35 years of travel agent services
Castaways Travel Logo

(281) 362-8785

AMEX excellence award
Thailand_logo01

Thailand is one of the absolute best vacation bargains you will find anywhere on earth,
so try to visit if you can and stay at least 10 days.

Resort Overview

Comment:
The reason Thailand is included in our website is that we believe social nudity and nudist beaches, if not resorts, will happen in the future. Nudity is not yet accepted in Thailand, although topless sunbathing is quite common in most tourist beach areas. The other reason is that we get frequent inquiries about Thailand from you for both conventional as well as nudist vacations.
Thailand is one of the absolute best vacation bargains you will find anywhere on earth, so try to visit if you can and stay at least 10 days.

Most all the Thai service personnel in any tourism center, city, hotel or resort speak English, as well as other languages in addition to the native Thai language.

Background: Thailand, formerly known as Siam until the 20th century, has been part of the civilized world for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. This beautiful country of over 60 million people is in the heart of southeast Asia, bordering Myanmar (Burma) to the north and west, Laos and Cambodia to the east and Malaysia to the south. Buddhism is the predominant religion plus the rich heritage and traditional values of its citizens make for a wonderful reception and warm welcome for visitors and foreigners (ferrangs). Culturally, the Thai people are the most polite and caring people of all we've ever come in contact with a tourist environment. They're pre-disposed to care for you and yours well being, almost as if it's a personal duty.

Contrasting with its rich heritage and ancient ways, Thailand is actually quite modern with bustling modern cities where antiquities are cared for, family is revered and guests always respected. Major cities are as modern (and crowded) as any you will find anywhere in the world, coming as a surprise to many first-time visitors who may have a typical "tropical paradise" impression of the country. Bangkok, the capital with over 10 million population, is the best example of "east meets the west." Primarily in the country side and along the Gulf of Thailand shore to the south, in Andaman sea to the west and on the Thai islands will you experience "tropical splendor" with beautiful white sand beaches, waving palm trees and a relaxed atmosphere.

Reality sets in, however, when you gaze at the ocean across beautiful sand and see hundreds and hundreds of beach umbrellas scattered along the water's edge.... predominant in most of Thailand's developed tourism areas. Finding a deserted stretch of beach to bask in the sun nude is possible, but you will have to hunt for the spots since nudity is not accepted in any public area whatsoever. Nudity is considered rude and thoughtless there. Curiously, however, topless sunbathing is seen everywhere in most of the Thai beach destinations and vacation resorts so it would seem the country is catching up to the European standard of social nudity. If you visit Thailand, you will see mostly European visitors, hopefully helping to pave the way for more nude acceptance. Just don't hold your breath until it happens.

Summary:
It has been reported that the Thai Department of tourism has studied possible beach areas for nudist development, supposedly up near the Thai/Burma border facing the Andaman sea to the west near Ranong.   A few small properties in Phuket, Chiang  Mai and  Pattaya have established a foothold serving the nude and naturist market.

Two major Thai islands for tourism are Phuket (poo-ket) and Koh Samui. The former is fully developed and overrun with tourists most places on the island while the latter is more laid back with less tourist infrastructure since much of Koh Samui is a national park, the Anthong Tropical Reserve. Both islands are about one hour by air south of Bangkok, with Phuket on the Andaman Sea and Koh Samui in the Gulf of Thailand.

A deserted stretch of sand you may find on Phuket island is east of the airport at Mai Khao beach, 6 miles long, which has basically no services or resorts on it except the Marriott on the north end and Crown Nai Yang to the south. You will need a car for this exploration. Another adventurous way to hunt for a secluded nude beach is on the surrounding islands, such as Racha Yai or Racha Noi just south of Phuket island. You can make a deal with the driver of a "long-tail" boat at any of the tourist towns to help you find such a beach to drop you off with your honey and come back later to pick you up. If you do, always pay a part of the driver's fee first and the rest payable upon pick up.

You don't want to be stuck out there for the night!    Do so at your own risk and the responsibility is yours to check local customs and nude use of any venue you choose to visit.

Here are some clothing-optional properties some of our clients have visited but been aware that they may change ownership, change venues or be absorbed by other resorts.  This is for your information only and is not guaranteed in any way.

Getting There

Typically, most international flights arrive in Bangkok. From there, most popular tourist destinations are no more than an hour or so away by air from Bangkok, so if you plan to go, assume you will be arriving into Bangkok from just about any foreign destination. Thailand is served by numerous major airlines which typically run seasonal specials, so an air bargain is not hard to find, especially if a resort package can be included. Plan to spend a couple of days in Bangkok to get used to the time change and, if nothing else, for shopping and seeing the world-famous temples and nightlife there.

U.S. Citizens: Passports are required for international air travel to all destinations outside the USA.

Typical flight times between the west coast of the U.S. and Asia can vary between 10-14 hours, non-stop, either direction.

Services

You will find every type of accommodation in Thailand from a beach bungalow for $10/night to Super Luxury resorts for $300-$400/night. Absolutely great standard tourism accommodations and hotels can be had for less than $100/night for two people, which typically includes your private room with private bath, use of health clubs, swimming facilities, a full American breakfast and hotel taxes included. The lower end of the scale for a $10 bungalow is one step above camping and back packing so make sure you know what you want before you go. Electricity is 220 so take a converter. Some hotels have hair dryers so you may need to take your own.

There are no nudist resorts in Thailand and no official nude beaches. "All-inclusive" resorts don't appear in Thailand since food and services are so inexpensive, there is really no economic reason for their widespread acceptance. The only exception is Club Med at Kata beach on Phuket, which includes all meals, plus beer and wine at dinner plus all types of non-motorized water sports plus direct access to Kata Beach, the best developed of all of them on Phuket.

Ambiance

Thailand is a wonderful tropical experience enhanced with the culturally-instilled politeness of its citizens.
Typically, polite treatment and a welcoming smile are extended to all guests and visitors so don't regard their smile and thoughtfulness as friendliness. Actually, Thai citizens are somewhat shy until they get to know you, as they are culturally somewhat inhibited by their nature to refrain from appearing to impose upon you in any way, including striking up a conversation. Their reticence may be misinterpreted as shyness.... which it is not. Their behavior usually represents their cultural reluctance to refrain from imposing upon you in any way.

Thai people are spotlessly clean as are most of their cities and towns.

Thailand has mountains, beaches, lowlands, spectacular geological formations along the coast, huge limestone outcroppings, great for trekkers and mountain climbers, great nightlife, plus a rich heritage and wonderful people that make this country one of our personal favorites, worldwide.

Lots of the lowlands, hills and tropical beach areas remind us of the western coast of Mexico or Costa Rica, with its lush greenery and local wildlife..... a lot like Mexico except instead of a burrow making its way down the road, you might come upon a huge elephant instead, which usually gets the right of way. By the way, driving is on the left side of the street. If you like the outdoors, you will enjoy Thailand, especially what it offers for eco-tourism. Our personal favorite tour was a half-day with the elephants, to be around them, to watch their show, watch them a bath in the river and to ride with them for about an hour was really special. The Thai elephant population has dropped from 20,000 a few years ago to a few thousand now, with most in captivity and very few living in the wild or in the jungle. Their numbers have been drastically reduced by poaching and by the destruction of their habitat.

Group Trips

We do not have listed group trips to Thailand, but that doesn't mean its not a great place for two, three or more couples to get together for a group trip.  If you have other couples that might want to join you, please contact us and see what kind of group trip deals we might be able to package especially for you.

Sightseeing

You can just about do it all in Thailand but snow ski. With islands and beaches, lowlands and mountains, scuba diving and boating, trekking, mountain climbing, and elephant riding, huge cities and small villages, modern buildings and ancient temples, you will have a hard time choosing your "perfect" vacation elements. The most popular tourist stops include Bangkok, Chiang Mai in the mountains, Phuket, Koh Samui and Pattaya on the beaches. Offshore, the Andaman sea and the islands on the west side of Thailand offer some of the best scuba diving available. Numerous scuba dive shops and liveaboard boats are based in and around Phuket.

The Star Clipper sailing vessel is based seasonally out of Phuket so you can mix a land or resort vacation with a great week's cruise to Southeast Asia ports of call. You can even charter a sailing vessel if you wish in Phuket with or without a crew. There is also a nice yacht owned by a Frenchman there who may be of a mind to take you nude sailing.

Island & Beach Destinations
The two most popular Thai islands for tourism are Phuket and Koh Samui. The former is fully developed and overrun with tourists most places on the island while the latter is more laid back with less tourism infrastructure since much of Koh Samui contains a national park, the Anthong Tropical Reserve. Both islands are about one hour by air south of Bangkok, with Phuket on the Andaman Sea and Koh Samui in the Gulf of Thailand.

About the only secluded stretch of sand, you will find on Phuket is east of the airport at Mai Khao beach, which has basically no services or resorts on it except the Marriott to the north and Crown Nai Yang resort to the south. You will need a car for this exploration which will take you to the north side of the island. More development is scheduled for this six-mile-long beach area, so enjoy it while you can. All beaches in Thailand are supposed to be "public" but some resorts are located on land adjacent to the public beaches, rendering them inaccessible unless you're a resort guest. Another adventurous way to hunt for a secluded nude beach is on the surrounding islands, such as Racha Yai (Koh Racha or Raya) or Racha Noi south of Phuket island.

You can make a deal with the driver of a "long-tail" boat at the tourist towns of Rawai Beach or Chalong to help you find such a beach to drop you off with your honey and come back later to pick you up. Raya is closest at about 7 miles out in the bay. If you choose that, pay a part of the driver's fee first and the rest payable upon pick up. You don't want to be stuck out there for the night! Most of the offshore islands are a 20-30 minute trip on a fast speed boat or "long tail" boat, so-called since its straight six-cylinder engine is linked directly to the propeller mounted on a long shaft. Instead of a rudder, the driver just moves the engine and driveshaft as one unit to change direction. This is a great trip for fun, nude beaching, and snorkeling with 2-3 couples.

The other island location with a good mix of beaches, tropical ambiance and some tourism development is on Koh Samui in the Gulf of Thailand. Two popular beach resorts there include Chaweng Buri Resort (simple bungalows) and Imperial Samui.

On the mainland, if you rent a car, there are also lots of places to explore and beaches to visit at or near many of the modest resorts on the Andaman Sea between Phuket Island and north to Ranong, near the Burma border. Or, stay around the seaside resorts from Phuket to Krabi, due east.

Best beaches are on Koh Samui and the best-developed beach on Phuket Island, in our opinion, is Kata Beach on the west-central side of Phuket island. Club Med is located on Kata Beach as is the other large resort there, the Kata Beach Resort. Numerous other beaches are on Phuket and on the Thai mainland, too, but most others have less of tourism development around them. The trade-off with finding secluded beaches or resorts is that there are usually few tourism facilities, hotels, resorts, restaurants or nightlife nearby.

The town with the most development, largest (and most crowded) beach, night markets, hotels, resorts, and clubs is Patong Beach in central Phuket on the west side of the island. The nightlife here can be wild and crazy or quiet and subdued as you please. Most open-air restaurants, shops, bistros, and clubs are on Thaweewong Road facing the beach. The craziest street for nightlife has to be Soi Bangla (road), right in the heart of Patong Beach. There, you will find just about everything humanity has to offer from fine restaurants and resorts, discos, to kickboxing clubs, nightlife to the infamous "gogo" bars to street vendors selling "designer" clothes and every type of knock off watch, CD and DVD, all for dirt cheap prices.

Some of the best little resorts are actually located on small islands in the Andaman Sea near Phuket or in the Gulf of Thailand, which require boat trips from the mainland. If you like seclusion, these small resorts may offer a better choice but be prepared for very modest accommodations usually with little or no nightlife.

Most overrated tours are the day trip to James Bond Island near Phang Nga Town and the day trip to the Phi Phi Islands for snorkeling----Koh Phi Phi Don and Koh Phi Phi Lay (where the movie "The Beach" was filmed). If you want to go, consider hiring your own private speed boat to see these places if you must. Otherwise, you may be chugging along for hours in a "cattle boat" with 200 of your closest friends. We would spend the money on a private speed boat, forget the canned tours and find your own nude beach on a secluded island.

Bangkok
Typical tourism things to do include half-day or full-day city tours in Bangkok, tours of the temples (Wat Po, the Golden Buddha & the Grand Palace), arguably worth standing in line for to see the largest reclining Buddha in the world (it's massive). You can go just about anywhere in the city for $3-$5 by taxi. The modern elevated "Skytrain" is also available to get around most of downtown and into the suburbs, too, with 20 miles of track. The Sukumvit and Pratanum areas are the newest sections of Bangkok with a diverse cultural mix, many shops, restaurants, and tourist facilities. SIAM square and the World Trade Center are all within walking distance of most of the major hotels downtown. A hotel or resort for every budget can be had in Bangkok starting at a few dollars a night to $400/night or more. Any hotel's tour desk can point you in the right direction for sightseeing as well as make arrangements for your tours.

You can even spring for a full day tour to see the Bridge Over the River Kwai.

Taking a ride on the Chao Phya River in a Thai long-tailed boat is a must-do, tourist thing to do. Get a Thai massage or at least a great foot massage for about 300 b (baht) or about $6-$7 for an hour....worth every minute of it.

If you visit Bangkok over the weekend, visit Chatuchak, reportedly the "World's Largest Flea Market" with over 9,000 individual shops... twice as many as the Grand Bazaar boasts in Istanbul. You can take the SkyTrain there from downtown. Visit Thailand's famous floating market at Damnersaduak and stop at Thailand's largest Pagoda with lunch at the Rose Garden.

Chinatown in Bangkok is reportedly the largest in the world outside of China. One-third of Bangkok's population are of Chinese heritage. The Chinatown market on Yaowarat Rd is also worth a visit where you can find everything from glittering gems, to antiques, Chinese porcelain, to high-end electrical appliances. Also, Sampeng Lane runs almost the length of Chinatown where you can find everything else you couldn't find on Yaowarat Road! For Indian goods, try Pahurat Road, also located adjacent to Chinatown.

For clothing, most tailor shops are reputable, especially the ones inside your hotel plus, you can visit Pratanum garment district if you like for all types of ready-made clothes as well as custom made suits, dresses, coats, and dress shirts.

Go shopping for any and everything where you will not believe the prices. For common items, street vendor products such as clothing, knock off watches, shoes, leather, and sunglasses, expect to negotiate. Start with whatever the vendor asks, cut the price in half and haggle from there.

Nightlife in Bangkok can be found at Soi Cowboy (go go bars), Buckskin Joe Village (pubs and restaurants), Soi Langsuan (live music), Sukhumvit Soi 24 & 26 (brewpubs and discos) and Soi Thonglor (pubs and live music). Also, visit Patpong night Bazaar in the infamous red-light district.

Chiang Mai is Thailand's 2nd largest city behind Bangkok. If you have time, it's worth a visit for 2-3 nights. Lots of trinkets, tourism souvenirs, silver and bronze markets, embroiderers and jewelers are located along Sankampaeng Road. Don't forget to visit the Night Market, too, where we found some of the best bargains... some of which you have to barter for. Hilltowns are close by where you can visit some artisans and craft markets for ceremonial masks, textiles, and woodcarvings. A few are tourist traps but it's still an adventure, especially the rough and tumble trip up to and down from the hills. Our limo was the back end of an old Chevy truck with benches....lots of fun and you had time to visit with the locals

Dining

Thailand is one of our all-time favorite destinations for eating, other than maybe Italy. Food, services, and hotel accommodations are so inexpensive there, you just can't go wrong.

Most tourist destination in Thailand include restaurants serving both western as well as local cuisine. Oriental and Thai foods with soups, rice as a staple, seafood, green vegetables, hot spices, and fruit make up a typical local selection. Western palettes will find food selections for just about everything else including McDonald's and all major ethnic choices including Italian, Mexican, Indian, Japanese and Chinese dining.
Thai food is generally served with the basics such as hot soups, fruit, a seafood dish plus chicken, pork and beef selections, many of which are prepared with optional hot spices available. Our personal favorite is the dishes served with satay sauces as a side dish along with red pepper and other spicy condiments. Our motto: If it makes sweat pop out on

your forehead, you know it's got to be good.

Price example: One four-course Thai dinner we had in a 5-star restaurant cost about US$ 10/person including taxes and tip. Evening buffets are about US$ 11-$12/person for everything, tips and drinks included. Breakfast and lunch can be had for less than $5/person.

The only part of a dining experience with costs comparable to American or European pricing is liquor. Don't expect a bargain there, as alcohol is priced about the same everywhere, except for perhaps the local beer, which is about $1-$1.50 per bottle.

Rates

Room rates can vary from US$ 10/night for a bungalow to over US$ 400/night, with about  US$ 100/night the average for a fine, tourist class hotel such as a Holiday Inn Crowne Plaza, for example. Room rates usually include air-conditioned private room and bath, hotel taxes and a full American breakfast for two.

Impressions

Uppers-Downers

▼ Thailand has no "official" nude beaches.

▲ Thailand is just about the least expensive vacation destination considering all the amenities, hotels, resorts and dining options available. A great mix of modern and ancient, with a cultural diversity you will rarely get in such a safe environment with the most terrific variety of any vacation destination we've seen.

▼ Phuket and Pattaya, two of the most popular vacation beach destinations are over run with tourists. Of the two, Phuket has a more upscale selection of accommodations, restaurants and beaches than Pattaya, which is on the mainland, a few hours south of Bangkok, but it's got a decidedly "seedy" feel to the place.

▲ A more natural and tropical location is Koh Samui, one the best combinations of beaches and modest accommodations in Thailand.

▲▼ Some of the more secluded resorts are actually located on small islands in the Andaman Sea near Phuket or in the Gulf of Thailand, both of which require boat trips from the mainland. If you like seclusion, these small resorts may be for you.

▲ Topless beaches are the norm at most island destinations.

▼ Some small resorts and towns on the Andaman sea are near rivers which empty on to shallow bays, where much of the water is either murky or downright muddy, not good places for scuba diving.

▼ Avoid the canned tours and "cattle boats" for island sight seeing in Phuket. Try arranging for a private tour or boat if you wish to visit some of the islands on the "tour" circuit such as James Bond Island or Phi Phi Islands, both of which are over run with other tourists. Prices are inexpensive so you may want to consider a private speed boat for your island hopping.

Age Ranges

Tourist destinations include all ages in Thailand. There are no "adults only" resorts there.

Best Time To Go

Dry season runs from about October to March. The wet season runs from about March to September, when daily rains may be the norm. Other than an actual storm front that may move through occasionally, the wet season means there may be showers in the morning and sunshine the remainder of the day.

Wish List

● Wish nude beaches and nudist resorts would happen, and soon, in Thailand.

● Wish there weren't so many tourist but, hey, that's what helps make for a fun experience. Europeans definitely represent the majority of visitors there and are a welcome addition to the tourism mix.

Photo Album

The photos were either shot by us, our clients or provided by various resorts. If you have recently visited Thailand we invite you to send in your photos for us to display. To contribute your own photos (or trip reports), go to our Contribute Trip Report / Photographs page.

Trip Reports

If you have recently visited Thailand, we would appreciate you contributing a trip report. You can contribute to this section buy using our Contribute Trip Report / Photographs page.  Here are a few we have from recent visitors.