Fresh vegan springrolls at Imm Aim vegetarian cafe Chaing Mai Thailand - Charlie on Travel

Thailand’s Growing Raw Food Movement

The raw food movement, or raw foodism, is a massively growing trend. My Instagram feed is always crammed with raw food bloggers posting images of incredible raw cakes, spiralised veggies and superfood salads, which I admittedly go a little wild over.

Raw foodism refers to a diet with a high consumption of uncooked, unprocessed foods. A raw food diet mainly focuses on eating lots of raw fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds, but interpretations of what else is considered part of a raw food diet varies.

You hear a lot of buzz about raw food diets from places like California, Vancouver, Australia and New Zealand’s North Island, but far less so over in Asia. While travelling in Thailand though, I unexpectedly discovered that the raw food movement is slowly starting to set down roots over there too.

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Sleepless in Bangkok – Why It’s so Hard to Find Budget Accommodation and Where to Stay

Wondering where to stay in Bangkok without breaking your budget? Well, so were we.

While the cost of travel in Thailand can easily be kept on the cheap side, Bangkok is unsurprisingly the most expensive city. The majority of travellers to Thailand will arrive or depart from Bangkok and spend a few days in the city at least. Backpackers can grab a dorm bed for a little as £3 and double rooms in hostels can go for as low as £10 near Khaosan Road.

For the budget conscious traveller who doesn’t want the loud party scene that dominates the Khaosan Road area, finding budget accommodation in a more desirable location takes a bit more hard work. Luke and I set an accommodation budget of £20 per night for two, which is really the upper end of budget for Thailand, and went from there.

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Rocky outcrop on koh samet

Rocky Outcrops and White Sand Beaches on Koh Samet

With a couple of days to spare in between traversing the neon lit expanse of Bangkok and heading to the green mountain city of Chiang Mai in the north, we pulled out a map to locate an island not too far from Bangkok.

After some flash research, we ended up opting for Koh Samet, an island known for it’s close proximity to Bangkok, it’s silky white beaches and clear waters, and it’s – as we discovered – dubious National Park status.

We only had three days on Koh Samet, and though we prefer to travel slowly as often as possible, I’ve got to say that unless you’re keen to just kick back on a white sand beach for a week, then Koh Samet can be easily covered in that time.

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How Much Does it Cost to Travel Thailand on a Budget? [Infographic]

It’s no secret that Thailand is a favourite destination for backpackers wanting to pitch up on a beach-side hammock, but you don’t need to be a backpacker to keep the cost of travel in Thailand low.

If like me and Luke you’re not into the backpacking scene but are still budget conscious, it’s easy find low cost double rooms, eat good food and enjoy cultural activities all day long. We didn’t keep our costs quite as low as in Vietnam, but Thailand has still come out as one of the most affordable places we’ve travelled.

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Rice paddies

Ecotourism in Thailand: Planting Seeds at Phu Ruea Ruean Mai Rice Farm

If you spend any time at all in Thailand, or any Asian country, you’ll immediately notice that rice is essential to the local diet. Many people, especially from the older generations and in the countryside, eat some form of rice three times a day. Having spent so much time in Asia, Charlie and I have also become a little bit addicted to rice, and quite happily eat it seven days a week, and sometimes for breakfast too!

So naturally I was keen to visit Phu Ruea Ruean Mai resort, an organic rice farm, and learn more about how some Thai people are trying their hand at ecotourism. The rice farm is run by Nu Dee, a young, well-educated woman from Bangkok, and her mother. Nu Dee is one of a small handful of people bucking the urban migration trend, and she argues that there’s more to life than sitting at a standstill in Bangkok’s notorious traffic jams.

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Growing a Travel Blog Offline – Why You Need Travel Blog Business Cards

When I started Charlie on Travel, like many other travel bloggers I really just wanted to reach an audience who appreciated my writing and connect with like-minded travellers, bloggers and readers. As time went on, my niche as a sustainable and slow travel blog really started to come out and my readership began to grow much more than I had ever expected.

My travel blog was becoming more than just a bit of writing on the side for me. It wasn’t just a journal about my travels – it was my portfolio for finding freelance work, a kind of profile for homeowners interested in our house sitting services, a way for me to connect with other travellers and travel-related businesses, and a talking point when we’re on the road.

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Eco-Friendly Accommodation Options and How to Find Them

If like me you are feverish with wanderlust but also keen to be as eco-friendly as possible while travelling, then you might want to look into making eco-friendly accommodation choices. You don’t need to spend a fortunate to be an eco-friendly traveller, but making eco-conscious choices often takes a reasonable amount of research.

Unfortunately, it can be all too easy to end up staying in a hotel or resort that has a negative impact on the environment without even realising it. Collectively, hotels are guilty of excessive energy consumption, unnecessary overuse of water and poor waste management. From bigger issues like building in areas where construction ruins the environment down to the little things like pumping out air conditioning and washing bed linen daily, hotels can leave a huge carbon footprint.

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Female Travellers – You Need a Good Bra for Travelling

This is is going to sound like madness.

When I hiked up Volcan Concepcion on Ometepe Island under the hot Nicaraguan sun, not only had I just got food poisoning from eating some bad black beans but I also wasn’t wearing a proper bra. I wasn’t even wearing a real bra at all. Instead I’d cut an old, bedraggled vest top in half with straps that were wearing thin and was wearing that under my t-shirt. Let me tell you, that is not a good idea.

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Learning to make traditional style food parcels

Thailand’s Alternative Community Based Tourism

Those who haven’t visited Thailand, and even some of those who have, might think of its tourism industry as being synonymous with full moon parties and massage parlours, but there’s another kind of tourism which is all about exploring the real Thailand. It’s about meeting communities of Thai people, learning about their life and culture, and respecting the environment.

Community based tourism, which is often described as “travelling like a local,” has been going on in Thailand for decades, but is still not as well known as it should be. Community based tourism seeks to uplift local communities by providing them with a sustainable way to support themselves while providing a rich, cultural experience for travellers.

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