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What A Bug Bite On My Butt Crack Taught Me About Thailand: An Itch I’ll Never Scratch

by Meg · 18 comments

A bug bite:  It’s there.  It burns. It throbs.  It itches.  But once you give into the temptation of scratching it, you will never be able to stop.  It becomes an addiction deep in your soul.

Just like any bug bite, once I scratched the surface of the Thailand itch, I couldn’t get enough of it.

And I use the bug bite analogy because, well, I got a TON of bug bites in Thailand.

Bug Bites in Thailand

And yes, one of them happened to be on my bum… which of course Tony thought was absolutely hilarious (and thought it would make an excellent article title).

Despite the welts and bumps from all my bug bites, I immediately fell in love with Thailand. I adored it so much that we actually skipped visiting Vietnam and Cambodia, just so we could extend our trip in the country an extra month.

Sunset in Koh Samui Thailand

So, what was it about this unique country that has me jonesing for just one more hit?

Charming Chaos

Bangkok at night

The first stop on our trip in Thailand was bustling Bangkok… and bustling it was.  I normally dislike large, noisy, and chaotic cities, but Bangkok had a mysterious charm to it.  The weather was hot and humid, the cute little locals heckled with tourists around the street stalls, and the tuk-tuks dangerously weaved in and out of traffic…. but all this mayhem seemed right… And I loved it!

Great Food

Massaman Curry Bangkok Thailand

Being obsessed with all things food, Tony and I knew we would be happy with the food in Thailand.  We loved Thai food back in the states and we heard so many great things about the real deal from backpackers that had previously visited Thailand.

But after one day in Thailand, its reputable food scene exceeded my expectations.

Green Curry, Tom Kha Ga, Pad Thai, MANGO STICKY RICE…. We worshiped it all! Despite eating like kings during our two months in Thailand, we surprisingly lost weight… Man, I love this country!

Cheap Everything

Bangkok Market

Not only was the food in Thailand divine, but it was also DIRT CHEAP… along with everything else in the country.  A good meal on the street sets you back $1USD and clothes, medications, etc., is (at most) a third of the retail price back in the states… Oh and hour-long massages were only $4! #Score

Beautiful Beaches

Local charm, phenomenal food, rock bottom prices on just about everything… what more could you want in a place?

How about breathtaking scenery and beaches.

Koh Mak Beach Thailand

Well, Thailand has that too.  During our two months in the country, we spent some quality beach time on the island of Koh Mak and Koh Samui… Both places were so beautiful that they looked like they came right of a National Geographic spread.  Better yet, if you visit Thailand during the off-season you can get these marvelous beaches all to yourself!

Your Turn: Was there ever a place during your travels that surprised you?  Is there anywhere you just can’t get enough of?

About Meg
Exhausted from traveling every week as a Business Management Consultant early in my career, I took a year off in 2012 to travel at my own pace. I am a high-energy girl that loves being active, eating food, drinking wine, and exploring the world with my partner-in-crime (and husband), Tony! I now reside in Portland, Oregon and continue to write about travel, food, wine, and the awesome adventures we have in the Pacific NW!

Christina December 17, 2012 at 2:09 pm

Thailand has been high on our list for a while. My husband has been there already, but I haven’t! Everything about it sounds right up my alley!

Meg December 17, 2012 at 5:29 pm

You will love it! Any idea on where you want to go in Thailand?

Christina December 17, 2012 at 6:51 pm

Everywhere, haha! Not sure though, definitely Koh Samui!

Marco Fiori December 17, 2012 at 2:48 pm

Oddly, and this isn’t probably a rarity, I really like Las Vegas. Despite hating the majority of consumerist displays, Las Vegas is a cool place to party and despite its fakery, really strikes a chord with me. I’m probably alone in that thought.

Meg December 17, 2012 at 5:31 pm

I actually really liked Vegas too. I am not a big gambler, but there is so much more to do/see there… It is a feast for the eyes!

Annette | Bucket List Journey December 17, 2012 at 5:20 pm

Heading to Thailand in a month and happy to hear about all it has to offer except those bug bites!!! Ouch.

Meg December 17, 2012 at 5:32 pm

Where are you headed? I am so jealous! I cannot wait to someday make it back there!

Jade December 17, 2012 at 6:06 pm

For me it has to be Spain, I love the food, language and people and it’s easy to get there from home. However I have a soft spot for Bolivia too. I must try and do a bit more in Thailand as haven’t given it a proper chance and your post has inspired me to try and squeeze it into my next RTW trip, although the bug bites are not appealing as the mossies always go crazy on me :(

Meg December 17, 2012 at 6:12 pm

I studied abroad for 5 months in Spain in 2005 and LOVED IT! I hope to take Tony back there someday. We traveled to Bolivia, which I liked, but I wasn’t a huge fan of La Paz :-( … Glad you enjoyed the post and be sure to wear lots of bug spray if you make it to Thailand!

Steph (@ 20 Years Hence) December 23, 2012 at 2:43 am

So great to hear you loved Thailand so much! I know it is a popular place for LT travelers to hang out for a while, but since leaving, we have actually been hearing a lot of backlash for Thailand (in large part because of its huge tourism scene). I guess all we can do is make our way there eventually and see if it inspires us to set down our packs and stay awhile!

Meg December 23, 2012 at 1:50 pm

There definitely were a TON of tourists in Thailand unfortunately. The island of Koh Mak (where we stayed at for 3 weeks) was one of those very few undiscovered places though. It was so beautiful and remote – We loved it!!!

Vicky from acoupletravelers December 25, 2012 at 5:39 am

We are heading to Thailand in less than 10 days and are definitely excited for it! We have been in Vietnam for the last three weeks and absolutely love it here – everything about it so far has far exceeded all expectation especially since we read so many bloggers hating on Vietnam but our experience has been quite the opposite! Hoping Thailand is awesome as well!

Meg December 26, 2012 at 8:34 pm

Hey Vicky! I am so glad to hear that you loved Vietnam. Tony and I wanted to visit so badly… I will be curious to see how it compares to your time in Thailand. Keep us posted!

JR December 25, 2012 at 8:19 am

Meg, those bites look so painful and itchy. For you too love Thailand that much after those bites must make it a really special place.

Meg December 26, 2012 at 8:33 pm

It was all very worth it JR!!

Elle Williams January 8, 2013 at 4:01 am

It’s so funny you’ve mentioned cancelling Vietnam in favour of Thailand – my boyfriend and I have just decided to do the same for our trip next year. We wanted to do the place justice – so we decided to replace vietnam with more Thailand. Any recommendations for Koh Samui area? :)

Meg January 8, 2013 at 2:19 pm

haha we loved Thailand but we did regret not visiting Vietnam after all of the wonderful things we heard about it from other backpackers. We really liked Koh Samui but didn’t do much exploration around the surrounding islands. Bo Phut and Chaweng Beach were pretty congested and touristy on the island, but the rest of the island you can find more quiet vacation spots. Definitely check out the Full Moon Party on Koh Phangan if you are there…. It wasn’t my scene, but it was cool to see regardless!

Blake November 5, 2016 at 9:33 am

On my way to Asia next week. Hong Kong and then Thailand. Leveraging all of your posts! Hope you both are doing well!

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