Christmas is fast approaching! Can you believe that in 5-short-months Saint Nick will be visiting? We try, where possible, to join our extended family for the silly season. We normally live on the west coast of Australia and our families live on the east coast. So, it can be hard! As I am travelling around Asia, and with the very real possibility that Matt won’t be with us, I wanted to make sure we would meet up with family for Christmas!
where in Asia?!
Luckily my family, like myself, are travellers! My mum and younger brother will be heading to the United Kingdom in December. As many layovers from Australia to Europe are in South-East Asia, it makes sense to meet in one of these countries. I was then given the task of choosing the best country to have our Christmas family vacation/reunion! I have decided it should be Thailand! Cue panic!
Culture always but Luxury, please!
Luckily, the panic was unwarranted. I found an awesome website that will help me choose where to have a luxury Thailand vacation with my family. Further, it allows me to combine two of my favourite things in one handy search engine! Firstly, I love to ‘live like a local’ so you get a real sense of the country! Heck, that is what we are doing long-term, right now! Secondly, when I am wanting to relax on vacation, I will not lie, I want luxury!
Accommodation for large parties.
I am not sure if it is just me but when looking for accommodation for more than 4 people it often leads to a massive headache?! The cost mounts up but it is more than that. Trying to please everyone can be very hard when choosing a resort or hotel. On this trip, we will have a motley crew: a single older female, a young family sans father and a single younger male – and we all have different ideas of what the “best accommodation type” is. Ensuring everyone is happy can be hard! Obviously, you can always just choose multiple places for each family member or group but that sort of defeats the purpose of seeing your long-lost family members.
Having a beautiful property in the middle of the action will ensure everyone is happy! Having a house, as opposed to singular room makes sure everyone has enough space. Yet, you can still reconnect over a wine, beside a glorious pool, very easily!!
Budget conscious Luxury.
As we are travelling long-term we must always be conscious of the budget so getting a luxury holiday home is literally the best of both worlds! As you get a large house when you divide it between all people staying it becomes very affordable. Furthermore, you can also get a kitchen to prepare food so going out for every meal is not essential. It also stops the often-excessive costs of things like laundry in a resort. YAY! I mean no one wants to pay $7 for a pair of pants to be washed! You can put that money towards an amazing massage instead!
So, Why Thailand?
I could probably answer it with just two words: cuisine AND massage!
Thai food is amazing. Think of the best Thai food you have ever had: peanut satay, Tom Yum soup, curry puffs, or coconut rice with a green or red curry. Are you imagining? What if I told you that if you eat Thai food IN THAILAND I can guarantee it will be 10 times tastier! It will be a party in your mouth and everyone IS invited!!! Seriously! Well, not much really needs to be said about Thai Massage! It is equally as heavenly as the food in Thailand and so cheap!!!!
So, in short, I chose Thailand for its ridiculously delicious cuisine and sensational massages!
Where in Thailand?
I have been to Thailand a few times. Matt and I even had our honeymoon on Koh Samui. I have travelled to Phuket, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and we had a few days in the hill tribe region. Now, all I have to do is decide between city, mountains or beach!
Like most big cities in Asia, Bangkok is semi-organised chaos. It is frenetic, loud and the traffic is insane. You can get all you need and more in this 24-hour international city. It is also a very busy hub for international flights from all over the world. You can also get very cheap flights from Bangkok to other regions within Thailand!
Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai
The northern part of Thailand is home to numerous amazing hill-tribe communities like the Karen long-neck people. This area is diverse, less refined and can make for a unique experience in Thailand. In reality, though, our family vacation in Thailand will have 3 small children, so trekking really is not really an option.
Yes. The answer is YES to a beachside luxury vacation in Thailand! We are Australians and appreciate beautiful beaches! So, when I saw how many of the properties on Luxury Retreats have amazing views or are beachfront properties, I knew the answer was always going to be BEACHSIDE LUX! Now, I just have to choose between Phuket or Koh Samui!
Phuket is the largest island in Thailand; located in the Andaman Sea off the south-west coast. Phuket is also arguably the best-known island in Thailand and is known for its palm fringed beaches and fine white sand. Phuket is a tourist hub and very popular destination as a standalone destination or as a layover stop. There is an international airport near Phuket with a variety of international flights arriving daily from all over the world.
Phuket ticks lots of boxes; it has beautiful beaches AND remnant rainforests. Khao Phra Taew National Park is the last virgin found on Phuket. The Andaman Sea also has spectacular sites a short boat-ride away from Phuket; they are easily accessed via a day-trip or overnight. The limestone cliffs of Phang Nga Bay, for one, are breathtaking. Further, a trip to Koh Phi Phi is also an essential for any itinerary when staying on Phuket. You can even visit “The Beach” made famous by the movie, starring Leonardo DiCaprio.
Samui is the second largest island in Thailand, after Phuket, and is located on the eastern side of the country in the Gulf of Thailand. Like Phuket, it is known for its palm fringed beaches. It is much calmer than Phuket and known as a honeymoon destination. In fact, Matt and I had our honeymoon on Samui. We loved it! It is a really lovely island.
And the winner is?
For now, Phuket is winning the race! Now all I have to do is actually chose from one of the amazing properties! Wish me luck as there are so many to choose from! To make my job easier the Luxury Retreats website have a very handy filter to help refine your searches!
- Phuket – check
- Pool – check
- Million dollar view – check
- Luxury property – check
Now, get in my belly, Thai food!