Dec 04 2012

Phuket scams, rip-offs and hassles

Published by under Health & safety

The water's inviting but the jet-ski ride could come at a high price.

As Thailand’s tourism cash cow, Phuket regrettably attracts some unsavoury characters looking for quick and dirty access into the wallets of the unwary visitor. Here’s a rundown of some of the most common Phuket scams and rip-offs to be aware of to avoid becoming the island’s next victim. The jetski scam is Phuket’s most notorious … read the full post

Dec 02 2012

Sunset in Ko Lipe

Having a wonderful time in Ko Lipe, wish you were here.

Most new arrivals to Ko Lipe will want to christen their island adventure with a sunset celebratory toast. And due to the geographical location of Ko Lipe, your selection from the beaches of Lipe for a picturesque sunset will be limited to the west side of the island at Pattaya Beach. This whitesand strip of … read the full post

Dec 02 2012

Photo essay: Loy Krathong, Bangkok

Published by under Festivals

A pair of krathongs float at Lumpini Park.

Streets are being swept, dilapidated krathongs make there way out to sea, and people are recuperating from one of Thailand’s most beautiful festivals. The Big Mango celebrates this holiday like it does most of them — with the cracking of fireworks, the blasting of music and a carnival-like atmosphere along the Chao Phraya river. Here’s … read the full post

Nov 30 2012

Review: Above Eleven, Bangkok

Published by under Bars & nightlife

Above Eleven. It's,er, abover Soi 11.

Rooftop bars are Bangkok’s specialty. But unless you’ve got an awful lot of cash to flash, most people are limited to sipping on one expensive cocktail, taking the obligatory tourist snaps and then heading back down in the lift. But Above Eleven is a little different. While it still offers the excellent views, stylish surrounds … read the full post

Nov 30 2012

Review: La Fabrique French Bakery, Lamai, Ko Samui

Published by under Food

A good spot to satisfy a caffeine craving.

Shortly after the Lamai temple and the bend in the road on the 4169 when coming from Chaweng, you’ll find a little piece of France. There’s a large concentration of French expats in this part of Ko Samui, and many gather at La Fabrique for a taste of home. The bakery supplies many of the … read the full post

Nov 29 2012

Warp54 Studio, Bangkok

Published by under Art & culture

No cannons left over from the Japanese, but the eyes on some of these portraits could blow a hole right through you.

Historic Charoen Krung Road in Bangrak has long been home to fantastic Asian antique art galleries, but Belgian painter Chrisian Develter and partner Peter Smits contribute a fresh breath of artistic air at Warp54 Studio. Not far from the old Portuguese embassy on Charoen Krung Soi 30, Warp54 occupies an airy teak wood warehouse constructed … read the full post

Nov 28 2012

Review: Akiira Spa, Chaweng Noi, Ko Samui

Published by under Yoga & spas

They smell good enough to taste.

Akiira Spa is located within New Star Beach Resort & Spa on the hill overlooking Chaweng Noi bay. The resort’s modern, airy feel carries through to the spa, with its floor-to-ceiling windows, orange and yellow hues, and comfortable furnishings. My visit was during torrential rain, so it made a great escape, watching the weather outside … read the full post

Nov 27 2012

Swimming Rama (pork with peanut sauce) near Chatuchak

Published by under Food

Coconut curry peanut gravy or whatever it is -- we'll just call it yummy.

Chatuchak market is best known as a sprawling maze of trendy clothes and souvenirs, but some notably good food is also found in its vicinity. Head for nearby Or Tor Kor gourmet market for a taste of high quality fruit, sweets and prepared Thai foods, and while there, don’t miss a Malay/Indonesian cum Chinese cum … read the full post

Nov 27 2012

Thalang National Museum, Phuket

Thalang National Museum offers a peek into Phuket's past.

Though it’s a small and humble attraction, the Thalang National Museum reveals a side of Phuket that’s unknown to most visitors coming here for their sun-drenched tropical holiday. Found just 100 metres east of the Heroines’ Monument roundabout off Phuket’s main thoroughfare, Thepkrassatri Road, the museum is set in leafy green surrounds with a large … read the full post

Nov 25 2012

King’s birthday festivities in Bangkok, December 5

Published by under Festivals

A young King Bhumibol is portrayed comforting one of his subjects.

Doubling as Father’s Day, the birthday of King Bhumibol Adulyadej (aka Rama IX) on December 5 is one of Thailand’s most important holidays. Although celebrated throughout the kingdom, festivities are centered around Bangkok‘s Ratchadamnoen Road from Democracy Monument to the Grand Palace. Being among the throngs of Thai people as they honour the King is an … read the full post

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