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Mid March we travelled from Kathmandu to Bangkok to spend 2 weeks in Thailand as an improvised family vacation! For visa reasons we needed to get out of Nepal (to later have some more time in the country) and we decided Thailand was a good option because it had a direct (only 3 hour) flight from Kathmandu, no too expensive and we were excited about swimming in its beautiful beaches!
It was a wonderful vacation full of sweat, salt, water, mangos and pad thai!!
Here is what we did!
We first spent 3 nights in Bangkok to discover a little bit the big city, do some shopping and get a first taste of the new country!
It is a city full of street food stands, lots of markets and temples, colorful tuk-tuks and tourists! We took it very easy because it was so hot and the kids were not used to it, especially the first day! It felt like summer in Florida, humid and sticky! We were so glad our hotel room had AC and we could take breaks and nap during the day! We stayed at the “Shanti Lodge”, a family-oriented guest house and really enjoyed our stay! It had a little play area next to the restaurant, delicious food options, from homemade granola for breakfast to delicious pad thai dinner, cocktails and desserts. The family room was simple but perfect for us! If you are looking for a quality budget acomodation you should check them out.
One morning we took a boat taxi, we visited the Buddhist riversite temple “Wat Arun”, we had some coconut water, crossed the river with another boat to a market, had lunch and walked around!
One afternoon we went to the Changchui Creative Market, the most well-known “creative space” in Thailand. It consists of event spaces, art galleries, restaurants, cafes, bars, antique stores and spaces for street music and shows! It was fun to walk around discovering different art pieces! The kids had a great time!
After 3 days in Bangkok we took a domestic flight to Phuket, this mountainous island in the Andaman Sea. We had a reservation in the Hotel Smile Residence for 3 nights but we only ended up staying 2 nights. The hotel was great, with a very nice big room, a great pool and a very (very) basic breakfast. But the location was not so great.
We rented a motorcycle (to ride as a family like the locals do) and it was fun but very scary with the traffic!
After that we didn’t have more reservations, the idea was to go with the flow and leave some days open of our trip to be able do decide, once there, what we wanted to do. We decided to go to Phi Phi Islands. We made a reservation for one night and went! We found it difficult to reserve for longer without really knowing the place and we wanted to be free to change plans.
We took a speed boat from Phuket city to Phi Phi Island, which took about 45 min. The island was amazing!! No cars, just pedestrian streets, beautiful beaches, a lot of restaurants and yes, party bars too, but it didn’t bother us. We stayed a first night at the PP Nice Beach Resort. It was right in front of a little quiet gorgeous beach, 10 minute walk from the center of town. The family room was nice but the AC didn’t work really well and they didn’t have a pool. Ramona was really loving swimming at the pool so we decided to look for another hotel.
We found JJ Residence Hotel to be a good fit for us. The room was nice and we had direct acces to the pool from our balcony, which was great and fun! The balcony was also a good hang-out spot for the kids, to play with water out of the sun!
We loved the island so much that we ended up staying all week! Galileo got a little sick half way through our trip (with a bd cold) so we didn’t want to travel more until he got better. Also, travelling days are not that fun and mostly exhausting… So instead of seeing more islands we decided to enjoy the one we were at and really discover it’s natural beauty! We had a nice and relaxed week of swimming, eating thai food, drinking fruit shakes to help with the heat, trying different thai desserts, eating a lot of mangos, enjoying the sunsets from the beach and night swimming! It was quite perfect!
A couple of afternoons we rented a boat to go to different beaches (that’s the only way you can reach some of the most beautiful beaches of the island, by boat!).
We really loved “Nui Bay” beach. It was the perfect little beach, with white sand, very few people, black rocks and palm trees around, where you can enjoy the most beautiful sunset!
We spent our days like this: wake up, go out for breakfast around the corner to our favorite bakery/breakfast place (the pros of staying a long time in one place is that you get to know the people and start having favorite spots, and we really like that!), Joe would work for a while, while me and the kids would go swim, either to the pool or to the beach.
Around 12 we would have lunch. A few days it was just me and Ramona (because Galileo was extra tired feeling sick and needed more sleep than food…, and Joe was catching up on work), going out for lunch! It was so especial to have some time one on one with her, talking about everything and sharing good food together! I will always remember those lunch dates with my almost 4 year old daughter!
After nap we would grab a snack and go together to discover a different beach every afternoon.
After swimming all afternoon we had dinner out! There were so many restaurants! Our favorites were the ones right next to the ocean!
After a week it was time to hit back. We decided to travel back to Bangkok (Phi Phi to Phuket and then to Bangkok) all in one day. This time we took the ferry back to Phuket, which took longer than the speed boat (about 2 hours) but it was cheaper and also much nicer, with AC and room to walk around, which helps travelling with kids!! Then we flew to Bangkok and this time we found a hotel close to the airport so we were not wasting time on the comute the next day.
If you are looking for a hotel close to the airport, we really enjoyed our stay at Asias Boutique Club. The room was great, had a big pool and it felt very homey and personal.
That was our vacation! We didn’t see all of Thailand, we didn’t visit the most important temples in Bangkok, we didn’t go to all the beautiful islands the country has! But we did enjoy our time together in a very different country and will always have great memories of those 2 weeks and all the delicious mangos we ate! That’s why we travel!
And the video!!