I’ve been in Thailand for just about 30 days. As my 30-day tourist visa nears expiration, all I can think is 30 just isn’t enough.

Six months ago and I’d have thought 30 would be good enough, and a full year ago, a 30-day trip in a single country would’ve seemed like a lifetime. In Thailand, I’ve hardly seen anything in 30 days. Yes, I’m moving slowly and I spent a fair amount of time catching up on some online stuff I’d avoided for a while. But still. I would’ve had to run from city to city to get to all the places I’d originally hoped to see. And while two or three days in a city might seem like enough, I can’t imagine only three nights in Bangkok.

And yet, I know I’m spoiled. At the very beginning of my trip, I cut short my time in Morocco for the sake of staying in Spain an extra week or two. I ended up with only 10 days in Morocco. Ten days, three cities. I’m pretty sure I spent 10 straight days just in Bangkok this month.

The only reason I’m pointing this out is to emphasize that it’s possible to travel in very different ways. On the same trip even. I’ve had quick trips and slow ones in the past 11 months, and there are benefits for both. Right now, I’m obviously in slooooow mode. Maybe because I’m tired; “traveling” for such a long time can get exhausting.

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  1. I absolutely agree with your point on travel time. Everyone travel’s at a different pace. Last week, my boyfriend and I went to LA for 5 days. I figured 5 days would be enough to see one city!!! Well, it absolutely was not. I mean we got to see Hollywood, Malibu, Santa Monica etc. but there were so many other things I wanted to do before I left. It really is crazy how fast time goes by when you are experiencing something new. You can always TRY to plan a perfect schedule, but something will come up along the way that will change the entire itinerary!

    • Adam

      I LOVE when something comes up and mucks up your whole schedule, but it ends up being the most fun thing on the trip. It’s those little moments that I like to travel for!

  2. Go as slow as you need to go Adam. I’m hoping we’re going to make it to Argentina because I don’t want to leave a location unless I’m good and ready.

    I’m super stoked that you brought up the traveling at various paces – so important for people to know.

    • Adam

      Yeah, it’s funny how I’ve done both slow and fast travel on the same trip. I guess when you’re gone for as long as I have been, though, it makes sense. But I don’t think I’d enjoy slow travel for forever either. It’s nice to do the touristy, quick-paced, run-from-city-to-city thing every now and then.

  3. Holgs

    30 days isn’t anywhere near enough for Thailand! Even worse is the 15 days that you get if you happen to cross a land border. I wonder if the government realizes how much tourism revenue they’re missing out on by forcing people to cut short their trips. For anyone planning a trip to Thailand, its worth applying for a visa before you arrive – this gives you 2 months in the country, and up until 31 March they’re still free.

    • Adam

      I’m pretty sure the government is aware, but I’m not sure what they’re thinking is. And they just reduced it to that recently from what I understand…

      Thanks for the tip about the free visas. Wish I’d done that…

  4. Anonymous

    Hey Adam,
    I didn’t know you were in Thailand! You certainly can’t see all of Thailand in 30 days! I’m going there for the third time, and I doubt I’ll be able to cover as much ground as I am hoping to. The two times in the past we’ve stayed for 3 or 4 weeks, and it is never enough. Almost my entire family on my dad’s side still lives in the Bangkok area. Three nights in Bangkok would definitely not suffice; good observation.

    You’re very right about the exhaustion of just “traveling.” My friend and I backpacked for 10 days up the northern coast of Peru right before our return trip to the US. We hit 4 cities in that short amount of time. It is hard to cut things out of itineraries, but it has to be done sometimes. My advice: just try to soak it all in. I can’t wait to hear about all your travels in Thailand. :)

    • Adam

      I totally understand why people come back here so many times. I know Thailand will be in my future again!

  5. Brigit

    Hey Adam,

    I think it’s so true what you said about how it’s possible to travel in very different ways; two people could travel to the same place and have completely different experiences because of this. I am heading to Rome in May for a three week trip- which right now sounds really long to me- but I know once I get there I’m going to feel just as you are now- needing more time! Thanks for sharing.

    • Adam

      Have a good time in Italy Brigit! Can’t wait to get there myself…

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