Do I need to bring my own tent and camping equipment?
Sometimes. Many national parks in Thailand have tents to rent along with sleeping bags, blankets, pillows and more. Many also have bungalows for those who are not tent-friendly. Check with the park’s website to see what supplies they have.
Where can I buy a tent and camping equipment?
As long as you don’t mind not having name brands, any big grocery store will do. I’ve seen tents, sleeping bag, and other camping gear at Big C and Tesco Lotus. The tents have mostly been generic brands.
Be careful when buying stuff in Thailand. Your average Thai is not very tall or wide. The tent in the picture above next to Mark, was labeled as a two person tent. I am 5’9″ (1.75m). There is no way to fit another 5’9″ person along with me, plus 2 backpacks in that tiny tent. Luckily Mark and I saw the tents on display before we bought it. We got two.
Do I have to bring my own food when I go camping?
Sometimes. Many campsite have a restaurant near by. Some even have small stores where they sell many of the things you would expect to find at a 7-eleven or Family Mart. But there are a few campsite that are remote and you will have to bring all your food yourself.
What do I HAVE to bring?
Anything you think you would need and would rather not have to buy at a 7-eleven like, bug spray, towel, flash light, basic first aid kit, toothbrush…
Bring at least one pair of long soccer socks. White is best. When it rain, leeches come out. Leeches can be easily seen on white socks.
You might need a sweater, long pants, and socks to sleep in. Even though it’s a hot country, sometimes it gets cold and night.
You might find an ATM in the town near the park, but don’t count on finding any in the park.
Make sure to bring some type of Lock N Lock container to put your electronics in. During monsoon season it rains like the world is coming to an end, but it can rain like this at any time. It might be nice and sunny one minute and raining the next. Make sure to get something that is air tight.
You can still go camping up north at some campsites during the monsoon season.
Where are the campsites?
Go to the Thai National Park section of wikipedia. The entry for the individual parks will have the link for the park itself. This page will give vague instructions on how to get there. But, most importantly, it will tell you if you can camp in the park and if they have tents to rent. This information is usually found by clicking on the “facilities” tab.
Remember that the entrance fee for National Parks in Thailand is usually 400 THB for non-Thais who have no work permits. The fee is a lot less for Thai and non-Thais with work permits.
Many campsites in the south will be closed each year between the months of May and November due to monsoon season.