Popular Tags:

Ang Thong national marine park trip

Ang Thong national marine park trip

Anyone who visits the beautiful island of Koh Samui, will surely come across the option to take a boat trip to the Ang Thong national marine park. This is one of the most popular tours available to anyone visiting the Island. There are lots of options to choose from, including group tours and private hire for the more luxurious experience.

The tour is really for half days on our opinion and you need a full day out on the water to get the most out of it. Joined tours generally come in 2 formats. Standard where you will be in a boat with around 35-40 other tourists of varying nationalities, and VIP which is in smaller groups of around 14-18 passengers. As you are on the water for the whole day, and the heat here can be excessive then the extra comfort afforded by the VIP is well worth the extra money. All in cost with fees is around 4,000thb per person.

Ang Thong national marine park tour

For those of you who want the real movies star treatment then there are an abundance of yachts and luxury speedboats to choose from, for private hire. This gives you exclusive access to the boat for the set time and you can within reason decide on the itinerary for the day. The cost of a luxury private charter really depends on the boat you choose, the season and the itinerary you decide on (fuel costs), but a minimum of 25,000thb should be expected for a small luxury speedboat and crew, where as a 60ft motor cruiser can cost upwards of 75,000thb.

Private yacht charter Samui

The day will start early with pick up at your hotel around 7:30 – 08:00 depending on where your hotel is. For private charters you can pick your own time (but bear in mind your paying for the boat all day so use it).

Once aboard most operators offer you some light refreshments for the day such as fruit and soft drinks. But this is a light snack so we advise breakfast at your hotel first. Also you don’t want to over do breakfast this is a pretty active day, and you will be in and out of the water a lot.

The day will start with the longest boat section of the day out to the far end of the marine park about 1 hour in total, where you will have time for some amazing snorkeling and swimming. If you have never been snorkeling then I would highly suggest giving it  a go and getting in, the boats will take you to a safe spot where you can get in safely. The boats will have plenty of gear to lend you included in the price, a lot of the more reputable operators will sanitize properly after each use. But the only way to be certain of the hygiene will be to take your own snorkel, you can buy cheap ones all over Koh Samui.

After you’ve dried off the boat will head through the stunning marine park, stopping off at various islands where you can disembark and explore, as well as try sea kayaking. The scenery here is absolutely stunning and has been used as the back drop to many movies sets. Make sure you have your camera handy, if you camera has a wrist strap make sure you use it. Speedboats are often subject to sudden and unexpected movements and one thing which is sure to ruin your day, is seeing your camera or smartphone disappearing below the waves.

snorkeling samui

Depending on the stops your particular boat makes you will have the chance to get off the boat and wander around, enjoying the scenery, swimming or just relaxing on the beach. I wouldn’t leave any valuables on board whilst your ashore as the boats aren’t secure.

Lunch may or not be included in the price of your ticket, but you will be taken to a great local restaurant for lunch.

Arriving back to Samui around 17:00 for your transfer back to the hotel.

We highly recommend a day out in the Ang Thong national marine park if your in Koh Samui, however it is not suitable for those with younger children, can’t be in the sun all day or are not active.

Things to take along would be:- A towel, Swim wear, dry bag (if you have one), Strong sun scream, refreshments (if not provided by operator), some cash for tips but not more than 1000thb, and of course a camera.

Things not take along:- Passports, high value items such as jewelry or tablets, your bank cards, hangovers!!!


Pattaya a weekend break from Bangkok

A beach weekend from Bangkok

Bangkok like any major city is a hectic place, and if you live or work here why not consider a beach break in Pattaya? We will show you where to stay in Pattaya, what to do and how to plan your weekend away. Only 170km south of the Capital Pattaya makes a great weekend break from the mayhem of Bangkok.

Getting to Pattaya

There are many options to get to Pattaya from Bangkok. Located only 170Km south, Pattaya is perfectly located for those who want to get away but don’t have a lot of time in which to escape. If you plan on driving here, you really need to plan to avoid the Bangkok rush hour and take the toll motorway. On a good day you get from the center of Bangkok to Pattaya in less than 2hrs.

For those that don’t consider driving to be part of a relaxing weekend away, then for less than 1800thb why not take a private taxi. There are many operators and hailed taxi will be willing to take you, just remember to negotiate fees first and make sure it includes the tolls. Our favorite for service and price is Pattaya express taxi service.

If your on a budget then there are 2 bus options to choose from to get to Pattaya. Public standard bus takes around 2,5hrs and cost 35thb, where as you get a privately run minibus with around 10 others for 125thb each way.

Stay in Pattaya

Pattaya has an absolutely huge selection of accommodation options to choose from, and offers something in every price range. If your only here for the weekend then you will want to stay in the center, so that you are in the thick of things and on the baht bus routes for getting around.

As mentioned no matter what your budget is you will find a good selection of options, especially if you come out of the main tourist seasons. A simple air conditioned room in an average central guesthouse will set you back around 350-500thb a night depending on season. If you are more used to a little luxury and comfort on your travels then there are many international chain hotels and boutique resorts to choose from expect to pay 1000-1500thb a night depending on season. Or if your after something special then why not try Pattay’s true luxury resort the Royal Cliff, where you every whim will be catered for.

Royal cliff luxury resort Pattaya

What to do

Depending on your travel companions Pattaya has the attractions to keep you entertained. The city was originally famous as a nightlife destination and the world famous Walking Street is probably high on any visitors list. Don’t worry this area is no longer the exclusive domain of single men and stag do’s looking to party, but is now home to many great restaurants, and entertainment venues. Well worth a visit at least on of your evenings whilst you are here.

If your not a night owl and would prefer to keep yourself busy in the day then the city has many attractions suitable for all types of travelers as well as some very high standard golf course to choose from.  If your a resident or are working in Thailand, then most attractions offer discounts to Thai nationals and permanent residents, just show your driving license or work permit when paying. Its worth noting that discounts are not available when buying tickets from an agent.

Pattaya golf course

One absolute must when in Pattaya is an evening show at one of the 3 main Lady boy Cabaret’s, these famous shows are great fun and very entertaining. All 3 are very similar so which one you choose is up to you?


Jomtien is located 2km south of Pattaya’s city center, and sometime feels like a world away. Much quieter and subdued this is a great area if your traveling with your family or partner and are looking for a more chilled out break. The beach here is much quieter and better suited to young children. Along the 2km beach front you will find a great selection of hotels, bars and restaurants to choose from. The beach road is also on the main Baht bus route which will get you into central Pattaya in around 15mins for only 10baht per person. Prices here a little cheaper than in the center of the city. Jomtien is still a great location for the cities attractions and has easy access to Sukhumvit highway for getting around.


Naklua is located to the north of central Pattaya, as has recently been heavily developed during the last few years. There have been many five star hotels and large resorts here, and is a great option for those looking for a little bit of luxury from your weekend away from Bangkok. The beach here is a lot quieter than either Pattaya beach or Jomtien.

Naklua also offers more high end eateries for both international cuisine and Thai food

There are many other reasons for choosing Pattaya as a weekend escape from the stresses of Bangkok, some great beaches, awesome food and beautiful islands. It is no wonder that 10’s of thousands of people journey here from Bangkok each month.

Thailand’s best beaches

Thailand’s best beaches

One of the main reason’s people travel to this beautiful country is to experience some of Thailand’s best beaches. And there are many to choose from, each offering something slightly different. Whether you seek great snorkeling, white powder sand, diving or water sports? Thailand’s beaches have it all. Or if you’re more like me then maybe you prefer pure isolation on your own dessert island?

Holiday guides, tour brochures, websites and TV programs constantly depict the sublime beauty of Thailand’s beaches, but how do you know which is best? Well that is not an easy question to answer. Every traveler is looking for something different from their beach, and with that in mind there can be no definitive answer. So instead of giving you a list of the best beaches in Thailand, we aim to show you the best for different aspects so you can decide which is the one for you.

Isolation – Koh Khram Yai Pattaya

Located about 45 mins away from Jomtien beach by private speedboat or 75 mins by larger boat, this isolated island offers one of the most pristine beaches in the world. Protected by the nearby Royal Thai Navy at Sattahip the beaches here are untouched by mass tourism and can only be accessed by private boat. This ensure the beach stays in all it’s natural beauty, and long may this last. If you really push me to pick this is one of Thailand’s best beaches.

KohKhram Yai Thailand's best beaches

Diving and snorkeling – Sairee beach Koh Tao

Maybe ten years ago the only people who ever visited this sublime 1 mile long peace of paradise were avid divers, looking for some relaxation between dive trips. This is by no accident they came here because of it’s location to great snorkeling and diving spots. Koh Tao is an ferry trip from nearby Koh Samui and this helps keep tourist number at a minimum and the beach as beautiful as nature intended.


Party beach – Haad Rin beach

It should be no surprise that we are recommending Koh Phangan’s full moon party as Thailand’s best beaches for party-goers. No explanation is really needed as these monthly (Lunar) are written about extensively on the internet and in travel books.

We at Trunkgallery are not a fan of this kind of mass tourism and heavy beach usage ruining the beauty nature gave us. But we do understand everybody is entitled to use the beaches as well as us. All we ask is after the fun you leave the beach as untouched as possible for future use by others.


What a shame!!! People can be so bad at times.

Family’s – Lamai Koh Samui

With the exception of high season (end Nov-beg feb) this is always one of Thailand’s best beaches, located south of Chewang on Koh Samui, this beach offers a little of everything. The beach is soft white sand and very clean, the waters are clear, shallow and very calm making this great for families. Another consideration for families is boredom of the little ones, and there is plenty to keep them happy here and allow you to enjoy and relax. At night the beach comes to life as the bars, cafes and restaurants which align it open up, no need to worry though all is at a chilled pace and suitable for children.

Lamai-beach-Koh Samui

Well there you have it, no matter what you look for in your beach vacation, I hope we have covered it above, if not feel free to comment your tips below.

Thailand’s beaches aren’t just limited to the above and there are hundreds just as good all over the country and it’s islands.

Koh Chang is it just for Backpackers?

Koh Chang is it just for backpackers

When people talk about visiting Thailand’s islands, a lot of you will mention the more familiar Island’s. Including Koh Samui, Phuket, Koh Phangna, and Koh Tao. There is nothing wrong with these islands and all are beautiful in their own way. But there’s another choice normally popular with the “off the beat traveler”, we discover Koh Chang is it just for backpackers?

The reason your average site, or travel guide covers the aforementioned islands is due to their ever improving popularity. But with popularity comes mass market, and this can under certain circumstances ruin the true natural beauty of the islands.

There is however another option located towards to north of the gulf of Thailand. Koh Chang is actually Thailand’s third largest island behind Phuket and Samui. But don’t let size affect you, this island still only has one major road and this still doesn’t go all the way round the Island. Combine it’s lack of major infrastructure with the fact there are few large style resorts and no skyscraper style buildings and you have as close to nature as your likely to get anywhere in Thailand.

Koh Chang is it just for backpackers

The island has for the last ten years been a big favorite of the independent travel and dive enthusiasts, apart from those, Koh Chang doesn’t attract a major tourism. This all adds up to a truly stunning island full of pristine beaches, clear waters and gorgeous little coves.

For those of you who do fancy a trip here then the islands hotels are made up of stunning luxury resorts, each are relatively small compared to the other islands, and offer outstanding service.

Koh Chang pure luxury

Located mainly on the west of the islands, the resorts offer great value for this level of luxury and tranquility. The east of the island is even less developed and is great to go off exploring and find a little guest house for the evening. Koh Chang is really for those travelers looking for real luxury and unspoiled landscapes. Perfect for romantic getaways.

Koh chang deserted island

So there you have it, now you decide, Koh Chang is it just for backpackers?


Living in the land of smiles

Living in Thailand

Everybody at some stage of their life, dreams of moving to a paradise location and leaving the stress of the rat race behind. Living in Thailand is one such dream. And why not imagine waking up every morning, strolling down to the beach and having exotic fresh fruit for breakfast, then lounging by the pool in the afternoon, all before watching an amazing sunset. Sounds good right?

Well if you are serious then Living in Thailand could be for you, the cost of living here is surprisingly cheap and you can live comfortably for around $1200US a month, and extremely well for $2000US a month.

We at Trunkgallery have lived here for nearly ten years and we know how to do it. In this post we aim to show you how you can achieve the dream too. So read on and start your future in Paradise.

Read more

Favorite Thai street Food

Favorite Thai street food

This is some of our favorite Thai street food, we have eaten at thousands of Soi side restaurants, and sampled hundreds of different dishes. After years of living here we think this is the best cuisine around. Whats not to like, cheap, readily available, delicious and varied Thai food really is the best.

Favorite Thai street food

Are your tastes buds salivating yet? If so read on.

Thailand – One of the worlds most popular destinations

Thailand one of the worlds most popular destinations

Just why is the land of smiles one of the worlds most popular destinations? Well for many reasons! No matter what you personally look for when deciding on a great place to visit, I am sure Thailand will be high on your list. There are numerous reasons for why Thailand is one of the worlds most popular destinations. Below are the reasons why it always ranks high on our list:-


Top Thailand Travel Destinations

Thailand is nicknamed the Land of Smiles for a reason. This Southeast Asian country provides most comfort for both the natives and travelers alike. Whether you want to spend your holiday in the mountain villages or your vacation in the world-class beaches, Thailand will not disappoint. In this article, we have highlighted top Thailand travel destinations that provide a memorable and rewarding experience.