suggestions for our Thailand Tiger, Elephant, and Cultural Tour
Clothing and Packing
For the one night we are in Bangkok I will bring casual slacks
and a button down shirt. I always suggest that people bring
are comfortable, designed to walk in for long distances, that
have open toes, and are thoroughly broken in. However, in Thailand
you will be taking your shoes on and off every time you enter a building,
so flip flops or some type of sandal are imperative if you don’t
want to get really frustrated at taking your shoes on and off and
tying and untying them dozens of times every day.
My shoe wear of choice for the past several years has been a
Keene closed toe water sandal and a sturdy Columbia Birke trail
fact I am now wearing pair number 7 of the Columbia trail shoes.
I always carry a fleece top for on the airplane, but I certainly
don’t expect to need it once I land in Bangkok. In November
to January there could be some short periods of time where that
fleece would be handy to have.
My wardrobe is now made up primarily of fabrics that are hi-tech
quick drying so that I can wash them in a sink or tub and wear
them several hours later. I also have at least one set of comfortable
cotton clothing which is the coolest feeling cloth to wear. Denim
has no place in my packing. It is heavy, dries too slow, soaks
perspiration and in general just doesn’t suit my travel style.
One pair of denim pants might weigh as much as 3 or 4 pair of quick
drying nylon pants.
For working at the temple, choose clothes that are grey, brown,
green, or blue. Do NOT wear any bright colors such as pink, yellow,
during your work time. A note about color in clothing. Dark colors
such as black and navy blue will feel extra hot when you are
out in the searing Thailand sun. I suggest those for evening
gets dirty too easily on an adventure trip. Yellow turns you
into a giant daisy and all the insects within sight will come
or hover around your brightly colored yellow blouse or shirt.
Except for the multitude of tropical Hawaiian shirts that I habitually
my wardrobe is primarily made up of mud brown and light gray
colored fabrics. Dull, but practical when outdoors in the tropics.
For riding the elephants bring something you can go into the
water in. Because we ride bareback, if wearing shorts the elephants
hairs might prickle your thighs.
For women especially, when visiting temples you will be expected
to cover your shoulders, to not be wearing shorts or short shorts
and to not have your breasts too exposed. Some women get around
these temple and government building restrictions by carrying
cloth sari in their carryon or daypack and they just slip into
that before entering one of these locales that has dress requirements.
Since we will be walking across the border at Tachiliek into
Myanmar a backpack will be easier for you to handle than a piece
But a roller bag will work for most situations without using
too much energy.
My advice is to pack as little as possible. "Lightweight" and "Compact" are
two words that you should keep in mind. You will be carrying your
own luggage on this adventure, we don’t have porters or baggage
handlers like some of the large bus style tours have.
A small daypack is convenient for carrying valuables, electronics
and things like a sari cover up, sunscreen and so on when we
are out and about during the day. A purse is not so convenient
easier to forget or lose.
Articles of Daily Use
A good pair of sunglasses, a shade hat, mosquito repellent and
sunscreen are essential. Toothbrush, basic toiletries, anti-bacterial
or gel, lip balm, Neosporin and a few bandages or first-aid items
you may need should be included. If you have to take regular
prescription medicines, be sure to bring adequate supplies for
your trip. Bring
more than enough, not less. You will have extreme difficulty
replacing prescription drugs if you run out. Some antibiotics
over the counter, but I have learned that USA doctors prescribe
cutting edge medications that might not have found their way
to the Thailand
Items such as shaving cream, razor blades, deodorant, dental
floss, tampons and contact lens solution are generally available
cities, but when on a tour with a lot of activity and not too
much free time, such as our tour, the time to find these things
a challenge. 7-11s are found everywhere in the big cities of
Thailand. Sometimes even two on the same block.
Remember to pack your camera and spare memory and batteries.
Electrical power is 240 V. not 120 Volt like in North America.
If you bring
an adapter to convert your three prong plugs to two prong plugs,
they might work in most of the outlets. NOTE: usually electronic
chargers are able to use either 120V and 240V power. Read the
fine print on each piece of equipment to be certain. Hair driers
NOT work in Thailand if bringing from the USA, but will burn
out from the higher voltage. A battery operated alarm clock is
so you can get up on time. Wake up calls are sometimes unreliable
in some of the places we will stay. I always carry a pen and
a notebook to keep notes plus reading glasses & spare eyeglasses. Belt-
- -I recommend a money belt or pouch to carry large currency. We
don’t have a safe available for valuables. I wear a waterproof
divers style watch all the time so that I never have to worry about
getting it wet.
Last but not least, DO NOT FORGET your passport and airline tickets!!
About mosquito prevention and protection:
Bring DEET repellent 40% solution or higher spray. Walmart sells
small pen sized dispensers in their camping section for around
$1 - $2 that carry enough spray for two or three days. 2 or 3
small containers should be enough for our 9 day trip.
I suggest treating some of your clothing with an insecticide
called pyrethrin. You can find this in sporting goods stores,
REI and in
home and garden stores. Follow the directions for treating your
clothing. What this does is help minimize mosquito bites through
When going out at night, such as to dinner I generally wear long
pants and long socks, not ankle socks because of mosquitoes.
Repellent works, but it is not 100% effective.
What clothing I might actually place in my pack for the 9 days
4 underwear, 4 T-shirts, 1 long pant, 2 short pant, 1 swim trunks,
3 pair ankle socks, 2 pair long socks, Columbia trail shoes,
Keene sandals, a light jacket, 1 or 2 button down tropical patterned
shirts and perhaps a long sleeved shirt because mosquitoes always
on the elbows while I’m eating dinner. Everything except
the tropical shirts will be made from hi tech quick dry fabrics.