If you’re fortunate enough to be spending four weeks in Thailand the choices of where to go and what to see and do are almost endless. We’ve previously covered ideas for a fortnight trip to Thailand and a three-week holiday and those same itinerary suggestions can be adapted for a month-long stay. One of the advantages of an extended trip like this is that you have the option to enjoy the benefits of slow travel.
If you’re visiting Thailand for the first time, you can adopt the ‘Classic Thailand’ itinerary for your travels. This showcases the diversity this amazing country has to offer. You’ll get to see historic locations in the central region, the mountains and culture in the north and the dazzling beaches and islands in the south or east. If you’re a repeat visitor to Thailand, you can try swapping out destinations you’ve already visited to go somewhere new. Take a look at our Itinerary Ideas series for travel inspiration beyond the most popular tourist locations.
You can certainly see much of Thailand in four weeks but as counter-intuitive as it may seem, try to resist the temptation to tick off as many destinations as you can. As with our other itinerary suggestions, we’ve included some ideas for how long to spend in each region, but adapt these to suit your style of travel. If you’re a beach person, allow more time for the islands. If nature is your thing, head out to locations like Nan and Mae Hong Son in the north and Khao Sok and Phatthalung in the south. And if you’d like to see the elusive ‘real Thailand’, travel through Isaan in the north-east.
Suggested 4-week itinerary
- 9 days: North Thailand
- 9 days: Central Thailand
- 11/12 days: Beaches/islands (Andaman Coast or Gulf Coast or East Coast)
When to visit Bangkok
Many people will opt to start their holiday with at least a few nights in Bangkok. That can be a good option if you’re already familiar with the Thai capital. Bangkok is an incredible city with so much to see and do. However, if this is your first time in Thailand, Bangkok can initially be overwhelming. Instead of spending three or four days in the Thai capital at the beginning of your holiday, you could factor in time in Bangkok for the middle of your trip when you’ve had the chance to acclimatise or at the end of your holiday.
As an alternative to spending time exploring Bangkok at the start of your trip, you could head north instead. Travel to Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai and use either of those cities as a springboard to explore the charm and culture of North Thailand. From Chiang Rai, you can add on trips to Nan, Phrae and Phayao. From Chiang Mai, head north-west to take in Pai and the picturesque province of Mae Hong Son.
Travelling by train from Chiang Mai is a great way to see more of the country. Take the train south and stop off in lovely Lampang for a day before continuing south the next day by catching the train or bus to Sukhothai (via Phitsanulok if travelling by train). Spend at least two full days in Sukhothai and hire a bicycle to explore the countryside and atmospheric ruins of Sukhothai Historical Park. From Sukhothai continue your journey towards the central region and Bangkok.
If you’re a history buff, Lopburi and Ayutthaya both contain ancient ruins that make for a convenient stopover if you’re travelling by train. Ayutthaya is the more impressive of the two with more historical locations while Lopburi is unique because of the monkey population which coexists alongside the human inhabitants in the town.
To the west of Bangkok, spend at least three days in Kanchanaburi province. This gives you time to not only visit the famous wartime sites but also time to enjoy the lush Kanchanaburi countryside.
Bangkok can take some getting used to and repeat visitors often say they like the city more and more with each visit. Beyond the main tourist attractions, the Thai capital is a city with a dazzling array of dining and entertainment options. If this is your first visit to Bangkok, spend at least three full days here.
- 6 of the best areas to stay in Bangkok
- 2 days in Bangkok: What to see and do in 48 hours
- 17 of the best food experiences in Bangkok
Spending at least 10 days enjoying Thailand’s beaches and islands is a wonderful way to complete your trip. On the East Coast, this gives you ample time to explore the Ko Chang archipelago in Trat province. Head to the island of Ko Chang first before relaxing on the quieter islands of Ko Mak and Ko Kood.
On the Gulf Coast, ten or eleven days is ideal for visiting Ko Samui, Ko Pha Ngan and Ko Tao. This trio of islands are all well-connected by boat services and with each island offering different experiences, it makes for an excellent beach holiday. If you like the idea of beaches without the boat trips, consider Hua Hin and Cha Am on the mainland. For a quieter alternative, Chumphon and Khanom are good choices.
Over on the Andaman Coast, there are countless islands to choose from. For somewhere off the tourist trail, go island-hopping in Satun province or the Trang Islands. Phuket and Krabi are both mainstream destinations but with convenient transport links they are ideal for a twin-centre break. You could also combine either of these destinations with stays on the laidback islands of Ko Yao Noi and Ko Yao Yai.
If you’d like to visit both the Andaman Coast and the Gulf Coast, that is possible too. Spend around five days on Ko Samui and then travel over by boat to Surat Thani on the mainland. From here, you can travel across to the gorgeous Khao Sok National Park and spend one or two days here before continuing onwards to Khao Lak, Krabi or Phuket.
Find your ideal Thailand itinerary
For more ideas on Thailand travel itineraries check out these links on our site:
- Advice for first-time visitors to Thailand
- 2-week Thailand itinerary (for first-time visitors)
- 3-week Thailand itinerary
- 2 days in Bangkok: What to see and do in 48 hours
- Itinerary ideas for repeat visitors to Thailand
- All-inclusive holidays in Thailand
- How to choose your ideal Thai beach holiday
- Disabled travellers
- Female travellers
- LGBT+ travellers
- Mature and older visitors
- Solo travellers
Fan Club Thailand
Tourism Thailand (UK & Ireland)
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