Join our traveller Navin Ragade as sets sails to explore the international seas with his family for the first time. Armed with this Thailand family vacation itinerary, here’s his story in his own words ~
I have long dreamt of travelling across India and the rest of the world. After marriage and children, an international family vacation became a dream – of sorts – I chased after and finally fulfilled by Pickyourtrail this year. Best of all, I planned it with the Pickyourtrail team in hush-hush to surprise my wife (whose birthday we were going to celebrate) and the kids.
Chennai Phuket Bangkok
From packing to immigration check at Chennai International airport, the excitement was palpable in our faces. We wanted yell out: we are embarking on our first international holiday and we are going to have an awesome trip!
Phuket was the highlight of our trip. From our resort stay to the beautiful Patong beach and our spa sessions, Phuket captured our hearts.
The Patong beach, the row of shops lining the beach, Para sailing on the beach
The half day city tour. Starting from the Karon Viewpoint, where you get to see 3 beaches in a single view to the beautiful Wat Chalong Buddhist temple. And then through the pearl factory, to learn how pearls were made, and to the Cashewnut factory, where we got to see how cashewnuts are manually shelled. We shopped for a variety of cashewnut preparations! We concluded our tour with a visit to the souvenir shop.
At the Tiger Kingdom my entire family got to spend 10 mins cuddling with and hugging real tigers. This was an out of the world experience and something that wasn’t part of my itinerary initially.
The Phuket FantaSea show – with Gold seats that awarded us fantastic views of the stage.
Cruise to the Phi Phi islands. With beautiful beaches, crystal clear waters and white sands, it had the bonus tag of possessing private beaches you can escape to with your family. If you are feeling adventurous, maybe even get a machine or a bamboo stick tattoo.
Bangkok has this complete urban backdrop as against the laidback beach like atmosphere we felt everywhere in Phuket. Our room at the Silom City Hotel had lovely views of the skyscrapers surrounding the hotel.
The Safari World was one big adventure with a scenic drive through the park and close encounters with some endangered animals and birds.
At the Sea Life Ocean world, we were raptures – especially the kids – at the variety of marine life we came across. There were swimming past us from above and both the sides.
The never ending shopping options: MBK Centre, Indra Square (low cost clothes etc.), Prathunam Market (bargain place), Pantip Plaza (IT mall), Platinum Fashion Mall (clothes reasonably priced) and Central World Plaza (huge mall). The huge Suvarnabhumi International Airport with reasonably good shopping options (off course nothing close to the Dubai Airport shopping options)
It was refreshing to see orderly traffic, despite being a busy hour. Nobody was breaking rules or honking and every vehicle maintained a good distance from each other – all of which we don’t get to experience in India!
When in Thailand:
Food: If you’re vegetarian like we are, I’d advise you stock up on ready-to-eat meal packs like MTR’s while coming here. While there are plenty of Indian dining options, they are pricy. So, if you are looking to not splurge on food, this is a good option.
Electric plug points: While the 2 pin plugs sit well, it’s the 3 pin plugs that don’t fit in Thailand. Buy a travel adaptor from one of the local malls, if you plan on using your laptop.
Beaches at Phi Phi Don island: there are I believe several beaches on the island. Take the one which is next to the PP Princess restaurant for the beach with a fantastic view, space for relaxing and its expanse.
Avoid the Tuk Tuks: Yes, this may sound strange but I would advise to keep away from the Tuk Tuks. They are expensive (as compared to Taxis), they drive rashly and we were even advised by the Silom City hotel staff to keep away from the Tuk Tuks as not all drivers were safe to travel with.
About the author:
Navin Ragade is from Chennai and is a trained mixed martial artist, stationery aficionado who loves playing drums and spending time with family.