It’s Ask the Experts time again here on the blog and this week we’re going to be teleporting you to paradise. This week’s question has been sent in by Jonah in Derby and is all about the beautiful islands of Thailand. What’s your question Jonah?
I’m off to Thailand Island Hopping in December what are your trips for the ‘must see’ islands and why? Jonah, Derby.
Ooooh good question! With an abundance of stunning islands to hop between in southern Thailand the decision of where to go will leave you with a big decision to make (although to be fair not exactly a bad decision to make!)
But luckily for you, our two experts Claire and Lucy are at the top of their game, and are here to offer some sound advice. What you saying ladies?
Railay Beach, Krabi.
Claire Whittington from STA Travel Brighton says…
Hi Jonah! Well, depending on how long you have, most people choose one side of Thailand to focus on, and my personal favourites were the islands off the west coast of Thailand. Since the film The Beach was released, backpackers flock to Phuket to visit the hostel and island where it was filmed and, of course you have the beautiful Koh Phi Phi but the west coast has so many other treasures which I’d recommend you explore.
Our 9 day Thailand Island Hopping trip gives you plenty of “me-time” on the paradise beaches Thailand has to offer but also includes something a bit different, whether that’s in a homestay on Koh Klang Island where you can really immerse yourself in Thai culture or spending 2 nights camping on Koh Phai and really getting back to nature – and lets face it who doesn’t want to wake up on a gorgeous beach just take a few steps away from clear blue waters and colourful coral reefs?!
The trip also includes time in Krabi which offers loads of brilliant activities, I went rock climbing here for a more unique way to take in the views over the Andaman Sea and horse riding which is a brilliant way to see both the beach and jungle. And of course you can dive, snorkel or just work on that tan. Your final night is spend at Railay Beach and if your trip just hasn’t been “Thai” enough for you yet, what with the homestay, beaches, jungle and crystal waters, why not take a cookery course and learn to make spring rolls or the famous Thai Green Curry or do an elephant trek and really make everyone at home jealous!
Koh Lipe is one of Thailand's best kept secrets...
*Extra little tip – If you have a bit more time to visit even more islands the waitress in my local Thai restaurant told me a few weeks ago that her sister goes on holiday from Bangkok every year to Koh Lipe, a small island right down near Malaysia. So if it is good enough for the locals then I always think it must be good!
Lucy Bolton from STA Travel Leeds Vicar Lane says…
There are lots of Thai islands, all of them are incredible and have different things going on so, if time allows, you should definitely try to visit them all. If you are short on time my favourite 3 are Koh Samui, Koh Phan Ngan and Koh Tao. They are all really close to each other, so it’s easy to hop between the three islands.
Koh Samui is one of the larger Thai islands, so a great place to start. You can also get flights to Koh Samui from the mainland. Take a tour of the island and take in the gorgeous beaches, lagoons and waterfalls; the great thing about the islands is that everything is chilled out and relaxed.
Koh Phan Ngan is home to the infamous Full Moon Party which is definitely not to be missed if you are going to Thailand! We have lots of Full Moon Packages which include transfers from Bangkok, accomodation on the island and day trips to see the other amazing places on Koh Phan Ngan – it’s not all about the partying!
If you interested in diving then you will absolutely love Koh Tao. It is a beautiful island and is the best place in the world for scuba diving. If you already have your PADI you can explore the island yourself and if not, why not enroll on one of our PADI courses whilst you are there.We have a great 7 day fun diving package – no classrooms or tests, just great open water dives exploring the underwater world.
Koh Tao has some of the best, if not the best, snorkelling and diving in the world.
There are so many ways to get around the islands, there are the Thai Island Hopper Passes for both east and west coast islands and also sailing trips that take in all the islands.
I would recommend getting one of our Bed Hopper passes with Nomads Hostels as these can be found on most of the islands. You can get 5, 10 or 15 nights to spend in whichever Nomads hostel you like so can be safe in the knowledge that you will have somewhere to stay once you get there.