As you guys now, I’m almost always on the road but when I’m not traveling I’m proud to call Thailand my home. I love my family in Ireland and my friends around the world, and I miss them dearly, but there’s only one country I ever miss – and that’s Thailand.
I’ve lived in Chiang Mai previously, and more recently in Bangkok where I’ve bought a place, and they are probably my two favourite places in the world. So as I’m currently visiting every country in the world, Thailand is the place I come to recover, get fit, party too much and build my businesses.
Anyways, I thought I’d share with you guys the 5 reasons why I loved living in Thailand so much:
I’m not pulling up any trees by saying Thai food is awesome, but it really is. I literally have cooked twice in the years I’ve lived in Thailand, I eat out 3 meals a day, and I look forward to every single one, with the vast majority of them costing about $2. Their grilled chicken and sticky rice would be my last dish if I ever had to choose. Add to that spicey papaya salad (Som Tam), spicy basil (Gra Pow), fried chilli curry (Pad Prik Keng) and of course mango and stickey rice for desert (Khao Neaw MaMuang) and you’re onto the right idea.
Also, being based in Bangkok means that should you fancy Lebanese, Mexican, Indian, Italian etc, it’s all there, and normally within walking distance.
This is probably the greatest thing about living in the country. Thais are very proud, very nationalistic, very caring and very positive. People are pleased to know you, they celebrate your success and are there for you in your failures. They don’t sweat the small stuff, which is something I live by too.
Now whilst places like Koh Tao, Khao San Road and Phuket may give you the wrong impression about Thailand people (and Thailand in general), as soon as you escape the tourist trade you get to see them for their true beauty. Warm smiles, sharing beers, and trying to see the best in everything.
Then there are the festivals – from the vegetarian festival in Phuket (not for the faint hearted!), to Song Kran (Thai new year, AKA the biggest waterfight/party in the world) to my favourite – the lantern festival (Yi Peng) outside Chiang Mai, where they release 10, 000 lanterns simultaneously into the sky). With culture like this, you don’t have to travel too far to experience some worldclass events that make you feel alive.
Coming from Ireland, grey, grim weather is a killer. I couldn’t imagine every living in a climate like that again. Sure, Thailand can get too hot sometimes but when that happens, I head to a tropical island for a few days and jump in the ocean. Not an option in most countries.
Thailand is much more developed than people give it credit for, I live a great lifestyle there. I don’t understand why it still remains pretty cheap. My condo would cost about $1000 per month to rent, and it’s a 2 bed place, on the cities main street, Sukhumvit, complete with pool, gym, futsal and basketbal court. If I wanted something like this in NYC or London, it’s by $4k at least. You can pick up street food for $1-$2 every day too. My money goes a lot further, allowing me to have a cleaner, get my laundry done etc.
Saving the best until last. I don’t gravitate towards stress, infact I do quite the opposite. I don’t believe in 40 hour work weeks, 10 hours works fine for me. In the west, people would think I’m lazy (I prefer ‘efficient’) but here people congratulate me for it. All the people here are great, but my awesome gf takes first prize, and really rocks my world! 😛
I know Thailand has many facets, some of which are negative (sex tourism, expotiation etc), and other people come here to undergo cosmetic surgery abroad, get their teeth fixed etc But for me, it’s more than a quick visit. It’s my home, and I’m proud to call it such. Happy travels!