How to Survive A Jungle Trek in Thailand



Keep calm and strap on your leech socks – we’re going ‘splorin’!

Jungle trekking is ultimately one of the main attractions that bring people to Thailand. With crystal clear waterfalls, secret caves, and endless green mountains, Thailand is arguably the best place to go trekking or hiking. BUT adventure without safety is just recklessness. And we are a cool and responsible travel community (Do I sound like a mom yet?).

That being said – Welcome to the Jungle! Here are 8 tips to surviving a jungle trek in Thailand.

1. Avoid the fuzzy caterpillars

They look like itty bitty, harmless cuties – but they will give you a gnarly rash.

2. Use a hiking stick

You know, to help you up a hill and also to scare snakes away.

3. Embrace the free fish spa

Have you heard of a “fish spa?” It’s that thing where people pay to stick their feet in water tanks filled with fish that like to eat your calluses. It’s a very popular tourist activity in Thailand.

Well, thoseeee fish are in like, every waterfall, and every swimming hole you will find in Thailand. And they have zero chill. They WILL come after you moments after getting into the water. They don’t exactly hurt… it’s just a lil’ freaky? A big one once went for a wee mole on my neck LOL.

These fish :)
4. Invest in some good shoes

Make sure they’re waterproof shoes, not just water-resistant. There’s a pretty good chance you’re gonna have to walk through a stream of some sort.

I mean, unless you’re a fan of wet socks then by all means nevermind.

5. Bring bug spray with DEET

Smh, the mosquitos in Thailand are crazy fast and sneaky. You will probs end up with some scars from bites – but hey on the plus side, that’s sort of like a free tattoo for you to remember Thailand by?? Is that a stretch?

**Updated: As noted by an elephant vet tech, please do not wear or use bug spray with DEET around any elephants. 

6. Follow-up to that

Dear SUAG family, we care about you. If you’re going deep into the ~jungle~ protect your beautiful, healthy self and get malaria pills. Pill side effects include having oddly vivid, weird a$$ dreams – but hey you’ll have a fun conversation topic with your friends in the morning.

And if you’re more of a city person, you’re not exactly off the hook because mosquitos still can carry Dengue Fever.

Use bug spray and stay healthy friends!

a graceful pic of me
7. Wear your leech socks

Yes, you reader, unfortunately, read that correctly.  Welcome to Southeast Asia – where leeches live on land! These things are acrobatic little turds that’ll Simone-Biles-flip off a leaf and onto your warm, tasty, blood-filled body. Yummy!!

To my knowledge, they mostly sit in the mud and on plants. Hence the need to protect your feet. From experience, I can tell you that they love toes. Love ’em. These are leech socks.

8. And on the rare chance that you see a tiger…

Well do what a guide told me once – write your Will fast 🙂 🙂 🙂

Got any tips for trekking or hiking in Southeast Asia? Do you have a favorite trail in Thailand that you’ve been on?

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