as an itinerary is concerned, you might have to pick the bits you are most interested in, as the country is quite a large one to fit into a regular holiday. If you have to skip something, you might want to drop Isan off your list, the northeastern high plateau, as this is almost exclusively set aside for rice production and therefore not quite as stunning. Apart from that the north is stunning, as it is covered in mighty mountains which peak at 8,400 ft. (2,565 m). Though not all of it is accessible by your car, the dense rainforests that cover the area are a major tourist attraction and make for a truly humbling travelling experience.
The shores of the Gulf of Thailand in the east are where those pictures of paradisiacal white beaches are taken which are used for advertisement by the Thai tourists board. The scenery is absolutely true to the pictures: the water is turquoise and alive with colourful fish, the sand is warm and clean, and the palm trees provide fresh coconuts and shade. The best seaside resorts are in Rayong, Pattaya, on the Koh Samet islands, and of course in Phuket, which has gained worldwide fame.
CarDelMar wishes you a pleasant stay with car hire in Thailand.