Welcome to my 3 week Thailand itinerary!! This is my absolute favorite destination in Southeast Asia. It has an amazing culture, food, nature, and spirituality. Use this as a rough guide and make your epic journey your own. We will cover Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Krabi, Koh Samui, and Koh Phangan, with a mix of urban adventures, rural escapades, island hopping, and temple visits.
Thailand is a land of contrasts that boasts bustling cities, lush jungles, stunning beaches, ancient temples, and warm hospitality. It’s a place where you can ride a tuk-tuk in Bangkok’s chaotic streets, hike to hill tribe villages in Chiang Mai’s mountains, rock climb in Krabi’s limestone cliffs, snorkel in Koh Samui’s clear waters, and dance at a full moon party in Koh Phangan’s beach. All in the same month!
The best Thailand itineraries are designed to give you a taste of Thailand’s best experiences. While also allowing you to customize it to your preferences and interests. Whether you’re a solo traveler, a couple, a family, or a group of friends, you’ll find something that suits your style and budget.
So, pack your bags, grab your passport, and let’s dive into this wonderful culture and explore for three weeks in Thailand!
Things to get before starting your 3 week Thailand itinerary
The Best 3-Week Thailand Itinerary for an Amazing Trip Abroad
Do you need to Visa to visit for a 3 week Thailand itinerary?
For most people entering Thailand for less and 30 days do not need a visa. As an American I was granted 45 days on arrival. I have gotten a visa on arrival every time I visit, with no issue or payment needed at all. Check here the offical Thia Embassy website to see your visa countires requriments.
3 Weeks in Thailand Budget
Before you travel around Thailand in 3 weeks you need to make sure you have a good budget in mind. Keep in mind you need to include food, water, drinks, nightlight, tours, day trips, souvenirs, planes, buses, and grab rides.
The budget for a three-week Thailand itinerary can vary depending on your travel style, accommodation choices, activities, and food preferences. However, here’s a general breakdown of the costs you can expect:
Stay, Food, Transportation, & Activities for Three Week Thailand Itineraries
- Accommodation: The cost of housing in Thailand is always affordable. But can vary depending on your preferences. You can find budget guesthouses and hostels for as little as $10-$15 per night, mid-range hotels for $30-$50, and luxury hotels are still affordable for around $100.
- Food: Thai street food is affordable and delicious, and you can find a meal for as little as $1-$2. If you prefer to dine in restaurants, you can expect to pay $5-$15 for a meal. Western food and fine dining restaurants are a bit more expensive. You can get a full meal with drinks and spend about $20 per meal.
- Transportation: Renting a scooter is the most popular way to travel around Thailand. If you are not into that vibe next are Tuk-tuks and taxis. Grab, Maxim, or Bolt are the best ride-sharing apps. You can expect to pay about $2-$7 for a short ride. The downfall of a car is that you will sit in more traffic than a bike. Pro tip- downland Grab BEFORE you get to Bangkok, and put in your banking information.
- Activities: The most expensive part of your trip will be the entrance fees to popular attractions like temples and national parks. These fees can range from $1-$10 depending on what you like to do.
Activities like cooking classes, elephant sanctuaries, and island hopping tours can cost anywhere from $30-$100 or more. It is best to book them now so you can budget better for your trip.
Overall, a budget of around $1,500-$2,000 per person (excluding international flights) should be a good start for traveling around Thailand for 3 weeks. Assuming you go with affordable accommodation, local food, and a few activities.
Best Ways to Travel Thailand in 3 Weeks
So this is kind of personal, and depends a lot on your budget, and how spontaneous you want to be. There is a great site called 12go.asia that will help you plan out your movements for your Thailand travel itinerary 3 weeks.
There are long overnight buses to take from Chiang Mai to Krabi, or Bangkok to Chiang Mai. These will take up more of your time during your 3 week travel itinerary Thailand but will save you some money.
A quick way to travel is with domestic flights which can cost anywhere from $10-$80. The sooner you book the better the price is.
Long-distance buses can cost around $10-$20, you can book these buses online before you come, but I have found it better to find a little “travel booth” and just ask them what they have available. In most places, wherever you rent your bike from should be able to help you.
The same methodology goes with booking your boat tickets. You can book them before or do it when you get islands. I have done both and the prices seem a bit cheaper in person, but when you book online you have a sense of mind that it is all done.
See Bangkok in 4 days
We will start your 3-week Thailand itinerary from Bangkok. Plan to spend 4 days here to really get the feel for everything. Bangkok is amazing and you will love the feeling of this giant city.
Day 1 in Bangkok: Arrival and Exploring the City
- After arriving in Bangkok, check in at your hotel and freshen up before heading out to explore one of the biggest cities in the world! I always take a grab from the airport. If you are flying into BKK the Grab pickup station is on level two where all the taxis meet, you cannot miss it. You can also book a private pick-up, which I have also done a few times and can recommend.
- Start with a visit to the Grand Palace, which is located in the heart of Bangkok. The palace is the official residence of the Kings of Siam and includes several buildings, temples, and courtyards, all adorned with intricate and colorful decorations.
- Next, visit Wat Phra Kaew, the most important Buddhist temple in Thailand, and home to the famous Emerald Buddha. The temple is located within the grounds of the Grand Palace and is a must-visit attraction in Bangkok.
- After exploring the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew, take a walk around the nearby Rattanakosin Island. The island is home to several other historic sites, such as Wat Pho, the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, and Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn. If you wanted to book a temple tour, this one comes highly recommended.
Day 2 in Bangkok Boat Rides
- Start the day with a leisurely breakfast at your hotel, and then take a boat ride along the Chao Phraya River. The river runs through Bangkok and is an excellent way to explore the city’s sights and sounds from a different perspective. Book a tour for a historic boat ride!
- Along the way, you can stop at Wat Arun and Wat Pho, and also visit the famous Wat Kalayanamit, a temple located on the Thonburi side of the river.
- In the evening, head to the famous Khao San Road. which is a vibrant and bustling street famous for its street food, shopping, and nightlife. Try some of the local specialties, such as Pad Thai, Som Tam, and Mango Sticky Rice.
Bangkok Day 3 Markets Day
- Start the day early and visit the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, which is located about 100 km southwest of Bangkok. The market is famous for its canals, wooden boats, and vendors selling fresh produce and local delicacies. This guided tour will take you to the floating market, as well as the popular trail station market!
- After returning to Bangkok, spend the afternoon shopping at the Chatuchak Weekend Market. This is the largest open-air market in all of Thailand. You will find a wide variety of products. From new and used clothing, the cutest accessories, home decor souvenirs, street food, and even antiques. It’s a great place to shop to grab your loved ones’ authentic gifts.
Day 4 Bangkok to Chiang Mai
Today is a travel day, so I always like to leave those days light. Grab some local food or splurge and order grab straight to your hotel room and just take it easy before your travel day. To get to the airport or bus station, I always book a grab. Do not let them tell you to pay the tolls, or that you have to use the meter.
Where to stay in Bangkok
- Yaks House Hostel– This is one of my favorite hostels in Bangkok. The rooms are extra clean and spacious. Their common area is perfect for Digital Nomads. It is centrally located near the best Wats and the river and very affordable.
- Apartment near BKK – This beautiful apartment building has a bit outdoor pool and all the luxuries you are looking for. And it can sleep up to 4 people, making it very affordable.
Chiang Mai 4 days on Your 3 week Thailand itinerary
Your second stop for your Thailand travel route 3 weeks in Chiang Mai. This is a northern mountainous town and is the second biggest city in the Kingdom.
It has an amazing digital nomad and SEO community with plenty to keep you entertained. There are also plenty of hikes around this beautiful city if you want to get out into the nature of things.
After Chiang Mai you go to Koh Samui, here you will find all the best ways to get there. I did a bus and then a ferry, then another bus.
Day 5 Chiang Mai – Wat Tours
- Start the day by visiting Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, which is one of the most important temples in Chiang Mai. It is located on top of a mountain, the temple offers stunning views of the city and its surroundings. To get there, you can either take a Songthaew (red truck), motorbike, or car service.
- After visiting Doi Suthep, head back to the city and explore the Old City in Chaing Mai, which is surrounded by a moat and includes several temples and historic sites.
- In the old city you will see Wat Chedi Luang, which was built in the 14th century and was once the tallest building in Chiang Mai. The temple houses the famous Emerald Buddha statue, which is similar to the one in Bangkok’s Wat Phra Kaew.
- In the evening, head to the Chiang Mai Night Bazaar, which is a lively market filled with food stalls, souvenir shops, and entertainment.
Chiang Mai Day 6 – Cooking Class & Tribal Villages
- You cannot go to Thailand and not take a cooking class. Here you will learn how to make some of the most popular Thai dishes, such as Tom Yum soup, Pad Thai, and Green Curry. There are several cooking schools in Chiang Mai, and most classes include a visit to a local market to buy ingredients.
- After the cooking class, visit some of the tribal villages around Chiang Mai. Some super popular ones are Bo Sang, which is famous for its handmade umbrellas, and San Kamphaeng, which is known for its silk weaving and pottery. You can also visit the Elephant PooPooPaper Park, where you can learn how to make paper from elephant dung.
Day 7 Chiang Mai- Elephant & Sticky Waterfall
- Now that you are familiar with elephants it’s time to take a day trip to one of the elephant sanctuaries in the nearby hills. These sanctuaries gives you a chance to interact with elephants in a responsible and ethical way, without riding them or using any kind of force. You can feed the elephants, give them a bath, and observe them in their natural habitat.
- After the elephant sanctuary, take a jungle trek to see the sticky waterfalls. These are some of the most unique waterfalls in the world!
Art & Night Market Day 8 -Art & Night Market
- Start your day off right at one of these amazing cafes in Chiang Mai! Then it is time to go out and see the art culture around the city!
- Visit some of the art museums in Chiang Mai, such as the Museum of World Insects and Natural Wonders, the Lanna Folklife Museum, and the Art in Paradise 3D Museum. These museums offer a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage and natural beauty of Northern Thailand.
- This is your last night so head out on the town to check out all the best bars and nightlife in Chiang Mai. There are all types of places to explore. Local beer gardens, weed clubs, and even family-friendly bars! Just out the list, and plan your night out!
Day 9 Chiang Mai to Krabi
Loose ends, sleep in, and travel to Krabi! Do not forget to stop by these amazing 420 shops in Chiang Mai while you are visiting to get the most out of your 3 week Thailand itinerary.
Where to stay in Chiang Mai While you Travel Thailand 3 weeks
- Chiang Mai Orchid Hotel– this is one of the prettiest hotels in Chiang Mai. There is an outdoor pool, fitness room, a breakfast buffet, and it is centrally located.
- Best Hotels in Chiang Mai – Here is a list of the 15 best hotels for all budgets in Chiang Mai. Happy Traveling!
Krabi 3 Days South Thailand Itinerary 3 weeks
Krabi is where you will start the beach part of your 3 week Thailand holiday. And let me tell you, the beaches here are incredible. I have already made a 3-day itinerary to Krabi, so I will link it here and you can follow that way!
This is one of my favorite cities to visit in Thailand. I stayed here an entire month and did not get bored for one minute.
Where to stay in Krabi
Be sure to check out these amazing beach hotels in Krabi.
6 Days of Island Hopping in Thailand 3 weeks
The first island to visit on your 3-week Thailand tour is Koh Samui. They are known to have some of the best beaches for snorkeling, swimming, and relaxing. Plan to spend about 2-3 days here exploring.
The best area to stay in Koh Samui is Chaweng Beach. This is the most popular area and the biggest beach.
There are plenty of restaurants with amazing views, as well as beach clubs to visit during the day. Plus, the nightlife here is amazing, and yes they are home to the famous full moon party. You could always plan your Thailand three-week itinerary around the moon cycle, but chances are no matter where you are for the full moon, there will be a party.
Click here to find the best transfer ferry boat company from Koh Samui to Koh Phangan grab a ticket before you go, it is the best way to ensure you get on the ferry when and where you want!
Day 13 in Koh Samui – Beach & Waterfall Tours
- Start the day by visiting one of the beautiful beaches on Koh Samui, such as Chaweng Beach or Lamai Beach. These beaches offer white sand, crystal-clear water, and a variety of water sports and activities.
- After the beach, head to one of the nearby waterfalls, such as Na Muang Waterfall or Hin Lad Waterfall. These waterfalls offer a refreshing dip in the cool water and are surrounded by lush jungles and natural scenery.
- In the evening, head to Fisherman’s Village, which is located on Bophut Beach. This charming village offers a variety of restaurants, bars, and shops, and is a great place to experience the local culture, cuisine, and nightlife, and there is a night market to explore as well.
Koh Samui Day 14 Island Trip!
- Take an island tour and explore some of the nearby islands, such as Koh Tao or Koh Larn. These islands offer some of the best snorkeling and diving in Thailand and are known for their colorful coral reefs and chilled-back attitude.
- In the evening you can relax at one of the restaurants in Koh Samui on the sea, or head to the Chaweng Night Market and Walking Street.
Day 15 in Koh Samui – Temple Tours
- Your first mission for today is to visit some of the temples on Koh Samui. The most popular is Wat Plai Laem or Wat Khunaram. These temples offer beautiful architecture, ancient relics, and a glimpse into the local culture and traditions.
- After visiting the temples, head to the Big Buddha! He is located up on a hill overlooking the sea. This giant Buddha statue is one of the most iconic landmarks on Koh Samui and offers stunning views of the island and its surroundings.
- Next up is food and dancing time! Head to one of the beach bars or clubs and enjoy the vibrant nightlife of Koh Samui. Chaweng Beach and Lamai Beach are known for their lively party scene and offer a variety of options for all tastes and budgets.
Where to Stay in Koh Samui –
- Crystal Bay Beach Resort–In the Lamai part of Koh Samui with wonderful ocean views.
- The CHESS Samui Hotel– Is centrally located near all the best things to do in Chewang. Like Fishermans island the Chewang beachfront.
Last Stop Koh Phangan
Koh Phangan is known as one of the biggest party islands in Thailand. This is why I put it as your last stop on your 3-week trip to Thailand. There is nothing worse than wasting your days on vacation! If you are not a partier you can still get so much out of this island.
There are plenty of yoga and meditation retreats, stunning waterfalls, delicious food, and plenty of nomads. After Koh Phangan, you should go to Bangkok to fly back, it is usually always cheaper to do a round-trip ticket to and from Bangkok.
Koh Phangan Day 16: Beach Day!
- Arrive at Koh Phangan and check into your accommodation.
- Now that you are ready to go head to the east coast to explore the beaches. Some of the more popular are Chaloklum, Bottle Beach, and Mae Haad. Bring some snacks, plenty of water, and get ready to and soak in the tropical vibes. Or come empty-handed because you will find rental chairs all over the place in Koh Phangan.
- After you are day in the sun ready head to Thong Sala Night Market and sample local street food, such as grilled seafood, Pad Thai, and mango sticky rice. They also have plenty of other dishes, like fried chicken wings, yummy potatoes, and even corn dogs! One of the more popular dishes for dessert is Mango Sticky Rice.
- Now it is time to relax before your island trip tomorrow. You will need some sleep to get the most out of your 3 week Thailand itinerary!
Island Day 17 in Koh Phangan: Island Hopping
- Go on a day trip to Ang Thong Marine Park, a group of islands with stunning beaches, lagoons, and viewpoints. You can book a speedboat or a long-tail boat tour from Thong Sala or Haad Rin, and enjoy snorkeling, kayaking, and hiking.
- Return to Koh Phangan and catch the sunset at one of the west coast beaches, such as Haad Yao or Haad Salad.
- For dinner try the Bambu – Jungle Lounge. They stay open late until 11 pm and it is right on the Haad Yao beachfront.
Day 18 in Koh Phangan: Wats & Beach Bars
- First up visit the beautiful Wat Phu Khao Noi. This is a stunning temple up on a hill that offers panoramic views of the Koh Phangan and the sea. To get there you can either hike or drive to the temple to admire the golden Buddha statue and the colorful murals.
- Next, it is time to chill at one of the island’s beach bars. The most popular are the weed Amsterdam Bar, Coral Bungalows, and the epic Eden Garden. Enjoy drinking fruity cocktails, and a few Changs while listening to the live music. Most nights you will be able to see fire shows performed by local and talented artists.
- If you can experience the Full Moon Party. This is a monthly beach party that attracts thousands of visitors from around the world. The most popular beach to check out is Haad Rin Beach. Here you will DJ spinning the hottest music, young and old dancing the night away wearing neon body paint. Book a private transfer to stay safe!
Day 19 in Koh Phangan: Relax or Explore Nature
- Relax at your accommodation after the night before! Then eat up and rent a scooter to explore the island’s hidden spots. There is so much to do in Koh Phangan that often gets overlooked because of the big party scene. You have to check out the waterfalls, hikes, temples, or remote villages.
- The highest peak in Koh Phangan is the Khoa Ra, it is a channeling hike but will give you the best views of the entire island. Than Sadet Waterfall is also one of the top attractions in Koh Phangan. You can swim, hike, or relax under the cascades. Phaeng and Wang Sai waterfalls are also worth a visit!
- Depart Koh Phangan and head back to Bangkok to finish up your 3-week tour of Thailand!
Where to stay in Koh Phangan on Your 3 week Thailand itinerary
- Absolute Beachfront Resort– the name says it all here. The adorable beachfront hotels have everything you need. The Beachfront resort is located near the port town of Thong Sala and is within walking distance to Bottle Beach!
- Loyfa Natural Resort– This is one of the best hotels in Koh Phangan for privacy and beach views only. Book yourself a private villa for the best vacation ever!
Bangkok for 2 More Days Three Week Itinerary Thailand
Your 3-week Thailand holiday is almost over as you go back to Bangkok. By this time you may need a rest day before trekking back home. This is a great time to explore your neighborhood and just get lost in the quiet chaos of the Bangkok streets.
Circle back up to the first couple of days of your Thailand trip plan and see if you missed anything you wanted to do. Here is a 24-hour Bangkok guide if you must do something on your last day! Please enjoy and come back to reference your favorite things on my 3 week Thailand itinerary!