If you’re travelling to southeast Asia for the first time, I believe Thailand is hands down, the easiest place to start. Thailand is a very friendly, gentle introduction to Asia. Many locals speak English, the food is heavenly, Thai beaches are out of this world and the mountains in the north are dreamy.
Bangkok is crazy, there’s no doubt about that, but do give it a day or two of your time. The Bangkok food stalls, discovered by a tuk-tuk ride, are unmissable and you can see so many Bangkok attractions in between all the eating.
What I love most about Thailand is the magic it holds here though, especially in Chiang Mai. There are over 300 temples just in this one city and this is where I got my Sak Yant Tattoo from monk Ajarn Roong. It’s one of the most powerful and special gifts I’ve given myself on my travels.