Chiang Mai...should we?

May 25th, 2015, 01:42 PM
  #1  
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Chiang Mai...should we?

Our family (me, DH, sons 12,12,13) will be visiting Thailand for Spring Break 2016. We have about 10 days. Our current plan is to fly into Bangkok, spend a couple days and then head to the beach. I would love to go to Chiang Mai as well (have been to Bangkok and some of the islands but never Chiang Mai) but worry that our timing is off. Spring Break will be the last week of March/first week of April. It seems as if travel to the area is not advised at that time due to the burning. Thoughts? It seems that some go to Siem Reap from Bangkok for a couple days. That could be interesting. Last time I was there (25 years ago) there were just a couple simple guest houses.

Also, which beach should we visit? Obviously, we don't want a party scene. Something fun for the boys. I am extremely worried about box jellyfish but I can't seem to discern if our time period really matters in terms of the jellyfish this trip.

Any other thoughts on hotels or fun things to do would be greatly appreciated. We are set in terms of Bangkok but will need to lock in something for the other location(s).

Thank you
taitai is offline  
May 25th, 2015, 03:33 PM
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april is the warmest month of the year, so more beach time seems important...

we love the jw Marriott at khao lak.. I think your kids would too.

btw, most hotels will require you to have 2 rooms.

in bkk we love the anantara riverside--they now have some double double rooms.. best pool in bkk..

chatrium riverside is also a good option..

I personally would skip CM as your time is limited
rhkkmk is offline  
May 25th, 2015, 03:35 PM
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Chiang Mai at that time of the year is very likely to be smoky. Be aware that the absolute hottest time of the year in that area is April. It's always hot, but this will be HOT. Be forewarned.

Siem Reap would be a nice side-trip, you'll just need to manage the heat. There are now zillions of places to stay ranging from simple guesthouses to over-the-top luxe hotels. If you have an interest in the temples, get a copy of Dawn Rooney's book, Angkor: A Guide to Cambodia's Wondrous Temples. There are dozens of accessible temples spread out over a large area. It takes three full days (that means 4 nights) just to see the major temples.

In terms of beach, Hua Hin will have the best wether. There are a number of excellent hotels there. I'm partial to the Hyatt.

You might want to consider Bali as an alternative to Thailand, as the weather there will be better.
Kathie is offline  
May 25th, 2015, 04:58 PM
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For a 12 year old, i would suspect one temple looks like all temples. And depending on skin type, the tropical solar radiation can cause big trouble, esp if you are coming from a cold and dark northern place. This makes the beach life risky.
jobin is offline  
May 26th, 2015, 04:31 AM
  #5  
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So, one vote for the Gulf and another for the Andaman Sea. Do you think it matters, in terms of jellyfish, which one to visit? I must sound crazy but I read a couple articles about box jellyfish and am now terrified of them.

It would be great to add Siem Reap or Chiang Mai but I worry about too much moving around in a short time period. I don't want my family angry with me.

We have a place to stay in Bangkok on the Chao Phraya River. Might not be centrally located but it is free so that goes a long way.

I appreciate all advice as we try to figure out if we can make this work.

Thank you
taitai is offline  
May 26th, 2015, 05:24 AM
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with only 10 days, I'd stick with bkk and a beach... I guess the best answer to jelly fish is to ask your hotel which can be done before you book.

personally, we do not use the ocean, but rather stick with the pools... we sit and walk by the beach
rhkkmk is offline  
May 26th, 2015, 06:58 AM
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Take a look at the weather here: www.weatherbase.com

Remember that if weatherbase shows it is rainy, it means you will get storms and beaches will be red-flagged.
Kathie is offline  
May 26th, 2015, 09:38 AM
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Kathie

Thanks for the link. It appears as if March is one of the driest months so that is something. Our trip would be the last week of March/first week of April.

If beaches are red flagged than a hotel with a great pool is paramount. Will start looking at that and maybe that will help direct us toward which beach to visit.

Our challenge in planning Spring Break for next year is everyone's desire to go to a beach. We also want to show the boys other countries and cultures and so finding someplace interesting to visit with a beach is our quest.
taitai is offline  
May 26th, 2015, 10:00 AM
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I mentioned this before, but you may want to consider Bali for that time of the year.
Kathie is offline  
May 26th, 2015, 11:19 AM
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Kathie

Thank you so much for your continued advice. We may consider Bali. The issue with Bali is although our kids have never been, we have multiple times. It is amazing, of course, but the beaches are somewhat unremarkable. If it isn't Thailand, then I think we will scrap Asia as a destination and go back to the drawing board and figure someplace else out.

I still think Thailand might work. I am warming to the idea of adding Siem Reap and maybe adding a couple days somehow. Would mean pulling them out of school in order to stretch the break and there will be blowback from that (from the kids, not the school) so we will need to figure it all out.
taitai is offline  
May 27th, 2015, 12:12 AM
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E were in the north of Thailand for around three weeks in March this year. The smoke was truly appalling. It was not just CM but all the way from the Mai Salong in the far north down to Nan province. It doesn't happen every year but has happened to us twice in the last decade. This year was more hope over experience ( will I never learn? I would avoid the north at that time of year.

Even in the south it was very hazy around Phang Nga bay.
crellston is offline  
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