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Bang Saen/Ko Chang/Ko Mak

  • kvleiva

    Joined Travelfish
    19th January, 2009
    Posts: 5

    Hi. We're heading to Thailand for two months w/our three children (all under 5 years old). We'll spend first couple weeks in Eastern Thailand in Bang Saen

    We'd like to visit some animal-friendly zoos/gardens/etc. -- know of any near Bang Saen/Pattaya?

    We'll then head to a nice, sandy child-friendly beach.

    Two years ago, we were in Ko Chang and liked White Sands -- nice, sandy, wide and long beach, lots of restaurants to choose from. But we've heard that in the last couple years, White Sands beach has really changed for the worst. Can anyone confirm this?

    Any good (under 700 baht/night) accommodation recs?

    Any recs for Ko Mak? We thought we might head there for a week or two.

    Thanks in advance for any help.

    #1 Posted: 20/1/2009 - 04:06

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  • travelrock

    Joined Travelfish
    19th April, 2008
    Posts: 209
    Total reviews: 18

    White sands wouldnt have changed much in 2 years. It was well developed 2 years ago.

    Don't know any good places under 700 baht though. The island's accomodation is a bit pricey for mine.

    #2 Posted: 20/1/2009 - 06:34

  • somtam2000

    Click here to learn more about somtam2000
    Joined Travelfish
    21st January, 2004
    Location Indonesia
    Posts: 7371
    Total reviews: 24
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    At least 113


    I can't help on bang saen and Pattaya, but I think you'll see White Sands to have developed a LOT. Under 700B I struggle to think of anywhere on that beach.

    Check the listings for specific beaches from the Ko Chang page, or use the accommodation search (bottom of the Ko Chang page and sort by price -- that will show you the cheapest places across the island.

    More question, ask away!

    #3 Posted: 20/1/2009 - 14:01

  • kvleiva

    Joined Travelfish
    19th January, 2009
    Posts: 5

    Is White Sands still a pleasant beach? Or has it been badly affected by the over construction? Thanks, somtam2000.

    #4 Posted: 20/1/2009 - 16:00

  • Thaiman

    Click here to learn more about Thaiman
    Joined Travelfish
    12th November, 2008
    Posts: 201

    Hi kvleiva
    There's the Tiger Park at Si Racha which you don't hear too much about.Visited it a few years back and was'nt too bad at all.Monkeys are also present at a spot between Bang Saen and Si Racha on the coast road but afraid I can't remember exactly where.There's also Nong Nooch[gardens] in Pattaya but I've never been there so can't say what they're like.Hope that helps.

    #5 Posted: 20/1/2009 - 16:36

  • khunwilko

    Joined Travelfish
    27th January, 2007
    Posts: 560

    Bang Saen –

    Oh my God! The Tiger Zoo at Sri Racha is an APPALLING place! It is no more than a circus side show – they actually killed dozens of Tigers there a few years ago by feeding them infected chickens (Flu or SARS). PLEASE don’t give them your money.

    What kind of a place dresses piglets (or puppies) up in “tiger skins” and allows a tigress to suckle them? – have I missed something here or does that have nothing to do with the care of animals or conservation or any at all connected with animal welfare?????

    Khao Keow zoo nearby is a little more considerate to the animals and you can even drive round....a few eateries there and a night “safari” – apparently not that exciting.
    They sometimes put on theatrical shows in the landscaped gardens.

    Monkey Mountain – Khao Samuk – is just outside Bang Saen it is “infested” with hoards of monkeys – if you drive up there, people sell you fruit etc to feed them. So you can sit and watch them (the monkeys) pull the mirrors and accessories off your car or just relax and watch them fighting with the dogs over road-kill!!

    The beach at Bang Saen is OK – it has sand, deck-chairs etc….the Southern-most end – Wanapa - doesn’t have deck chairs at the far end.

    Pattaya has things like “Water World, Nong Nooch Little Siam. There is also go-karting, and various watersports – avoid the Jetskis.

    If you are at Bang Saen on the week-end, be warned, it gets very crowded. Everyone and his brother comes out from Bangkok for the day or days.
    There is often something going on at the week-ends – e.g. go-karting on the sea front, they even have a “Speed Week” – (November, I think).

    Up the road are Carrefour, Big C and Tesco Lotus – Big C has cinemas etc

    There is also there VERY strange – Buddhist Heaven and Hell garden – with a selection of plaster statues depicting various tortured and mutilated beings – good for keeping errant children in line! – ask how to get there from a local.

    PS – Whitesands is HUGELY more developed than 2 years ago! There has been no “good” accommodation there for 700 baht for 5 years or more.

    #6 Posted: 22/1/2009 - 12:02

  • kvleiva

    Joined Travelfish
    19th January, 2009
    Posts: 5

    Thank you. Wow. Just arrived, and don't have too much time to write. Thanks so much for the information. Will reply more later.

    #7 Posted: 26/1/2009 - 12:30

  • travelrock

    Joined Travelfish
    19th April, 2008
    Posts: 209
    Total reviews: 18

    Khunwilko is correct White Sands have been hugely developed for a few years and accomodation is expensive. The beach however is good.

    I looked at many resorts on the island and found it to be very expensive by thai standards, however we did find good cheap food and daytrips were inexpensive compared to say Samui.

    #8 Posted: 27/1/2009 - 06:59

  • Jon_Mak_Mak

    Click here to learn more about Jon_Mak_Mak
    Joined Travelfish
    21st February, 2007
    Location United Kingdom
    Posts: 464
    Total reviews: 5

    Sri Racha Tiger Zoo - I went here about 4 years ago and some of it was alright but I actually walked out of the circus bit after only a few minutes! It was not nice at all and it left me feeling quite upset for the animals. :(

    BUT, there is a place right near (in?) Pattaya called, The Million Years Stone Park and Pattaya Crocodile farm, something along those lines anyway. This was quite a good zoo where we held a baby tiger in our hands and fed some GIANT catfish. The beautiful gardens are meant to be ancient too. Worth a visit I would say.

    Another place in Pattaya is The Sanctuary of Truth, which is a hand-crafted wooden Wat that has been in construction for years now. You can get a tour around this place (its not big but visually interesting) and they also have dolphins in a kind of lake that you can go swimming with.

    #9 Posted: 27/1/2009 - 07:18

  • kvleiva

    Joined Travelfish
    19th January, 2009
    Posts: 5

    Thank you so much everyone. Great and very helpful info. Much appreciated. Will take it all and digest. Many, many thanks.

    #10 Posted: 29/1/2009 - 14:40

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