Thailand with kids

Traveling in Thailand with kids

What does Responsible Travel recommend?

Widely known are the increasingly affordable, regular flights, with great weather; friendly, English-speaking locals; and restaurants, tours and accommodation to suit all budgets. On top of that, the beach resorts, elephant sanctuaries and tuk tuks will delight tiny travelers, while older kids will enjoy meeting hill tribes, navigating night markets, voyaging through the jungle and… yes, the beach resorts again.

Basing yourself around either the southern islands or northern highlands helps you avoid long, hot journeys. Families might want to avoid some of the more riotous festivals; children are likely to get doused in water or startled by bangs, and some attractions close.

Activities for families in Thailand

What to do in Thailand with little ones

Chiang Mai is well set up for tourism but a much more manageable size than Bangkok. Kids will love the night markets, as well as cycling through the tiny alleyways – known as soi – to explore away from the main roads. Cycling out to the temples on the outskirts also takes them through lesser visited residential areas – it’s great fun.
Bumpy bus rides and airport queues often make traveling with kids a bit of a drag – but here the journey becomes part of the adventure. Tuk tuks are delightfully fun, as are the boat rides across the sea to tropical islands. Many attractions can be explored bike – and the safe, comfortable trains will inspire even the tiniest Thomas the Tank Engine fans.
Liddy Pleasants, from our supplier Stubborn Mule Travel:
“You can go ziplining in the forest near Chiang Mai. It’s the most spectacular hilly area, and you zip line through the jungle canopy from one tree to the next – sometimes over 100m. I did that with my son when he was five! But kids can do it attached to an instructor. I thought it was the best fun ever – even without the kids!”

Traveling in Thailand with kids asks the experts

Lesley Schofield, from our supplier All Points East, shares her tips on traveling in Thailand with kids:
“Thailand is the most fantastic destination for children. It’s comparatively safe, there are good standards of food hygiene, people absolutely love kids and will interact with them. The standard of English is reasonable – but it’s also good for our kids to discover that everyone doesn’t speak English particularly well. In some villages they have a much more rural existence. They have satellite dishes – but on their huts. They drive round in pickup trucks – but that’s because they haven’t got roads. So they’re not backward by any means, but they are living a much more simple life than we are. And while that still exists in the world, and it exists somewhere that’s safe and pleasant, I think it’s brilliant to get kids out there to discover it.”
Liddy Pleasants, from our supplier Stubborn Mule Travel, cycled round Southeast Asia with her two young children. She shares her advice for traveling in Thailand with kids:
“There are lots of great family accommodation options in Thailand. Khao Sok National Park is lovely and near to the west coast beaches, and you can stay in a proper treehouse up in the canopy. It’s lovely, but obviously things like that are not suitable for younger children from a safety point of view – there aren’t very sturdy railings. Likewise, lots of hotels in Thailand have pools – but you still need to keep an eye on the children.”
Photo credits: [Top image, Chiang Mai, bumpy rides and ziplining: Stubborn Mule Travel] [Liddy Pleasants quote - swimming pool: Jim Winstead]
Written by Vicki Brown
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