Im going to thailand on 2nd July until 22nd july 2007 ... 3 weeks... thats all the time i could get off work in one lump...
So ive been to laos b4 and loved it...
Can anyone recommend any places to go/things to do?
I want to go to phuket for 7 days and become a qualified diver.... but the rest of the time...any ideas?? Also how to get there??
Chiang Mai in the north is popular, good base for trekking, and it's quite a cool city. You can do Thai cooking courses, wonder around the city, it has a great night bazzar, markets, restaurants etc.
If you have enough time, you can get a mini van further up north to a place called Pai. This place is amazing, great scenery & a very laid back vibe. We hired mopeds and explored the area, it felt quite safe as the roads were quiet.
Two places that I would recommend are Kanchanaburi and Koh Phi Phi.
Kanchanaburi is about 2 hours north of Bangkok by train, it's home to the River Kwai, Death Railway and the War museums. There are tonnes of great trips you can take too, Elephant trekking, water rafting, Tiger temple and erawan waterfalls. It's a really beautiful place and absolutley my fave place in Thailand.
Koh Phi Phi I think (I can't remember exactly) is a 2 hour boat trip from Phuket. Has beautiful beaches and some great little bars/restaurants. From here you can go over to Koh Phi Phi Ley which is where they filmed The Beach, definatley worth it but try to go either early in the morning or later in the evening to avoid the crowds, which makes snorkelling quite difficult.
As an alternative to Phuket, which you may find more expensive than the Thai average, is Koh Tao on the East Coast. It's famous for it's cheap and plentiful diving courses. I did some great dives there. It's also a very low key island compared to Phuket, and I figure if you are a fan of Laos, it might be more your style. It's also right next to Koh Phagnan and Samui if you want go to a couple different islands. On the West coast though, as others have suggested, PhiPhi and Krabi are both breathtakingly beautiful places.
Others have suggested Chiang Mai and Kanchanaburi, both of which are must sees. Definelty take a cooking course when in Chiang Mai. If you have an interst in history, Ayathaya and Soukathai are two places worth checking out on your way up North.
Thanks for your great tips for places to go... do you know if it is expensive to travel to these irelands? and around thailand? Im kinda on a budget..although diving is one thing i want to do big time...
Do you think i will have enough time to do the places below then in 2 weeks? and do a 7 day diving course? Or should i just do a few dives and get qualified another time? Least i will have a full 3 weeks to explore?
Koh Tao on the East Coast.
Koh Phagnan and Samui
PhiPhi and Krabi
Chiang Mai (def wanna do this)
Ayathaya and Soukathai
Kanchanaburi (def doing this)
Koh Phi Phi. (def doing this)
Phuket (really wanna do this)
Things i really wanna do
Massage (not rude)
meet fellow backpackers
Do i have 2 much on my list 4 3 weeks ??
The way i see it is if i can get as much info from you guys as pos the better!
Yeah, I would say that you have too much on your plate for only 3 weeks. My suggestion would be to drop a few of the Islands, since really, a beach is a beach. There is no need to see all of them. If diving is your priority, then I would say stick to the East coast. Spend a week diving and 3 days or so on Phangnan to hit the parties. Then head North to ChaingMai. Do a hike for 3 days (which will hit half your list ex: villages, rice fields, elephants, walks etc.). Spend a day doing a cooking course and check out the night market. This will all take up about a week, and you have a couple days left. On your way back down to Bangkok stop by Soukathai, and if you still have time left, head to Kanchanaburi for a couple days.
If you decide not to dive, then maybe you could hit 3 Islands for 3-4 days each. Maybe Tao (where you can still do a couple intro dives), Phagnan, and over to Krabi/Phi Phi. Or of course you can do Phuket and PhiPhi instead, where you can also do an intro dive or two.
Whatever way, I would say you will have to pick your beaches, or else you'll be cutting into time in the North which would be a shame since there is so much more to see.
It would even be too much for three months. You'll be more on the road than anywhere else. Take your time, especially in Asia! Stay where you like it! Meet the wonderful people of Thailand! Don't mind if you won't have seen everything, you'll come back anyway!
And July is most unsuitable in terms of weather. It's the rainy season, which will dampen your fun considerably. Best time: October to March.
[ Edit: sorry, no promos in the forum please. ]
I think you can do alot in a short time but you won't get much out of it. Its good to just spend time and allow yourself to make changes to your plans. If you travel overland by buses during the day you will see the rice fields. I would say definitly go to Kanchanaburi. I didn't go to any of the beaches because I have that at home and I really wanted to get out of the touristy areas. My favourite place was Um Pang. Its near the border to Myanmar and is absolutely breath taking with very few tourists. There is a beautiful waterfall and you can do 3 day treks for very cheap which include staying at a Karen hilltribe village, elephant riding, hiking and camping at the waterfall. Awesome experience. If you dont have time I would either do Sukhothai or Ayuthaya - probably Sukhothai - its bigger and very beautiful with old temples. One beautiful beach I went to was KO Chang but it is out of the circuit - Phuket is beautiful.
Ko Phi Khi Lei. Undoutably. Beautiful. One of the most beautiful places in the world... if you can handle the tourists. And it needs your tourist dollars.
Yeah i thought i may have had too much... boo!! I know its rainey season when im going... its just im at uni... and that is the only time i will have to take 3 weeks... but i was in laos in august 2005 backpacking and it wasnt too bad... bit of rain... but not loads! It just hammered it down when it did... all other times it was hot and humid....
Im printing this thread off if i can work out how!! There are some brilliant ideas on here to make sure i can pack as much in....
Im not booking anything as your right... i dont want to get to a place...love it so much but have to leave as im on a schedule... Ill take it as it comes... but i will def to the 3 day hike! that sounds like a brilliant idea!! And yeah i wont do all beaches... as your right a beach is a beach! he he
If you can think of anything else please add it on here or tell me your exp...also things and places to watch out for ... i will keep checking here for updates ;-)