Do you see the hotel? It is there, respecting the landscape, a lesson that Thailand gives us since the first moments, and with only a few exceptions. If there weren’t 16 hours flying there and the same backwards, that should become a regular destination. Everything was appealing, and affordable.
We made a well planned trip, with the internal connections made by plain first from Bangkok to Chiang Mai (from where we went by land to Chiang Rai and back) and then to Phuket.
Since we were there, we went a little further to visit Singapore, and that was the only thing that didn’t go as we planned, because we were thinking on a direct flight from Phuket and couldn’t get it. We were obliged to fly north to Bangkok and from there to Singapore, adding extra 2000 kms to the flights. It didn’t reflect on price, only on time, but still gave us time to a brief trip in southern Malaysia (only saw Johor Bahru). Coming back to Thailand is my wife’s dream (and I’m in), but the flights… Maybe one day!
Eat. Everything. Even when cutting the food looks like a crime against arts. But for me, everything tasted good, being light and healthy. I had tried Thai food in a Portuguese restaurant and was somewhat disappointed. In place things were totally different. So… eat. And enjoy.
Thai language is difficult? Yes! But who needs it, in a country that bets in communication? Do you really need a translator?
In my trip I was impressed by the readings about Phuket, and didn’t care with my agent’s warnings about monsoon. He suggested Ko Samui much safer in that period, but I insisted in Phuket.
I didn’t regret, since it is really interesting, and Phi Phi islands and Patong were perfect to overcome the sea constraints.
In his second visit, Tito visited not only Ko Samui, but a few other islands, all of them with heavenly beaches, being Ko Thao his favorite.
He convinced me, and in the second visit I will reserve several days for the Ko… something!
Is it possible to visit Thailand without going to Bangkok?
Yes, it is!
But the big city is something that no one should miss. Even after the injustice that kept the Imperial Palace out of the new seven wonders of the world, Bangkok is a place where I would like to come back (and, surprisingly, Fernanda too).
If it wasn’t so far…
Land of some good beaches, this large island connected to the continent, is plenty of complementary attractions. When we were there it was monsoon time, and some of the beaches were dangerous. A detail to have in mind, since monsoon extends for several months in summer.
Our agent advised Ko Samui, in the opposite coast, and maybe, that would have been safer, with easy access to the beautiful area of Krabi. But Phuket was great, and the additional precautions needed at the sea didn’t spoil a good week.
A visit to Thailand will not be complete if we don’t add to Bangkok and the inevitable beach, a trip to the north.
Chiang Mai is the capital of the north, and the best located place to travel around.
It is also, very interesting if you don’t want to go elsewhere in the neighborhoods.
Visiting Thailand, travelling to Chiang Mai opens the doors to visit Chiang Rai, and the so-called Golden Triangle.
It is a crossroads of people with ethnic and political expression, which guarantee a dense and interesting visit.
Left hand driving
Before leaving to Thailand I considered the option of renting a car, to travel around.
The first sight of the local traffic immediately forced me to give up.
Driving on the left it’s tricky for us, even in a disciplined western country, but here, the permanent jamming of the main avenues and the confusion out of them, advice one single solution – no matter what your plans were, get a local driver, as we did.
My previous idea was to rent a car in Phuket, to visit the island; upon arrival, and watching the traffic, I decided not to risk, and to use public transportation.
Tuk Tuk was a wonderful solution: we were seven, but that was no problem, and it was quick, cheap, available everywhere, adapted to the weather, and all the drivers we met were nice guys.
We used it everyday and everywhere.