Is it worth going to Thailand for a week? Sample Thailand itinerary for 7 days

So, is it worth going to Thailand for a week?

Yes! Visiting Thailand, even for a week, is worth it. Spending 7 days in Thailand is enough to get an excellent introduction to the country’s rich history and culture, delicious food, and beautiful and friendly people.

But, if you ask me –

Is 7 days in Thailand enough?

Then my answer is NO. Thailand has so much to offer; one week is too short to explore the country fully.

For example, I first visited Thailand in 2012, backpacked Chiang Mai and Ayutthaya for a week in 2015, and have returned to explore parts of the Kingdom a few more times since then. But there’s still so much more I want to see and experience in Thailand.

‘Cos there’s something about this country that would make you want to visit it over and over again.

But I do get it. If you’re from Southeast Asia, like I am, visiting Thailand whenever I want is easier. But, if you’re from, say, the USA or Canada and have a full-time job there, you need more planning to visit Thailand again, which may not be convenient for you.

So, how many days do I need to experience Thailand fully?

If you have the time, plan at least three weeks for Thailand to experience more deeply what the country offers without rushing.

But if one week is all you’ve got for now, that’s perfect, too! If you enjoy your first visit to Thailand, you can simply plan another vacation there, like many travelers before you.

Do I need a visa for Thailand?

It depends on where you’re from. For example, as a Philippine passport holder, I can enter Thailand visa-free and stay there for up to 30 days.

To be sure, you can check here if you need a visa to Thailand.

Planning your trip? Use my favorite resources.

πŸ›Œ Accommodation: I recommend
✈️ Flights: I recommend
πŸš‚ Land Travel (Bus, Train, Vans): I recommend 12go
πŸš— Car rental: I recommend Klook
🏞️ Tours and Experiences: I recommend Klook
πŸ›‘οΈ Travel Insurance: I recommend SafetyWing

*These are all the sites I personally use to plan and book my trips, and if you use them, some of them will earn me a commission at no extra cost to you. This helps reduce the ever-increasing costs of keeping my site up. Thanks!

Sample Thailand Itinerary for 7 days

Now, if you’re planning a trip to Thailand and would like to see for yourself if it’s worth visiting for 7 days, below is my sample Thailand itinerary for a week, the same itinerary I followed during a week’s visit to Thailand a few years ago.

Since I had already visited Bangkok in the past and was looking for a bit more quiet and immersive experience during trip, my itinerary looked like this: three days in Chiang Mai (including a day trip to Chiang Rai and Mae Hong Son), an overnight stay in Bangkok, and three days in Ayutthaya.

But, if it’s your first time in Thailand, you can spend four days in Bangkok (including a day trip to Ayutthaya and then to Kanchanaburi) and three days in Chiang Mai (including a day trip to Chiang Rai and Mae Hong Son).

I do hope this sample itinerary will help you decide if it’s worth going to Thailand for a week. Enjoy!

Day 1: Travel to Chiang Mai

If you’re visiting Thailand for the first time, I recommend spending a couple of days in Bangkok first.

But, because I’d already been to Bangkok when I went on this trip, I decided to do things a little differently from my fellow travelers and began my Thailand adventure in Chiang Mai.

βœ”οΈ Travel to Chiang Mai, Thailand

There are a couple of ways to get to Chiang Mai if you are coming from overseas.

  • You can fly directly to Chiang Mai. You can check below if direct flights are available from the airport you’re flying from to Chiang Mai.
  • Or, you can fly to Bangkok first and then, from there, fly to Chiang Mai. If you’re taking this route and flying out of Bangkok on the same day, make sure to book a flight to Chiang Mai leaving from the same airport that you landed in Bangkok. Otherwise, you’d have to take a cab, rent a private car for convenience, or you can also take the free shuttle offered by Suvarnabhumi Airport to Don Mueang Airport, if you still have the time.

βœ”οΈ Get to your accommodation from Chiang Mai Airport

From Chiang Mai International Airport, you can opt for a private airport transfer or take a taxi to your accommodation of choice. You can also check with your accommodation if they offer airport transfer.

βœ”οΈ Check in at your accommodation

There are a lot of options for accommodation in Chiang Mai, Thailand. They’re very much prepared to welcome tourists, and the options are very responsive to your budget as well.

Where to stay in Chiang Mai

Here are the top-rated accommodations in Chiang Mai:
🏨 Hotel: POR Thapae Gate
🏠 B&B: M1 Chiang Mai Boutique Guesthouse
πŸ›Œ Hostel: Hostel One Art & Gallery

βœ”οΈ Enjoy Chiang Mai at night with your friends!

You have many options for enjoying your first night in Chiang Mai. You can explore Doi Suthep and Wat Umong at night, go on a private street food tour, visit Chiang Mai’s night market and explore its temples at night through a tuk-tuk tour, or if you’re tired from all the traveling, get a relaxing Thai massage.

Or, if you’re into it, experience Chiang Mai’s nightlife, like what we did!

Day 2: Chiang Mai

You can do a lot of things while you’re in Chiang Mai. Like many travelers, you can visit the rescued elephants. Enroll in a cooking class and learn how to cook authentic Thai food. Or, you can explore Chiang Mai’s main temples through a walking tour, bike tour, tuk-tuk tour, or private tour.

βœ”οΈ Explore Chiang Mai Old City In a fun way!

In my case, I booked a tour with Segway Gibbon to explore Chiang Mai’s gorgeous temples in a fun way.

Segway Gibbon in Chiang Mai has permanently closed.Β But there are still tons of tours that you can choose from to make your visit to Thailand for a week worth it. Here are some curated options for you:

Day 3: Chiang Rai & Mae Hong Son

There are many things you can do while you’re in Chiang Mai, Thailand. You can learn how to cook Thai food on a farm, spend a day with rescued elephants, or go on a thrilling white water rafting on the Mae Taeng River, to name a few.

However, because I believe that indigenous communities are an integral part of a country’s culture, I wanted to visit the Karen Hill Tribe. So, I looked for a tour that would allow me even just to have a glimpse of their community.

Below are the activities you can do during a day trip to Chiang Rai and Mae Hong Son.

βœ”οΈ Admire the artistry of Wat Rong Khun (White Temple)

Wat Rong Khun, or more famously known as the White Temple, was designed by the local artist Chalermchai Khositpipat. Admiring its architecture and artistry was one of the reasons why I felt my 7-day visit to Thailand was worth it.

βœ”οΈ Experience The Golden Triangle

Have you ever experienced being in three countries at once? That unique experience is what you’re getting when you visit The Golden Triangle. The Golden Triangle is where Thailand, Laos, and Myanmar meet!

βœ”οΈ Visit the Karen Hill Tribe at Mae Hong Son, Thailand

If you’re interested in Thailand’s rich history and culture, visiting the Karieng Tribe at Mae Hong Son is something you wouldn’t want to miss. Spending time with them made my visit to Thailand for a week worth it.

Day 4: Travel to Bangkok

Spend your last morning in Chiang Mai with a food trip! My roommate and I roamed around the Old City and had the best pad thai I’ve ever tasted.

After that, I spent the rest of my stay in Chiang Mai writing postcards for my family, friends, and myself!

βœ”οΈ Travel from Chiang Mai to Bangkok

The cheapest way to get to Bangkok from Chiang Mai is by train. But because you only have a few days left in Thailand, I encourage you to fly from Chiang Mai to Bangkok, like what I did.

βœ”οΈ Travel to your accommodation in Bangkok

Check with your accommodation if they offer airport transfers. Otherwise, you can use the public transportation, hail a taxi, or book a private airport transfer to get to your accommodation in Bangkok.

βœ”οΈ Check in at your accommodation in Bangkok

Bangkok is a famous tourist spot, so there are tons of options that you can choose from, depending on your budget and your itinerary in Bangkok.

Where to stay in Bangkok

Here are the top-rated accommodations in Bangkok, for your convenience:
🏨 Hotel: Eastin Grand Hotel Phayathai
🏠 B&B: Noursabah Boutique Bed
πŸ›Œ Hostel: Siam Eco Hostel

βœ”οΈ Enjoy your night in Bangkok

There are tons of options for you to enjoy your night in Bangkok. You can go on a food trip and have a taste of authentic Thai food. Or, if you’re feeling a bit fancy, eat at one of Bangkok’s Michelin-star restaurants. Or, you can also go on a tuk-tuk tour and see the famous temples beautifully lit at night.

As for me, though, I just spent the night at my hotel and rested. Looking back, I could’ve gotten myself a relaxing Thai massage to prepare myself for the remaining leg of my Thailand vacation.

Day 5: Ayutthaya

If you’re interested in learning about history and culture, like us, you should include Ayutthaya in your Thailand itinerary.

βœ”οΈ Travel to Ayutthaya

The cheapest and fastest way to travel to Ayutthaya from Bangkok is by taking the train. It takes about 50 minutes from Don Mueang, and the train fare starts from 2 USD.

If you’re planning to spend more time in Bangkok, you can just book a day tour to Ayutthaya from Bangkok.

As for us, we planned on staying overnight in Ayutthaya, and we rode the train to Ayutthaya from Hualamphong Train Station, which was nearer our hotel.

βœ”οΈ Travel to your accommodation in Ayutthaya

From the train station, you can easily find a tuk-tuk driver who can bring you to your hotel. Just have the address of your hotel written in Thai to avoid miscommunication.

βœ”οΈ Check in at your accommodation

We stayed at Baan Thai House Ayutthaya. We loved it so much that we extended our stay for another night!

Where to stay in Ayutthaya

Ayutthaya offers many accommodation options for its visitors. Here are some of the top-rated accommodations I found for you:
🏨 Hotel: Baan Thai House Ayutthaya.
🏠 B&B: Krodyle Mindfulness House
πŸ›Œ Hostel: Room Story Hostel

βœ”οΈ Go on a Sunset Boat Tour

To do things a little differently, go on a sunset boat tour to visit the lovely temples of Ayutthaya. We did this during our visit and it was indeed a fascinating way to explore the place, a different perspective from when you view Ayutthaya on land.

βœ”οΈ Eat like a local: Food trip at the night market

After our boat trip ended, we visited one of Ayutthaya’s night markets. With various food options, you will have a fill of their food culture. Helen, Justine, and I enjoyed their freshly made sushi!

Day 6: Ayutthaya

Your visit to the Historic City of Ayutthaya won’t be complete if you don’t explore its famous temples. Include the following in your itinerary to make your 7-day visit to Thailand worth the trip!

βœ”οΈ Wat Yai Chai Mongkol

βœ”οΈ Wat MahatHat

You’ve probably seen an image of a Buddha’s head wrapped around the roots of a tree when you researched about Thailand. And that you can find in Wat Mahathat.

βœ”οΈ Wat Na Phramen

Day 7: Last day in Thailand

Want to explore the Historic City of Ayutthaya on your own? Check with your hosts and see if you could borrow or rent their bikes to explore Ayutthaya. For example, at Baan Thai House Ayutthaya, where we stayed, they offer free bike rentals!

βœ”οΈ Travel to Bangkok

If your flight leaves from Bangkok, you can either take the train (fastest and cheapest option), ride the bus, or book a private ride from Ayutthaya to Bangkok.

In our case, we rode the van to Bangkok, then took the train to Makassan City Air Terminal and another one to Suvarnabhumi Airport, where my plane for Manila was flying from.

Enjoy planning your Thailand itinerary!

Thank you for reading this far. I genuinely hope this post helped you see that it’s worth visiting Thailand for a week and planning your Thailand itinerary. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. I’d be happy to help!

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