Thailand - 5 weeks in Phuket with a 3yr old - any help pls!

Travel Forums Asia Thailand - 5 weeks in Phuket with a 3yr old - any help pls!

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1. Posted by jay7777777 (Budding Member 9 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

Hi, we are planning a 5 week trip to the Phuket area in Jan / Feb 2020 and would love some advice on places to stay and things to do suitable to do with a 3yr old.
(I'm aware we would need a Tourist Visa to stay over 30 days)

For the 5 weeks around Phuket, this was my initial plan / thoughts -

3/4 days in Phuket,
3/4 days at Khao Sok National Park
2 weeks in Khao Lak
2 weeks in Koh Lanta.

Would love to know if people think this is a decent plan.

Wasn't sure if 2 weeks is too long for Khao Lak / Koh Lanta but we could easily split it to have a week in a different part of the island / area or a different resort etc.

So would really appreciate any ideas or suggestions for places to stay / things to do in Khao Lak / Koh Lanta.
Kantiang Bay is definitely on our list - possibly a week here and a week somewhere else in Koh Lanta?

Our budget is mid range and we're looking for somewhere relaxed and clean with nice size rooms.
Our preference location wise would be a nice safe beach for swimming with our little one, ideally not too isolated so with somewhere you can walk too.

Also would love to hear if people think, given the time we have, if Ko Yao Yai / Koh Yao Noi or Phi Phi are worth a visit?
Other options we could also consider is stopping in Krabi or travelling further south down to the Trang Islands.
We don't want to travel around too much with a toddler but I think we have enough time to stay at 4/5 places over the 5 weeks without it getting too hectic.

Thanking anyone who replies in advance!
Jx

2. Posted by Andrew Mack (Travel Guru 925 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

I'd agree whole heartedly that you shouldn't cram too much travelling in with a 3 year old.
Have you thought about spending a bit more time in Phuket or just outside at somewhere like Karon Beach or Kamala Beach.
You haven't filled any of your profile (which really helps when giving advice), so we've no idea how far your flights are, but if it's from Europe then that's a real long and stressful journey with a toddler who will get bored which stresses the parents (unless they are completely selfish people).
Assuming the first week+ is just to decompress from life, you could easily spend a week+ in/on/around either of those areas.
January is still high season in Thailand, but if it was just adults I'd suggest you research but don't plan to much, however you'll need certain facilities when travelling with a little'un so booking is probably a wise idea at least for Jan, although the numbers start reducing in Feb, so booking up becomes less of an issue.
Sorry, I can't help with the rest of your itinerary.

3. Posted by jay7777777 (Budding Member 9 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

Hi Andrew, thanks for replying.
Sorry only just joined the site and hadn't had time to fill out my profile.
We're flying from london, so yes it will be a long flight with a toddler and there will definitely be a few days of relaxation and acclimatizing when we get there.
I think its probably a good idea to spend a bit more time in Phuket but out of the centre, someone else also recommended Kamala Beach so I will look into this.
Please let me know if you (or anyone else!) have any other recommendations or suggestions.
Many thanks
Jamie

4. Posted by Andrew Mack (Travel Guru 925 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

It's a real long flight for an adult.
I'd think about a couple of days stop-over in somewhere like Dubai to break it down a bit, or maybe you just want to get the pain over with asap.

Have a quick search on youtube for Karon Beach and Kamala Beach.
I haven't, but I'd be pretty sure there are a few showing the beach itself and giving a general idea of each area. IIRC from cozens 3 year olds buzz then implode (although I'm kinda like that as an adult...), so a beach and nearby accommodation are big factors whilst recovering from jetlag.

This may help as well; https://www.travellerspoint.com/guide/Thailand/

5. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 1628 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

Quoting Andrew Mack

It's a real long flight for an adult.

Yeah, I wouldn't want to do long haul with a toddler. Personally I'd stick to short haul until they're of an age to cope with it better and appreciate the experience.

6. Posted by jay7777777 (Budding Member 9 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

hi all, thanks for concerns over flights! Fortunately, we have booked Virgin to Hong Kong, managed to use our miles to get Premium Economy so fingers crossed this will make it less painful. We intend to spend a night or 2 in Hong Kong before we fly to Thailand to acclimatize and get over jet lag.
Unfortunately this is the only time we can do this trip with our daughter before she starts school in Sept 2020, the only way of doing it once she starts would be to take her out of school for 2 months.
Hopefully all the good times we enjoy and all the unique experiences she will have will outweigh the flights! Thanks though for concern.
Any suggestions of places to visit and stay greatly appreciated!
Many thanks

7. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 1628 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

Quoting jay7777777

We intend to spend a night or 2 in Hong Kong before we fly to Thailand

Oooh now to me HK is far more interesting than Thailand's beaches. Have you been before? There's loads to see. Although expect hotel rooms the size of a cardboard box! :)

  • Take the Star Ferry from HK Island to Kowloon.
  • See the nightly Symphony of Lights from Kowloon waterfront at 8pm - the skyscrapers across the water put on a light show for your entertainment.
  • Go up Victoria Peak to the viewpoint over the city.
  • Take the Lantau 360 cable car on Lantau Island to see the Tian Tan Buddha.
  • Bus ride over the island to Stanley to see Stanley Market.
  • Boat trip to Lamma island - you can take a ferry to one village, ~45minute walk over the island to another village for a return ferry.
  • Ocean Park or Disneyland for kids

Personally I'd have longer than a night or two!

[ Edit: Edited on 25-Jun-2019, at 13:32 by AndyF ]

8. Posted by jay7777777 (Budding Member 9 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

Thanks Andy, you are probably right, i thought we'd spend a night or 2 to break up journey but maybe we should allocate a bit more time there. I've been to HK once before, about 10 yrs ago and did some of the things you mention. I think I was a bit put off as we have our little one with us, last time i was there it was busy, manic, over crowded, polluted. But given the amount of time we have maybe a few extra nights wouldn't be a bad thing.

Someone else recommended we fly south to one of the Malaysian Islands, not sure if anyone has any experience of these or thinks is a good idea?

Thanks again for help.
J

9. Posted by Andrew Mack (Travel Guru 925 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

Quoting jay7777777

We intend to spend a night or 2 in Hong Kong before we fly to Thailand to acclimatize and get over jet lag.

LHR-HK isn't much difference from LHR-BKK, and it can take more than a couple of days to get over jetlag.
HK really is a fascinating place although it's real busy and I suspect you'll spend more time trying not to lose little legs than enjoying the place.
As adults only HK is a week plus, but places like Mong Kok market wouldn't be fun with a toddler.

This may help; https://www.travellerspoint.com/guide/Hong_Kong/

10. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 1628 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

Quoting jay7777777

last time i was there it was busy, manic, over crowded, polluted.

I think that can depend a lot on where you're staying. I was last there a few months ago, and away from the chaos of Hennessey Road and Kowloon-Mong Kok it was okay - but then we deliberately spent time in quieter bits like Lantau, Lamma, the far side of HK island. And the MTR seems to go to more places now so maybe that helps ease the congestion.