Tagged: Thailand travel

Thailand Vacation Series – Phuket Attractions

Phuket – The Pearl of Andaman

Located approximately 862 kilometers south of Bangkok is Phuket, Thailand’s largest island, which is often dubbed as the pearl of the Andaman, or the pearl of the south. Its natural resources- rocky peninsular, limestone cliffs, white powdery beaches, tranquil broad bays and tropical in-land forests contribute to making it the South’s wealthiest, busiest, most visited and most popular island and province.

Nestled in the tropical zone off the west coast of the southern part of Thailand in the Andaman Sea and the Indian Ocean, the province covers an area of approximately 543 square kilometers (excluding small islets). It is estimated that Phuket Province covers an area of approximately 590 square kilometers if its 39 other small islands are included. The islands total length, from north to south, is estimated at 48.7 kilometers and approximately 21.3 kilometers wide.

Phuket borders on Phang-nga Province to the north. The other 3 sides are encircled by the Andaman Sea the place where many of the best diving sites are located. The island is connected to Phang-nga Province by Sarasin Bridge and Thep Krasattri Bridge.

Staying on the island is easy, as there are only two seasons in a year – the rainy season (May to October) and the hot season (November to April). The low season of phuket is between September and October as they are the wettest months. The best period for a visit, is from November to February, when it is possible to see the clear blue sky, feel the fresh sea breeze and marvel at the crystal clear water while lying on powdery, palm-fringed beaches. Average temperatures ranges between 23?C and 33?C.

Phuket’s topology is exceptional with 70 percent of its area covered with mountains which stretch from north to south and the remaining 30 percent being plains located in the central and eastern parts of the island. The island does not have any major rivers except for a total of 9 brooks and creeks.

Phuket is divided into 3 administrative counties namely Amphoe Muang, Amphoe Thalang and Amphoe Kathu.

Phuket has a lot more to offer its visitors other than its natural heritage sea, sand, sky, beach, forest, and world renowned diving sites. Sino-Portuguese architecture casts its spell delighting travelers to the city, while Phuket-style hospitality has never failed to impress visitors from all walks of life. In addition, accommodations ranging from world-class resorts to tropical-style bungalows have warmly catered to the different needs of travelers. For seafood lovers, there is a lot more to sample than just Phuket’s famous lobster. Altogether, these characteristics have made Phuket a truly unique destination.

You may see more details about Phuket at http://thailand-vacation-info.blogspot.com.

Bankok – Thailand Hot Spots

BANKOK – SOME FACTS

If you visit any destination in South East Asia, it may be imperative that you pass through Bangkok. Bangkok has a strange nature of evoking extreme sense of likes and dislikes amongst visitors. A few seem to loathe it while many others swear that it is the most wonderful, fascinating and exciting places on earth. Actually, Bangkok tends to be what a particular visitor wants it to be. Bangkok is a picture post-card haven with beautiful pagodas, pagodas and some of the world’s finest hotels. Bangkok’s renowned for it’s nightlife in the Orient with an opportunity to savor some of world’s most unique cuisines. Bangkok is a favorite and best shopping destination in South East Asia.

Bangkok inhabitants are known as Thais and their friendly ways would flatter the snootiest traveler. Bangkok is all in all, a load of fun and games and a great way to enjoy a civilized vacation. Thailand’s history emerges from the Bronze Age, whereas Bangkok, the capital is a young city founded in 1782. With a population of around 6 million, 50% of them are under 30. Bangkok lies on the banks of the river “Chao Phraya”, a wonderful working waterway full of sampans, wide variety of boats and rice barges.

Bangkok is a beautiful mix of the old and the new, the modern and the ancient evident from its skyline that comprises of Buddhist temples (wats), luxury hotels, high-rise office buildings and shopping malls making it a kaleidoscope. Under the thin veneer of new found Western influence you will find that the Thais are not devoid of traditional values. The sights of ubiquitous street food sellers, monks on morning begging rounds and women stringing jasmine blossoms on thread near wats will display the cultural heritage of Thailand that is not lost in the arc lights of modernity.

MAJOR ATTRACTIONS IN BANKOK

Bangkok is packed with more attractions per square mile than any other city in the world. Despite the crowds, the architecture and the attractions are worth the effort to travel and see. On the top of the list would be Wat Phra Khao and the Grand Palace for sightseeing for half a day. This can include the National Museum and the Wat Pho. Chinatown, Bangkok’s major attractions has a unique traditional life untouched by modern civilization and could be fascinating. Historical sites like Rattanakosin Island (central point when Bangkok was founded) are also worth visiting. The main symbolic places of Bangkok are Wat Arun on the Chao Phraya River.

Cross the Chao Phraya to reach Thonburi and you can tour the klongs to appreciate the heritage and culture of the country of Thailand. The Vimanmek Palace, restored by Queen Sirikit, made of golden teak emphasizes the exquisite taste and oriental splendor of ancient Thai royal life.

TOURING AROUND BANKOK

The easier way to explore the country would be put up base in Bangkok and explore the region by using the interesting and unusual daytrips.

Ayutthaya & Bang Pa-In: This probably is the most popular day trip from Bangkok and takes you to visit the Ayutthaya (A-you-ta-ya), the previous and old capital of Thailand, about 50 miles north of Bangkok, the current capital. Ayutthaya has served as the second capital of the Kingdom of Siam for over 400 years. Travellers in the past have described the glittering palaces, temples and Buddhist images depicting it as one of the most beautiful cities on the planet. In an unfortunate event the Burmese burned the glories of this city in 1767. In Ayutthaya, you could hire a tuk tuk along with an English-speaking guide to take you around the celebrated temples (cost could be in the range of 250 bahts). You can also hire a long-tail boat for cruising the 12-mile Chao Phraya River trip that ends at the king’s summer palace at Bang Pa-In (300 bahts).

Many such trips are available to be taken. Bangkok never ceases to amaze and so giving an approximate time frame of the trip becomes difficult. You could get there, relax, and see for yourself what Bangkok has to offer. May be you could go back when you have more time, or to see the rest of it. The magnetism of Bangkok is such that despite having been there many a time, travelers tend to come back.

To ensure your vacation recipe is complete, add in that special sprinkle of a Thailand vacation rental. Book Thailand Vacation Rentals matching your criteria. These vacation rentals are presented by their owners or managers.

Travel tour Phuket

Phuket is the largest island in Thailand. It stands as one of the most loved travel destinations of the world. The beautiful white sandy beaches of Phuket look more striking by the surrounded Palm and Coconut trees. With many tour packages offered, visitors have a range of options for cheap hotels and discount hotels in Phuket. You can choose from these budget accommodations to get the best of your stay at Phuket. This landscape of the charming island is the reason behind it being one of the most visited places in the world. Other than the beaches, Phuket has got fascinating historical places like the ancient Buddhist temples and Chinese shrines. Wat Chalong and Wat Phra Nang Sang temples are the most visited temples in Phuket. Golf lovers just love Phuket for its superb golf courses like Phuket Country Club, Banyan Tree Club in Bangtao Beach, Blue Canyon Country Club, and Loch Pam Golf Club that are laid with lush green mountains and scenic vistas.
Travel tours to island of Phuket would offer you many adventurous activities. Some of these activities include Elephant safari into the tropical forests of Thailand and a many water sports. You can savor upon the flavorsome seafood offered in the restaurants along the beaches. Nightlife of Phuket bustles with energy. To enjoy all these fun offered at Phuket, visitors can choose from a range of travel packages that suit every pocket. Get a complete Thai experience at Phuket through the discount packages that offer budget accommodations like cheap hotels and discount hotels. You are also made aware of the cheaper bars and eating joints that help you accord with your budget. Patong Beach in Phuket is a favorite spot for shopping. It offers best shopping stops from small shops to big malls like Junkceylon mall and Central Carnival Mallin Phuket.
Phuket is often referred to as the ‘Pearl of the South’ and ‘Pearl of the Andaman’. Holiday makers from all over the world come here to get the best of the sparkling blue waters of the Andaman Sea. This island of Phuket is located at a 850 kilometers distance from the capital city, Bangkok. Beach lovers would cherish this place. Every beach of this island is unique in its own way. Some beaches are noted for their strikingly calm caves. Others are known for the excellent facilities that they provide. Some of the most admired beaches of Phuket are Patong, Kamala, Surin, Nai Yang, Karon and Kata beaches. Ocean lovers can look for water sport activities like boating, fishing, deep sea fishing, jet skiing, sailing, sea canoeing, water skiing, para-sailing, and swimming. Many budget accommodation options are available for the travelers who want to get cheap hotels and discount hotels to stay at. (http://www.phukethoteldirectory.com )

Thailand hotels Phuket Hotel Directory offers Cheap Hotels Phuket Thailand, Luxury Rooms, Phuket Resort, Phuket Beaches, Phuket Vacations, SPA, Packages in Phuket, Patong Phuket, Accommodation for Budget Travel to Thailand.
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Luxury Thai Holiday Villas: the Way to Stay!

Luxury Thai Holiday Villas: the way to stay!

Thailand has, over the past few years, seen a large increase in the number of private villas available for holiday rent. Here we investigate the villa market, and make our recommendations as to how to find and book a villa, and where to stay on your next holiday.

These alternatives to hotel or resort accommodation often offer exceptional quality and high standards, but a number of very second rate properties are also broadly advertised on the internet and in some cases offer no more than a room in a tired condominium in a poor location: it is important for the holidaymaker to know how to find an appropriate villa, and to understand the pricing structures generally in place, in order to be sure of securing an enjoyable, clean and properly serviced villa at the right price.

It is perfectly possible to rent your own villa in Thailand for your holiday and to enjoy not only superior accommodation, but also a plethora of services, at rates that in fact make such a holiday the sensible alternative to booking a room – or indeed for those with friends and family, a number of rooms – in a resort.

Why Thailand?

Thailand is a perfect destination for those who wish to rent their own house or villa, for a number of reasons:

- the Thais are widely recognized as a welcoming, smiling people

- The kingdom’s cuisine is world-renowned; whilst most visitors will know the famous dishes such as Tom Yam Kung, the variety of cuisines and regional specialties is great, and even a serious glutton would have trouble trying to experience the exhaustive array of Thai food dishes in just one stay.

- Thailand is a shopper’s paradise, offering unique silks, handcrafted furniture and a plethora of exotic items at a fraction of the cost of such goods in the West. Clothes, leather goods and decorative items are often at the top of the visitors’ shopping list.

- Thailand offers exceptional value for money: even five star hotels cost a fraction of what they do not only in the West but even in other Asian capitals such as Hong Kong or Singapore.

- Thailand welcomes millions of visitors to its shores annually, and personal safety is generally excellent. Any reported crimes tend to be minor, involving jewellery scams and the like, but the more experienced traveler is hardly likely to fall for these. Most visitors will feel infinitely safer in Thailand than they ever would in equivalent capitals such as London, Paris, New York etc.

Which Thai region should I visit?

The visitor to Thailand today is spoiled for choice, with villas available throughout the kingdom.

For shorter stays, we would recommend a single destination stay, so that you can avoid the hassles of travelling and fully explore your chosen location. For longer stays, why not combine a stay in two very different locations, allowing you a greater exposure to the country and its diversity, whilst taking advantage of its inexpensive domestic travel networks? (see below)

Thailand is generally divided into four main regions.

Bangkok and the central Plains

Bangkok is a sprawling metropolis which, despite its famous gridlocked traffic and teeming streets, offers a great variety of things to do and to discover, to those with patience and a will to explore. The restaurants in Bangkok are second to none, whether you seek Thai or foreign cuisines, and its weekend and other markets deserve to be explored, as do many of its lesser know temples. A cruise on the Chaophraya river – perhaps by privately chartered long-tail boat – is an excellent way of seeing much of the city without being reduced to tears by the traffic.

The North

The North of the country is home to cities such as Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai and Mae Hong Son. With tropical jungles and hills, the North attracts those looking to go trekking or seek out places of natural beauty. Do try to avoid the larger cities, as tourism is so developed here that you run the risk of simply being “processed” through a number of popular elephant camps and well-trodden hill tribe treks.

The Northeast

The Northeast is the largest region of the kingdom, yet has been largely untouched by tourism. The Northeast (or isan) is the rice-bowl of the country, and is predominantly agricultural, producing rice, sugarcane, tapioca, eucalyptus and, increasingly, rubber. Major centres include Khon Kaen and Udon Thani, and the mighty Mekong river twists along this region’s borders. The people here are perhaps the most open and fun-loving in the country, perhaps because their lives are based on village traditions where overt consumerism has been much slower to advance than in the other booming parts of the nation. Travel to the Northeast is recommended for those looking for a unique experience, to get away from the tourist crowds, and to immerse themselves in something new.

The South

The south of Thailand is renowned for its famous beaches and seaside resorts, such as Phuket, Krabi and Koh Samui. Some of the country’s most expensive holiday villas are found here. Travellers should be aware of the security issues in the south of the country and avoid journeys to the southernmost provinces: your local government’s website will post updated advisories with travel recommendations and warnings.

The vacation villa market

Holiday villas in Thailand tend to fall into one of two categories. They are either privately owned, self-contained homes, or villa units forming part of a resort complex. These are quite different propositions!

Resort Villas

The resort-centred villa essentially comprises a resort’s superior room inventory, and will be priced accordingly. In many cases, these villas will have been professionally designed by the hotel designer itself, and then sold to a third party buyer, who in turn joins the letting pool operated by the developer to provide a return on investment on the villa buyer’s acquisition.

The advantage here is that the villa occupants will generally be able to avail themselves of the additional facilities or services provided by the resort, albeit at ‘resort” prices. The disadvantage is that, for those seeking a more genuine experience, they will find themselves simply a guests within a resort complex, and considered as additional – if well-paying – “keys”.

Private stand-alone villas

Private villas are generally second homes owned by individuals, located on an individually-held land plot.

These may be rented “as is”, with the guests picking up the keys at the start of the trip and returning them at the end, either with or without a cleaning or security deposit. Alternatively, the villa may have its own staff, generally living off property but available throughout your stay to take care of cleaning, laundry, cooking or local visits etc.

Whether you choose a resort villa or privately held property, you should expect to pay a partial deposit at the time of booking, either by credit card guarantee or by a wire transfer.

Tried and Tested

We tried a number of villa vacations in Thailand, and below highlight one resort villa and one private villa – each offering an exceptional holiday but altogether different experiences.

Green Gecko, Northeast Thailand

Green Gecko is a privately owned villa located on a large country estate, surrounded by woodlands, plantations and rice paddies in the heart of Thailand’s rural northeast, near a town called Udon Thani. Free airport transfers were arranged from the airport, which is accessible via a 50 minute flight from Bangkok on Thai Airways, or budget airlines Nok Air or Air Asia.

In contrast to more mainstream locations, our stay here allowed us to discover and experience the real Thailand, off the beaten tourist track.

The villa’s architecture was traditionally Thai: an impressive wooden staircase led up to the raised and enclosed wooden deck, where our delightful private swimming pool was located, with bucolic views of the surrounding countryside and the evening sunsets. The steeply pitched roofs made of terracotta tiles gave the house an almost temple like appearance. A raised “sala” here offered protection from the strong midday sun and became our favourite spot, with its views over the pool.

Accessible from the deck in two separate buildings were the two bedrooms (each air-conditioned), as well as the living and dining room and kitchens. The master bedroom had a sturdy teak four-poster, king sized bed, with a cotton duvet and feather pillows, a large adjoining bathroom and WC and an outside garden shower. The second bedroom had a queen sized four poster, again with a spacious adjoining bathroom / WC.

The main air-conditioned building housed a dining room with a dining table and seating for six, a living room with comfortable sofas and views onto the pool deck, and a sunken area decorated with futons for lounging in front of the large screen LCD television (complete with a separate high-end home theatre system and international satellite channels). Leading off from this area (behind sliding wooden panels) was an additional WC, and a fully equipped Western kitchen (with built in microwave, oven etc), that in turn led out to a stainless steel Thai kitchen.

We must confess that this all looked very user-friendly, but that we never used the kitchens – with the exception of helping ourselves to a few iced beers from the refrigerator! As the owner is a former chef, he prepares all his guests’ meals throughout their stay, varying the spiciness or composition of these to his guests’ tastes. We were delighted to be shown around the gardens to collect a number of herbs and spices, which we were then shown how to spirit into deliciously fresh and tangy Northeastern dishes. We tried the classics too: Thai food certainly is mouth-watering, and staying at a villa like this where all meals are prepared for you, by a chef who is willing to share his secrets, was a boon!

We spent a good deal of time just lazing by the pool in complete privacy, but also enjoyed a number of excursions with our hosts to experience some of the sights and sounds of the Northeast. These included a spectacular trip in a small wooden boat, across a lake that was fundamentally a vast expanse of pink lotus flowers, interrupted only by the occasional fisherman or wallowing water buffalo (marriage propositioners, take note!) We also visited a local museum that seemed to denominate Thailand as the home of the bronze age, and a number of rowdy, colourful local festivals and wet markets, as well as silk and cobra farms. But our lasting impression was one of rural simplicity and ever-friendly locals, keen to ensure we enjoyed our stay and sample an unending variety of indigenous foods and drinks!

Green Gecko may be booked for stays of 2 nights or more via their website, where availability and rates may be checked online (from around US$280 including all transfers, service and meals.)

Green Gecko

134 Moo 13

Baan Um Jaan

Tabol Um Jaan

A. Prajak Sinlapakhom

Udon Thani

41110 Thailand

Green Gecko

Green Gecko’s sister property, Gecko Villa offers a cheaper three bedroomed alternative to those on a tighter budget (from around US$160.)

The Villas at Napasai, Southern Thailand

The villas at Napasai are located within the seafront resort complex on the luxury North coast of the island of Koh Samui, in Thailand’s southern province of Surat Thani. Koh Samui is accessible via Bangkok Airways from Bangkok, with flights taking approximately one hour (depending or aircraft chosen).

The resort is part of Orient-Express Hotels, Trains and Cruises: as such, both the villa and the resort were professionally managed, and we were able to choose between cooking up our own Thai meals after a visit to the local markets, or to simply walk to the resort’s excellent Thai restaurant in the evening.

The villas themselves were located at one end of the property, sandwiched between a steep hillside behind our house and the sea in front. Each of the villas is tiered down the hillside to the seafront. We stayed in a two bedroom villa, but three bedroom properties were also available. Beyond the two well-appointed bedrooms, our property had a spacious living and dining room with its own kitchen, a maid’s room, and, at the ground level, a private swimming pool and “chill-out” area. The main living room was well furnished and had a DVD player, satellite TV, and charming sea view balcony, where we spent most evenings.

The island of Koh Samui is a major international tourism hub and as such plenty of activities are available for the guest, from exploring waterfalls, to elephant rides, paintball, sea sports, diving, fishing, golf etc. The hotel also offers boating activities, Thai cooking classes, tennis courts, a fitness centre and a spa.

We booked online at the hotel’s own internet site, taking advantage of a special offer. Rates for a two bedroom villa are seasonal and start at around US$850++ per night, including complimentary American breakfast.

Napasai

65/10 Baan Tai, Maenam,

Koh Samui,

Surat Thani

84330,

Thailand

Tel: (66-77) 42 92 00

Fax: (66-77) 42 92 01

Napasai

Finding your Thai Villa on the internet

Choosing an appropriate holiday villa on the internet is easy using Google, Yahoo, MSN etc. Remember:

• Play with your search terms: use more specific words to help you drill down to receive a more “targeted” property. “Rural villa with pool Thailand” will give a more specific set of results than will “Thailand Villa”, and will be less likely to return a listings site.

• Where possible, book directly with the property owner rather than via a listings site – in all likelihood such a listings site will be charging a commission on top of the normal rate.

• Don’t be afraid to ask for references.

• Travel in the off season, and book early. Book ahead, as when a standalone villa is booked – it is booked!

• Make sure the property you choose has a telephone and address listed.

• Travel somewhere different! What makes a stay in a private villa memorable is the way it can take you out of the tourist centres to enjoy a more authentic holiday.

Thailand’s Airlines

Thailand’s flag carrier offers numerous domestic flights, but travelers “in the know” will turn to the local discount airlines. These offer frequent flights at a fraction of the price and in relative comfort. Try Nok Air or Air Asia.

Koh Samui is served by the “boutique airline” Bangkok Air.

DO’S AND DON’T IN THAILAND

Do’s and Don’t in Thailand

The Monarchy : Thai people have a deep, traditional reverence for the Royal Family, and a visitor should be careful to show respect for the King, the Queen and the Royal Children.

Religion : Visitors should dress neatly in all religious shrines. They should never go topless, or in shorts, hot pants or other unsuitable attireIt is acceptable to wear shoes when walking around the compound of a Buddhist temple, but not inside the chapel where the principal Buddha image is kept.

Each Buddha image, large or small, ruined or not, is regarded as a sacred object. Never climb onto one to take a photograph or do anything which might indicate a lack of respect. Buddhist monks are forbidden to touch or be touched by a woman, or to accept anything from the hand of one. If a woman has to give anything to a monk, she first hands it to a man, who then presents it.

Social Norms :

Thais don’t normally shake hands when they greet one another, but instead press the palms together in a prayer-like gesture called a wai. Generally a younger person wais an elder, who returns it.

Thais regard the head as the highest part of the body, literally and figuratively. Therefore, avoid touching people on the head and try not to point your feet at people or an object. It is considered very rude. Shoes should be removed when entering a private Thai home.

Public displays of affection between men and women are frowned upon.

Special Advice :

- Beware of unauthorised people who offer their services as guides. For all tourist information, contact the Tourism Authority of Thailand, Tel : 1672. For information about Bangkok, contact the Bangkok Metropolitan Tourist Bureau, Tel : 0 2225 7612-4.

- Observe all normal precautions as regards to personal safety, as well as the safety fof your belongings. Walking alone on quiet streets or deserted areas is not recommended. Be sure that all your valuables-money, jewellery, and airline tickets are properly protected from loss. Visitors needing assistance relating to safety, unethical practices, or other matters, please call the Tourist Police at Tel: 1155.

- Drop your garbage into a waste container. The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration id no strictly enforcing the law in an effort to keep the city clean and healthy. The fine will be imposed on a person who spits, discards cigarette stubs, or drops rubbish in public areas.

- Do not get yourself involved with drugs. Penalties for drug offences are very severe in Thailand.

- Do not support any manner of wild animal abuse. Never purchase any products or souvenirs made from wild animals including reptiles like snakes, monitor lizards, and also turtle shell and ivory. Avoid patronizing local restaurants that serve wild animal delicacies. It is against the law to slaughter wildlife for food in Thailand.

Thailand has beautiful place very much if you come to tour in thailand , assure that ,you do will not be defeated certainly.

Things to be wary of when traveling

Something worth knowing before venturing forth into the laid back, tropical environment that is Thailand: There are no copyright laws, and this is especially strange coming from the West, where copyright laws are borderline ridiculous, they’re so rigid – that’s why shirts and pants and shoes can be mass-produced for, oh, 2 cents in Thailand and then branded with a designer logo. (I don’t know why this surprises me…most cities over there don’t even have traffic lights.) Anyway, this lack of copyright law also means that there are fake tourist agencies who pose as TAT (Tourism Authority of Thailand) but in fact, are small independently owned companies that give cab drivers commission to bring yourists there, and possibly charge more than they should.

Such proved to be the case with Dan and I. Although we paid a fairly decent price, we were left hanging far too many times, and so when we get back to Bangkok, we will see about getting some of said money back. All of this is ok, though, because the fun we’ve been having has greatly out-weighed the annoying lack of political and moral infrastructure. Moral of the story DON’T. TRUST. ANYBODY. Not even me. I might scam you hardcore…there’s a little bit of residual Thai in me now, and I have been known to haggle prices down to ridiculous rates, so watch your back.

And something else to be very aware of: My boyfriend and I were visiting a temple, the Reclining Buddah, to be precise, and we were approached by a really sweet, friendly Thai man. He was chatty with us, showed us where to go, even gave us a little bit of history about this particular temple. Then he asked, “Have you bought a suit yet?” We hadn’t, but we had heard that in Thailand there are hundreds of tailors who will make you suits for really great prices. We were, in fact, looking for such a place, but not the kind that could potentially scam you. This man, well dressed, handed us the business card of a suit company and went on to tell us that he is an accountant, and he buys all his suits from this place. “Look at the double stitching,” he told us. We ooh-ed and we ah-ed. “And they do two fittings instead of just one, so you can rest assured the quality of the suit will be superb.” Well! This sounded marvelous. What a sweet man, we thought. This has been a lovely day. Let’s go buy a suit!

Long story short This man was a plant. He had been told to wait around the temple for tourists, preferably of the fresh, wide-eyed, nave variety, to make some preliminary chitchat, and then sell the suit place. Sell it hard. And it worked. And $500 later, we emerged with a suit and a jacket, nice looking, but certainly not worth what we paid. And the quality was certainly not what the kind man at the temple had gone on about either. That is the day we learned we must be skeptical of everything. It felt almost like a rite of passage. Like we must be the ones to inform fellow travelers, keen and bright-eyed like ourselves, that this beautiful paradise called Thailand had, in fact, some fairly rough edges.

Plan Your Holiday To Thailand For A Culture Experience

When you plan your holiday to Thailand, you will want to experience some of the culture. The first place you stop at should be the Chiang Mai Culture Centre. You can see a traditional tribal and folk show, and intriguing displays about the northern culture. The National Museum also exhibits all the culture of Thailand. The rooftop is fascinating as well. You will learn about the culture and the history of the area. The Tribal Museum is down the road and has many beautiful exhibits. The exhibits of the hill tribes are amazing to see. You will learn many interesting things about Thailand by visiting these two attractions.

While deciding about the other things to do when planning your holidays to Thailand, you should include a trip to the zoo. You will see the Pandas as well as African and Asian animals. Then there is the Art Museum. The exhibits are fascinating to see and read about while learning about the type of artworks that are custom in Thailand. After a few indoor activities, you might enjoy a day outdoors at the National Park. You will see birds, plants and some smaller creatures. The waterfalls are beautiful and the hiking trails are enjoyable and easy to walk.

Another place to plan to see is the waterfalls called Namtok Huai Kaew located by the zoo. Then you can take a trip to the Doi Pui Tribal Village. The village is a true Hmong village that has all the older traditions and a beautiful view of Doi Inthanon. The Royal Winter Palace is another spectacular place to see. It is a palace on the mountain with a beautiful garden adorning the grounds. If you visit from December to February, you will not be allowed inside because the Royal family will be there.

Holidays to Thailand are about culture and what better way to experience the culture than with a Khantoke Dinner. The dinner consists of many different dishes, which are a northern tradition. They have culture dances and other shows during the meals, which are courtesy of the hillside tribes. It is a real treat to visit Thailand and see how they live and celebrate different holidays. The Hmong New Year is a spectacular tradition and if you can travel during that time, you will see beautiful costumes and enjoy a cultural experience like you never have before.

If your holidays to Thailand are going to include some shopping, you will want to visit Night Bazaar. You will find souvenirs and handmade items. The Night Bazaar does not open until six at night. You can find just about anything you want. The fabrics are fascinating and reasonable priced. You can enjoy a great vacation to Thailand and see how everyone lives and how the tribes live. The culture is amazing to see and learning more about the culture is exciting. You will enjoy a week or longer in Thailand experiencing the customs.

What to know about traveling in Malaysia

Malaysia is an Islamic country. That is the first thing you should know. If I have not put you off by now, it is to your advantage, as Malaysia would be the first Islamic country, if you choose to visit, to change your perception of what most Islamic countries could be. If you are ready to open your mind to what Malaysia has to offer, read on.

Drug Trafficking

Malaysia practices the mandatory death sentence on anyone caught trafficking illegal drugs!

Exchange Rate

The exchange rate is about 1US$:3.2RM. As such, it is a very reasonably priced country to visit

Visa

Malaysia’s is a very welcoming country as you do not require a visa for all ASEAN and Commonwealth subjects, should your visit be less than 3 months. This is almost half of the worlds’ population. If not, getting a visa is relatively easy.

Transportation

Malaysia’s is located in a very strategic location between Singapore and Thailand, two countries that are already world famous in the tourism sector, and as our location suggest, we have the best of both countries, if not even more than what both these countries could offer.

We have rail system that starts, or ends in Singapore depending on your itinerary, which connects the whole of the Malaysian peninsula, right into Thailand, Cambodia and in the future, China.

We have a world class airport, located in Sepang, where most international airlines include in their international and Asian route. We have a national airline (Malaysian Airlines System) and two budget airlines (Air Asia and Firefly) that fly to most of the Asian countries, including China and India and soon to the UK. To reach the other two states in East Malaysia’s, that is Sabah and Sarawak, flying is the only option. You could make bookings on-line. There are also other budget airlines connecting Australia and Singapore.

If you choose to travel on a budget, we have many types of buses that travels to all the states in the Malaysian peninsular, inter-connecting countries like Thailand and Singapore, in a mere 5 hours. Executive air-condition coaches (Aeroline) are as comfortable as traveling by air at a much reduced cost.

We drive on the left. So driving is another popular way to travel for independent travelers. The highways connects all states. All you need is an international driving license, get a map and off you go at your leisure.

In Kuala Lumpur, the Capital of Malaysia, transportation includes all the normal metro, light rail transit, buses, taxis

Koh Samui Thailand, The Best Holiday Destination

Koh Samui is the third largest island positioned in the Gulf of Thailand. It is one of the most beautiful and most peaceful islands. This exceptionally beautiful island of Samui is located in the heart of Thailand. It has abundant natural resources, warm and rich culture, white tranquil sand beaches, great coconut trees and beautiful coral reefs. If you have an image of a heavenly island amidst with deep blue water and surrounded by coconut trees then the great Samui islands can be the exact place.

Holidays in Koh samui

In the past few years, Koh Samui islands have become one of the most favored and travel destinations in the world. If you have been planning to take a break from your routine and hectic life and going on a long and relaxing holiday then you must opt for Koh Samui islands for their tranquility. These islands have the most tranquil natural environs. The sound of the sea waves hitting the shore seems to be the only thing breaking the silence and calm of the place. If you just simply want to lie down and relax without being disturbed then Koh samui is the perfect travel destinations for you.

Natural wonders

The beautiful Koh samui islands nestling in the azure deep blue waters with soft white powdered sandy beaches offer you the most relaxing and wonderful experience. Once you are here in the midst of these natural wonders and sprawling white sand beaches, you are most likely to be left spell bound by the aura and beauty of the place. If you are one of the nature lovers then you would have an extremely good time enjoying the palm trees and the thick and thriving tropical vegetation. The lower slopes and the long coastline are populated with coconut trees making Koh samui the main supplier of coconuts to Thailand.

Beach attractions

Apart from these natural attractions, Koh samui islands have a lot more to offer like interesting places to visit and great fun- filled activities. Koh samui islands are most famous for their beach attractions. Tourists from all over world are traveling to the island to enjoy the pure deep blue waters and great views by the ocean. These wonderful islands have a large number of beautiful and splendid beaches that have become the most popular tourist attractions such as the Lamai beach and the Chaweng beach. Apart from these beaches, some of the more quieter and relaxing beaches in Koh Samui include other such as Mae Nam beach, Tong Yang beach, Cherng Mon beach and Nar Ton beach.

The great waterfalls of the place delight the visitors. These wonderful waterfalls include names such as Nar Muang falls, Wa Norn waterfalls and Hin Lad waterfalls. For the same reason, the Koh samui islands are also one of the most favored and top rated diving destinations of the world.

With all such great wonders and a quiet peaceful atmosphere, Koh samui is a place worth visiting. Taking a tour to the wonderful Koh samui islands could be your most delightful as well as the most memorable travel experience.

Chiang Mai – Rose of the Northern Thailand

The beautiful city of Chiang Mai, located in Northern Thailand is surrounded by mountains and lush green countryside area. As per its mesmerizing beauty and wonderful location the city is often called as, “Rose of the North”. As the fifth-largest city of Thailand, Chiang Mai is much greener and composed in comparison to other centers of the country that even includes capital city Bangkok. Being the core of Northern Thailand, this city is swarmed by countless number of visitors every year. It offers magnificent attractions to visitors which leave them spell-bound. With good hospitality services offered by Chiang Mai Hotels like D2 hotel, Veranda hotel, and the Holiday Inn, tourists experience pleasant visit to the city. So, splendid locations with good accommodation facilities, Chiang Mai offer an amusing retreat to the tourists.

Chiang Mai has gained a splendor image and is a storehouse of wonderful locations like museums, temples, hot springs, waterfalls, shopping areas and other attractions. These spots provide opportunity to tourists to come and experience the world which is entirely different. Chiang Mai hotels are located at convenient areas, around all the major attractions which allow tourists to visit them easily without any hassle.

After visiting the vivacious locations tourist doesn’t leave the city without appreciating its compelling beauty. Some of the major attractions of Chiang Mai are Wat Chedi Luang, Wat Chet Yot, Wat Chiang Man, Wat Tha Ton, Wat Lok Moli, Chiang Mai National Museum, Hilltribe Museum, Khruba Siwichai Monument, Bhubing Palace, Queen Sirikit Botanical Garden, Taeng Dao Elephant Camp, Twin Royal Pagodas, Mae Klang Waterfall, Mae Sa Waterfall, Mae Ya Waterfall, Fang Hot Springs, San Kamphaeng Hot Springs, Doi Inthanon National Park, Doi Suthep & Doi Pui National Park, Doi Tao Lake, Night Bazaar, Muang Kung Earthenware Village, Ban Thawai Woodcarving Village, Ban Rai Phai Ngam Cotton Weaving Village, Bo Sang Umbrella Village and San Kamphaeng Cotton & Silk Weaving Village.

Chiang Mai also hosts various colourful festivals like Bo Sang Umbrella Festival, Flower Festival, Chiang Mai Art & Culture Festival, Songkran Festival and Lantern Festival & Loi Krathong Festival. These festivals taking place in different months of the year are held in their own unique way. Visitors are highly fascinated by these festivals which attract them to participate. With the beauty of culture in Chiang Mai, you will also find here the opportunity to try hand at adventurous activities like trekking, elephant riding, bungee jumping, rafting, cruising, mountain biking, golfing, swimming and tennis.

While enjoying all these things, you can avail the good hospitality services offered by Chiang Mai Hotels, which are available in each and every range. Moderate, budget and luxury hotels in Chiang Mai allow the tourists to choose a hotel of their choice according to their need and budget. Good facilities are provided by these hotels which make tourists feel like home and have a wonderful journey.