Are you looking for a visa-free vacation?
By Ashima Sethi
After two years of travel restrictions, it’s understandable that now that things are easing, the last thing any of us want to do is apply for visas to go on a much-needed holiday! Thankfully, Thai passport holders actually have a plethora of choice when it comes to picturesque destinations we can visit without too much additional paperwork. From family-friendly destinations to locales more fit for the adventurous traveller, here’s our list.
**The full list is extensive, this article only covers a handful.
CENTRAL AND SOUTH AMERICA
Thai passport holders can visit a long list of countries in these two regions, including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Panama, and Peru, so if you have time for an extended holiday and are up for adventure, definitely look into travelling around the continent. Highlights you can plan your trip around include Machu Picchu, a maze of stone walls and terraces in the Andes Mountains; the 300 waterfalls that make up Iguazu Falls in Argentina; Patagonia in Chile, home to the largest body of glaciers outside of the polar regions as well as the glistening blue waters of the Torres del Paine National Park (pictured above); the volcanoes of Ecuador, and much more!
How to get there: Flights average between THB 45k and THB 55k to Sao Paulo, Brazil with a stopover. The flight time is approximately 23 hours.
A tip: The continent is so vast that it is imperative to plan ahead, this includes all of your domestic travel too. Factor in things like seasons, changes in altitude, carrying local currency, and so forth.
Fiji is an archipelago in the South Pacific made up of over 300 islands, but its two major islands are Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, with the former home to the country’s capital, Suva. The country boasts plenty of palm-lined beaches, private island escapes, five-star resorts, and crystal clear waters that are brimming with coral reefs and marine life. In regards to cuisine, the local food is very healthy and crafted using local seafood, rice, spices, and fruits. With the sheer amount of activities available ranging from tanning on the beach to surfing, trekking, and getting a glimpse of the local indigenous culture, Fiji is actually an excellent choice for a family holiday.
How to get there: Flights average between THB 22k and THB 25k with transfers through Singapore. The flight time is approximately 15 hours.
A tip: Vanuatu is only a 2 hour flight away and can also be visited without a visa. Combine both destinations for a memorable vacation!
The largest archipelago in the world, Indonesia is home to thousands of islands, making it an ideal destination for those who love a beach holiday. The most popular island is Bali, which boasts picturesque beaches, cascading rice paddies, and incredible temples. This is followed by Lombok that is home to lush jungles, waterfalls, and the Gilli Islands off its West Coast— three tiny islands known for their white sand beaches and stunning coral reefs. The country also has plenty of national parks for the avid explorer, including the world-famous Komodo National Park, the only place where you can see Komodo dragons in the world; and the Bromo Tennger Semeru National Park, that is home to several volcanoes.
How to get there: Flights average between THB 4k and THB 6k direct to Bali. The fl ight time is approximately 4 and a half hours.
A tip: Bali gets very busy during certain months. It is recommended to opt for a vacation in Lombok during these times.
Georgia is among the top 20 safest countries in the world and offers plenty to do and see. The country is made up of diverse landscapes including deserts, coasts, and mountains, making it an ideal place for those who love to bask in Earth’s natural beauty. The capital, Tbilisi, is a melting pot of influences from Asia and Europe and is home to historical sites, cafés, cocktail bars, and lots of unique architecture. Kakheti is the country’s wine region, boasting plenty of vineyards tucked in valleys for wine tastings and affordable bottles. Other popular regions include Stepantsminda for mountain views, monasteries, glaciers, and hiking, and Gudauri, where you can enjoy paragliding, skiing, and snowboarding!
How to get there: Flights average between THB 23k and THB 27k with transfers through Turkey or the UAE. The flight time is approximately 13 hours.
A tip: Thai passport holders can stay in Georgia for up to a year visa-free, perfect for those who want to spend some time abroad.
Beyond being host of the FIFA World Cup this year, there are a multitude of reasons to make Qatar your next holiday destination. The country is a meeting in the middle between old-world hospitality and cosmopolitan sophistication and offers fun activities, awe-inspiring natural landscapes, and lots of museums, art installations, and preserved sites like the Zubarah Fort that is recognised by UNESCO. The country boasts several stunning beaches including the Inland Sea, Sealine Beach, and Katara Beach, some of which offer water activities such as kayaking, taking a boat ride, jetskiing, and more. Other things you can do include desert safaris, road trips, and even scuba diving.
How to get there: Flights average between THB 20k and THB 23k direct to Doha. The flight time is approximately 7 and a half hours.
A tip: For a taste of Doha and Qatar, you can see a lot in just 48 hours, making the destination a great choice for breaking up a longer trip.
If you’re looking for a getaway where you can relax, look no further than The Maldives. The epitome of luxury and tranquillity, more or less all resorts act as private enclaves perched on individual islands that are only accessible by seaplane. Moreover, many of these resorts boast over-water villas where you can wake up to views of the ocean and take a dip in its turquoise waters that are teeming with marine life such as corals, turtles, sharks, rays, and more. An ideal vacation spot for couples, this is a destination that off ers plenty of privacy and romantic experiences that encompass dining on the beach and underwater restaurants, among others.
How to get there: Flights average between THB 9k and THB 11k direct to Male. The flight time is approximately 4 and a half hours.
A tip: Many hotels offer all-inclusive, full-board, and half-board stay offers, which can help you with budgeting for your trip.
Another top destination for lovers of the beach is The Philippines. An archipelago with more than 7,000 islands in the Pacific Ocean, the nation has become synonymous with pristine beaches, emerald waters, stunning dive spots, and cascading rice terraces. Some of the most popular islands include Boracay and Palawan, the former being a hub of relaxation, restaurants, and nightlife; while the latter is best known for its boat tours, national parks, and watersports. Another stunning option is Cebu, which borders several tiny picturesque islands to explore. It is also known for its marine life, waterfalls, and karst rock formations. The Philippines is also home to several bustling cities where you can witness one of many festivals, mingle with the locals, and indulge in the cuisine.
How to get there: Flights average between THB 7k and THB 10k direct to Manila. The flight time is approximately 3 and a half hours.
A tip: There are no direct flights to the islands so make sure to factor in domestic travel via plane and ferries if you want to visit the isles.
There are endless reasons South Africa should be on your bucket list, from incredible natural landscapes spanning savannahs, mountains, and lagoons to its many vibrant cities, activities, and luxury escapes. Cape Town, one of the world’s most beautiful cities, straddles both the ocean and a range of mountains. Here you can visit Table Mountain for incredible views, spend time on the beach with penguins, and drink and dine on the waterfront. Of course no trip to SA is complete without seeing the diverse wildlife, whether that is during a stay at one of the famous game reserves, a day out whale watching, or even cage diving with great white sharks.
How to get there: Flights average between THB 26k and THB 36k to Cape Town with a stopover. The flight time is approximately 16 hours.
A tip: One of the most recommended things to do is to drive the Garden Route, which runs 200km through some of the country’s most breathtaking coastal scenery. Highlights include the picturesque town of Knysna, the Stellenbosch vineyards, and the Garden Route National Park.
An extremely safe destination, Taiwan is an island that has a rich cultural and spiritual heritage, top-tier local cuisine, beautiful landscapes, and a thriving arts and music scene. A great choice for foodies, Taiwan has a huge street food culture, making eating out super affordable. Once the sun sets, there are plenty of bustling night markets offering a huge variety of food and drink, which you can follow with a visit to an all-night karaoke bar, high energy nightclub, or a pub serving up craft brews. Beyond cuisine, Taiwan is home to a selection of national parks that have everything from mountains and volcanoes to valleys and even beaches. As a result, it’s a great country to do some hiking and enjoy the outdoors. If you’re a fan of design, Taiwan also boasts many museums, modern architectural landmarks, and incredible temples.
How to get there: Flights average between THB 6k and THB 9k direct to Taipei. The flight time is approximately 4 hours.
A tip: Taiwan is one of the most vegetarian-friendly places in Asia with over 6,000 vegetarian eating establishments across the destination! This is because many Taiwanese Buddhists follow principles that are close to veganism.
With something to offer all visitors, Turkey offers a holiday experience that marries together plenty of sightseeing, historical sites, once-in-a-lifetime experiences, and a vibrant restaurant and café culture. Istanbul, once the Grand Capital of the Byzantine and Ottoman empires, is filled with stunning monuments, delicious local food, and a diverse art, music, and cultural scene. During the summer, it is recommended to visit one of the coastal destinations such as Antalya or Bodrum, both of which are home to classical-era ruins, turquoise waters, and laid-back beaches. If you can, a visit to Cappadocia is what dreams are made of. A region of volcanic rock landscapes, there are picturesque villages carved into the hillsides making it a great place for hiking, horse riding, and of course, the famous hot air balloon tours.
How to get there: Flights average between THB 23k and THB 27k to Istanbul with a stopover. The flight time is approximately 12 hours.
A tip: Different destinations thrive during different months. Depending on when you choose to go, it is recommended to do some research as to which places would be best for summer vs winter travel.