Honeymoon Ideas: Thailand Escape

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For Australian couples, Thailand represents all things “honeymoon” — with luxury resorts, private beaches, warm weather, exotic scenery, cuisine, and culture — not to mention affordability. Whether planning a single stop or island hop, Thailand is the dream place to get loved up after your wedding


If your idea of the perfect honeymoon is to plonk yourself on a poolside or beachfront lounger, sip cocktails from coconuts, and get a full-body massage every day, then Thailand is your place. Not only can couples fulfi l their dreams of total relaxation here, but Australia’s north-western neighbour also offers ample opportunities to mix down-time with cultural, adventure, and foodie thrills, which add a truly memorable dimension to any holiday.


WHEN TO GO

Peak season for tourism in Thailand is mid- October through to the end of February. While the weather is not as hot or rainy during this period, accommodation and travel prices increase and there are heavier crowds. Some travellers find the weather during off-peak months (March to mid-October) entirely tolerable, with high temperatures, humidity, and the occasional stormy afternoon being the only drawbacks. Benefits of travelling during this time are more elbow room and more affordability.

Choosing when to travel depends on the kind of holiday you want. If scuba diving is the main attraction for you, you might consider avoiding the wetter season due to the risk of choppy seas; however, if chilling out at a resort attracts you most, then a few afternoon storms shouldn’t detract from your experience.

 

WHERE TO VISIT

Before deciding what places to visit in Thailand, it’s important to know what you want from your honeymoon. Below are the key regions with an outline of what they offer.

CENTRAL AND EAST: Bangkok is the geographic and economic heartland of Thailand, equally loved and disliked by tourists for its shopping mall towers and chaotic markets and traffi c. Honeymooners seeking relaxation will probably do well to heed the famous Chess song lyrics and stay only “one night”. The east of Thailand is where the kingdom’s agriculture is centred, and resorts along the southern coastline, from Chon Buri to Rayon, are worth a look.

NORTH: Adventurous couples will relish mountainous northern Thailand for its hiking trails and clashing of culture and scenery. Chiang Mai is a popular base to see Buddhist temple Doi Suthep, climb Thailand’s highest mountain, Doi Inthanon, and visit hill-tribe villages. Elephant treks are also popular, however make sure you research the trekking provider before you go. Do they treat their elephants ethically? One suggested company is Baan Chang Elephant Park.
Visit www.baanchangelephantpark.com

NORTHEAST: If ancient temples are your thing, add the northeast of Thailand (also known as Isaan) to your itinerary. Bordering Laos to the north and Cambodia to the south, numerous Stone Age and Bronze Age buildings and artefacts can still be found here.

SOUTH: Perhaps the most synonymous with honeymooning, the southern region of Thailand encompasses the peninsula and islands between the Andaman Sea to the west and the Gulf of Thailand to the east. Each island has its own distinct personality, the more populated ones featuring beachside resorts, villages, unrivalled snorkelling, and scuba diving. They are also often key “party” towns where exciting nightlife can be found.

ISLAND ESCAPES

Three of the most popular islands in Thailand for honeymooners include: 

Phuket: The kingdom’s biggest island, Phuket is lined with resorts on the coast and offers best access to James Bond Island in Phang Nga Bay, with its spectacular rock formations. Inland you’ll find dramatic tropical mountain ranges, elephant riding eco tours, Buddhist temples, and character-filled villages.

Phuket’s most famous town is Patong — a hectic yet culturally immersive experience where street peddlers, market food stalls, nightlife and beach activities come together in a fl urry of fun and pandemonium. Honeymooners might prefer to stay outside Patong and catch a tuk tuk (taxi) into the village to sample its comforts and chaos. Phuket also acts as a gateway by boat and plane to other nearby islands.

Koh Samui: Located off the east coast of Surat Thani province, Thailand’s third-largest island is rimmed with luxury resorts while buzzing nightlife is located in Chaweng. Koh Samui offers the best access to Koh Phangan — famous for its “Full Moon” parties and scuba diving.

Koh Phi Phi Don (Phi Phi Island): A very scenic and private island just a twoand-a-half-hour boat ride from Phuket. Again, luxury accommodation and bungalows sit alongside tiny villages, with the main entertainment town of Tonsai catering for partying travellers. Best access to Maya Bay (where the film The Beach was set).

WEDDING DESTINATION

As well as a honeymoon hotspot, Thailand is an ideal destination for weddings. Many resorts feature chapels, ceremony locations, and reception facilities on site, and offer convenient packages that include hair and makeup, photography, catering, and accommodation for bridal parties and wedding guests. Destination weddings give your closest friends and relatives a great excuse for a holiday and ensure everyone is at their most relaxed on the most important day of your life. Three luxury resorts in Thailand that cater for weddings are:

TSUNAMI SAFETY

While the memory of the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami still lingers in the south — a tragedy that had greatest impact on the region’s western coastline and islands — the only evidence that it occurred can be gleaned from tsunami evacuation warning signs on the most affected beaches, and more efficient evacuation plans now in place at seaside hotels. Check with your hotel about their evacuation plan if you have concerns about safety.

 

Words: Jodie McLeod 

 

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