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  1. #1
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    Pattaya and Chiang Mai

    Hi everyone! Some friends are going on holiday and they asked me to help and in turn, I'm asking help from y'all.

    Their route is Bkk - Pattaya - Bkk - Chiang Mai - Bkk.

    From Bkk, they intend to go to Pattaya by bus. From what I've read, there are aircon & non-AC buses from the Eastern bus station at Ekamai, but there are also buses to Pattaya from Swampy airport.

    1) Do the buses from Swampy have AC? Where is the ticket station located - inside the airport or outside of it? Is it like in KL or Taipei that the bus ticket office is in the basement?

    2) Re: Pattaya, which area to book? This will be a mixed group - males & females - some singles, some couples, all adults (no kids) and they're not the mongering type. Is it better to book somewhere near the center or is Jomtien better? Is the beach in Jomtien good for swimming, or is it full of sewage water and they're better off swimming in a pool? Any hotel recos in Jomtien - budget friendly would be nice. Not looking for Dillinger-esque or Landreth standards. So many options in Agoda and would be nice to narrow it down to a few hotels.

    From Pattaya, they'll go to Bkk, then take the night train (sleeper) to Chiang Mai.

    3) They intend to book train tickets online - are the tickets issued via email after payment (credit card) or do you have to get the tickets at the station? Which station - is it Hua Lamphong? Do you have to book weeks or days in advance? Or can get tickets right there & board the train?

    4) In Chiang Mai, where is it better to book? Somewhere central or better to be farther? Somewhere near The Wall? Would be nice if it's near restos and/or convenience stores. Any cheap hotel recos? Pool is nice to have, but not a must.

    5) Still in CM, which places to visit for 2-3 days? They'd like to visit a mountain or forest (saw something in a YouTube vlog, will have to watch that again). Which is better and/or nearer, Doi Suthep or Inthanon? I haven't done much reading into this, so if they're far from each other, my apologies. How to get to that mountain park - can it be done by public transport or do you have to hire a car/taxi/Grab?

    6) What will the weather be like, generally? This will be in July and I assume that it's rainy season there too? Some rain is ok, but will it be pissing rain everyday? Will there be storms? (It's been pissing rain here in PI for 3 days now, bcos of a weak storm in the Pacific.)

    Many thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Thailand Expat tomcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by katie23 View Post
    Any hotel recos in Jomtien
    ...Tui's Place is right on the beach in Jomtien, within walking distance to a 7-11 and easy transport to Pattaya; rooms are basic, but clean and with nice ocean views...the hotel only has 8 rooms, so it's best to book as far in advance as possible...
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  3. #3
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    ^thanks TC! Will look into that. Basic rooms are okay. For both areas, pool is nice to have but not a must. They'll be exploring and taking pics most of the time.

  4. #4
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    Hiya Katie

    (1) All the info you need for the Swamp-Pats bus is here https://www.thethailandlife.com/bang...rt-pattaya-bus

    (2) Mermaids at Jomtiem have a pool for around 1K baht a night. The Scenery in Pattaya Soi 10 is better and around the same price. I don't swim BTW.

    (3) You can print the tickets out. Here you go...https://www.thairailwayticket.com/eT...spx?language=1

    (4) I stay at Raming Lodge. It's near most places and just a bit over 1k with brekkie and a pool. Use Grab Taxi to get around.

    (5) Can get a taxi to the bottom of Doi Suthep (near the zoo) and get a songtaew up. After that you can carry on going up and go see the hilltribe village. Dinner in the evening at Riverside/Goodview restaurant. Have the Night Bazaar to mill about in too.

    (6) No idea, sorry.
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  5. #5
    or TizYou?
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    Hi Katie.

    I used to live in Jomtien.
    I wouldn't recommend swimming at the beach there.
    I also wouldn't holiday there either.
    Better to stay closer to Pattaya in a nice hotel with a nice pool.

    My GF and I stayed at Siam@Siam last November and really enjoyed it.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by TizMe View Post
    Better to stay closer to Pattaya in a nice hotel with a nice pool.
    Good advice there and whilst the accommodation will be more expensive everything is at your finger tips.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the replies, Bogon, Tizme & LT.

    I've looked at Csfan's thread about CM hotels, and took note of the hotel recos there. Will look up more places in Agoda & Booking in the next few days from my ofc, where the 'net is better. Hehe.

    @Bogon - no bogon tip no. Xyz for me? Thanks for the links, will pass them on.

    @Tizme - Salamat! I was in the Bicol region last weekend and thankfully my group had good weather most of the time. We were able to see the peak of Mayon Volcano (sometimes it's hidden by clouds). I've lots of pics but can't load them yet, too busy w/ work & stuff at the moment.

    Now I'm confused - which is better for a short stay, Jomtien or central Pattaya? Not interested in the gogo bars, but they'll prolly visit a bar with live band or such.

    Budget for rooms is 1k baht or so, better if brekky is included in room price.

    I've seen vids about Mae Hong Son - the pine forest & the Yun Lai viewpoint, etc. Is Mae Hong Son near Chiang Mai? If yes, how many hours or minutes to get there from CM? Would you recommend a day trip there from CM?

    Re: trekking trails - are there trekking trails in CM? Is a guide needed, and if yes, where can they hire one? Maybe a short trek of 2 hours (one way), so that would make a half-day/ morning trek.

    I've watched Art Thomya's vids on YouTube. He's a Thai singer and his vids are professionally done, very educational. I used his vids as guide for my recent trip to Cambodia.

    Thanks all for the help!

  8. #8
    Thailand Expat Dillinger's Avatar
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    Even if they are not mongers, they should see Walking Street
    There' also night clubs as well as the gogos where they'd have a good time.

    As for Jomtiem, theres a beach there called Dongtang(sp) where they'd probably bump into Bogon on the prowl or Za handing out a mano et mano massage to Jack Meoff

    Tell them to stop in Pattaya but not near LK metro or Walking Street, if they want some sleep.

    Cozy beach is the best in Pattaya( located in Prarumnak (between Jomtiem and Pattaya).
    Sa Keaw is a well maintained Thai navy owned beach in Sattahip and worth a trip, about 30km south of Pattaya

    They can also hire a boat there and do a tour to 2 islands you cant land on. One is monkey island where the monleys will jump on the boat looking for food and .
    probably rip someones limb off as you speed off. And Khram island which is now a turtle sanctuary

    The other beach options of note and which hsve clear water-

    Koh samet- expensive
    Koh Larn- cheap and close but full of Chinese

  9. #9
    Thailand Expat David48atTD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by katie23 View Post
    Now I'm confused - which is better for a short stay, Jomtien or central Pattaya? Not interested in the gogo bars, but they'll prolly visit a bar with live band or such.
    Stay @ central Pattaya ... no question.

    Beaches are crap everywhere.

    If they are taking the Bus to Pattaya, and staying in Central Pattaya near the Beach, take the Baht Bus from Pattaya Bus station down to the Beach.

    20 Baht last time I was there (a few years ago)

    A little more costly getting back to to the Bus Station though.

    ---

    For Chiang Mai, good advice above.

    I try and stay @ rachamankha flora house It's within the Old City Square, walk to many of the Temples.



    Food options either side of the Hotel, not expensive.

    Family style Hotel, some tourist services. I've never been disappointed staying there.

    Opposite the BP Chiang Mai Hotel

    https://www.agoda.com/en-au/rachaman...h.html?cid=-96

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  10. #10
    Look at all my medals
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    Quote Originally Posted by katie23 View Post


    I've seen vids about Mae Hong Son - the pine forest & the Yun Lai viewpoint, etc. Is Mae Hong Son near Chiang Mai? If yes, how many hours or minutes to get there from CM? Would you recommend a day trip there from CM?
    !
    Mae Hong Son is about five hours by mini bus away , passing through Pai . Its either a beautiful scenic ride through the mountains or a sickening horrendous journey , suppose it depends on whether you like fairground rides or not .
    1000 or so turns on a five hour journey through the mountains .
    Thyey also have flights on a propeller aeroplane from CM to MHS for 1000 Baht

  11. #11
    Look at all my medals
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    You need to book sleeper trains from BKK to CM a few days in advance . They have new trains and old trains in service , try to book the new trains .
    There is a difference between top bunk and bottom bunk , one is better , although I forget which one .
    Coaches are quicker and more frequent and cheaper

  12. #12
    Thailand Expat David48atTD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluke View Post
    Coaches are quicker and more frequent and cheaper
    ... and more likely to have your stuff knicked from?

    Me ... I'd train one way, for the experience and fly back.

  13. #13
    Look at all my medals
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    Quote Originally Posted by David48atTD View Post
    ... and more likely to have your stuff knicked from?

    Me ... I'd train one way, for the experience and fly back.
    Its just the rogue buses from Ko San road where things get stolen .
    The legitimate coaches from the bus station are quite safe

  14. #14
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    Thanks for the replies.

    @Dillinger - can you do snorkelling or swimming near the beach in those 2 islands you mentioned - Khram or Monkey island? Re: Koh Larn - I looked at the map & it seems near enough. Day trip from Pattaya possible? How to get there from Pattaya? Koh Samet seems too far for a day trip.

    So I guess swimming in the waters of Pattaya Central or Jomtien is out bcos of crappy water.

    Re: Mae Hong Son, 5 hours ride is too far, and they won't like an additional plane ride, so scrap that idea. (Thanks fluke for the info)

    Re: hotel in CM, David48 - that looks nice & homey.

    Thanks for the info & suggestions, keep them coming!

  15. #15
    Thailand Expat Dillinger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by katie23 View Post
    can you do snorkelling or swimming near the beach in those 2 islands you mentioned - Khram or Monkey island?
    Yeah and i have. It'll be a bit cloudier than your mates are used to


    Quote Originally Posted by katie23 View Post
    Koh Larn - I looked at the map & it seems near enough. Day trip from Pattaya possible? How to get there from Pattaya? Koh Samet seems too far for a day trip.
    Easily possibe for Koh Larn. Its only a 30-45 minute ferry ride from Bali Hai pier. Koh Samet, is possible at a push too if they leave early

    I wouldnt bother with Samet...better islands are further South for me, Koh Chang for example which will take 5 hours to reach but are well worth the travel

  16. #16
    Thailand Expat Dillinger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by katie23 View Post
    So I guess swimming in the waters of Pattaya Central or Jomtien is out bcos of crappy water
    If you look at the map you will see what looks like a toilet's s-bend running through China, Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand and a big toilet bowl at the end.... Thats Pattaya the bowl, with mersey trout

  17. #17
    PAG
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    Re Chiang Mai, just to throw this in the mix. M'Sahib and a couple of her girlfriends did a week's break last December, doing a night in Chiang Mai (quite expensive hotel), then a few nights in Pai, before returning to Chiang Mai for a couple of nights. The second time in Chiang Mai, they stayed at the Plumeria (https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Re...hiang_Mai.html). The location was good, being close to the airport and also central Chiang Mai. M'Sahib does know the owners through a gardening group, though had never actually met them previously. They are super hospitable couple and helpful, and have excellent English.

  18. #18
    Thailand Expat Dillinger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PAG View Post
    they stayed at the Plumeria
    Does M'Sahib know about your Yacht Club membership?

  19. #19
    PAG
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dillinger View Post
    Does M'Sahib know about your Yacht Club membership?
    Know about it? She's my chauffeur! Great having a non drinking spouse to whisk me home after a couple of hours imbibing chilled beverages by the sea, though my taste in music is better than hers on the car stereo but at that stage I don't get a choice.

  20. #20
    Thailand Expat Dillinger's Avatar
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    Sweet, i have the same............

    Its great aint it.....waking up on the drive at 3am in buckets of sweat with chronic dehydration

  21. #21
    Thailand Expat reinvented's Avatar
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    the airport busses get busy, book well in advance

    train to chinag mai is nice but really just so much easier to fly these days

  22. #22
    PAG
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dillinger View Post
    Sweet, i have the same............

    Its great aint it.....waking up on the drive at 3am in buckets of sweat with chronic dehydration
    If you say so Dill.......

  23. #23
    Can I still change this?
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    Quote Originally Posted by katie23 View Post
    @Bogon - no bogon tip no. Xyz for me?
    Just for you...

    Bogon Tip #924

    If travelling by train, buy some booze from 7-11 before boarding because alcohol is banned on the trains.

    Tip a bottle of vodka/gin in a water bottle or premix into large Coke bottles.

  24. #24
    hangin' around cyrille's Avatar
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    1) FLY to CM.
    2) I think time could go by very, very slowly in Jomtien in the rain without your own transport. Your friends will find more to do in Pattaya Central, but they're probably not crusty sexpats so...maybe Kanchanaburi?

  25. #25
    Can I still change this?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dillinger View Post
    As for Jomtiem, theres a beach there called Dongtang(sp) where they'd probably bump into Bogon on the prowl or Za handing out a mano et mano massage to Jack Meoff
    Bogon Tip #925

    Listen to Dilly. He usually has his finger on the pulse as his description of me, Za and Jack is spot on.

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