I'm travelling to Thailand for 3 weeks in January. It's a very last minute trip so I haven't had much of a chance to prepare. I've been through some rough guide/lonely planet guide books but because everywhere looks SO fantastic I'm having trouble working out a realistic itinery.
I'd like to see the beauty spots - national/marine parks, laze on beaches, kayak, walking, snorkeling, boat trips and meet lots of lovely people to socialise with - but I'm not looking for a heavy party scene and would like to avoid places that are overdeveloped/trashy/big tourist resorts (i.e. phuket/Ko Samui) and prostitution hotspots (if possible - it'll just upset me).
I tend to be one for finding a nice spot and staying there but in a country so beautiful, I dont want to get lazy so I have put together a rough plan of action...but now I'm thinking this is so rushed I'll never have a chance to stop and take it all in ...
1-3 Bangkok - sights, shopping, bike ride
4-6 EITHER fly to Chang Mai OR travel to Kanchaburi and see some national parks from there as it is closer, OR just go straight down south. Any suggestions?
7- 19 free for andaman coast - I'd really like to see Phang Nga, Khoa Lak, Ko Taruntao...and a million other island chains here. Which ones are worth saving for day trips and which places make the best base to travel from?
7 - Fly to Ranong - head towards Khoa sok
8 - khao sok national park - overnight floating raft house?
9-11 Ao phrang Nga area
12 - Krabi/Ralay beach
13/14 - Ko Phi Phi Le
15/16 Trang - Day trip trang islands
17/19 Ko Taruntao Marine Park (stay ko lipe?)
20 fly back to bangkok early
21 fly home
Would i be rushing too fast to fit all this in?
Would it be better to stay for longer on the islands?
any suggestions would be really valuable.