Vacations are a must in your life to keep you energized in life, until the next one comes! We usually plan one or two vacations every year, either domestic or international.

My husband and I are water lovers, so most destinations we choose always have a water adventure. Keeping this in mind, after some research we discovered that Thailand has some amazing beaches and island tours, and so our destination was finalized - Thailand: The Land of Smiles.

Vacations are even more fruitful if you can catch up with any of your relatives.

Based out of Hyderabad, and most of our relatives in Mumbai, we decided to hop over to Mumbai by Indigo Airlines and fly to Thailand from there. Thanks to Thai Airways nonstop and convenient flights, our itinerary was finalized: Hyderabad -> Mumbai -> Bangkok -> Phuket -> Hyderabad.

So the beach clothes, swimming kits, DSLR and other vacation essentials were packed up and we were all set.

After spending a day at Mumbai meetings friends and relatives, we took a non-stop Thai Airways flight on our international destination– Bangkok.

The Suvarnabhoomi airport at Bangkok was sparkling, with several elements of Indian mythology, including the ‘Churning of the Ocean’, impressed us. Since it was just me and my husband, we had absolutely done no real planning apart from flight and hotel bookings, and decided to explore the country as it would present itself to us. Outside the airport, there were some tourist counters, where we bought a one day guided tour of Bangkok city for the next day.

We took the train from the airport straight near our hotel, where the famous Thai “Tuk-tuk” was promptly waiting for us to take us to the hotel. After a good night’s rest, we got ready for our Bangkok sightseeing and our tour guide was waiting for us in a cab outside our hotel.

We started with the magnificent Grand Palace, the guide explaining us about the history and the sculptures, as well as the most important aspect – Photo spots. After exploring the palace, it was time to visit and worship the heritage Thai temples – Wat Phra Kaew, Wat Pho (Temple of Reclining Buddha) along with a couple more.

After the tour, the guide took us to a vacation house, where we bought a one day Island package for Phuket.

Second day we were on our own and decided to explore the riverside. We took a boat tour across the Chao Phraya river, and visited the Temple of the Dawn – Wat Arun. Being the adventurous lot, we decided to be amongst the few people who climbed the steep steps of Wat Arun, and trust me, it was worth the risk. What magnificent views and photographs we were able to capture from atop Wat Arun, amidst a gentle cool breeze, truly a lifetime memory. We had been struggling for Indian food, and thankfully found a few Indian restaurants near Nana Stop.

What’s a vacation without shopping? With our tummies full, thanks to the good sky train facilities, we were able to visit the two famous shopping destinations of Bangkok – The magnificent Siam Paragon mall and the more affordable MBK@Siam. We shopped for a few hours making sure we got something for our families, before heading for our dream destination – Phuket. We had booked the wonderful Marriott Phuket for our stay.

Our day 1 at Phuket was another unforgettable day – Visit to Phi Phi Island by speed boat. The trip started with the stunning Maya Bay, where we got some magnificent captures and enjoyed swimming in the Andaman Sea. Then was the Monkey Beach, with pure white sand followed by the famous Phi Phi Island, where we enjoyed a delicious international lunch, custom made vegetarian, especially for us. After the lunch, we enjoyed a round of snorkeling in the emerald waters following by a relaxing sunbath at another island surrounded by beautiful green waters. During our return, a heavy storm approached, while we were still 30 miles into the ocean, and we had a lucky escape back into the mainland.

Day 2 at Phuket was a guided day tour to visit other famous attractions of Phuket – The Big Buddha on top of a mountain, Wat Chalong temple, and the mind blowing view-points – ‘Three Beaches’ being the best of the lot, while the evening was a relaxing one at the famous Patong beach followed by the enthralling Fanta Sea show.

Refreshed, satisfied and exhausted, we set back for our home, taking a non-stop Thai Airways flight from Bangkok to Hyderabad.