20 Killer Photos of Thailand

20 Killer Photos of Thailand

I spent one month in Thailand, traversing the islands and beaches of the south, all the way up to the jungles of the north. Due to the relative ease of access (Bangkok has two major international airports), cheap prices and delicious food, Thailand has become a hotspot for tourism. It’s host to some of the world’s most gorgeous beaches, unique jungle and diverse wildlife.

I took more than 1,200 photos in those 30 days, but these are 20 of my favorite photos of Thailand which I think represent the country and its culture in the most comprehensive and stunning light.

Which one is your favorite?

1) Koh Phangan

Koh Phangan Coast

It was our first day on the island and we had just rented motorbikes for the week. As we slowly conquered a slight incline, we rolled to the top of the hill, overlooking Haad Yao, and an adjacent bar and restaurant on a small peninsula jutting out from the beach. We stopped in for a curry and a beer and went on our way.

2) Pai Canyon

Pai Canyon

Pai Canyon (or Kong Lan, in Thai), is set outside the small hippy town of Pai in northern Thailand. This particularly picturesque valley, just a few hours outside of Chang Mai, is said to have the best sunset in town, and locals and tourists alike will gather here each evening to watch the sun go down. The more adventurous can hike the thin wall down into the valley, assuming they have balance on their side.

3) Tiger Cave Temple, Krabi

Tiger Cave Temple, Krabi

It’s 1,237 steps to the top, but it’s totally worth it. The views from the top of this Buddhist temple are some of the best in the country, overlooking the mountains and jungles of the Kiriwong Valley. The Tiger Cave Temple, or Wat Tham Suea, is rumored to have been inhabited by a huge tiger at one point in time, as evidenced by the paw prints on the cave walls. Read more about The Tiger Cave Temple!

4) Sunset on Koh Tao

Koh Tao Sunset

Koh Tao is a small island off the eastern coast in the Gulf of Thailand. It’s a part of the famous trio of islands which also include Koh Phangan and Koh Samui. Most notably, Koh Tao is renowned for scuba diving and all-night beach parties which happen most nights of the week!

5) Children in Chang Mai

Children in Chang Mai

Climbing the stairs to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep in Chang Mai, these children were dressed in traditional garb and charging the tourists to take photos with them. I kept a good distance and snapped one for free, while my travel partner was accosted by these unassuming two. In keeping my distance, I cried with laughter as they essentially pillaged his pockets, and forcefully denied his requests to take their photo for free.

6) Haad Yao, Koh Phangan

Haad Yao, Koh Phangan

Haad Yao is known to be the most beautiful beach on Koh Phangan. Often used as a jump off point for snorkeling and scuba diving, this is a beach well worth spending a day.

7) Khao Soi

Khao Soi

Khao Soi is a northern Thai favorite which literally translates to “cut rice.” It is a coconut milk, curry-based dish made from rice noodles, with pickled cabbage, shallots, lime, spicy chili and deep-fried crispy egg noodles on top. I must have eaten this twice a day for an entire week!

8) Tonsai

Tonsai Beach

Tonsai is home to huge karst mountains which jut directly out of the water. It’s small hippy island which only barely has WiFi and electricity. Just before taking this photo, I watched people base jump onto the beach, over the water, from the top of those very mountains.

9) White Buddha at Temple on the Hill, Pai

White buddha at Wat Phra That Mae Yen, Pai

Also known as Wat Phra That Mae Yen, the Buddha here was still under construction when I visited. The path still wasn’t complete, so I had to hike through the woods to get there. It was definitely worth it, though, because the views over Pai were incredible.

10) Krabi Sunset

Krabi Sunset

The beach on Ao Nang, Krabi, was host to some of the most glorious and colorful sunsets I’ve ever seen in my life. Every night produced some iteration of a sunset like this. Simply remarkable.

11) Longtail Boat on Koh Tao

Longtail Boat on Koh Tao

Longtail boats are a regular form of transportation in Thailand and they have become an iconic symbol for this stunning region. I probably traveled on 30 boats in 30 days of travel in Thailand. This photo was taken from a beach on the southern coast of Koh Tao.

12) Waterfront Jungle, Koh Phangan

Sandy Jungle of Koh Phangan

Koh Phangan is host to a very diverse set of environments, mostly dense jungle, beautiful sandy beaches and gorgeous, opulent coastline. I snapped this just behind a beach on the northeastern part of the island.

13) Jungle Trekking in Northern Thailand

Jungle Trekking in Northern Thailand

I spent three days trekking through the jungles of northern Thailand. We spent most of our time hiking through forests and along vast green rice paddies like this one.

14) Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, Chang Mai

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, Chang Mai

A sample of traditional Thai architecture at Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, a Buddhist temple in Chang Mai.

15) Phi Phi Islands

Koh Phi Phi

The Phi Phi Islands, popularized by the film The Beach starring Leonardo DiCaprio, are a group of islands off the southwestern coast of Thailand. I took this just off Koh Phi Phi Le, on a snorkeling trip to Maya Bay, the beach where the movie’s hedonistic utopia is said to exist.

16) Deep Water Solo Rock Climbing in Railay

Deep Water Solo Rock Climbing in Railay

The mountainous scarps of Railay are perfect for rock climbing. Here, you can go Deep Water Solo Diving, or rock climbing without ropes! If you fall, the turquoise waters will catch you…just don’t land on your back or belly!

17) Ao Nang Beach, Krabi

Ao Nang Beach, Krabi

Southern Thailand is a beach lover’s paradise! The beach at Ao Nang provides some pretty spectacular vistas like this one. It also has mischievous monkeys who like to steal things right out of your hands!

18) Buddhist Prayer, Chang Mai

Buddhist Prayer, Chang Mai

Buddhism is the official religion of Thailand, and temples can be found everywhere throughout the country. Here, two women pray at a temple in Chang Mai.

19) Pai Jungle

Pai Jungle

More stunning green jungle in Pai in Northern Thailand.

20) Sunset on Koh Phangan

Sunset on Koh Phangan

Just another standard sunset at Chaloklum Bay on the northern edge of Koh Phangan. This country truly is beautiful and unique, and the sunsets here are some of the most memorable that I’ve ever experienced in my life.

Thailand holds a truly special place in my heart, and I anxiously await the day when I’ll be able to return to one of my favorite places in the world.


READ NEXT: The Cost of Travel in Thailand: How to Do it on $30 Per Day

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25 Responses to 20 Killer Photos of Thailand

  1. Chanel | Cultural Xplorer July 22, 2014 at 6:08 pm #

    Beautiful photos. I love Koh Phangan. I stayed on Haad Yao during my trip and it was just stunning. I especially loved getting a massage on the beach, it felt like heaven.

    • Jeremy Foster July 25, 2014 at 10:02 am #

      I sure know that feeling! Those massages were a staple in my trip to Thailand!

  2. Marta Kulesza July 23, 2014 at 1:11 pm #

    I just booked my flights to Thailand for October and I will be spending 3 weeks there, right before heading off to NZ for a year. I can’t wait to see all those beautiful sunsets, islands and jungles myself. I am a huge photoenthusiast so I will be snapping away too! 🙂

  3. Amanda Williams July 24, 2014 at 10:23 pm #

    Killer photos indeed! Nice job!

  4. Erika Awakening July 28, 2014 at 4:36 am #

    Amazing photos. Brought back some memories and almost made me cry. I love Thailand. Can’t wait to go back. Thanks so much for the breathtaking vistas and inspirations about places to visit.

    • Jeremy Foster July 28, 2014 at 6:03 pm #

      I know what it’s like to have such vivid and meaningful memories in a place. I’m glad I could help you remember them 🙂

  5. Paddy and Sarah July 28, 2014 at 12:16 pm #

    Great pics, I think the Khao Soi was my favourite!

    We’ll be in Thailand in January, can’t wait 🙂

    • Jeremy Foster July 28, 2014 at 6:03 pm #

      YUM! Make sure you try lots of Khao Soi–just once isn’t enough!

  6. Aren July 28, 2014 at 12:40 pm #

    awesome pics! i was there a year ago but couldn’t make it north. .spent most of my time on the beaches..koh ma’s my favourite. .you’re pictures make me want to go back (and I just might) 🙂

    • Jeremy Foster July 28, 2014 at 6:04 pm #

      That’s ok! The beaches of the south are stunning. Maybe I’ll see you over there one of these days 🙂

  7. Michael July 28, 2014 at 6:52 pm #

    Nice shots. I like how different different parts of Thailand can look.

  8. Kendra (the Escapologist) August 27, 2014 at 9:09 am #

    Love that last one! That sunset looks amazing!

  9. Miriam of Adventurous Miriam August 27, 2014 at 12:16 pm #

    Those sunset photos are fierce! Thailand has so many different faces and I’ve always loved that it has a little bit of everything – stunning beaches, jungle and wildlife, ridiciously tasty cheap food and the most kind-hearted people.

  10. Mark Anderson October 9, 2014 at 9:19 am #

    Well Miriam i totally agree with you…..

  11. Frank October 12, 2014 at 3:24 am #

    Nice photos. My favorite is number 2, that ridge looks like a nice hike and the views look great.
    We’ve been in Bangkok the last 2 weeks and look forward to moving on down south for some ocean views!
    Frank (bbqboy)

    • Jeremy Foster October 14, 2014 at 2:52 pm #

      If you make it north, be sure to head to Pai and visit the canyon at sunset!

  12. Lily October 20, 2015 at 9:50 pm #

    Hi Jeremy

    If you don’t mind, what camera did you use for these photos? These are some amazing photographs.

    Thanks!

    • Jeremy Scott Foster October 23, 2015 at 5:13 am #

      Thanks, Lily! Actually, a lot of these were taken with an iPhone and a point-and-shoot…

  13. jamie October 5, 2016 at 12:01 am #

    we are going to Chiang Mai and Krabi for Christmas and I can’t wait. Thanks for sharing your pictures they are beautiful.

  14. E November 15, 2016 at 5:29 pm #

    Hello: You’re right, some of the most beautiful sunset photos I’ve seen. In May of this year, I volunteered at an elephant sanctuary run by Global Vision Int’l. It was over a 5hr drive from Chang Mai. At that time of year, farmers are burning down the forest & jungle in preparation of planting crops. The air from Chang Mai, to the village where I stayed was filled with smoke. Many residents of Chang Mai wore face masks while walking around the city. This was totally surprising to me, and sad to see so much pollution, mainly from motorbikes. I love the people of Thailand & would love to visit some of the unpolluted areas in your photo

    s. Thanks for sharing.

  15. James January 17, 2017 at 11:25 am #

    Hey Jeremy,

    LOve you blog, excellent information! I’m traveling to Thailand arriving on Feb 18 and departing March 6 2017. As far as the islands and the south go, which side would you suggest weather-wise, the West (along the Andaman Sea: Phuket, Krabi, Phi Phi, Ko Lanta) OR the East (along the Gulf (Koh Tao Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Samui)?

    I plan on spending 3-4 days in Bangkok upon arriving and 2 (maybe 3) days there before flying back home to the States. That gives me about 9/10 days to check out the islands in the south. I’m looking for a nice mix of partying/bars and relaxation. Budget aside, what would you suggest as a possible itinerary for the south?

    Thanks!!!

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