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  • Terrece Walker
  • "Need Itinerary Help - 14 Days in Thailand"

Terrece Walker

New York, New York

Need Itinerary Help - 14 Days in Thailand

Hi, All. Starting to plan out a 14-night trip with about 8-10 people to Thailand this Christmas and into New Year and thinking about the below itinerary:

*Chiang Mai - 5d 4n

*Koh Samui, Koh Phangan or Phuket - 7d 6n

*Bangkok - 5d 4n

We're a mixed bag of travelers, males and females ranging from mid/late 20's to early 30's. Looking for a nice balance of sightseeing, nightlife, beach and relaxing.

Thoughts on if we're spending too much (or too little) time in one area? I would love to sneak in time to jet to Cambodia, but I think that's too ambitious.

Also, any suggestions on villa rental websites other than Airbnb on the islands?

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  • Michael Ryan

    top answer by

    Just a suggestion! If you are traveling to Thailand, yes, it is kind of a MUST that you stop in Bangkok - but only for a couple days (there is only so much of it you can handle!) Looking for your next destination? Phuket? Overrated - not to mention expensive. I suggest you go to Koh Chang. It is the third largest island in all of the Thai Islands! Despite Koh Chang's increase in popularity, the island has maintained its unparalleled beauty, privacy, and delicious food! Stop by. It's stellar :)

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    • Terrece W.

      Terrece W.

      Koh Chang was not on my radar; thanks for the feedback. Will look into it! · (0 likelikes)

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  • Nam Onrit

    answered by

    Your itinerary is perfect, just be aware your trip is during peak season!

    Advance booking for more than 6 months is essential. Chiang Mai, Phuket, Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Bangkok are really popular.

    On September last year, I searched rooms for friends from UK who wanted to celebrate Christmas night in Chiang Mai. It was incredible, a few good rooms left.

    Your group (8-10 people) is suitable for private van rental with driver for Chiang Mai visit. Convenient and worth to pay, you can access both city and natural sites on suburb.

    Cambodia is interesting but it is world class ancient sites (Angkor) where you need to spend time for 3 nights or more.


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  • Angela Isherwood

    answered first by

    Hi Terrece -

    Thailand is amazing! I'm glad you are taking 14 days to enjoy such an awesome country. It is probably a little ambitious to try and get Cambodia in within that timeframe, as well but I can understand why you'd want to!

    How are you planning on traveling from place to place? They are all pretty far apart and you'll have to account for travel time. 4 nights is probably just the right amount of time for Bangkok - it will allow you enough time to see all the big sites but also to just explore different parts of the city. The city is pure chaos - some people love it, and some people hate it (I happen to love it) - but there are so many awesome places to explore, regardless of your crowd's preferences - you'll find lots to keep you interested!

    Chiang Mai is an incredibly beautiful and friendly place. Are you planning on doing any trekking while you are there? That's a good way to spend time in the north if the group is up for it. If you could make your way over to Chiang Rai at some point to see White Temple I don't think you would regret it!

    In regards to Phuket vs the islands - this is tough! Obviously it would be hard to do both since they are on separate sides of the country but both have so much to offer! Phuket can probably be classified as more touristy and definitely more built up than the islands, but if you like crazy nightlife it's a great place to be. Of course it also has gorgeous beaches - whether you want the crazy and less clean Patong Beach or more isolation, you can find it there. It's also worth a day trip to the Phi Phi Islands to snorkel, see the gorgeous limestones and blue waters, and have a picnic lunch on one of the isolated beaches. Krabi is on the same side of the country as Phuket and is supposed to be pristine and beautiful, but I think a little less to offer in the nightlife department.

    Koh Samui has an awesome nightlife scene, feels more local than Phuket (even though its also touristy), and is probably a bit more relaxed with less to do. If you could swing both the islands and Phuket, I definitely would. 3-4 days in each is probably enough time to thoroughly relax and explore both places.

    Hope this helps - have a great time!!

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    • Terrece W.

      Terrece W.

      Great feedback. Thank you much!! · (0 likelikes)

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  • Carolann Hughes

    answered by

    Sounds like you have a pretty good balance! Chiang Mai provides a good nightlife with some added cultural sights - 5 days is good to see the city and perhaps some of the surrounding sights (you may need to find transportation if you are going to make your way to surrounding mountain areas but you could fill up your time within the city and songthaews (like a pickup-truck style taxi) are really cheap within the city limits.

    Bangkok is obviously great for nightlife and exploring the city. 4 nights was the length of our last visit to Bangkok and we were able to fit in quite a bit of exploring, going out at night and trying different restaurants.

    I would personally recommend Koh Phangan - it's a great island for beautiful beaches and sunsets - great combination of partying and relaxing and I'll always agree with a week on beautiful islands! That being said, there are a few things to consider:

    1. You may be able to find cheaper accommodation and more option for differently priced food on Koh Samui in general. There is also a ring-road around the island so it's fairly easy to get around from one end to the other where Koh Phangan is a little more tricky to drive and expensive for taxis.

    2. You should look into the Full Moon Party on Koh Phangan - I believe it is on Dec 25 this year which could either be good if you want to go, or bad as you will usually have to pay premium prices for a VERY busy island. We went after a full moon party and got reasonable prices and calmer parties and clubs and much of the beaches were less crowded. It's up to you! You'll have to book early and a minimum number of nights during Full Moon Party.

    One other thing to note - if you are renting scooters on the islands - beware of scams and make sure you rent from a recommended rental shop. Take photos and videos, although that doesn't always help, and be prepared to either leave your passport or a deposit with them.

    If you are renting in Chiang Mai - Tony's Big Bikes - https://www.facebook.com/TonysBigBikes - is the one we used and he is fantastic and reasonably priced.

    Renting on the island is a bit is an experience in shopping around if you can't find anything you like on AirBnb - check out TripAdvisor and then shop for the best prices on all booking sites - booking.com, Agoda, priceline. We've had success finding cheaper prices on all those sites at different locations and times.

    Wow! This ended up being long! Let me know if you have any other questions! We wrote quite a bit about Thailand on our site but we've got lots more information if you have questions and we'll try and answer them!

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    • Carolann H.

      Carolann H.

      Meant to note that I have not been to Phuket but Macrae, the other half of OneModernCouple.com has and he said its a pretty big party town as well. And is a decent option · (0 likelikes)

    • Terrece W.

      Terrece W.

      Appreciate the great feedback! Going to look intonyour suggestions soon. Thanks! · (0 likelikes)

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  • Stephen "Sven" Minor

    answered by

    Look into Ko Yao Noi. It is where they filmed the movie Beaches and James Bond: Man With The Golden Gun. Located Just off the coast from Phuket. It is also not as busy as Phuket. The best place to stay in Bangkok is the airport hotel. Especially before flying out. There is a underground connector between the hotel and airport which makes getting to your plane very convenient. Don't forget the Palace and the White Temple in Bangkok. Word of warning: The quickest way to get in trouble in Thailand is to look like you are disrespecting the Royal family especially the King.

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  • Jae Oh

    answered by

    You'll have a good time in Thailand, especially if it is your first time.

    I think your itinerary is quite ok- not too much or too little time in one place. You can save Cambodia/Laos/Myanmar for your next trip.

    For other villa rental options, you can try Travelmob, as sometimes places are listed there and not on Airbnb.

    Phuket is a good jumpoff point to the other Islands. It's a convenient place to stay since it's plenty of night life, beaches, and parks. The other Islands you mention are vastly less developed, thus less teeming with tourists (if that is your thing).

    Christmas is peak season, so things are at least twice as expensive and are sometimes booked out way in advanced- plan everything in advanced as much as you can.




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  • Uriel Triguel Pacheco

    answered by

    Hi Terrece,

    I would be happy to add few more advices for your Bangkok part of the trip.

    Bangkok is an amazing city and there so many things to do and see, however it is easy to fall into the tourist trap and go on mainstream tours, visit temples during the crowded times etc..

    I have managed to avoid this, and hope my advices can help.

    If you like Thai food, there are some amazing food tours off the beaten track, walking in small streets in the heart of Bangkok and tasting dishes from all over Thailand, it gives you a good introduction to Thai food and you'll spend an amazing time.

    Also, I recommend you to visit Bangkok during the night when there is no traffic, tourist sites such as Wat Pho are still open and the experience is much more intimate and temples are still lit up. Also if you want to have a good massage, do it at the Wat Pho temple during the day where they have a massage school.

    Anyway I went on a Tuk Tuk tour that brought us to few of the iconic sites Bangkok has to offer, and it really made me discover much more than expected in few hours.

    Some companies also organise great Cycling tours off the beaten path.

    I suggest you reading this article that will you a lot more info :

    http://blog.eoasia.com/2015/03/19/top_5_fun_and_unusual_tours_in_bangkok/

    Lastly, you can browse over 200 activities in Bangkok, Phuket, Koh Samui, etc via this link :

    http://www.eoasia.com/en/thailand

    Hope it helps!

    Enjoy Thailand!

    Uriel

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