An awe-inspiring place, Thailand has something for everyone. If you’re an adventure junkie, you’ll probably find yourself SCUBA diving with sharks, or taking Muay-Thai kickboxing classes. If the wilder side of life isn’t your cup of tea, don’t despair – between Thai cooking classes, hiking to hidden caves, and the world’s most exotic beaches we’re confident you’ll find more than enough to keep you happy. As one of the most gay-friendly destinations in the world, Thailand is an opportunity to feel completely comfortable being yourself while experiencing a whole new side to life.
Thailand has that exotic, mysterious, exciting appeal to it. Just hearing the name “Bangkok” can send shivers down people’s spines, and the allure of the country’s jungles and mysterious culture is mesmerizing. Thailand is the Mecca of adventure, carefree living, and open-mindedness. There are fewer inhibiting rules or Western nonsense here, and the Buddhist zen-like culture makes the country one of the happiest places on earth.
Our 12-day trips have been designed to maximize your experience. Instead of rushing around in a panic trying to visit as many places as possible, we’ve specially chosen four locations that we know you’ll fall in love with. How are we so sure? Well, we’ve spent many years in this country tirelessly testing out beaches, bars, bungalows and a bit of booze just to make sure we can bring you the cream of the crop.
Check out the links to the left to delve deeper into the itinerary and more trip details.
Elephants, monkeys, massive palm trees, boat taxis, pineapple fruit shakes, beach bbqs and Thai massage are all elements of the experience in Thailand that make each moment so enjoyable. In a world that is changing so fast, Thailand is a beautiful reminder of a place where simple living can still be the key to happiness.
Another great thing about traveling in Thailand is that a little bit of money goes a long ways. A complete Thai (or Western) meal will normally cost $5 – $6. A beer at a bar or restaurant will cost $2. T-shirts are only $5 – $6! And every day in Thailand offers opportunities for some sort of life affirming adventure – like world class rock climbing, scuba diving, jungle trekking, swimming, boat trips, caving, tubing, and more. There are also Thai cooking classes, $8 massages, yoga classes, bamboo tattoos, temple visits, fire spinning, or just simply chilling out on a wonderful beach with a group of friends. As the Thais like to say – “up to you!”
Going on a Detours trip means that you can be involved in as many fun activities as you like…or as few as you like. If swaying in your hammock with a good book and letting the day roll by is what you’re in for, then so be it. Each day presents something new, so slow down and soak up the moment in a way that most Western people rarely get the chance to do.
January 5, 2019 to January 16, 2019 – USD $2660.00
** – Trip prices based on twin share. Traveling solo? We’ll match you up with another solo traveler at no extra charge, or just pay a $620 USD single supplement for your own room!
* – Costs in Thailand rise in peak season, therefore, our January departure is subject to peak season surcharge of $270 USD
Duration: 12 Days
Starts In: Bangkok
Ends In: Bangkok
Deposit: $500 USD
2 domestic flights (Roundtrip Bangkok to Southern Thailand)
Accommodations for your 12-day Detours experience**
All land and sea transfers between destinations
Bangkok welcome dinner and drinks
Bangkok City/Temple day tour
Cave and lagoon hike in Railay
Guided day tour of Ayutthaya
Day visit and tour with the elephants at Wildlife Friends Foundation
Group travel within Thailand
Knowledgeable and fun Detours leader
Detours Travel Guidebook
Over a decade of trip leading experience
most luches/dinners and drinks
activities outside of the ones listed above
international airfareOver a decade of trip leading experience
Don’t worry about getting chilly, Thailand is a tropical country and the areas that we travel in are warm day and night. High temperatures of 35C/97F, and lows of 23C/77F can be expected through most of the year. Even if it rains it’s usually in the afternoon, and these unlikely showers are a refreshing cool-down and make a great excuse to try out your favorite rain dance.
95% of Thailand’s population is Buddhist, which makes for a laid-back, friendly country full of good-karma seekers. Great people that love their food, their king, and of course their international visitors, you’ll be hard-pressed not to make local friends during your stay. While you’re there, consider learning a few words their language, “Thai”. (Not “Taiwanese”, by the way – that’s from Taiwan) We recommend starting off with “Sawat-dee-khap” (hello), “Khap koon khap” (thank you), and of course “Hat yoo tee-nai khap” (where’s the beach?)
Thailand is home to some of the most amazing food on the planet, and it’s cheap too! Detours doesn’t believe in limiting your choices by including meals at pre-decided restaurants as part of the trip package. Instead, we encourage you to explore all of the different restaurant options available to you. This way you can eat when you want, where you want, with whomever you want, and spend what you want! Your trip leader definitely has their favorite spots and will be excited to show you all of their favorites in each location, just check with them.
What to bring?
Our advice is simple. Pack your bag, then take half of those things out and leave them back home. It’s common to hear people wishing they’d packed less stuff, but we’ve never heard anyone complain that they didn’t bring enough. Thailand is an inexpensive country, meaning even if you realize you forget to pack some crucial item you can just pick it up on the trip for half of what it would have cost back home. Just make sure you’ve got the basics: speedos and sunscreen. Other than that, not too much else matters. More packing suggestions are contained in your “Pre-trip guidebook” which can be found on your “Your Trip” page after trip registration.
ATM withdrawal fees can really add up, and credit cards aren’t always accepted at shops and restaurants here, that’s why we suggest grabbing some Thai Baht before you arrive to Thailand (around 10,000 THB is a good amount to start with). Bring your regular ATM card and credit card for additional needs too though. 1000 Thai Baht is worth around $30 USD, so don’t go nuts if your dinner bill costs 200 baht. Relax –that’s about 6 bucks. Your 300 baht, hour-long full body oil massage on the beach? Yeah, that cost less than $10.
Tipping isn’t a native Thai custom, however, it’s become a part of what is expected from Westerners like us. We suggest tipping for services in a similar way as you would in North America; that is, if your dinner bill is 100 baht then we encourage you toss 10-20 baht in on top of that. That extra 30-40 cents is extremely appreciated by the Thai service staff.
We have pretty high standards when it comes to choosing our accommodations, and trust us, we’ve done plenty of room-sniffing, pillow-patting, and bathroom inspections to make sure we stay at quality spots. To be approved as a Detours accommodations provider, a guesthouse must: be locally owned (to support the local community), be in an amazing location (close to the beach and other hot spots), have air conditioning (you can thank us later), AND be gay-owned or gay-friendly. We won’t be staying in 5-star Ritz-Carltons but we also won’t subject you to anything we wouldn’t want to stay in ourselves. Clean, comfortable, well-located spots that’ll put a smile on your face, you can count on that! Check out our accommodations page for more detailed info on this.
All of our trip leaders are gay, and all certified leaders must undergo a rigorous training routine that includes deep-fried cricket eating, and impromptu dancing tests. Apart from these vital skills, we require our leaders to know their stuff really, really well. Underneath their fun and quirky facades, our guides are experts about all aspects of Thailand and especially the places we visit. Don’t hesitate to ask them to teach you some Thai or question them about a random statue you might see along the way. Their job is to help ensure that this is your trip of a lifetime by taking the hassle out of your trip and making sure you experience everything you came to Thailand for.
We do absolutely everything possible to avoid needing such a mundane awakening. A world without alarm clocks is one we want to be part of, and your “rise and shine” while in Thailand will come from the sound of crashing waves, an elephant trumpeting, or perhaps even the odd monkey jumping onto the roof of your bungalow.
Extending Your Trip
For many people, their 12 days in Thailand just isn’t enough time. If you’re lucky enough to be able to stay longer, or if you decide to quit your job and become a beach bum in Thailand for the rest of your life, we’d be happy to extend (or cancel!) your return flight. We’ve been all over South-East Asia, so don’t think twice about asking where to go or what to do after your Detours trip is complete.
Our Detours groups are run with a minimum of 4 travelers and up to a maximum of 15 travelers. Ages of group members vary but around 90% of our travelers are in their 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s. Whatever the age of the guys on our trips everyone’s already got something in common, an exciting new experience in a new country! Each group is led by a Detours trip leader who is there to ensure everything goes off without a hitch, allowing you to focus on having the time of your life!
A Little Bit About Modesty
As we’ve already mentioned, you’ll have a tough time finding a more open-minded and accepting country, and most people don’t have any issue at all with homosexuality. That said, the Thai are a modest people, and public displays of affection (whether gay or straight) are generally frowned upon. In respect for their local culture we usually suggest keeping your excitement and affection for your partner to more private locations.
No problem! Don’t worry, our trip will provide plenty of chances to meet great people both inside and outside of our group, including other solos. As far as your accommodations go, you’ve got two choices. We can either pair you up with another group solo member in a two-bed room, or you can have your own room for a reasonable surcharge.
Communicating with Home
Relax – we won’t keep you from updating your Facebook status the whole trip. Every hotel we stay at includes free Wifi and your trip leader can even help set you up with a local SIM card for your phone if you’d like to do that when you arrive too.
Thailand uses a “type A” and “type B” plug, the same as North America and several other places in the world. The voltage is 220V with 50 Hz frequency. These days, the majority of items that are plugged into an outlet are built to handle varying voltage and frequency levels, but just to be sure, we suggest checking your item for its accetable range.
Thailand is jam-packed full of opportunities to keep active, whether it’s excitement you’re looking for, cultural experiences, or checking out the stunningly unique flora and fauna. Listed below are just a few of these opportunities in each of the locations we visit. Our unhurried travel concept gives our travelers enough time to take advantage of as much (or as little!) as you like to make this your trip of a lifetime!
Day trips to Koh Phi Phi (Where “The Beach” was filmed) or Phangan (where “James Bond: Man with the Golden Gun” was filmed)
SCUBA diving (including a wreck dive to a sunken ferry)
White Water Rafting
Kanchanaburi Day Trip (Erawan Falls, JEATH museum, Bridge over the River Kwai)
Buddhist Temples (Wat Pho, Grand Palace…)
Very cheap shopping
Day trip to ancient temples (Ayuuthaya)
Observation desk at Baiyoke Sky Hotel (Thailand’s tallest building)
Khao San Road (Famous backpackers Mecca)
Chatuchak Market (huge open air market selling anything you can imagine)
Note that some of these activities are seasonal so there’s a slight possibility of an activity not being possibile during your trip.
We don’t like staying in smelly shacks on our vacations, and we’re pretty sure you don’t either! After working hard for your trip, you deserve an enjoyable, comfortable place to wind down at the end of your day. We put a LOT of time into finding the perfect accommodation for your trip so after sniffing around, fluffing pillows, and testing showers we have narrowed down our favorite properties that won’t disappoint. Check out our approved accommodation to get an idea of the types of places you can expect to lay your head during your Detours trip.
BANGKOK – Amara HotelM
Why we love this property:
Very modern design hotel
2 minute walk to famous night market and gay area
Friendly and helpful staff
Gorgeous rooftop infinity pool
Immaculately clean rooms
RAILAY – Bhu Nga ThaniM
Why we love this property:
Modern contemporary design
Beautiful swimming pool
Quiet area amongst the palms
Incredibly friendly local staff
Immaculately clean rooms
PHUKET – The NapM
Why we love this property:
Just a few steps to the beach
Cool, chic, contemporary decor
Clean, private swimming pool
Incredibly friendly local staff
Immaculately clean rooms
5 minutes walk to the gay street
As you’ve probably heard… Thailand is pretty cheap! Your personal spending on the trip will include the costs for your food, entertainment, and shopping. We recommend that you budget $650 – $850 for all of your expenses during the trip.
The low end of $650 budgets for eating all meals at restaurants, going shopping, and doing activities, but it is for a more budget conscious traveler.
$850 on the other hand is for someone who plans to be more relaxed with their spending, with shopping and taking part in most activities.
We must mention that there are also travelers who spend even much more than $850, but the bulk of that spending would come from spending extravagantly or shopping to the extreme!
47 Elizabeth Bay Road
Elizabeth Bay NSW
02 8667 3336