Thursday, 31 October 2013

More discounts from Nok Air

Nok Air sells discount fares on domestic routes and its regional routes to Myanmar, but the booking window closes 6 November.
The one-way  all inclusive fare is pegged at Bt1,099 departing Bangkok (Don Mueang Airport) to Phitsanulok, Nakhon Phanom, Udon Thani, Ubon Ratchathani, and Surat Thani.
The fare is also applicable on the Chiang Mai–Mae Hong Son and Chiang Mai–Mae Sot routes.

A higher fare Bt1,199 sells to Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Mae Sot, Nan, Phrae, Sakon Nakhon, Buri Ram, Roi Et, Loei,Hat Yai, Phuket, Krabi, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Trang, Chumphon, Hua Hin, Ranong, including Chiang Mai–Udon Thani.


Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Exploring Myanmar: Traveling the Dusty Roads of the New Burma

Cover for 'Exploring Myanmar: Traveling the Dusty Roads of the New Burma'

By Amber Hoffman

This is a personal story of my 28 days spent in Myanmar in 2013. It is a story of troubled bus rides, dusty journeys, long boat tours, preschools on stilts, ancient pagodas, tea houses, fresh noodles, and the people I met along the way. It is a story of my travels with my husband of 11 years. It is my personal experience and my impression of what it means to travel through Myanmar.

This book is not a guidebook or a traditional travel guide. Although I hope it provides some practical advice, it is not a replacement for Lonely Planet. It will not give you a list of airlines, bus companies, guesthouses, or restaurants. There are no maps. It also will not provide the complicated history of Myanmar, formally Burma, as volumes have been written much better than I ever could.

Myanmar is an unique country - the last frontier of Southeast Asia travel. Information is spotty, and constantly changing. Although the guidebooks and websites can provide practical information, they cannot come close to describing how it feels to travel through Myanmar at such an exciting time.

Buy Here

Loy Kratong Postponed

BANGKOK, 29 October 2013: Hotels will have to cancel Loi Krathong parties and celebrations, 17 November, as the country mourns the passing of His Holiness Supreme Patriarch who died last Thursday.
The Supreme Patriarch who was the spiritual leader of  Buddhism in Thailand,  was 100 years old.

The government immediately declared a month of official mourning across the nation that prohibits all entertainment and celebrations usually associated with this annual festival.


Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Anti Impotence Coffee Seized

Authorities seized more than 60,000 packages of coffee believed to be mixed with an anti-impotence drug in Kannayao district of Bangkok on Monday. Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB) and Food and Drug Administration officers raided a three-storey house on Ram Intra Road about 11am on a tip-off that coffee mixed with sildenafil, the active ingredient...


Wat Pho Sri - Nakhon Phanom

Monday, 28 October 2013

Thai Smile to add fourth daily flight to Udon

Effetcive December 15th, Thai Smile will add a mid morning flight leaving Bangkok at 1030, arriving Udon at 1135

The return departs Udon at 1205 and arrives Bangkok 1305

Bus Times - Thakhek to Nakhon Phanom


Price is 70THB or 18,000Kip

Both sides against the amnesty bill

An anti-Thaksin Shinawatra coalition says it will call a mass rally as soon as the controversial amnesty bill passes its third reading in the House of Representatives.

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A red-shirt group has announced it will mobilise more than 10,000 people to oppose the government's blanket amnesty bill.

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Saturday, 26 October 2013

Get Ready To Pay More

Want to leave - 100Baht more please

The Airports of Thailand board of directors has agreed on the need to raise the airport departure tax for both domestic and international passengers by 100 baht, AoT Chairman Sita Divari said on Thursday.

The departure tax for domestic flights would rise from 100 baht to 200 baht, and from 700 baht to 800 baht for international flights, Mr Sita said.


Want to visit - that will be 500Baht if you fly in

The Public Health Ministry is considering enforcing a plan to collect a 500-baht entry fee from tourists to help cover foreigners' unpaid medical bills at hospitals. The plan is part of the ministry's...


Wat Nabo - Thakhek

Nation in mourning for 30 days for late Supreme Patriarch

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Thakhek - Laos

Although a provincial capital, perhaps best described as a sleepy town  I took a wander round the streets and the old Town Square.  Not a lot of activity anywhere...  Except sitting and drinking.

Friday, 25 October 2013

Crossing the border - Nakhon Phanom to Thakhek

Of course the ferry is reserved for Thai and Lao only so it's back to the bus station for the International Bus.

Got the 0830 departure, perhaps not the wisest choice as it was packed to overflow.  We were told three people to a double seat, and departure was delayed whilst all the bags and boxes were loaded.  Anyway we got to the border in twenty minutes and I was waived over to the office.  It seems they like to give Farang special treatment at immigration, and not have you queue with everyone else.  Well there were two of us!  The majority of our bus mates were Vietnamese.

The special treatment didn't work that well as we then waited for forty minutes so that a VIP Bus group could have a trip across the bridge.

40 minutes after arrival back on the bus for the short river crossing.

Laos Visa on Arrival simple and quick, and only 1,300Baht, not the 1,500 that they charge at Nong Khai.  Back on the bus quickly and into Thakhek.

Or rather Thakhek Bus Station.

Gouged by the Tuk Tuk drivers who wanted 50,000 to take me to the riverside and a hotel.  That's 200 baht.  Three times the cost of the bus from Nakhon.  Still not much choice as the bus station is out of town.

Was taken to a hotel, not the one I asked for, but river front.  As they ignored me, I left and wandered around and checked a couple of others.  Looking at the map realized it was the hotel I intended, just had changed it's name.

Went back, got some attention and checked in.  Well handed over cash in return for a key.  Good clean ground floor room with fan and TV for 100,000kip.

Relaxed then went for a wander.

to be continued

The Vietnamese Clock Tower - Nakhon Phanom

Built at the end of the Indochina wars by the Vietnamese to thank the Thais for their hospitality

The new road - work continues

Back from my travels - Udon - Nakhon Phanom

Made a trip east for a change, to Nakhon Phanom and Thakhek.

The bus journey was long, but at least I ate before boarding.  We seemed to have frequent long stops on the way there.  Left Udon at 0945.  It was advertised as the 1000 bus.  It took just under 6 hours to get to Nakhon, but we had a forty minute stop in Sakon which was not repeated on the return trip.

By the time I had checked into the hotel, for the first night the Grand, even if there was nothing grand about it.  At least clean and convenient.  Found a restaurant, the Classic restaurant, which served good food and seemed popular with both Farang and local, always a good sign, not that a brief walk round the riverside area revealed much choice.

A quiet evening ready for the trip to Laos the following day.