A possibility of a trip to Thailand got me thinking - being a vegetarian, would I be able to survive the experience? My itinerary wasn't just limited to touristy Bangkok and Phuket, but also included Krabi and its outskirts. It's fairly easy to get vegetarian, even Indian food at Bangkok, but that doesn't hold true when you move away from the glamour of Bangkok and into the countryside.
Have I told you that travel teaches you acceptance and then gives you the courage to embrace both the known and the unknown. No, that doesn't mean I turned non-vegetarian. What I mean is that if you have an open mind and a travel-loving soul, there's nothing at all that cannot be managed. Here are my insider's tips on how vegetarians can survive in the non-touristy, offbeat, Thai countryside.
Needless to say, Indianised Thai food is far from authentic. So the Thai Red/Green Curry and Rice that you're fond of is not a real thing while you're in Thailand. Their street food is something even hard-core Indian non-vegetarians cannot survive. But don’t worry. After the initial shock subsides, remember this guide and sigh with relief that you read it.
Most Thai restaurants prepare food when you order, so you can actually ask them to customise it with 'No Meat, No Fish' and they'll be happy to oblige because these people take their hospitality and tourism very seriously. They won’t mind going an extra mile to make you happy. I ordered the Thai Fried Rice, without meat, more than twice and the staff at the different restaurants was happy to serve. If you are fond of pineapple, do try their vegetable and pineapple rice.
Thailand as a country has an abundance of fruits and vegetables. I've had some of the most delicious tropical fruits here. Frankly, I could plan another trip just for the fruits that Thailand serves you.
Even the world-class Alphonso mango from India is a fail when it comes to the mangoes I relished in Thailand. And talking about mangoes, don't forget to have the signature Thai dessert - Mango with Sticky Rice.
From the most ordinary to the most exotic, you’ll find all kinds of fruits here, and all of them taste divine. The fruits are so delicious that I almost had an entire watermelon for dinner one night and I am not even a fruit person. Also, the taste of their traditional coconut ice cream is something that still lingers on in my memories - to say it was divine would be an understatement. Traditional coconut ice cream is served in a freshly cut coconut crust, after serving you the sweet water that's inside. At the bottom is gooey coconut, topped with coconut ice cream with a choice of colourful toppings to choose from. What's not to love?
Almost everywhere in Thailand, I found these small kiosks making delicious pancakes. If you stop and watch how they do it, it seems like a work of art. When you taste it, your taste buds and heart acknowledge that indeed, this could be nothing but art. With a variety of fruity flavours to choose from, pancakes were an instant hit with me and I had a pancake everywhere I went!
Guava is one of my favourite fruits but I have never had guava juice like the ones I had in Thailand. Regardless of the city I was in, this was my one constant of the day for the entire duration of my trip.
After spending almost eight days at Thailand, my craving for Indian food finally set in. I was at Krabi at this time and luckily I found many Indian restaurants in the market near Ao Nang Beach. Though they all looked similar and expensive, I gave in and had the most amazing dal-chaval ever. Either I was very hungry or I was really craving some spices, but this was a soul-satisfying closure to my Getaway Goddess Thailand trip.