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Sun, Sea, and Smiles: Navigating Southern Thailand
2 weeks :)
3 if you want to take it easy

Important considerations when driving:

1. Driving in Thailand: South Thailand offers an exciting and diverse landscape, perfect for those seeking adventure. However, it's crucial to be aware of certain factors while driving. In particular, keep in mind that some drivers in Thailand may not adhere to safe driving practices. While not all drivers are reckless, it's not uncommon to encounter motorists who drive on the wrong side of the road, make daring manoeuvres, or undercut vehicles (normally Mo Peds drivers). As a driver, you and your passenger's safety should be a top priority, so exercise caution and be prepared for unexpected road behaviour. In the case of accidents involving mopeds or other vehicles, remember that you may still be held responsible, even if it's not your fault.

2. International Driving Permit: Before embarking on your self-driving adventure, ensure you possess an international driving permit, as it's a mandatory requirement for driving in Thailand. Make sure to obtain this permit in your home country before your trip.


3. Insurance Coverage: Travelling internationally by car demands valid insurance coverage. Contact your insurance provider to verify if your policy covers international travel and driving. If necessary, consider obtaining additional insurance from a local provider in Thailand. You can explore the insurance options available with the "Economy Bookings" link below. They have this option available when renting a car, so it's easy and convenient.

Road Conditions: The main highways connecting South Thailand are generally well maintained, offering a comfortable driving experience.


Here's a simplified guide to your route:

From Bangkok to Hua Hin, take Highway 35, then 4.

From Hua Hin to Chumphon, continue Highway 4.

From Chumphon to Ranong, continue Highway 4.

Ranong to Khao Lak: Continue on Highway 4.

Khao Lak to Phuket: Continue Highway 4, but then turn off to Road 402.

Returning to Bangkok: You should return the car here and take public transport back.

Basically, use Highway 4.

Exploration Options: Consider visiting Surin Island, Similan Island, and Phi-Phi Islands, each offering its own unique charm and natural beauty. This will, of course, involve you leaving your car somewhere safe and using a boat.


With these considerations in mind, you can confidently embark on your adventure through South Thailand!


3 hours from Bangkok, traffic dependant

2-3 nights here

Take Highway 35, then 4

Hua Hin is a seaside town located about 3 hours south of Bangkok. It's known for its beautiful beaches, laid-back atmosphere, and delicious seafood. Some popular activities in Hua Hin include visiting the Hua Hin historic Railway Station, Khao Takiab, and the Hua Hin Night Market.

These links throughout the process are important!! you need to use them.

They tell you what to do in the area, getting around and what areas to book your accommodation!

So you should use them throughout.

Click the links below to discover more about Hua Hin, including hotels and what to do!


3 hours 30 minutes from Hua Hin to Chumphon

2 Days here

Continue Highway 4

Chumphon is located in the Gulf of Thailand. It is known for its long coastline with beautiful beaches, crystal-clear waters, and lush vegetation. The province is a popular destination for eco-tourism and water activities such as diving, snorkelling, and fishing. It's also a gateway to Koh Tao, Koh Phangan, and Koh Samui. The province has a rich culture and history, with many temples and shrines to visit. Chumphon is less touristy than other destinations in the region, and it's a great place to experience real Thailand.

Click below for more on Chumphon, including hotels and tours!


Ranong is 2 hours and 10 minutes from Chumphon

1-2 nights here

Continue Highway 4

Ranong is a small town located in the southern part of Thailand, close to the border with Myanmar. It's known for its hot springs, waterfalls, and scenic views. Some popular activities in Ranong include visiting the Ranong Hot Springs, the Ranong Mineral Springs, and the Tong Paya Waterfall

Click below for more on Ranong, including hotels and tours!

Khao Lak

Khao Lak is 3 hours and 30 minutes from Ranong.

Spend a night here before Koh Surin or Similan Islands

Do both if you have time, using Khao Lak as your mainland base!

The good thing about doing this too is many hotels will let you leave your luggage there. So you can and should pack light for the islands.

Continue on Highway 4.

Khao Lak is a beautiful destination in Thailand, where you can enjoy the sun, the sea and the sand. Khao Lak has many attractions, such as the Similan Islands, the Khao Sok National Park and the Tsunami Memorial Museum. You can also relax in one of the many resorts, spas and restaurants that offer a variety of cuisines and services. Khao Lak is a perfect place to escape from the stress of everyday life and experience the culture and nature of Thailand.

Koh Surin

Do a day tour or even better camp for 3 nights

Only camping is allowed on the Island

Koh Surin is a group of five islands located in the Andaman Sea, southern Thailand. The islands are known for their white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters, and diverse marine life, making them a popular destination for snorkelling and diving. The islands are also home to the Moken, an indigenous sea-gypsy community that lives in traditional stilt houses on the island. The islands are part of the Mu Koh Surin National Park, which was established to protect the natural resources and marine life in the area.

Click below for more on Koh Surin, including hotels and tours!

Turtle in the Reef

Rest in Khao Lak between tours

Similan Islands

The Similan Islands are a group of nine islands, off the west coast of Thailand. They are known for their clear waters, white sandy beaches, and diverse marine life, making them a popular destination for snorkelling, diving, and island-hopping.

Click below for more on Similan, including tours!

More on Khao Lak

Its worth spending 2 or 3 nights here even if you aren't doing the islands nearby

The area is also home to several luxury resorts, as well as budget-friendly options. Khao Lak has grown in popularity as a tourist destination in recent years, but still manages to retain a more laid-back, low-key feel compared to more developed destinations such as Phuket.

Click below for more on Khao Lak, including hotels and tours!


2-3 nights here if you don't go to Phi Phi Island

Phuket is 2 hours from Khao Lak

Continue Highway 4, but then turn off to Road 402.

Phuket is a popular tourist island in Thailand known for its beautiful beaches, diverse activities, attractions, and nightlife. It offers outdoor activities such as swimming, snorkelling, diving, and paragliding, and it's also a hub for sailing, cruising, yachting, and boat charters. There are many tourists here who visit the islands nearby.

Click below for more on Phuket, including hotels and tours!

Phi Phi Island

2 hours from Phuket

2-3 nights here

If you don't want the big nightlife, just get a tour around the islands in Phuket instead of staying here

Phi Phi Islands are a group of small islands located in Thailand, in the Andaman Sea. They are known for their stunning landscapes, turquoise waters, and white sand beaches, making them a popular tourist destination for beach-goers, divers, and backpackers. The main islands, Phi Phi Don and Phi Phi Leh, offer a variety of activities such as kayaking, rock climbing, and snorkelling. The islands are also famous for their vibrant nightlife scene, with bars, clubs, and restaurants lining the beaches.

Definitely get a tour here!

Click below for more on Phi Phi, including hotels and tours!


You can either have a car that you can drop off in Phuket and get the plane back to Bangkok or you can drive back to Bangkok, its a long way so you may want to stop off in Chumphon and Hua Hin again

Hot Air Balloons

That concludes your trip to Southern Thailand! Do you still have time? Then create another trip from Bangkok!

There are lots of great places to visit in Thailand.

Have an amazing holiday!!

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