Thailand holidays have long been popular for Australians, and it's no wonder why.
With long stretches of beautiful beach, lovely temperate water and glorious sunny skies, it's easy to leave the stresses of 'real life' behind when you arrive.
Popular choices for holiday spots include Koh Samui and Phuket, so here are just a few reasons why these are great places to spend your time away.
Beach holidays in Thailand
If the hustle and bustle of big cities such as Bangkok isn't your thing, escape the masses to Thailand's world-famous beaches.
Phuket is its own island located in Southern Thailand. It's one of the most picturesque places in the country, beloved by visitors for its tall palm trees, azure skies and great atmosphere. Whether you're eager to swim, take a few nature hikes or simply curl up in the sand with a book, Phuket is a great place to do it.
Here, holiday-makers spend their days enjoying the beaches and all they have to offer, while at night there is plenty of choice too.
Phuket is full of party destinations for revellers who like to dance the night away, but there are a whole host of more subdued activities as well.
Travellers in search of a taste of luxury will love to relax at one of the beautiful hotels and resorts, perhaps indulging in a refreshing spa treatment or whiling the night away in a sophisticated bar or restaurant. Try the Boathouse on Kata Beach for a sensational dining experience, or Tung Ka Cafe at Rang Hill for a romantic atmosphere and beautiful views.
Phuket really does bring the phrase 'variety is the spice of life' alive, so rest assured you won't run out of things to do or see.
This island of Koh Samui is another great holiday destination, located south of the mainland. It's a bit smaller than Phuket, but that intimate atmosphere makes for some great memories. In terms of its proximity to other Thailand hot spots, Koh Samui is just over an hour's flight from the hub of Bangkok, so it's fairly easy to get to.
Visitors love the tropical climate, and a whole new selection of beautiful beaches that are sure to enchant anybody lucky enough to find themselves there.
It's a great place for classic beach activities such as snorkelling. The water's clear and pristine, meaning you can really get up close and personal with all the marine life - think plenty of fish and even more exotic creatures such as turtles and reef sharks. If you're eager to get a bit more adventurous on vacation, consider taking a diving tour. There are plenty of providers located around the island who can take you to some hot spots where you're practically guaranteed to have a close encounter with some sort of spectacular sea creature.
In addition to a range of beautiful beaches, Koh Samui offers plenty of green spaces. If you're keen for a game of golf, there are world-class courses with sweeping views where you can swing it out for a day or two.
Then there's the hiking. Stretch your legs with a walk to one of the island's famously beautiful waterfalls. Savour the ethereal atmosphere of Hin Lad and Namuang, two of the most impressive. If you want to see them at their pull potential, make sure you visit during or after the rainy season, which takes place from around September to March. That's when you will see these falls really cascade in stunning fashion.
The walks to both waterfalls are well sign-posted, and anyone with a moderate level of fitness and a good pair of walking shoes should be able to complete them. When you're all tired out from the walk, you can head straight back to the beach for a refreshing dip or a relaxing afternoon lounging on the shore.