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Assistance Requested in Planning Thailand Trip (first timer)

Assistance Requested in Planning Thailand Trip (first timer)

Jan 21st, 2005, 02:01 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 120
Assistance Requested in Planning Thailand Trip (first timer)

I will be making my very first trip to Asia, and plan on visiting Bangkok, ChaingMai and a beach resort. I will leave Los Angeles on March 2, 2005. My goal is to stay in Bangkok from 3/3 (arrival) and depart 3/7 to ChaingMai. I think maybe 3 days/nights in ChaingMai? I also want to spend minimum of 3 nights at a beach resort…but don’t know which one. I do not want to visit Phuket as I hear it is very touristy. However, I am single and traveling alone, and would like some entertainment. Mostly looking for great snorkeling and an awesome beach (nothing too expensive). Any suggestions? Also, are the days in each location sufficient to get a good general feel of the cities? I am somewhat flexible. Thank you to all who respond. Any thoughts, concerns and/or suggestions are greatly appreciated.
Sturion is offline  
Jan 21st, 2005, 05:42 PM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 198
I am no expert, but I have spent the last four months researching our trip to Thailand in Nov.
Here is some on the opinions that I have gathered from the Thai experts on this board:
Your time in BKK and CM looks good. I think 3 days in the beach area is good, but others will give their opinion.
Also, consider the non-stop Thai Airways flight from CM to Phuket non-stop, there is only one per day. It leaves CM at 11:00am.
Consider a day or two back in BKK on your way home.
Good luck you will learn a ton from the wonderful people here.
jvrab12 is offline  
Jan 21st, 2005, 06:51 PM
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 549
We went to koh chang for the beach part of our trip and loved it! it was the opposite of touristy! what kind of entertainment are you talking about looking for on the beach part of your trip? What is too expensive for you? what jvrab said is right that you might want a day or 2 back in bkk before your flight home.
travelduo is offline  
Jan 21st, 2005, 08:07 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 28,929
# 1 you will be very tired upon arrival and will probably loose the first day, so i would consider limiting my trip to bkk and a beach place....why do you want to go to CM...any special reason....?? your time is limited and i think you will spend too much time in travel...it takes a minimum of 1/2 day for each change of location and sometimes more...
in fairness i am one of very few here who does not like CM...

can't help you with snorkeling...others will....
rhkkmk is offline  
Jan 21st, 2005, 08:20 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,751
The top island for Scuba and snorkeling in the Gulf area is Koh Tao. Good for a single, lots of budgret to mid range places and it really is a diveing paradise, that is what it is famous for, also lots of bars and cafes easy to meet people. Koh Chang is another option as already said by Travelduo though the diving won't be nearly as good.
If you requisite is snorkeling, beach, not too built up then Koh Tao might be the best choice, it is pretty quiet though and just bars but no real entertainment. Getting there a little more difficult than a plane ride, either fly to Samui and take the Jet-Cat fast boat or go by bus or train to Chumphon and take the boat from there. Accommodation on Koh Tao in March runs $5 - $100 Best is Coral Grand $75 for own Cottage.
Another option would be Krabi area, you could choose Phuket but perhaps stay somewhere like Kata beach, good beach, and then if you want entertainment it's 20 minutes into Patong. If you go to quiet places you won't get the entertainment side, so maybe somewhere like Kata on Phuket give a reasonable balance.
JamesA is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2005, 02:54 PM
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 549
James how is the diving around the rest of the gulf? you are right that it isnt that great in koh chang but i thought that it might be the same all over the gulf, am i wrong? I think maybe we had our hopes too high for the dive because we had just got back from belize where the diving was world class!!!!!!!
travelduo is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2005, 03:04 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,751
Yes I have heard around the Caribbean the diving can be amazing. Unfortunately so many picture postcard type photos are used over the world for places it is easy sometimes to get the wrong impression. In the Gulf Koh Tao is "the" place for diving but as I understand once rains start in the are from October diving isn't any good, but at the same time the weather clears on the Andaman side so people then tend to head for the Similan Islands and around Krabi/Phi Phi.
There are also some small spots like Chumphon and Bang Saphan which are along the mainland of the Gulf almost opposite Koh Tao area but these tend to be very small areas and snorkeling is there but for the average traveller who just wants a quick look as opposed to an avid diver.
JamesA is offline  

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