Please review our Thailand Itinerary

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May 25th, 2006, 09:32 AM
  #1
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Please review our Thailand Itinerary

First let me say thank you for all of you who post in this fantastic forum. The knowledge I have gained here has been instrumental in planning our upcoming trip. My wife and I are celebrating our anniversary and have decided to vacation in Thailand. We have been before and absolutely love it. So with that, this is the itinerary I have come up with.

Dates are flexible as we have not booked our flights, but this should be pretty close.

June 15 - arrive in BKK, stay at Asia
Airport Hotel, it is cheap and I like the bar right by the hotel, my first taste of Chang - $40 or so

June 16 - go to the tailor and do the initial fitting and pick out the suits, any recommendations here would be great, Bob I know you like one in the Marriot complex, later in the day fly to Koh Samui and check into the Baan Haad Ngam Boutique Resort. We will be staying here for 9 nights at an average rate of $93 per night. I thought this was a pretty good deal, but if anyone else has a better value that is a favorite please let me know. We plan on doing some relaxing by the beach and pool and walking into "town" for some good food. Any must do's on Koh Samui, I am not a big fan of the water, I don't mind boats as long as the water is not too rough and don't really snorkle or anything like that. My wife loves Thai massages, and who doesn't, so is there a nice massage parlor that is close and relativily inexpensive? Should we rent a scooter or car for a day? My wife also wants to look at monkeys, I am not sure what she is talking about. Other thoughts would be great - I look to the experts for their advice.

June 25 - we leave for Chiang Mai, flying BKKAir and are looking to buy their discovery pass. Staying at Yaang Come Village for 5 nights. Again, the place looked nice and in a good location, but if there are other suggestions let me know. We need a TV in the room and a pool at the property. Any thoughts for things to do here. I think my wife would like to do a tour of a hill tribe and we have already done an elephant trek. Do we need a driver for a day?

June 30 - return to BKK from Chiang Mai, we are planning on staying for 4 nights as we have spent close to two weeks here before. We stayed on the river last time and wanted to experience something different so I was thinking the Majestic Grande Hotel at about $75 a night. Good choice and location?

July 4 - we will fly back to the states

So does this look like a relaxing trip? Hotel choices good? Our budget is pretty flexible so if I need to make some changes it is not too big of a deal. I miss the days when you could stay at the Shangri-la for $55 through priceline. Your thoughts and suggestions are appreciated, once I have the hotels and general plans set it will be on to the restaurants!
bailmart23 is offline  
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May 25th, 2006, 09:53 AM
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For me, 9 nights at Koh Samui would be too much. Especially since you aren't a water person. I'll cut a couple of days there and add them to Bangkok.

In Chaing Mai, you'll probably want a driver one day to go out to Doi Suthep and any other places you want to go out of town. I think Yaang Come Village is a good option - that's what I've chosen for my November trip.

I'm a river person in Bangkok. You might want to consider Centerpoint Silom, serviced apartments close to the river and the Skytrain. Prices are good and you get a whole apartment.
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May 25th, 2006, 12:50 PM
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I would agree that 9 days would be too much (IMO) for Samui. I've been there, stayed on the beach, but found that about 4 days would be plenty. I'm also not a "water person" but I do like staying along a beach.

Majestic Grande is probably a good choice in BKK for something away from the river. You might also check into the Intercontinental. It's right along the sky train route and has tons of shopping within walking distance, as well as restaurants and night life. There is an excellent Italian restaurant on the first floor lobby level at Majestic Grande. DO try SACZ if you like Italian food. Nice place.

Other than that, your trip sounds great.

Carol
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May 25th, 2006, 05:42 PM
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5-7 days would be nice in samui, especially if you do not like the water...there is not a great deal to do in samui honestly, but it is a nice break..

craig likes the tailor next to the landmark hotel but i forget the shop name...victor is the tailor...more expensive than jack...

i would take a day or two from samui and use it in bkk after samui to do some fittings for your clothing...or at least one full day or fly to bkk early and continue to CM late in the day to allow for fittings...

majestic grande might be very nice for you...at that time of year for about $100 you can stay at the marriott on the river also using the www.huahin.20m.com site... i would prefer it to MG, but either is good...

the holiday inn bangkok on plenochit is also nice in that price range...

check out the HH site for prices...

i ahve been to thailand the last two years from mid-may to mid june and it was fantastic....some rain in the afternoons but not much...
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May 26th, 2006, 09:23 AM
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Thank you all for the advice. It looks like we will eliminate 2 days at Koh Samui and add more nights in Bangkok! A few other questions.

Has anyone stayed or heard anything about Villa Nalinnadda in Koh Samui, it looks like it is a new resort that is offering some pretty interesting specials.

Are there any must do's in Koh Samui - that doesn't involve diving. Boat trips, renting a car or bike for the day?

In Chiang Mai we will rent a guide for a day, Sergeant Kai, for hill tribes and crafts. Any other suggestions?

Should we have our clothes made in Bangkok or Chiang Mai. The last suit I had made in Bangkok I was not all that impressed with. My wife also did not care for her suit, the material was ok, the cut and fitting lacked something to be desired. Any thoughts?

Bob, could you send your famous restaurant guide of Bangkok and if you have dining suggestions for Koh Samui and Chiang Mai that would also be great.

Thanks again everyone, I really appreciate all of your help.

My email is [email protected] if anyone wants to get in touch off line.

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May 26th, 2006, 09:40 AM
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There really are no "must-dos" in Koh Samui. It's an island beach resort. You're supposed to be there to relax!

You'll find better quality tailoring in Bangkok than in CM. Remember that the fittings are very important. You'll need at least 3 fittings for a suit. I'd suggest you add a day at the beginning of your trip to Bangkok so you can order your clothes and get a first fitting. Then you'll need a couple more fittings to get things just right on your second stay in Bangkok. The tricks to getting good custom made clothes: know exactly what you want in terms of style. Choose appropriate cloth. If the tailor doesn't have exactly what you want, they can order other samples for you to look at within a few hours. Have a minimum of three fittings. Keeping having changes made until you are satisfied with the fit. leave yourself enough time at the end for any last minute adjustments.
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May 26th, 2006, 09:49 AM
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All of the above posters are more brilliant than I, but I can attest to Bob's tailor, Jack.

He hooked us up with several suits. The fit was amazing. Before we left we had suit styles in mind but were very open minded on fabric. One of my suits is a beautiful charcoal cashmere with very subtle lavander and rasberry pin stripes. What i enjoy about them is i can make them look non-existant or stand out depending on the shirt and tie i have on. His women's fashions looked pretty fantastic, when i was doing my last fitting i noticed a women's suit that he had been working on and I was quite impressed. Jack will also come to your hotel for the fittings if needed. The one problem you might have is that when you visit him, you will curse yourself for not staying at the marriott!
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May 26th, 2006, 10:12 AM
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B-23-If you would like to try an elephant ride, Sergeant Kai can provide an amusing day of E ride and river rafting. They are both fun, if trivial. It will not add to your understanding of Thai culture.
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May 26th, 2006, 11:54 AM
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Having returned returned from 16 days in Thailand and 10 in Malaysia I would say 5 full days/6nights is enough in Koh Samui.
The food in town is not that good that it will be a highlight of that island. ButBK is food and 20 times the number of sights to see. KS has nice beaches, snorkel trip to Koh Tao (but take the Skytran speed boat that carries 12 vs. big boat if you really want to do quality snorkeling in more spots and more time in the water.
I would say 3 full days in Chiangi Mai and then get driven down to Chiangi Rai for 2 full days would be a very different experience. Lastly unless you plan to shop until you drop 5 full days in Bangkok (Grand Palace, Marble Buddha,trip down the river in Bangkok in early AM-cooler, Reclining Buddha,Floating Market, if history is of interest the River Kwai-arrive by 9:30 (people sat 8AM but that is not neccesary unless you are going to the Bridge then leaving at 8 will get you back at 5). I would not go to the Craft Center near the floating market but if you must 30-40 minutes will do.
Visiting the Flower Market or Bird Market-like area is also interesting in Bankok.Emjoy!
Three fittings are need except for shirts. If you bring a pair of slacks that are 95% of what you want duplicated then 2 fittings but 3 is better. Choose 130-140 superfine wool from Zegna, Valentino, Loro Piana vs. so name. The price difference in a pair of slacks will be $10-15 and $30 in a suit.The price difference in the US will be 50-60% between 80-100% suoerfine lightwight wools and 140's if the tailor is honest. That is the rub. But, there are several highly reputable tailors in town. While they will comne to your hotel for 1 of the 3 fittings if it is a 10 minute taxi ride ($2USD) go there with an appointment.
As for renting a scooter. I saw more major srapes and bruises than in Bermuda. Rent a car if you must or the hotel will give you a 4+ our tour for $40-50USD which is more than enough time. Yo might want to eat at Bellini's for Italian, Seafoodhouse is quite good and CoCo China House also fairly good in Koh Samui.
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