Dreaming of the wedding and honeymoon of a lifetime? Then Thailand should be the destination that is number one on your list. It is blessed with hundreds of romantic destinations ideally suited for engaged couples for pre-wedding photo shoots, soon-to-be-fiancées ready to pop-the-question, honeymooners or married partners on a ‘recapture the passion’ anniversary sojourn.
Simply put a Thai romance is unsurpassed. To further prove that point, Thailand was recently named Asia’s number one wedding location at the Annual Destination Wedding Planners Congress 2016, and for very good reasons …
Dreamy fairy-tale wedding and honeymoon locations around Thailand abound, Thai hospitality reigns supreme worldwide, an abundance of hotels and venues countrywide offer engaged couples and honeymooners alike an incredible selection of sites to choose from plus much more.
Select your dream destination
Since weddings usually entail guests inclusive of family and friends, direct flights to one of Thailand’s modern international airports is an important logistical advantage. Honeymooners are often more adventurous depending on their age and interest since it only ‘takes two to tango’ once married. Newlyweds can easily go off the beaten path using alternative forms of transportation.
Northern Thailand is regarded by many foreigners as the most romantic location in the Kingdom to ‘get hitched’. Its lush vegetation and breath-taking mountain views are sublime, especially during the seasonal monsoon and annual cool season from June to February.
Sukhothai is the flavour of the month these days as an emerging yet ‘unseen’ wedding destination. It combines a historical and cultural romance with a unique archaeological flair, and Thailand’s ancient capital is well served by Bangkok Airways’ award-winning airport. Built to resemble classical Siamese pagodas, it has received the Asia Architectural Design Awards, ASEAN Energy Awards and many other accolades since opening in 1996.
Further north the twin destinations of Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai both have international airports and a combined cultural legacy: the ‘Lanna Thai’ wedding experience. The Lanna ceremony is native to this region of northern Thailand and is a beautiful way to celebrate one’s nuptials.
Heading down to Bangkok reigns supreme for urban weddings, as luxury hotels in the Thai capital often offer outstanding packages during the ‘so-called’ low season from May to October.
Nearby the royal seaside retreat of Hua Hin is a quiet and easy to get to honeymoon destination to consummate the marriage after a Bangkok-based wedding.
If ‘beach ready’ sums up your wedding or honeymoon requirement, then you’ve come to the right place. Thailand’s southern islands and shores are some of the most beautiful in the world – think azure waters, sun-kissed sands – and day trips to outer islands that feel like a set of The Beach.
Phuket is the country’s largest island, and its diverse archipelago offers a hundred destinations in one. There are another 32 smaller islands offshore including Ko Yao Noi, Ko Racha and Ko Phi Phi to name just a few. Phuket International Airport is Thailand’s busiest provincial airport and is served by 54 international airlines with over 8 million international arrivals.
The dramatic backdrop of Krabi’s limestone cliffs is also popular for weddings and honeymooners alike, as is Khao Lak north of Phuket in Phang Nga province. Both are spectacularly romantic while also surprisingly easy on the pocketbook.
Ko Samui remains a close second behind Phuket for beach wedding popularity, and its outer archipelago features Ko Tao and Ko Phangan. They all offer a slice of a romantic wedding paradise waiting for couples to tie-the-knot under a shady palm tree.
Chose your ceremony preference
Traditional Thai Buddhist weddings, where ceremonies are held in the morning led by monks from a local temple are the most popular. Most include the main elements of a Buddhist marriage with almsgiving and a water-pouring ceremony. Western religious weddings can also be arranged. A non-religious ceremony with a Thai or foreign celebrant is another option.
Most wedding ceremonies in Thailand are not legally binding per se. Many couples register their marriage at home before departing for Thailand, or get a statutory declaration from their respective embassy. Many venues and wedding planners often assist with this process.
Find the perfect hotel or venue
Thai resorts offer world-class service, expansive views, and proximity to nightlife and restaurants. In case of rain, resorts have stylish back up options and exclusive use of entertainment areas for guests.
Choosing a resort wedding allows access to each property’s outstanding facilities including contemporary dining rooms, beautiful post-ceremony cocktails locations, experienced chefs, premium function equipment, and access to service staff scaled to accommodate the style and size of each individual wedding. Whether couples prefer modern minimalism, island glamour or rustic retreat, a wedding or honeymoon in Thailand is limited only by one’s imagination.
Gallery: Some pictures from the Thailand Wedding Destiny event. Supported by the Tourism Authority of Thailand, the event invited nine couples from nine countries to get married in specially arranged ceremonies both on the beach and in an ancient Thai capital during 10-12 February, 2017.