Our very own thailand digital nomad Holly explores Koh Chang
My name is Holly, the digital nomad who quit her 9-5 day job in the UK in search of freedom and adventure.
Trust me, I know just how lucky I am to work from wherever I want and i am fueled with the desire to see the world in all of its raw beauty as much as i possibly can. Of course, there are times when digital nomading takes a bit of perseverance, mostly when having to consider locations with internet reliability, but with good planning and organisation those things didn’t really become an issue in Thailand.
Having travelled to Thailand a couple of times before, I was familiar with the areas I could work from best and knew exactly the best spots to set up my office. Who needs an exotic laptop screensaver when I have the real view right in front of me?
It’s so obvious to me why Thailand tops the charts as a favourite destination for digital nomads; it really is a no-brainer. Affordable living, interesting culture, amazing food, fascinating natural beauty and of course plentiful resources for internet.
I began travelling to Thailand about 7 years ago and back then you wouldn’t be able to get wifi anywhere unless you visited an internet cafe.
How fast the world moves on; Today, Thailand is one of the few counties in the region that boasts an impressive internet speed of around 10 MBps (sometimes even better than my speed back home in Turkey!)
Due to the 7 hour time difference between Thailand and our UK virtual office, I decided to set myself a routine that worked best for me by working in the mornings before the scorching mid-day sun and again for a few hours in the evening.
Thailand is the best place for digital nomads
We arrived in the city of Bangkok, where almost every traveller begins their Thailand journey. Bangkok is actually rated as a top city for digital nomads due to the cost of living, internet speed and city size. I prefer to get out of the city as quickly as possible when I arrive in Thailand – It’s a case of been there and done that too many times for me but Bangkok does have its own charm and i’d recommend a first time nomad to definitely check it out for at least 2-3 days! I stopped over in the city for a day and night at the end of my south east asia trip – more on that later.
Koh Chang and surrounding Islands
Koh Chang and the surrounding islands are by far my favourite places in Thailand and where my fiance and I spent the majority of our time during our trip. The main island of Koh Chang is the second biggest island in Thailand so there were plenty of things to do and see.
Over the years i’ve been coming to Koh Chang, there’s definitely been a rise in tourism and the island isn’t as much of a secret anymore. The great thing about this island is that it’s a little cheaper and still a lot quieter in comparison to the more popular and well known islands of the south.
First thing to do…was to rent a motorbike and go explore some of the remote areas of the island (some of these areas i’m keeping a secret!)
The longer the island stays quiet and peaceful the better in my opinion, however, there does seem to be a big push lately to develop and promote the island further so it may not stay quiet for much longer.
Snorkelling and scuba diving is another activity I absolutely loved doing in the warm waters surrounding Koh Chang. This was such an amazing experience as the site is well known for its abundant marine life- If you’re really lucky you might even get to see a whale or two as they’re known to frequent these waters.
The best part about coming back to a place you have travelled a few times before is you already know other like-minded regular travellers on the island and of course, local thai friends too!
Everyday life consists of enjoying early morning swims, boat trips with friends, beautiful sunsets and jungle walks, of course, some hard work in between and then the occasional a beer or two to keep cool on hot humid evenings.
Those who know me know that I love animals and have quite strong views when it comes to animal cruelty. It’s now becoming more widely known that the mistreatment of captive elephants does happen, not just in Thailand but across South East Asia. The topic of elephant riding and elephant “sanctuaries” is a heated one. My advice is to educate yourself before you visit and do your research. There ARE legitimate sanctuaries out there where no riding or performing of tricks for tourists is allowed so If you want to see a happy content elephant, go to a legitimate sanctuary.
One night in Bangkok
After 3 months in Koh Chang, a 2 week trip to the Philippines and then a final 10 days back in Koh chang it was time to head to Bangkok before our flight home the next day.
A quick shop in terminal 21, Tuk-tuk drive around, a bit of work and then a decent night sleep in a nice hotel in Makkasan before our long flight to Turkey was the only agenda this time. Of course, Koh San road, bars, ping pong shows and all that fun stuff is out there if you want it – I’m just too damn old now!
This blog post would not be complete if I didn’t say it: the weather in Thailand is unreal. The country experiences a tropical climate consisting of three main seasons, scorching hot, warm and dry and of course the wet rainy season. The most popular and expensive time to go to Thailand is between November and March which is during the warm and dry season. These are the months i tend to go to Thailand. The hotter and wetter seasons can be the cheapest time of year to fly and also there is cheap accommodation to be had during these low season months.
There’s a reason why digital nomads come to Thailand, despite the increased tourism there are still beautiful and traditional experiences to be had here. You just have to get off the beaten path to find them sometimes.
There is no doubt that it’s almost effortless to work in Thailand comfortably. I mean what more could I ask for in a working environment than to wake up in my remote wooden hut, surrounded by the sounds of natural jungle life, sucking up the ambience of travelling all whilst being able to work and make money.
I just loved my time working in Thailand as a digital nomad
I really do believe that if you can get that work-life balance, life is just much more complete.
“Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life again”
Living the dream,