You need to say which country you are from if you are asking about package deals.
Most people though do it themselves, it is easy and you of course have flexibility.
There are just so many beaches and islands for beach time, they vary from idlyllic tropical quiet beaches with a hammock under a palm tree to full-on resort areas with Euro and western bars, pubs, 24 hour budger bars ad shopping malls, so it depends how you want to spend your day and evenings.
If you have a 'dream' tell us - that helps to get a feel of what your own personal dream on a Thailand holiday is all about.
Many like to do bangkok, then perhaps Chiang mai in the north for culture and nature and then head to beach / beaches.
For beach time the time of year is important as weather conditions vary a great deal, where one are of beaches / islads could be sunshine and calm seas another area could be wet with re-flagged beaches and rough seas
Domestic flights are relatively cheap to those areas with or close to airports, there are also trains to some areas.
Thanks for replying!
I will be flying from Dublin (or possibly London if it is much cheaper)
We really want to experience Bangkok and do some elephant rides in the jungle, see some temples and get a feel for the culture and just to spend time on the beaches doing activities like snorkelling (which looks amazing)
I want to fit in as many experiences as possible - I know this is a lot and is vague so any help is appreicated.
We will be going in July/August - i am planning now because i don't want money to be a problem when it comes to next year!
Thanks for your help,
We only chose those initial destination going by other forum entries, so are open to change!
I have little knoweldge of flights but from Dublin Ireland you have Etihad who fly non stop from Dublin to Abu Dhabi and you connect there onwards to Bangkok , or, Emirates non-stop from Dublin to Dubai and onwards to Bangkok ( at least 5 a day between Dubai and Bangkok ) - also, you can do Dublin via Dubai to Phuket daily.
Those give you long haul wide-body airline comfort direct from Dublin all the way to Thailand.
At that time of year for islands Koh Samui / Phangan / Tao would have better weather than Phuket / Krabi area. Koh Tao / Nang Yuan is particularly good for very easy and plentiful snorkeling t that time.
You could do Bangkok and if you wanted fly cheap to Chiang Mai to have nature and the lovely scenery and culture. Flights between Bangkok and Chiang Mai you have 5 airlines, the flight is 1 hr 5 mins, but Nok Air and Air Asia offer budget flights. Although if you book ahead they have great deals you should expect to probably pay about US$ 40-50 each way for a flght, or you could train one way for the experience and then flight back.
For Koh Samui flights are pricey, but you can again with Nok Air and Air Asia get tickets that include flight from Bangkok to mainland airport then road + ferry crossing, again probably in the $50-60 range if you book early enough.
You can also with Nok Air get a flight + ferry option to Koh Tao.
If on a budget you can bus + ferry to the island from Bangkok which can be fun, and cheap, eg Bangkok to Koh Tao with Lomprayah for at the moment THB 1,050 ( approx US$ 34 )
This shows those routes and of great help is the smalll map that puts those islands into perspective with Bangkok
Koh Nang Yuan
Koh samui has great beaches but busier than Koh Phangan or Koh Tao,
Koh Samui beaches :
if you want lively holiday island with entertainment and fun this video clip gives you some idea but doesn't show beaches really
Chiang Mai :
This is a gorgeous well made video clip, gives you a great feel for what it is all about
Cheap domestic flights:
Air Asia http://www.airasia.com
Nok Air http://www.nokair.com
That will keep you busy for a while :)
This is fantastic! Thank you so much for your help, can't wait to start planning :-)
Do read up a lot, although lots on the internet it is still worth having a good relaxing read of a good travel guide book that has maps, weather details, some history etc and gives you a good base to start planning
I went to pattaya and really enjoyed it! We want to go again to experience the the fun we had there but is that the only area this happens?
We also want to stay on an island perhaps or beach area and take internal flights/ferries if we can! We are looking to go in May but are very flexible but want a quality hotels to stay in . Thanks
'experience the the fun we had there but is that the only area this happens?'
Who can we say if you dont say what type of fun you are talking about.
But just about anywhere in Thailand will have better and cleaner beaches than Pattaya.Edited: 28 December 2013, 15:01
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Hi Meg's I wonder if you would mind advising how you have got on in booking/ preparing your hols as they are very similar to my family's plans. We are 50ish with 21 & 19 year old boys and this will possibly be our last family hol - any advice would be gratefully rec'd our nearest airport is Gatwick.
When I book a holiday I like to get a calendar of the time I'm away, I create a simple on in excel but you can do the same on a piece of paper. I book my intitial flights using travel supermarket, by skyscanner is good too.
Then I look at where I want to go with a rough idea of how long for and start to pencil this in on my plan. For the above, Bangkok -> Samui -> Phuket -> Krabi -> Bangkok is a good route via air. But I would consider maybe going from Bankgok to Hua Hin via road, stay for a few days, then on to Samui by Ferry. I'd also consider for variety maybe Chiang Mai instead of one of the Islands - depending on time of year weather may be better at Phuket/Krabi or Samui so this can influence you decision.
So once I've got some ideas of places to go I look at domestic flights. To/from Samui I use Bangkok Airways, elsewhere I tend to use Nok Air and Air Asia as they are cheaper. I'll look at time/cost of flights and use this to firm up my plans of when and where I'll go.
n.b. For transfers from airport to hotel etc it's not necessary to book in advance, transport is cheap in Thailand and readily available.
I then go to Agoda and look at hotels at a suitable price in the area I want - I like agoda because of the map function and it's competitive prices but there are other sites. Tripadvisor is good for getting reviews of hotels before booking.
Then you're done, all is left is to look at tripadvisor for things to do in each place. Treat each destination within Thailand like you're planning a weekend away that way it breaks it down in to small chunks and it's not so over whelming. Once you've done it once or twice you'll be impressed at how easy it is!