Chang Mai? Chang Rai? Ankgor Wat

Jul 28th, 2005, 12:24 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 25
Chang Mai? Chang Rai? Ankgor Wat

My husband, 2 1/2 year old and myself are planning a trip to Thailand in October for 7 or 10 days. We are trying to determine where to go. Would we be able to comfortably see Chang Mai and Ankgor wat with a couple days in Bangkok? Would you recommend Chang mai or Chang rai? We've heard from friends that a day or 2 in bangkok is all you 'need' with a 2 year old. Any recommendations on any of this? I'd appreciate any suggestions you can offer! We will be flying in from Japan.
Shellyinokinawa is offline  
Jul 28th, 2005, 12:46 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
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We first brought our daughter to Bangkok when she was 3. With her at that age, sightseeing was really limited each day, as it's quite hot and temples and markets aren't particularly fascinating for a young child. Our typical day was a leisurely breakfast, one sightseeing spot back at the hotel for lunch and swimming, then either one more sightseeing or shopping in the early afternoon, with more pool before dinner. We've found sightseeing in short bursts to me easier and more enjoyable for everyone involved.

Things she liked then and remembers now 4 years later...Peninsula's boat to cross the river....loved it. Boat through the canals of Bangkok...pretty entertained by the boat ride. Temple of the Dawn...liked the colors. Emporium shopping activities were set up outside the big department store there that we did (we made a little craft thing) and their toy department was great. They sell Plan Toys, which are very nice, among the expected things. She loved, loved, loved the pool. We went to Ayuthaya one day, and she enjoyed the outing, especially lunch on a non-moving boat restaurant where the driver taught us to throw the shrimp shells overboard. We also went another day to the floating market, which she thoroughly enjoyed. Each time we had a driver, rather than a tour, which gave us the flexibility to pack it up whenever we felt like it. Don't remember the exact cost of that, but do recall that we didn't think much about it as it was not more than a few dollars over what we would have paid to have a tour.

First trip to Bangkok was 5 days, then 10 in Koh Samui. 5 days was nowhere near long enough to see everything. We've been back to Bangkok 3 more times since the first, and still have only begun to see what we want to.

Really up to you how much time to spend in Bangkok. We love the city, but it's not for everyone. As far as Chiang Mai, Chaiang Rai and Angkor...not yet been to those, but Angkor is on our to go soon list. We waited on Angkor Wat (daughter is soon to be 8) because it's pretty hard core temple viewing there I think, and while I think she could go now, I think it would have been a tough trip when she was younger...tough to balance seeing enough with child happiness and such.

We're in Japan, too.
KimJapan is offline  
Jul 29th, 2005, 01:43 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Hi, I'v been both Bangkok and Angkor but not Chiang Mai, but know it's a beautiful place. It was before my 3-year old daughter was born
If you have 10 days (not seven), you can do probably all three if you don't mind the frequent flying. Two full days are all you need in ANgkor You'd hire a taxi for two days for about $50 to see all the temples, including Banteay srey which is worth the extra cost and driving. More than two days, you'll be bored. There are nothing to see or not much to do in Siem Reap other them temple hopping.
So excluding 2-3 days of travel time, you may want to do three day in Bangkok and two in CHiang Mai. Not very relaxing but is doable. Bangkok is very convenient with taxi. You can spend one to one and a half day sightseeing and the rest of time shopping, doing spa/massage and enjoying the fabulous food.
If you only have 7 days, I won't worry about CHiang Mai. In fact, if you are in for a relaxing vacation, you don't get bored even if you spend more time in Bangkok.
Just one additional note, though I love ANgkor Wat, I would be hesitiant to take my daughter there because of the poor hygiene and amenties. I am an experience third world traveler myself but I did get a very bad diaherea while in Siem Reap. Just be extra careful with your two years old.
wky123 is offline  
Jul 29th, 2005, 05:55 PM
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i cannot conceive taking a young child to angkor wat...i would wait until the child is at least 8 for is very hot, not all that interesting for kids and taxing to the body...

the outline above with a 3 year old looks like a good guide to me....getting around in bkk is somewhat difficult but if you had a driver or used taxis frequently and went in small bursts you would be fine....

chiang mai would be easy with a kid...not sure chiang rai would be all that great...with only 7 days i would stay in bkk for the entire time and even for 10 days the same
rhkkmk is offline  
Jul 29th, 2005, 05:56 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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if you choose your hotel carefully that can make all the difference...

the marriott resort has a wonderful garden area which is good for kids and so do some of the other hotels...peninsula for one....nai lert also....
rhkkmk is offline  
Jul 29th, 2005, 09:42 PM
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Wow, thanks for all the info! We are thinking maybe we will just do bangkok, chang mai and chang rai for 10 days and not do ankgor wat. We just got back from a 7 day, 3 city tour of china with flights inbetween all cities, and that did feel a bit rushed with or without a child. I've read about raft trips from chang mai to chang I am assuming its close enough to drive or boat there rather than this correct?
THanks again!
Shellyinokinawa is offline  
Jul 30th, 2005, 09:41 AM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 12
You probably have decided: but here's another small suggestion.

For a short vacation, Chiang Mai should be the focal point of your trip. It's very beautiful scenery, calm and relaxing environment for your toddler. I am not too crazy about Bangkok; it's ok for a day or two for sight-seeing, the float market. etc. But shopping? We have Mall of America in the twins city,

Angkor Wat is not for young kids, especially for that time of the year; it will be too hash an environment for them to deal with. At this age, those temples are old rocks.

We are heading in that direction this August-September, and we have also bring along a 15 months old toddler. We won't go to Angkor Wat(been there 3 times already), just Phnom Penh, Sihanoukville, and Chiang Mai on the way back to the States.

Make sure the toddler have a visit to the Internal Travel clinic for all the shots and their latest advisery warnings.

Enjoy the trip!
Bayon is offline  

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