Top 5 places to spend Christmas in Thailand

Thinking of taking a trip to Thailand this Christmas? Whether you want an alternative way to celebrate or you're looking to escape the festivities, Thailand makes for a relaxing destination in December. Here's our selection of the top spots to spend Christmas in the winter sun...
Temple of the Emerald Buddha, ( Wat Phra Kaew) in sunset time, Bangkok, Thailand
Temple of the Emerald Buddha, ( Wat Phra Kaew) in sunset time, Bangkok, Thailand


Taking a holiday to Thailand: how to get started

Insight Guides can help you with planning, organising and booking your trip to Thailand. Simply, get in touch and share your budget, interests and travel style. Our local experts will create an itinerary exclusive to you and your requirements, which you can amend until it's just right. Alternatively, browse and modify ready-made holidays to create your dream trip today. 


1. Bangkok

No visit to Thailand is complete without at least a stopover in Bangkok, Thailand’s bustling capital. Vibrant, cosmopolitan and even a little eccentric, Bangkok is a city that’s definitely worth exploring. Pass your days on an Insight Guides holiday amid glittering Buddhist wats and taking in the Old City’s architectural charms; then spend your nights in Chinatown, dining at street-side restaurants or joining the party on Khao San Road, one of the hippest destinations in town.


2. Chiang Mai

Visit northern Thailand for its lush greenery, forested mountains, traditional hill tribe communities and some serious outdoor pursuits. Chiang Mai offers a very different experience to the rest of the country with its cliff-top temples, sprawling national parks, elephant safaris and cultural charms, all of which you discover on Insight Guides' Chiang Mai Sustainable Trails tour. Visit Phra Singh temple in the Old City, Wat Chedi Luang and Wat Prasat, shop the city’s night market, meet local monks and visit nearby villages. There's definitely no shortage of things to do in Chiang Mai. 


3. Pattaya

Popular with Thai families and tourists alike, Pattaya is known for its wide, soft-sand beaches and stunning coral islands; not to mention the can't-miss restaurants and exciting nightlife. There’s a wide range of sporting activities available around here too, with great snorkelling, swimming and golf. Or spend the day at Nong Nooch Tropical Gardens for its fabulous gardens, Sky Walk, elephant rides and traditional Thai dances and shows. Experience all this and more on Insight Guides' Pattaya Sun trip.


Tourists snorkeling with exotic fishes near Chicken island, Krabi, Thailand. Photo: Shutterstock


4. Krabi

Krabi, located on the west coast of southern Thailand, is a relaxing spot for a Christmas break. It’s perhaps best known for its majestic limestone karsts that jut out of the water. It’s also the place to go for access to unspoilt beaches and turquoise waters, with amazing reef snorkelling in the Andaman Sea.Visitors should head inland and visit the area’s lush rainforest and waterfalls, or hop on a boat to Ko Phi Phi and Ko Lanta, both just a few hours away, both of which are included on Insight Guides' Krabi Discovery holiday. At night, enjoy top-notch seafood and a relaxed beach-bar vibe.


5. Ko Samui

Upscale and a little more luxury, Ko Samui is hard to beat for a winter getaway. A paradise popular with honeymooners and those looking to recharge, Ko Samui boasts heavenly beaches, colourful coral reefs, coconut plantations and rugged rainforest. And in addition to luxurious spas, fine dining and boutique resorts, there’s a happening bar scene. It's also just a short boat ride to the Full Moon parties of Ko Phangan, if that's your sort of thing. Otherwise, make the most of lazy days on the beach or head to Ang Thong islands for phenomenal diving and snorkelling.


Landscape bird eye view of Angthong National Marine Park Ko Samui. Photo: Shutterstock


Not found the holiday you were looking for? Discover all trips to Thailand perfect for your Christmas break here

Alternatively, let Insight Guides' local experts plan your winter getaway from start to finish: submit a trip enquiry online now

Want to hear from a previous traveller with Insight Guides? Kate shares her experiences from her tailor-made trip to Thailand

And if you still need a little persuasion... Thailand's top 5 infinity pools will have you packing in no time at all