Our new Travel Journals land in the shop on April 20 (mark your calendars!) and we can't wait to share them with all of you! The Travel Journals come in four colors, each inspired by a different destination around the world:
- Natural Kraft: Thailand
- Dusty Rose: Amsterdam
- Grey Tweed: Scotland
- Deep Blue: Greece
In anticipation of our Travel Journal launch, we're sharing travel stories, tips, and advice for all four of these destinations! First up, Promptly Journals founder, Jayne Swallow, answers prompts from our Travel Journal and shares the details of her trip to Thailand with her husband, Scott.
THAILAND TRAVEL GUIDE
Names of travelers:
Jayne and Scott Swallow
Trip taken in 2012
What inspired the trip and the destination?
This was our last chance to go somewhere awesome before we took off to law school and were weighed down by school loan debt. We wanted to go somewhere super foreign. I had a friend who went to Thailand the year before and totally got me set on the destination. After some research, we discovered that Thailand was the perfect place for Scott and I—it offered adventure for Scott, the beach for me, good food, and $7 massages!!!
The Phi Phi Islands. It's so worth taking that two-hour ferry out and I'd recommend staying there a few nights. They are so magnificent; unlike any islands I've ever seen. We took an island boat ride one afternoon and I couldn't fill my eyes more with the panoramas those coves and cliffs made.
Favorite shops you discovered:
The floating market near Bangkok. There wasn't necessarily a ton of stuff I wanted to buy (lots of touristy trinkets), however, the experience of cruising through the canals in a make-shift canoe/boat was amazing.
Most inspiring or memorable moment:
Riding, bathing, feeding and elephant for a day at the Patara Elephant Farm. This was the most amazing experience. This family farm has humanely found a way to give their elephants a good and healthy life. They let tourists pay to take care of their elephants for the day. You feed them, learn to ride them, walk them to their favorite swimming hole, SWIM WITH THEM, and bathe them. You leave with so much knowledge and love for elephants. They are the most endearing animal. Oh, and they had baby elephants running around that you could play with. I wanted to take one home!
Our cooking class in Chaing Mai. We started off in the open market in town where they had us gather all the fresh local ingredients. Then they taught us how to make coconut chicken soup, a curry of our choice, and a veggie dish. Guys... IT WAS SO GOOD! And it made me appreciate the flavors of Thai food so much more after I actually prepared and chopped the lemongrass, Thai basil, shrimp paste, etc.
Any funny/awkward moments or mishaps?
I got a spray tan right before we left for Thailand, and we rode the elephants the second day we were there. I didn't wear long pants on the elephant and it's rough skin rubbed off half of my spray tan on my legs! It was super awkward the rest of the trip to walk around with striped legs, ha ha.
What did you love about the local culture?
The Thai people were soooo nice. Scott and I were floored with how helpful and sweet they were. We kept saying that Thailand is a foreign country that would be fun and stress-free to bring our kids back to.
What advice would you give others going here?
Pay the money for the elephant farm but wear long pants. Get three massages per day and eat coconut ice cream four times a day. And whatever you do, take the time to go out to the islands!
Stay tuned all week for more Promptly Journals Travel Guides! And don't forget to mark your calendars for April 20 when our new Travel Journals land in the shop!