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family holiday in Thailand and Vietnam...your ideas?


Nov 16th, 2006, 09:30 AM
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family holiday in Thailand and Vietnam...your ideas?

We would love some help from all you experts out there with planning a family holiday next August in Thailand and Vietnam.
We have 3 kids - Simon 18 (been to Vietnam before with World Challenge), Chris 15 and Caitlin 14 . We are a very active family - love watersports (Simon dives and the rest of us might like to learn), tennis, golf, riding etc. We do like our luxuries, however don't like to feel that we are paying over the odds for everything.

We have decided that the kids will be bored if we do too much sightseeing, so we were thinking - maybe a city to begin with - possibly Bangkok. Then a beach resort where there aren't too many tourists but plenty for the kids and us to do. We read an article about Ko Chang and really liked the look of that. Unspoilt, nice hotels, diving, snorkeling, elephant rides etc However when I looked into it further it seems that the weather might not be good. Another island that we liked the sound of was Phi Phi.

We thought at the end of the trip we could perhaps go to Hanoi and Halong Bay to get a taste of Vietnam.

We want to be away maybe 16 or 17 nights. 3 in each city and 10 at the beach resort would work out well.

I would be grateful for your ideas.
michelerea is offline  
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Nov 17th, 2006, 01:23 AM
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Koh Chang weather should be fine August, in fact Phi Phi weather wopuld be bad ! Although Phi Phi fine to snorkel you won't find elephants, nature treks or adventures.
Koh Chang is a good option though you really are stuck there unless you ventures quite a way to other places.

In August an area that springs to find based on your criteria would be perhaps Koh Tao / Koh Phangan and Samui area.
These islands are in the Gulf of Thailand and August is busy time as good weather area.
Koh Tao is great for diving at that time and many of the accommodations offer PADSI courses so you can all learn, but it is very much a diving island, but the beauty is you can hop across to Koh Phangan and you are also close to Samui.
Now Samui is a highly developed tourist island but there you will get the swaying palms, restaurants, elephant rides and adventure / soft adventure activities.
Getting from one island to another is easy so you can mix diving with also a busy place, if you went to Koh tao first you can travel from bangkok by bus/jet catamaran combination or train/jet catamaran combination from around USD 25 each. Once you have enjoyed diving etc you could then hop to Samui for some shopping, elephants etc and then fly back to Bangkok.
This is a fast few minutes into into ideas where to go, you can click and look at the different places like Koh Chang and Koh tao and Samui, http://www.beachsiam.com/where_to_go.html

You can during that time of year fly from either Trat ( near Koh Chang ) or U-tapao, a couple of hours from Koh Chang across the Gulf to Samui in just 1 hour, so it is feasable to dobr />
Bangkok-Trat ( for Koh Chang )
Trat / Utapao- Samui flight
Boat to Koh Tao/Koh Phangan
Samui - Bangkok flight

Bangkok Airways is the only airline to do those sectors so you could take advantage of the bangkok Airways Discovery pass and do a triangle trip.

The only thing missing is Golf, although samui does have a good course as far as I know there is no Golf on Koh Chang and certainly Koh tao / Koh Phangan too small ( boat access only anyway ).
http://www.koh-chang.com/Intro_Koh_Chang.html good for Koh Chang area.
Have a look and a think.
JamesA is offline  
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Nov 17th, 2006, 01:29 AM
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You can also get to Koh tao by flying bangkok to Samui and then boat/Jet-Cat to Koh Tao.

How important is golf/riding to you ? if it is important you could mix Koh Chang stay with a few days on the way around Jomtien where you will find championship Golf Courses, many places with tennis and also a famous Horse Riding resort, plus access to shopping etc, that's just 90 mins from bangkok by road and then you can road from there along to koh Chang.

On Koh Chang we like the Barali but the best place now is the Amari Emerald Cove, that's around the USD 140 a night range.
JamesA is offline  
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Nov 17th, 2006, 01:31 AM
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Around Jomtien there is also Elepahant Village, nature parks, go kart, Underwaterworld, Thai extravanganza cultural show etc. But this is a busy 'city' area toether with pattaya area but being just cab ride distance for bangkok it positions you well on the way down to Koh Chang, a mini-van can take you down to the ferry point for Koh Chang and then do the diving etc.
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