Thailand with teenagers in July

Old Apr 1st, 2008, 06:43 PM
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Thailand with teenagers in July

We have ten days planned in Thailand in July with 14 and 16 year olds. We were thinking of staying for about 3 days in Bangkok and am keen for advice on where else to go. Thank you!
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Old Apr 1st, 2008, 07:18 PM
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largely depends on what you want to do....personally i would go to bkk for 2 days up front and two days at the end....and in between i would sandwich in either a beach location (phuket, hua hin, koh chang, koh samui, krabi or khao lak) or up country in chiang mai

again it depends on what you want to do and see...

i would only go to the 2 places however.....seeing bkk takes more than 2 days and you will need some adjustment time---heat and humidity...

the kids will want a pool, i strongly suggest the marriott resort and spa in bkk
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Old Apr 1st, 2008, 07:40 PM
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I agree that two areas is best. Two days in Bangkok and 2 or 3 days there at the end. In the middle go to northern thailand -- chiang mai and perhaps the golden triangle area. Or perhaps you could do chiang mai and 3 days at the Elephant Conservation Center. I would not go to the beach. It's like any beach anywhere in the world. If you want to actually feel like you're in thailand stick to bangkok and northern thailand.
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Old Apr 1st, 2008, 09:44 PM
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Bangkok has a lot to offer. Jim Thompson's house, a dinner cruise on the river, and Pantip plaza, home of cheap electronics. There are a lot of great hotels to stay in.

For the time that you're there, I WOULD hit a beach. Yes, it's a beach, but the environs are amazing. I'm a fan of Phuket and have stayed at Karon beach, at a place called Marina, where they have cottages which are great for a family. They also have a dive shop and you can scuba dive (or take beginner lessons, which I highly recommend!) The Chedi is also amazing, although more expensive. THe architecture is amazing.

If you want to see the hills, Chang Mai is a good destination. We rented rooms in a private house on the estate of the Four Seasons hotel, and loved it. Elephant rides, rice paddies, it was worth a few days.

Have fun with the trip: Thailand is wonderful and you'll have a great time!
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Old Apr 2nd, 2008, 03:28 AM
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bridey

You don't say whether your teens are girls or boys. If girls, they will LOVE all the shopping in Bangkok, so make sure you allow time for that.

Teens usually like movies, and you can't beat the movie theaters in Bangkok. Think of watching a movie at home, in your own Lazyboy chair, with pillow, blanket, footies, your popcorn, your beverage... take a look at the theaters at Paragon Shopping Mall. I think they are the latest and greatest. I've been to the Gold Class Theater at Siam Discovery Mall, but supposedly the Paragon theaters are even a step ABOVE what I've already done. Your teens would love it!!

Phuket beaches will have the red flags out in July, so swimming will be dangerous during this rainy season. Koh Samui would be better, if you want a couple of days on a beach.

Carol
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Old Apr 7th, 2008, 02:27 PM
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Thank you all sooo much! Your advice is fantastic. In hindsight 10 days is way too short, but we'll see it as a taster trip. All your advice is hugely appreciated.

The 16 yo old is a girl but I'm afraid the 14 yo boy loves shopping too! They have great plans.
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Old Apr 7th, 2008, 10:33 PM
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After Bangkok you haead to Northern Thailand but if you want some beach time then from Bangkok you can head down the coast - east side of Gulf down to Koh Samet or Koh Chang ( Koh Chang you can fly to nearby airport or cheaper simply get a car+driver, for 4 of you I would go for a mini-van ), you can stop on the way and have lunch, do the Dolphin swimming near Trat and then across to Koh Chang. Gets you to Koh Chang but makes a fun day out.

Though do check weather for Koh Chang.

Another one is go down the other side of the Gulf of Thailand, you can simply take a taxi/van in about 3 hours to Dolphin Bay ( just south of Hua Hin ) where you have 'average' beach but trips to Monkey island, 'try' and spot the Pink Dolphins, then take in the National Parks, temples, caves, wetlands, mangrove swamps etc.

http://www.beachsiam.com/sunrise_coast.html

Then a couple of hours by road down to the ferry at Chumphon and 1.5 hrs across to Koh Tao to do snorkeling. Thyen boat over to Samui for a lively island for last few days - fly back to Bangkok.

OK, that would be pushing it, but do-able without much bother.

To save time simply take a flight from Bangkok to Koh Samui and then you can split time with Koh Tao for snorkeling.

http://www.beachsiam.com/where_to_go.html

You can do a 3 sector flight BKK-Chiang Mai - Phuket - BKK, as long as you appreciate you 'can' get rain in Phuket and are happy to 'shrug it off' with no worries then that makes a very easy fix.
The reason for that suggestion is the daily non-stop Thai flight which gets you from Chiang Mai in the North to Phuket in 2 hrs.

Another option is a few days near Bangkok in Kanchanaburi / River Kwai area for jungle, elephants, river rafts, adventure tours etc, that is a couple of hours from Bangkok, you can road or train.

Then perhaps head down to a beach for 4/5 days.
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Old Apr 7th, 2008, 10:38 PM
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For flights there are the budget airlines to Chiang Mai etc, for Samui it's Bangkok Airways and Thai Airways so not so cheap, July is also busy time for Koh Samui.
Paying 4 fares though wherever can get expernsive, so an idea of your budget would be a help.

Also tell us 'your' interests for all the family : ? Shopping, night markets, history, jungle, soft adevntures, off-road adventures, beaches, snorkel, elephants, fishing, golf etc etc - whatever, helps to build a picture of what you are looking for.

Accommodation - 2 /3 / 4 star ?

The clearer the picture also helps to suggest locations.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 01:20 AM
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Hi James, Thank you very much for your ideas. Everything you suggested would appeal to us, as well as some down time. Includes shopping, night markets, a little history, jungle, Thai food, cooking class, massages, soft adevntures, off-road adventures, beaches, snorkelling, elephants, surfing and golf for Tom. Pretty regular New Zealand teenagers. We are looking at 4 star-ish. Would love three star but get put off by Tripadvisor reviews so erring towards good deals at 4-5 star. I had looked at the EVason south of Hua Hin but wondered if it was out on its own too much - after reading the above thinkin maybe Chiang Mai and/or an island would be better. Love 'boutiquely' places like costalanta.com and very Thai looking places. We're not high rise fans. I had looked at the little island to the east of Ko CHang - Ko Mak. Might be too remote for the kids. What is Ko Chang like?
Thank you very very much.
Bridey
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 03:25 AM
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With only ten days, I would go to BKK and one other location. Three locations would take too much transition time. Just pick between Northern Thailand and a beach. This will provide the maximum time to enjoy each location.

In BKK, you might look at serviced apartments for accomodations. Many on this forum have enjoyed the Center Point Silom. Do a search on this forum and you'll see.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 03:33 AM
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That really helps. If you are from NZ does River Kwai ( Bridge on the River Kwai ) interest you ? It's just a couple of hours by train or road from Bangkok.
You can do river rafting, hot springs, plenty of jungle type trips plus you have the historical River Kwai sights.
You can then car+driver 3 hours down to the coast. Evason honestly, unless you are richer than most, in particular with teens I wouldn't bother, you are going to pay 3 to 4 times the costs of a Cola by the pool than outside ! Also very quiet area a good 30 mins south of town.

With teens I would make sure you get a mix of city, adventure and beach.
I do not hold that much for tripadvisor reviews, too many variations and the fact no-one even has to stay to give a review.

We stay 3 star as family, we like our comforts, a/c, TV, refrigewrator, clean, swimming pool etc etc but don't overspend to get high style lux.

Evason style is fine if you want to 'lux' your trip but note you can be close to national park, Monkey island etc at say Dolphin Bay Resort you can get a 2 bedroom family apartment ( though breakfast not included on this deal ), tax, servic etc. 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, living area, I would only say 2 star but that's because it's a low level small place but well run, that would be about NZ$ 134 a night for all 4!

You could also after River Kwai spend say 2 nights in HH, Thai cooking classes, spas, night markets, off road ATV's etc. There you can lux it at Hyatt, Marriott, Sheraton, or you could get a 2 bedroom seaview apartments for about NZ$ 225 a night at the Anantasila beach Hotel( exc breakfast but beach places right next to eat to have brek on the beach! ) - You can then do a one day tour of Sam Roi Yot National Park.

Car with driver would take about 3 hrs from there to pier at Chumphon, 1.5 hours fast boat over to Koh Tao to do snorkeling ( quiet laid back island but you can find decent 3 star+4 star places ) sensi Paradise July ( high season for Koh Tao for good place around NZ$ 200 a night for a twin) Koh Tao resort on the beach about NZ$85 a night for a twin room. You can also express bus/ferry from Hua hin to Koh Tao.

Koh Chang is nice, should not be so quiet unless to head to quiet areas of smaller areas.

If you are not going to be too bothered about any rain Phuket is well cheap in July and certainly for a family lots to do. The big plus is that there is 'so much' to do. You could do Bangkok, River Kwai and Phuket.

Flights - if you are using Singapore Airlines out of AKL or CHC then see if they will ( the usually DO ) let you flky into Bangkok and back from Phuket ( Silk Air is part of Singapore Airlines and does the Phuket-SIN section but flights also coded SQ ) so ask them if you can fly into Bangkok and return 'from' Phuket, that would save you a great deal as you would not have to back-track to BKK to get home.
Malaysia Airlines may well do the same thing, fly in to Bangkok and fly back from Phuket.
Ifyou plan to use Thai then ask them about pricing as you could find a AKL-BKK-Chiang Mai 'return' may well be only s nominal extra over a simple AKL-BKK. Then you can budget flight BKK-Phuket return.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 03:44 AM
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Check with Singapore Airlines also about AKL/CHC via SIN to Chiang Mai ( the SIN-Chiang Mai are only 4 x per week ) with a retun ex Phuket. Then you can budget airlines CM-BKK-Phuket.
I think the costing you get on the airfares may play a part in deciding destination.
I agree you don't want to have too much travel, but if the jungle/elephants is interesting you can just do River Kwai for a couple of nights 'from' Bangkok and then head to a beach. Felix River Kwai about NZ$ 80 for 2 in a twin with brek, $104 for river view. 3 star fine and popular with ANZ visitors. Pool, tennis, river kayaks etc.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 08:09 AM
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If you go to Chiang Mai consider staying at Baan Orapin which is lovely (very thai) and small (12-16 rooms) and very near some of the "happening" restaurants and music places that teens would love. I also really think they might love spending a couple of days at the Elephant Conservation Center right outside Chiang Mai.
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 11:13 AM
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We went to koh chang a few years ago and loved it! We stayed at barali....very nice bungalow right on the beach, its about $100 US. We did an elephant trek in the jungle and swam with our elephant in the river.
We can send u picks if you like

Jeffrey and april
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 08:26 PM
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"The 16 yo old is a girl but I'm afraid the 14 yo boy loves shopping too!"

That's no problem. He will really like Thai guys
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Old Apr 8th, 2008, 10:27 PM
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Thank you all so much. I love the accommodations you have suggested - especially Baan Orapin, Felix River Kwai, Dolphin Bay and Center Point Silom and Marriott in Bangkok if I cna get a good deal. Does anyone have any similar suggestions for Koh Samui? Not too expensive for a family of four. We adore the beach, but I am nervous of the weather at that time of year. I'd hate to go all that way for such a short time and have it pour with rain for 3-4 days. We have beautiful beaches in NZ, but lack the endless heat that Thailand gets. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences and views everybody!! April, would love any pics!
THanks,
BRidey
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 12:30 AM
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Hi Bridey,
I am a huge Samui fan, but there are a few on this forum who are not so be prepared for some negative feedback. Your kids will love Samui as there will be plenty for them to do and you will still get that idyllic tropical island feel. A great mid priced resort is the Bannana Fan Sea Resort (strange name but really fab place). It is on the best part of Chaweng Beach and located close to plenty of shops and restaraunts. Expect to pay around 150NZ per night at that time of year per room.
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 12:42 AM
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Gosh that looks gorgeous! The rate is quite high at that time of year, I'll search around for a deal on it. THank you.
Bridey
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 01:25 AM
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We are two guys fromYorkshire and Wales in the U.K. who run a mountain bike tour company called M.T. Hill Tours we are based in the Khaosan Road area of Banglamphu, Bangkok, Thailand. You'll find our office just round the corner from Gulliver's Travel Bar under the Gazebo night club. Aswell as taking people on all in, guided, all-mountain, single track and downhill bike tours we are a bicycle rental company and have Trek Mountain Bikes for hire.

check us out here

http://www.mountainbiketoursthailand.com
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Old Apr 9th, 2008, 07:57 AM
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no advertising here please
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