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“What do you suppose they call Thai food in Thailand” she asked as we made our way through the marketplace.

“Probably just “food”, I replied, laughing.

It’s a well known fact that Thai food is absolutely to die for, and you can order it all over the world. It’s infiltrated the Australian dining scene, you can find restaurants all across Europe; you can even eat Thai food in the Arctic!

You may think you know Thai food, but you would be wrong: until you have eaten authentic Thai cuisine from the local streets of Thailand, you haven’t tasted anything yet!

Thai food is to die for. Photo by

Thai food is to die for. Photo by Alpha.

Think streets lined with local vendors selling fruits and vegetables of every size, colour and strange, exotic taste.

It took a sharp knife and a lot of determination to get to the edible parts of a Mangosteen, but we accepted the challenge and finally came out with a victory. It tasted like an incredibly juicy peach.

Think meat hanging from racks as pork rinds sizzle and pop in hot oil. Think local vendors offering their own twist on traditional noodle recipes, and chicken fried in huge woks in front of you.

Our tastebuds truly exploded, sampling flavors which were sweet, sour, spicy and salty, as well as what was once considered the hottest chilli on earth! 


Mangosteen. Tastes like a juicy, juicy peach! Photo by Toshiyuki IMAI.

We loved the local recipes, and the chance to experience authentic Thai food straight from the woks of the locals themselves.

Only one experience could have topped this. Eating with locals.

Eating Withlocals in Thailand

Finding a local to invite you into their home for dinner is a lot harder than the documentaries and travel memoirs make it sound. Though this is truly the best dining experience you could ever hope for!

In fact, during my extensive travels around the globe I have never once been offered an invite to dine in a homely setting, but then again, before now I hadn’t heard of Withlocals.

Withlocals is a fantastic new service which connects travelers with locals through food and experiences. They offer travelers the chance to eat with locals, tour with locals, and complete activities with locals; after-all, who knows a regional area better than the locals themselves?!

Enjoying a traditional Thai meal. Photo by Withlocals.

Withlocals eliminates the overcrowded tour buses, cliche dining options and stereotypical activities by instead offering private tours and dining experiences lead by locals themselves.

Those looking for a unique local Thai home cooked dinner need look no further, as there are ample listings from Thai families inviting you to enjoy a meal with them in their home! Some will even teach you how to cook!

The even more fantastic news? Withlocals operates all over SouthEast Asia, so whether you’re in Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam or Nepal (the list goes on!), you can enjoy regional cuisine from a local host who is ready and willing to welcome you into their home!

Sign Up Now!!


Looking for a local to invite you into their home? Check out Withlocals!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

 About Megan Claire

Megan is an Australian Journalist who has been travelling and blogging around the world for the last 7 years to inspire others to embark on their own worldwide adventure!  Her husband Mike is an American travel photographer, and together they have made the world their home.

Follow their journey on FacebookGoogle+ and Twitter.

This post was completed with the help of Withlocals. Sign up now!!


  1. You’re absolutely right…if you haven’t eaten off the streets in Thailand, you haven’t had the chance to experience REAL Thai food! lol I had the incredible experience of eating with a local family while I was Couchsuring in Bangkok. The food was delicious, the family incredibly friendly and welcoming. I’ve heard great things from Withlocals but have yet to of actually tried using their service. Can’t wait to try it out; I just entered the Giveaway…fingers crossed! X-D

    • Best of luck! So glad you had the opportunity to experience a home cooked meal – couchsurfing is definitely great for being able to immerse yourself fully into a brand new culture!

  2. I love Thai food, and I can only imagine how yummy it tastes when it’s right in Thailand!!! What a great experience being able to dine in a setting like this! I would totally enter the contest too, except I won’t be in Thailand in the near future at least!

    • The great thing about Withlocals is they provide the same service all over South East Asia. So you don’t have to necessarily be in Thailand :)

  3. I adore Thai food. We did a Thai cooking class in Bangkok, was so much fun. What a great competition.

    • Best of luck!

  4. Pick me! Pick me! Looks delicious, I would lOVE to experience this!!

    • Good luck! Will keep my fingers crossed for you!

  5. Yum! I can’t wait to eat authentic Thai food. Soo good! WithLocals seems like a great idea too, we’re always scoping out the best places to eat local food and where better than at a local’s home?

    • Exactly – there really is no better way to truly experience local cuisine. Better than street food!

  6. How coool :) I’ve heard of Withlocals before and it’s definitely something I want to try when I get to Asia someday :)

    • They’re taking Asia by storm – it’s such a brilliant concept, I’m not surprised!

  7. You must eat on the streets in Thailand. Thai food is street food, some of the best dishes I have ever tasted where always from some little vendors on the streets!

    • Street food is definitely a must when in South East Asia. Though I don’t know, I think home cooked meals give street food a pretty good run for their money!

  8. Awesome giveaway! I know the withlocals concept and I’d love to go to Asia just to have a meal with them!

    • They really do have an amazing concept! Best of luck!

  9. I love eating locally while abroad. I think the best way to do it is with people who live in a place and I have found Couchsurfing to be a great way to meet locals as well!

    • Very true! Couchsurfing is also a great option for experiencing a homestay. Local experiences are truly the best way to fully immerse yourself into a new culture!

  10. I never heard of this before but it sounds really cool!

    • It’s a fantastic way to truly immerse yourself into a new culture – highly recommend looking them up if you head to Asia soon!

  11. We just booked our first experience with withlocals. Looking forward to a home cooked meal in Puerto Princesa later this week!

    • Fantastic, Alana I’m so glad to hear. I know you’ll have an amazing time – hopefully you can snag the voucher for a second experience!!

  12. We’re starting a 6 month tour of SE Asia in December & can’t wait to taste authentic food. We love Thai food wecan get in the UK, but sadly it is not available here in Spain where we are currently travelling.
    I’m craving the fragrant spicies & subtle flavours as well as the spicy curries. I also want to enroll in a cookery class so I can bring some if the recipes back with me to continue the experience.

    • You definitely haven’t tasted anything until you get into the country itself – Thai food is amazing pretty much all over the world, but nothing really compares to the authentic local cuisine!!!

      Very cool idea to enrol in a cookery class – I think that’s a great idea! I should probably start collecting recipes as I travel as well – thanks for the inspiration!!

      Happy travels!

  13. LOVE Thai food. Love local food. And having a local to show you the best things to try is my idea of a great experience!

    • Totally agree! Locals know best!!

  14. Interesting concept Megan! I wish there was something similar in Mexico now!

    • Maybe they’ll look at expanding in the future!

  15. Thai food is my absolute favourite in the world, and With Locals is such a fantastic idea, I can’t wait to try it for myself when I get back to Asia :-)

    • You cant really ever go wrong with Thai Food can you!! Definitely hit up With Locals once you get back to Asia – it’s a really fun way to enjoy a meal!

  16. The local experience extends beyond the food. It’s the experiences and that’s why I find couchsurfing such an endless resource. In fact, I had a Russian host scoff at the Lonely Planet in disapproval on the section that attempted to describe Russian temperament. It’s also that locals, not only are…localized, but are also multitudinous, so rather than a be all say all of a guidebook, you get a country from multiple perspectives, giving you a more well rounded idea of a place.

    • Absolutely agree Ira – the most fantastic part of this experience for me is the access to locals for the perspective which goes beyond the food. It’s about connecting and fully immersing yourself in the travel experience. No better way to learn about a destination than through the eyes of those who live there. A local beats a well researched guide book every time!

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts :)

  17. I am an English speaking student at school in U Thong in Suphanburi. It is not easy learning Thai. And I have started a discussion group with some friends so I can practice my Thai and they can practice their English. We are also building simple web sites and are looking for content for . In our village everyone is a farmer, we eat well and want to promote Nong Prue as a centre which offers traditional country cooking and hospitality.

    • Thanks for stopping by Jono :) Glad to hear about your experiences – wishing you all the best with learning Thai! These kind of local experience interacting over a meal are a great way to further your language skills :)

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