- Fasting and Wellness Programs: While you're on holiday in Thailand, it is now possible to address the damage that years of overindulgence have caused. Wellness centers, often close to beach resorts, have made a name for themselves by offering an alternative to the fast lane. Health programs may include yoga, tai chi, monitored fasting, and even colonic irrigation, but, best of all, they serve carefully prepared fresh food. A wide variety of options ensures there is something to satisfy everyone's search for his or her soul. One center to try is The Spa, Ko Chang.
- Meditation Programs: Almost every Thai man enters the sangha, or monkhood, for some period of time, usually for just a few weeks as a young man and again later during marriage. Since the first Western spiritual seekers started coming in droves to Thailand in the 1970s and 1980s, many temples opened their doors to resident foreigners interested in practicing meditation. Courses in varying lengths and intensity exist; most follow the Theravada Buddhist tradition of Vipassana, or "Insight" meditation. In the south, try Suan Mokkhabalarama (near Surat Thani). In the north, there's Wat Rampoeng. Courses are held in Bangkok at Wat Mahathat, or The House of Dhamma.
- Learn Thai Massage (nationwide): It is now easy to find massage schools all over Thailand. However, big-name spa Chiva-Som, in Hua Hin, has set up an academy in Bangkok's Sukhumvit Soi 63, where, unlike most places, a huge range of wellness techniques are at last being taught in English by bona fide therapists. Visit www.chivasomacademy.com.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.