Thailand really is a backpacker’s paradise.
The flights might set you back a bit if you are travelling from Europe or America but the country itself has everything you could want. Hidden and secluded islands in the south, great beaches, bursting and frantic cities, and you are a stone’s throw away from travelling to the rest of South-East Asia. Once you get out of Bangkok, it becomes less expensive, too.
However there are usually some telltale signs that you have been to Thailand. We want to look at 6 things that show you have been to the nation that every backpacker needs to visit at least once.
You Have An Appreciation For Street Food
We know what some of the guidebooks tell you. Avoid street food at all costs. Who cares if it only costs $1 for a full meal, you will be spending 6 hour sessions in your hostels bathroom afterwards.
However, this is not the case. As any backpacker or traveler to the country knows, most street food is as safe if not more hygienic than many of the restaurants. The big plus is that you can see street food being made in front of you – that local restaurant might look OK, but who knows what goes on in the kitchen through the back? If you want to see what types of different foods they have in Thailand, check out “Bizarre Foods” on Netflix, which specifically has an episode for the food of Bangkok, Thailand.
You Go Hunting For Chang Beer At Home
If you had to remember one brand from your time in Thailand then it would probably be Chang beer. Seriously there are ads and beer holders, and the beverage itself, everywhere in this country.
It is actually pretty good as well. Indeed, it has started to be exported around the world. A good sign that you have been to a South-East Asian country is spending a good hour wandering round various liquor stores and supermarkets to find the beer that optimizes the Khao San Road.
You’ve Thought About Becoming Buddhist
Buddhism in Thailand is a curious mix of traditional believes interwoven with local folk lore. However one thing is for certain, most of Thailand is Buddhist and you have probably thought about converting.
The Big Buddha of Phuket is 45 meters high and is South-East Asia’s own version of Christ The Redeemer. After you have been to Thailand you will start thinking of burning incense sticks and making worship in the name of Buddha for even the most every day things.
You’ll Greet People with a Bow
It can be a bit of a culture shock when you first get to Thailand. Not only is Bangkok crazy but the traditional Thai greeting is a bit different from our own.
Thai’s put their hands together like they are praying and give a quick bow of the head to greet someone. The thing about Thai people is that how they are perceived in public and their standing is extremely important to them – in fact it is probably the most important thing to some people. Waiing, as it is known, shows respect. Going into a 7/11 for the first time and having the cashier perform this greeting to you can be strange, but you will start to pick it up – just ignore the funny looks you get when you do this after your return home.
Backpackers travel everywhere but these 6 signs are a good indication of whether or not you have been to Thailand.
You Forgot What Jackets Are For
Thailand is perfect for the sunshine lovers. Thailand still has the very wet and rainy monsoon season, but that does not stop it from being hot and humid. There is practically no reason to even own a jacket in Thailand (well…unless you want to stay dry). While in Thailand you may forget that the other half of the world is shoveling snow, and wearing layers upon layers.
Instead of wearing a jacket you may have to worry about feeling hot and sticky majority of the day, but it’s not a bad sacrifice to make if you hate the freezing snow.
You Have Never Met Friendlier People
You may never meet anyone friendlier, kinder or warmer than in Thailand. They are always smiling, and extremely helpful. The people you meet, and interact with will immediately make you feel welcomed and accepted.
They love to laugh, and have a good time. The warmth, love and happiness that Thai people give off is completely infectious. You will find yourself very quickly living like the Thais by not taking life too seriously, and always having a good time.
If you do indeed survive a trip to Thailand, you will most likely be counting down your days till you can return again. Whether it’s the food, people, or warm weather that made you fall in love with Thailand, you will surely be back (because it’s almost impossible not to return to such a beautiful place).