Thailand + Hong Itinerary Advice Needed

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Jan 22nd, 2018, 06:32 PM
  #1
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Thailand + Hong Itinerary Advice Needed

I would appreciate any itinerary feedback for a trip to Hong Kong and Thailand in December 2018. 2 adults and 3 kids.

Fly from US to Bangkok through Hong Kong

3 nights Bangkok
3 nights Chiang Mai
4 nights Koh Lanta
2 nights Hong Kong
Fly back to US

Is this a good order and itinerary? Should we start in Hong Kong and end up in Bangkok instead?
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Jan 22nd, 2018, 11:43 PM
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Sounds pretty good to me.. I like the order and for the most part, the amount of time you've allowed.

I do think HK is best for the departure city. Efficient public transport allows you to make use of your time right up until you jump on a train for the airport.
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Jan 23rd, 2018, 12:09 PM
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Thanks so much. Is there anything you would change? I wish we had more time for Hong Kong!!
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Jan 23rd, 2018, 05:58 PM
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I wouldn't suggest changes - but partly because I'm more interested in cities and inland country than beaches. So it would be unfair to say I'd take away from Koh Lanta because it's only due to my tastes.

Always seems to be the case that you wish you had more time. Everywhere! But at least with it being Hong Kong, it's closer to the US, requires no visa, is super easy to adapt to and a major hub. So chances are you might be able to include it more easily as an add on to future trips elsewhere in Asia. We've taken 2 and 3 day HK layovers from the US to Australia as well as from Australia to Vietnam and back. A nice way to transition between worlds.
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Jan 23rd, 2018, 06:56 PM
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Thanks. Itís funny you say that because part of me feels like the beach is the beach and weíve been to a lot of different islands and why fly around the world to go to a beach. Hypothetically, if we were to ditch the beach, any recommendations for alternative destinations? Iíve thought about a couple of days in Siem Reap but my teenagers just arenít going to be super interested I think (though they are good travelers). Other ideas?
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Jan 23rd, 2018, 07:24 PM
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I probably shouldn't classify that stop as "just a beach", as I haven't been.

That's one thing about these places. Like Siem Reap. You think of temples.. and it IS the framework for what you're there for. They're incredible. But for me, Siem Reap is kind of magical as a living place and the temples were really more of just a backdrop for interacting with the Cambodian people. I honestly barely remember the exact details of some temples. I remember having fun tiptoeing around the reflecting pond one morning with a dozen kids so we didn't disturb the people meditating. (it was my way of distracting from the sales chatter and they were all in for a game). Along with the guide book stuff, it's a chance to see the place as people who live there see it too. So maybe Koh Lanta or Siem Reap aren't really just a beach or just temples and your teens might find a lot in either to enjoy?
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Jan 27th, 2018, 07:42 AM
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We just finished 5 nights Bangkok and are now doing 3 nights Chiang Mai. I would just say to remember that you will be wiped after the flight so by the time you recover you will be leaving Bangkok - you might want to add another night or two there.
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Jan 27th, 2018, 08:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Htrav04 View Post
I would appreciate any itinerary feedback for a trip to Hong Kong and Thailand in December 2018. 2 adults and 3 kids.

Fly from US to Bangkok through Hong Kong

3 nights Bangkok
3 nights Chiang Mai
4 nights Koh Lanta
2 nights Hong Kong
Fly back to US

Is this a good order and itinerary? Should we start in Hong Kong and end up in Bangkok instead?
What kind of travel do you like?
If you like nature
In Bangkok, there is little to do with nature.
If you like nature, recommend to Pai. In Chiang Rai is very beautiful
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Jan 28th, 2018, 06:41 AM
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Thanks. We love a mixture of city, nature and relaxation.
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Jan 28th, 2018, 09:30 AM
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We use a layover in Hong Kong to recover from jet lag when heading father into Asia. It is so easy to get around in Hong Kong, one of my places to visit.
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Jan 29th, 2018, 08:10 AM
  #11
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I canít decide whether to do Hong Kong at the beginning or the end. I get the value of recovering there after the long flight. OTOH, it makes it less stressful at the end not to have to worry about a connecting flight before the trip back. I considered two nights at the beginning and then a night at the end but then thatís a lot of moving around. Thoughts? Thank you!!
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Jan 29th, 2018, 11:45 AM
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3 nights Bangkok
3 nights Chiang Mai
4 nights Koh Lanta
2 nights Hong Kong
Fly back to US

"Itís funny you say that because part of me feels like the beach is the beach and weíve been to a lot of different islands and why fly around the world to go to a beach. Hypothetically, if we were to ditch the beach, any recommendations for alternative destinations?"



(Not counting travel to your original departure airport and waiting for and during the the long flight from the US to Asia.) After you get to Thailand you have time invested in immigration, picking up your bags, travel to your hotel. Then a lot of unpacking and repacking of your bags, time wasted in transit to the airport for the next city, plus being there 2 hours prior to departure. Then the length of the shorter in-country flight, picking up bags again, travel to the next hotel, unpacking, etc.

Yeah, lots of time changes between the US and Asia, even if the adults weather the time differences the kids might have a harder time. (I personally don't sleep in first day Thailand no matter if I arrive at midnight or during the day hours. I get up and out by 8 a.m. to put my body on Thai time as soon as possible.) With kids there are some fights to Thailand that arrive during the day hours or at least early evening vs around midnight.

Suggestion. All of Thailand has summertime type weather. You could drop Koh Lanta and add a day to Chiang Mai and a day to Bangkok. Other two days add to Hong Kong. If flying from Bangkok head back there for a final night before flying home or to Hong Kong. Do last minute shopping, etc. That way you have a simple ride to the airport. (If you have cold weather clothing you could store them at the first hotel in Bangkok instead of carrying them to Chiang Mai. Pick them up for the final night in Bangkok again.)

There is enough to see just in Thailand for the entire time. From the US my recommendation for Thailand alone is at least 2 weeks. But some tourists like lots of places for selfie photos but not much time dedicated to actually seeing and enjoying the stuff around them.

If you want to add some beaches to Thailand stay longer. I don't know if you will be signing on to tours or just playing it by ear or booking private tour guides. In Bangkok and Chiang Mai you can sign on to shared day tours in person through local travel agencies and some hotel tour desks. Choose a tour one day and leave following day with the tour company meeting you at your hotel and bringing you back at the end of the day.

An extra day in Hong Kong will give you more time to explore.


Good luck.
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Jan 29th, 2018, 08:48 PM
  #13
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Fantastic perspective. I truly appreciate that you took the time to write such a detailed note. I wish we had more time, but we are on the school vacation schedule, and I am pushing it as is. So twelve days on the ground it is, I really need to decide how much coming and going we want to do.
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Feb 12th, 2018, 02:40 AM
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Personally I would spend less time in Bangkok and add another night to HK but then Bangkok is my least favourite asian city! But you can tick a lot of the boxes for HK in one day and have time for shopping!

Also take into account time getting to Koh Lanta and back again, I think you will have to go via Bangkok???

You may wish to consider Khao Lak or north west coast of Phuket for the beach bit as you can fly direct from Phuket to HK, four airlines available.
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Feb 13th, 2018, 07:17 AM
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Getting to Koh Lanta

We flew directly to Krabi from Chiang Mai without having to change in Bangkok - easy flight, the hotel picked us up at airport and took us to their ferry, 1 45 minutes from airport to hotel - enjoy

Last edited by lauramsgarden; Feb 13th, 2018 at 08:11 AM. Reason: add picture
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Feb 13th, 2018, 08:14 AM
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on the ferry to Koh Lanta


Doi Inthanon National Park outside of Chiang Mai
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