The Independent Parent: We'd like to go on honeymoon in Thailand with our young son
Saturday 14 August 2004
Q. We are getting married in September and want to go on honeymoon for a couple of weeks in October with our baby son.
Q. We are getting married in September and want to go on honeymoon for a couple of weeks in October with our baby son. We would like to go to Thailand, spending some time in Bangkok before heading to the beach. We would also like accommodation with a babysitting service. Our total budget is £3,000.
L Ferris, via e-mail
A. Combining a visit to Bangkok with a beach holiday on one of the Thai islands or beaches on the mainland is a good option. Many tourists use the capital solely as a gateway to the beaches and islands further south. But this means bypassing national treasures such as the Grand Palace, the temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaeo), and the Temple of Dawn (Wat Arun), not to mention the daily hustle and bustle along Bangkok's famous Noi canal and Khao San Road. However, while definitely an unmissable element of a trip to Thailand, the heat and humidity of Bangkok mean that you won't want to spend too much time there, and there are countless beaches and islands offering respite. However, you might like to consider postponing your visit until November when the rainy season is over, although this will mean it is more expensive. The monsoon can strike at any time between June and October and can make conditions unbearably humid.
Travel Mood (0870 990 9910; www.travelmood.com) offers a two-centre package which starts with three days in Bangkok followed by a stay at the reseort town of Hua Hin on the mainland, which is slightly quieter than the popular resort of Krabi and islands of Koh Samui and Phuket further south. Hua Hin feels very different to its southern counterparts, with the architecture of hotels and summer homes more traditionally Thai than on many of the more westernised islands.
While in Bangkok you could go on one of several guided tours, including a half-day trip around three of the most famous temples. Both the hotels in this package, the Royal Orchid Sheraton Bangkok and the Hua Hin Marriott, offer babysitting services. The Hua Hin hotel also has a spa, golf courses and can arrange excursions to temples. City tours of Bangkok start at around £10 per person.
Taking the time of year into consideration, a 10-night package departing between 1 September and 31 October would cost £1,685 for the three of you. This includes return flights from London Heathrow to Bangkok with Eva Air, transfers, three nights' room-only accommodation in the Royal Orchid Sheraton Bangkok and seven nights' room-only accommodation at the Hua Hin Marriott. Both hotels offer child-care facilities, with a puppet theatre at the Hua Hin Marriott and free upgrades for honeymooners.
As you are not travelling in the high season you could also afford to splash out on something a little more luxurious. Audley Travel (01869 276200; www.audleytravel.com) arranges tailor-made and two-centre holidays in Thailand. As well as its "Bangkok and Beaches" packages it also offers two-centre holidays in the Golden Triangle and the southern beach resorts. The Golden Triangle in the north is Thailand's newest tourist hotspot. Bordered by Laos and Burma, the region is characterised by tropical forest and temples, and has the Mekong River running along its border.
Audley Travel offers a two-centre holiday in the Anantara Resort and the Amari Resort in Trang, 130km south of Krabi. Trang is another lesser-known jewel, with beaches as beautiful as those around Krabi but much quieter. Both hotels also have spa facilities and offer activities like boat trips, water sports, elephant rides and visits to hill tribes. They also offer babysitting services and provide free cots.
A 12-night package including three nights at the Anantara Resort and Spa in the Golden Triangle and seven nights at the Amari Trang, departing between 29 October-5 November, would cost £2,850 for all of you. This includes flights from Heathrow to Bangkok, flights to Chang Rai and Trang, transfers and B&B accommodation in both resorts. If you want to keep costs down, you can reduce the number of nights you spend in Trang. Babysitting costs from $5 (£3) an hour and spa treatments start at $35 (£20). For information contact the Thai tourist board (020-7925 2511; www.thaismile.co.uk).
Send your family travel questions to The Independent Parent, Travel Desk, The Independent, 191 Marsh Wall, London E14 9RS or e-mail crusoe@-independent.co.uk
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