Jackfruit. As the largest fruit grown on a tree, this unusual fruit is almost always at least a foot in length. Cut open, the edible parts of the fruit are chewy and fibrous in texture. Dried jackfruit chips can also be bought at local markets. Random piece of trivia: the wood of the jackfruit tree is used to dye monks’ robes the identifiable orange/brown color.
Rice soup. Hot soup for breakfast? It’s a dish most Thais prefer. This popular recipe includes celery, shrimp, rice, and peppers. Other popular soups for breakfast include either chicken or pork. If this seems to be a meal more suited for dinner, then you may want to ask your hotel if they serve other fares. If you’re lucky, you may find plain yogurt that you can eat with granola.
Fish sauce. If you can get over the fact that this condiment is made from fermented fish, then you’ll probably enjoy the flavors it adds to many dishes that are served in restaurants and on the street.
The most famous temple in the city, Wat Phrathat Doi Suthed ("Wat" means "temple" in Thai). You can either hike the 309 stairs to the top or take a tram. The view from the top on a clear day lets you see most of the city below. Foreigners have to pay 30 Baht for entrance, and of course, you'll have to take off your shoes to enter.
An orchid farm. This rare and expensive flower is grown all over Thailand, and many of the farms that grow them also make the petals into jewelry through a very detailed process of lacquering.
Take a raft down a slow-moving river. Your guide will push you along the river on a bamboo raft with a long stick to prod you along the riverbed. It’s a relaxing experience and you may even be lucky enough to find a drink vendor standing waist-deep in the water with refreshments for sale.
Ride an elephant. Be sure to go to a place that is an elephant sanctuary—preferably non-profit so that you can be sure that your donation is going towards saving animals and not capturing them for profit. After the ride, stick around for the show and watch one of the mammoths paint a picture or do a handstand.
Get a massage—but don’t expect a Swedish massage. Keep in mind that your masseuse may be offended if you dress down too much. Thais tend to be very modest and typically perform their massages on fully clothed patrons using a combination of pressure and pulling for relaxation.