Says Ben Groundwater, travel columnist and expert backpacker
Why? Travelling solo teaches you that you're far more resourceful and resilient than you may have once thought. Situations that seem intimidating to begin with - say, haggling with a tuk-tuk driver in Bangkok, or finding a place to stay in Phuket - become easily negotiable after a few weeks of travelling on your own.
The quintessential backpacking destination, it’s completely normal – and often preferable - to be travelling solo in Thailand. There’s also a lot of options available to you – go trekking in the jungle, soak up the bustling city of Bangkok or simply lounge around on some of the world’s most glorious beaches in the south. The country is full of charming locals and other free-spirited solo travellers so you won’t ever get the chance to feel lonely here. It is also very affordable so you won’t feel the sting of not sharing a room cost with anyone.
What to eat: It would be criminal not enjoy the renowned street food – order Pad Thai from one of the carts dotted around every market and lane.
Where to stay: Millennium Hilton – for the sweeping views across the Chao Phraya River, glistening rooftop pool, award-winning rooftop bar (order a speciality cocktail at sunset) and city central location, make this hotel a top-notch choice for the independent traveller.
What to do: Head up to the north to Chiang Mai and join a jungle trek – it’s a great way to see some of the local culture and you’ll get to meet some interesting people along the way.
Solo traveller tip: Take an overnight train if travelling long distances – e.g Bangkok to Koh Samui, they are cheap, come with a fully flat bed and will save you the cost of a hotel stay.
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