Best Beach (and hotel) in July?

Old Apr 1st, 2010, 05:29 AM
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Best Beach (and hotel) in July?

Already know that it is rainy season over by Phuket and in reading previous posts it seems like most said the safest bet due to weather while also providing beautiful beaches and some nightlife is Ko Samui. Do you all agree or is there another beach location you would pick after spending time in Bangkok?

Also, if you can recommend hotels associated with the beach areas I would appreciate it. No more than $150 per night.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 05:47 AM
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i love the hyatt in hua hin, also the sheraton but its location is not as good.....there is a brand new intercontinental there as well, which hanuman has said is quite nice...

one advantage is that you drive to HH
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 05:52 AM
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Hua Hin and Koh Samui are different from each other. Hua Hin has the advantage of being able to drive there in under 2 hours from Bangkok. The beaches aren't as nice as some of the Koh Samui beaches. They Hyatt at Hua Hin is lovely, as is the Sofitel if you want to be right in town. I'm not sure whether either of those will be in your price range during your stay.

Koh Samui is more of the "tropical island beach" atmosphere, and I'm guessing more of what you might be looking for. Take a look at www.sawasdee.com for hotel ideas. The flights to/from Koh Samui are rather pricey, so consider that in the mix as you make a decision.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 06:07 AM
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Look at Crystal Bay Resort. It is on its own (mostly private) beach. A beautiful location; not far from the activity of Chaweng Beach. The place does not have its own pool. It doesn't need one. The beach is beautiful! The place is pretty basic (although I can't imagine NOT liking the "best room in the house" which has its own huge private terrace where you can sunbathe without anyone else around, or have a cookout for a large group of friends)... it's really lovely. And it is well within your price range.

The Regent Chaweng is possibly priced in your budget, but this beach is effected by the tides. Not so great IMO. The separate villas are really nice though, and close to the beach. Poppies is at the other end of Chaweng Beach, and IMO is better than Regent. The restaurant at Poppies is quite good.

Carol
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 06:13 AM
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Carol, the places you are recommending are that in the Koh Samui area?

Also, Kathie, you mentioned airfare from BKK to Koh Samui can be pricey - what airline would we use/can we check, to get an idea of pricing.

This whole trip is a long shot for us right now so I am trying to put together a draft itinerary to see if we can make it happen without blowing our budget tremendously! Thanks for the input and keep it coming please!
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 06:34 AM
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I found how you fly there, Thai Airways. It is about $400 USD per person...too much. Going to look at over night train/ferry option next.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 06:37 AM
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Bangkok Air is the other airline servicing Koh Samui. Indeed, they built the airport there and until recently, were the only airline flying that route.

The places Carol is recommending are on Samui.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 08:08 AM
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i think Samui us going to be too much having to include $800 dollars just to fly there and back. Open to other recommendations for beaches. Although hua hin seems like it would be most convenient I'm not sure it has what we are looking for - we do want nightlife etc.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 08:27 AM
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You can risk the rain in Phuket and the Andaman coast if you like. Other options are:

Koh Chang - around a 4 hours drive then ferry. Very little night life.
Koh Kood - near Koh Chang but smaller. No night life.
Pattaya - dirty beaches, a bit sleazy but does have a lot of good resorts.
Koh Nangyuan / Koh Tao - nice snorkeling and diving with night life(backpack type) on Koh Tao. http://www.nangyuan.com/
Koh Samet - near Rayong a bit further out from Pattaya. Small, nice beaches.

If I think of more I'll post again.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 10:35 AM
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i'll stand by hua hin
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 11:47 AM
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Sorry I didn't say Samui in my other post...

If you can accept "basic" (but right on the beach) accomodations on Samui, look at Seascape Resort Chaweng Beach. It's right next door to Poppies, but costs a lot less. It's basic. But it is clean, and includes b'fast, and it is right on the beach. I have stayed here, as a friend is a co-owner of the place. Activity and entertainment would be right outside your door. No need for taxis or tsongtaus or renting a motorbike/car, unless you wanted to explore other beaches and parts of the island.

Yes, the airfare to Samui is pricey. There is very little competition! BKK Airways owns the airport/airstrip there. Thai just started flying there during 2009. Otherwise, BKK Airways was IT.

What sort of activity are you wanting? You don't really spell it out. I hate to suggest Pattaya to anyone who is an unsuspecting traveller. It can be pretty sleazy. But there are loads of bars, some good shopping... a brand new 3-4 level mall opened about a year ago, it's lovely... plus there are all sorts of souvenir shops right along the beach road and on the next road inland. Easy to walk. The Marriott Resort is really a lovely oasis from the chaos that is Pattaya Beach. I just don't want to send someone there who doesn't know about the heavy influx of bar girls... if you get my drift. Beach is NOT that nice either. If you can afford it, go to Samui. Getting to Pattaya is by car, takes about 2 hours from BKK, and you can easily find a taxi or mini-van to take you there. The cost is about 1500-2000 baht... depending on the driver. No meter. It's a set fee.


Carol
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 12:06 PM
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Hey Parker,
the regulars on this forum routinely advise against Phuket and surrounds in July......''the rainy season''......Sorry, don't agree.
We have made several visits in June, July and also August,.....and we have never been rained out.
Hua Hin is awful.....Benidorm in Asia....but if you want tower blocks and rows of sunbeds, then maybe it's for you.
Stick with your original choice and go for Phuket and surrounds.
You might be unlucky with weather, but we never have. Half an hour or an hour of rain....then back to sunshine.
Phuket is an all year round destination.
We've had dodgy weather in January (peak time), there are no guarantees.
You want beautiful beaches????you certainly will not find that, conveniently, at Hua Hin. You most certainly will from Phuket.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 12:19 PM
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Hi Parker,

Are you sure that you are reading the airfare prices correctly? I just did a search for Bangkok to Samui for 2 adults leaving July 1st and returning on the 8th and came up with a price of 13640baht for 2. Maybe you read it as per person?

For what you want, Samui is well worth the effort. I dont mind Hua-Hin but it is not for a "tropical beach" holiday. It lacks the swaying palms and clear water and is more a City style beach.

Here is a recent photo of Chaweng Beach...http://i742.photobucket.com/albums/x.../1206_2746.jpg
This is not my favorite beach but it is where most of the nightlife is centred.
If you dont mind taking taxi's or driving to the "action" then stay on ChoengMon Beach. Here is a photo from last June....http://i742.photobucket.com/albums/x.../1906_2403.jpg

This is taken at the front of the Whitehouse Resort and Spa which will come in well under your budget.

Here is a photo of the Beach at Hua Hin taken in 2003...

http://i742.photobucket.com/albums/x.../3105_1952.jpg

The sand is nice but the water was a light "coffee" color and the view to the North of high-rise condo's amd naval ships. There was very limited nightlife back then but this may have changed.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 12:28 PM
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Don't give up on Koh Samui. By taking the night train, bus and ferry combination you are looking at just over 1000 baht each way, say $35 for each person.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 12:55 PM
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Leigh, I've also been to Phuket during the summer months and was not rained out. I went to Samui during the dry season one time, and we had a really hard rain! Unpredictable! I just thought that the OP had decided against Phuket. Me, if I were wanting to go to Phuket, I'd GO to Phuket!
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 01:13 PM
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I have enjoyed plenty of rainy season holidays on Phuket in July BUT...you really need to pick your beach carefully. There can often be very strong currents on the western beaches making swimming dangerous and I for one,much prefer to swim at the beach. I've got a pool at home. There are some beaches that are protected to a certain degree, in smaller coves, but they tend to be harder to access and virtually semi-private due to being dominated by more expensive resorts (aka Le Meridian) or on the less desireable eastern shore. I believe there are many drownings at this time of year so keep that in mind.

Anytime that I have been to Samui between May and September, the waters have been either flat or with smallish to moderate waves. The beaches tend to look more attractive as well as there is very little that washes up on the beach. The other thing that you will find in Samui is there is much more absolute beachfront accomadation and this brings down prices on this type of accomadation. There are plenty of bargains on Phuket at that time of year but they tend to be a street or 2 from the beach.....That's my 2 cents.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 04:47 PM
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I think the OP will be more confuse than ever now!

Parker,

Why don't you just come to Bangkok first and check the weather and then decide on where to go. The forecast nowadays are quite accurate up to a week in advance. If the forecast is that there will be very little rain then go to Phuket and the Andaman side of the country but do be aware of dangerous tides and beaches as described above. If there is some sort of a front, a depression storm etc over any part of Thailand then go to the beach area not affected.

July is a low season for most area and even for Samui you can often get flights and hotels at the last minute.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 04:51 PM
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My cousin have just returned from the new Four Sesasons on Samui and they love it. How ever, it's over the $150 price range.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 04:59 PM
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July and August is actually a very popular time for Samui, a mini "high" season of sorts and yes you will still get a flight, but the cheaper seats may be all sold out.

I will re-iterate clearly in case you are "confused", if you want to swim and spend alot of time on the beach....Go to Samui and book your flights early if you are concious of costs.
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Old Apr 1st, 2010, 07:37 PM
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Bangkok Air is cheaper than Thai but still costs around 7510 baht or $218. The train, bus, ferry is the cheapest way to get there.

Another alternative is to fly discount Nokair to Surat Thani and then bus/ferry. That should cost about $100
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