We will be flying from Yogyakarta, Indonesia to Kuala Lumpur on July 22nd. From Kuala Lumpur we are going to head south to Singapore (backwards, but the Air Asia prices were hard to beat!), and then take the "Jungle Train" to the Perhentian Islands and Kota Bharu. From there we want to start three weeks of exploring Thai beaches and Islands.
*I am concerned about the safety situation in Southern Thailand and crossing the border there. Is it possible to fly from Kota Bharu to Krabi or Phuket? Or is the travel warning overstated and we should plan to bus/train from Kota Bharu through Hat Yai and to the beaches?*
Any advice would be much appreciated!
#1 caseyrebecca has been a member since 22/4/2008. Posts: 10
From Kota Bharu I guess you could fly to KL then north again to Phuket or Krabi, but it seems like a long way to go.
People still cross regularly at the Sungai Kolok crossing (the closest large crossing to KB) but less than used to. From there there are regular minibuses to Hat Yai -- they go from just over the border so you don't need to even go into SK proper.
It's a personal decision -- the troubles continue in the far south, but tourists are not being specifically targetted...
If you're still concerned can always head across Malaysia and enter at Sadao or one of the crossings entering into Satun province where there have been no troubles to speak of.
#2 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,789
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We are worried about the same thing we've changed our plans around so were flying from KL to Koh Samui then making our way across. Were going to be using an airline called Firefly http://www.fireflyz.com.my/
Hope this helps,
#3 lanamike has been a member since 1/5/2010. Posts: 9
We ended up making the bus trip from Kota Bharu to Alor Setar after our time in the Perhentians. Long trip but relatively easy and very cheap. From Alor Setar we took a cab to the border and walked across to Thailand. Once there we realized there was no avoiding Hat Yai , so we took a vanpool there and from there to Krabi. Totally easy and we didn't feel at all in danger, but we were literally in Hat Yai for twenty minutes. Good luck!
#4 caseyrebecca has been a member since 22/4/2008. Posts: 10
No Western tourist has ever been targeted by any insurgency in the Deep South (provinces of Narathiwat, Pattani and Yala). Although daily unrest does go in these provinces, virtually everyone travelling through the area would be totally indifferent to the unrest unless they read about it.
Don't even bring Hat Yai into equation, that city is far away from it all - no problems.
#5 Risha has been a member since 23/2/2010. Posts: 20
"Don't even bring Hat Yai into equation, that city is far away from it all - no problems."
I don't know where you are getting your information from, but my sister in law lives in Hat Yai and there are small scale bombings and insrugent related violence every week there.