Island hopping in Thailand: Tips for creating a Thai island hopping itinerary
With so many amazing Thai islands to choose from, it can be very overwhelming to create an island-hopping itinerary in Thailand. In this blog post, we will give you tips and advice you need for creating a Thai island hopping itinerary yourself!
Step 1: Choose your “go-to island”
There are so many Thai islands, it’s impossible to visit them all. The first step in creating a Thai island hopping itinerary is to determine which island you really want to visit. This way you can focus on a specific area of Thailand. There are islands off the west coast in the Andaman Sea and there are islands off the south and east coast in the Gulf of Thailand. Focus on one of these coasts at a time. There are multiple ways to determine your one go to island. You can for instance have an island in mind you wanted to visit for a very long time, because of photos you’ve seen from the place. You can also determine your go-to island based on the costs of going there, like we did. We bought some very cheap flight tickets from Kuala Lumpur to Phuket, which made Phuket the starting point of our Thai island hopping trip.
Step 2: Look at surrounding islands
Once you’ve determined your go-to island, you have to look at the surrounding islands that you’d love to visit. First look on Google Maps and then Google for photos of the islands to see which islands look interesting to you. Many islands have different things to offer. There are very remote and underdeveloped islands but there are also islands that are well-known for its nightlife. Google is your best friend here to help you understand the specific islands better.
Step 3: Decide the duration of your island-hopping trip
The duration of your island-hopping trip might already be determined for you (because of a specific number of vacation days or the duration of your visa) but if it’s not, now is the time to determine it. In general, we would say you’ll need 3-4 days on every island in order to really see and enjoy the island. But this also depends on what you want to do and see yourself. If you want to go on a few day trips, but also want to explore the island yourself, you’ll need more days. Bear in mind that getting from island to island can also take quite some time. Research the things to do on the islands of your choice and determine for yourself how long you want to stay on every island.
Step 4: Decide in which order you’re visiting the islands
Key for determining in which order you’ll visit the islands, is how easy it is to get from one to another island. Determine your first island on how easy it’s to get to the island from the mainland. Phuket, for instance, has an international airport, so it might be easy to fly there directly from another country. Make sure your last island destination is one with a good connection to the mainland as well. Determine the islands in between the first and the last stop on the ferry connections with each other. It’s the easiest when there are direct ferry connections available, so look for those.
We hope these four steps are helping you in making your own Thai island hopping itinerary. Make sure to check out our own island-hopping itinerary to see which islands we decided to visit in Thailand and whether we can recommend them!
Which Thai islands are on your list? Let us know in the comments below!
Be sure to check out more of our visual experiences on Instagram!
Thai island hopping itinerary: Phuket, Koh Yao Yai and Krabi