Looks like a really good forum!
We are travelling to Bangkok on New Years Day. Staying there for a few nights then are really at a loss at to the best way from there. We don't necessarily want to travel too much on our first trip, but equally want to spend some time on the beach (quiet ones that is too long in the tooth for raves and all that trance stuff lol). I am Buddhist so want to see some of the Buddhist culture too.
We'd really appreciate your advice!
Tony & Rach...
#1 myotai has been a member since 27/8/2012. Posts: 1
Hi Tony and Rach,
How long do you have for the beach portion of your trip? I normally don't equate the Buddhist stuff with Thai beaches too much, but the eastern seaboard area and places like Koh Chang come to mind, particularly that time of year. Nearby Koh Maak is a more quiet spot for the long-in-the-tooth set as well. Plus, visiting those islands gives you the chance to visit Trat, which is one of my favorite spots in the country for just hanging out and being in Thailand.
Have you looked into places like Hua Hin and Cha-am? Those are more family spots with lots of locals too.
The north shore of Koh Samui has Big Buddha. Worth a look.
Using surface transport the closest nice island to Bangkok is Ko Samet. Ao Pudsa/Ao Tubtim, the 4th beach from the north on the east coast is the first of the quiet beaches and has two good resorts to pick from. Maybe avoid Samet on weekends and Thai public hollidays - closeness to Bangkok makes it very popular with Thais and vacancies are scarce without prior bookings.
Big Ko Chang and its associated islands link Maak, Wai and Kut is another 2 hours or so. Maak is nice but for an unspoiled island with a great selection of nice beaches Kut is better.