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Thailand forum

2 weeks on the beach: Andaman or Gulf - or both? Opinions appreciated!

Posted by krisandleo on 3/11/2006 at 11:09

Hi = My husband and I have 2 weeks of our honeymeoon to spend in southern Thailand at the beginning of January and we can't decide where to go.

Between Krabi/KohPhi Phi/Ko yao Yai/Noi and Ko Pha Ngan/Koh Tao, which would 1) be most recommended 2) best this time of year?

Is it worth doing both? How significant is travel time if we fly from Phuket to Samui and catch the boat to Koh Tao?

We are intrested in a little bit of snorkelling, some diving, and nothing too resorty.


#1 krisandleo has been a member since 26/10/2006. Posts: 3

Posted by 4015c on 3/11/2006 at 15:50

I would think that with your desires koh tao would be your best bet, it has quite a number of dive resorts but is no where near as touristed as Phi Phi and some spots in Krabi. That said, Phi Phi has some good diving as well as some secluded places away from ao dolam and tonsai that are much more laid back and for picture postcard perfect is hard to beat. I have snorkled in Koh Tao and can vouch for its weather in Jan and the beauty of it as well. the boat ride to Koh Tao is about an hour and a half or so depending on the boat and the flight from Phuket won't take very long. If you are in the Phuket area you might want to check out Khao Lak, very laid back with some excellent dive and snorkel trips to the similans. I got my dive certificate there and just loved it, that was pre tsunami but I will be back this Jan with my family to do a little diving. As to what would be best for time of year all would be equally good as to weather concerns being peak of dry season. hope this helps. Cheers

#2 4015c has been a member since 29/10/2006. Posts: 10

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Posted by exacto on 6/11/2006 at 22:30


I tend to enjoy wandering on my trips, so I'd lean towards hitting both sides of the peninsula with my two weeks. I guess that depends on how much stuff you have to drag around with you and if you enjoy the getting there part of being there (which I do).

Do you like to see lots of places or are you more into settling into one spot for awhile?

#3 exacto has been a member since 12/2/2006. Location: United States. Posts: 2,762
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Posted by wayne on 7/11/2006 at 20:55

First week of january the weather in the gulf side can still be a bit dodgy with rainy season on the way out. But the andaman side should be fantastic. Both sides however offer quite different experiences.

Diving is still best in the Andaman side, if you are looking at something not too resorty on that side then you have Koh Yao Noi which is in the middle of Phang Nga Bay, a very quiet island but scenic and should be able to organise some boat trips and dive trips from there. is a nice bungalow place, I have yet to visit it but i know the owners from their previous accom. From all reports it sounds beautiful.

Phuket is still nice and definately still has some of thailands most beautiful beaches (just not Patong), not everywhere there is resorty, but you will be there in high season so most places will be busy.

Krabi particularly Railey Beach area is fantastic scenery, more laidback night life on the beach and opportunities to dive from there

If you decide the gulf side, then Koa Tao is beautiful, plenty of accomodation choices, many people are there to dive. Beaches vary in style and quality. hat Sairee is the busiest with young punters out and about day and night and a wide choice of accomodation. My favourite beach is Ao Luuk, but there is only two bungalow resorts there.

Koh Pha Ngan is still one of the cheapest and laid back of the three large islands in the gulf and well worth visiting just for pure relaxation.

Hope this helps

#4 wayne has been a member since 1/2/2004. Posts: 23
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