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If you want to witness and experience local life and interact with Thai people beyond the hotel-beach-bar-hopping tourist trail, try a cultural exchange trip with Andaman Discoveries.
This community-based tourism and sustainable development organisation is located on the Andaman Coast, a three hour bus ride north of Phuket, and originally grew out of the North Andaman Tsunami Relief fund.
Just a simple three-day homestay in one of the local villages will bring you closer to the people and culture than you could hope to achieve over a much longer trip along the usual tourist track. You’ll live with a local family and explore the village and its surroundings, seeing and participating in activities such as planting mangroves, designing batik, roasting cashew nuts, fishing and much more.
You can interact with the people, practising basic Thai with the adults, playing around with the kids, stuffing your belly with gorgeous food courtesy of your hosts – and finally find a moment to yourself to relax and watch a magnificent sunset on the local beach.
You’ll be supported by staff at Andaman Discoveries, who will arrange all transport, fully brief you on what to expect from your trip and supply a guide/translator who will accompany you on your visit to the village.
And, if you truly fall in love with the place, you could always sign up for one of the longer-term voluntary opportunities, teaching English at a local school or helping out at a local orphanage.
Find out more here: www.andamandiscoveries.comover 4 years ago