Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Honeymoon in Thailand

Honeymoon in Thailand

Thailand is an intriguing contradiction of serene beauty and an exotic city that never 
sleeps. Thailand is stunningly beautiful with its serene and postcard perfect palms and 
beautiful beaches. The capital, Bangkok, is a vibrant city well known for its chaos, 
steamy alleyway massage parlors, street side vendors and endless crowds of people. In 
Bangkok, you can spend your time in heady night markets or take in a kickboxing 
match. Alternatively, you and your beloved can indulge in an afternoon of his-and-hers 
pampering with a Thai massage for two using local tonics and oils at a luxurious seaside 
spa. Bangkok is the ultimate shopper's paradise, with dozens of gift-oriented markets 
ripe for a savvy bargain hunter.

For the newly wed couple looking for a perfect honeymoon, Thailand is just the right 
combination of everything - romance, adventure and a countryside rich in history worthy 
of exploration.

The best time of the year to visit Thailand is between November to February.
Regarding accommodation, typically, hotels in Thailand are one-roomed bungalows, with 
a main house for dining. They range from structures built out of cemented river rocks to 
bamboo frames with woven grass roofs. These cozy guesthouses are comfortable, 
private and impeccably clean. Often situated on either a beach or lake, they are 
unquestionably romantic and the perfect getaway for honeymooners.

Thailand offers a rare opportunity to combine adventure and romance into one all-
encompassing yet inexpensive holiday. For a honeymoon, you couldn't ask for more.
Honeymoon in Bangkok

Bangkok is one of the world's most exciting cities. Visit the magnificent temples, palaces and museums. Cool out in the parks. Savour the lively nightlife. Plunge into the shops. Gorge on the wonderful Thai cuisine. Take a trip down the Chao Phraya River, the enchanting 'River of Kings'. Founded in 1782, Bangkok is a young city that constantly changes, constantly fascinates. The Thais call it Krungthep, the city of angels. Visitors just call it one of the great experiences.

 Bangkok is an intricate puzzle of a place, with layer after iridescent layer of mystery, conundrum, and paradox. Capital of the Kingdom of Thailand, it is an adrenalized metropolis of ten million people, with towering glass and concrete skyscrapers, rooftops bristling with television antennas, and probably the most spectacular traffic jams on earth. And it is a holy city, studded with splendid temples, shrines, and monasteries, haunted and blessed by thousands of gods, ghosts, and angels. Because the city has no real geographical core, no central point a visitor can navigate from, perhaps a good way to explore it is by historical periods. Bangkok is relatively young as Asian cities go-about two centuries old-but its cultural heritage extends back to the founding of the original Thai monarchy in the 13th century, and far beyond that, into the ancient underworld of ritual and myth that lies beneath the surface of everyday life in modern Thailand.

This is a Buddhist nation, but it has delightfully variegated the faith, combining Theravada, the oldest, most traditional school of Buddhism, with Hinduism and native Thai animism. At Bangkok's wats, or temples, you see this vibrant, convoluted spiritual world in all its living glory.
Surrounded by gilded gods, golden spires, and ritual objects of every size and description, the Emerald Buddha looms over the central chamber, seated on his own elaborately tiered gilt mountain, with a delicate spiked parasol of gold above his head. The Buddha's flesh glimmers like moonlight, twinkles like a star in the shadows. There is real magic, real power here that the incredible agglomeration of art and architecture in the rest of the wat somehow misses. Sometimes, less is more.

 Everyone who has spent much time in Bangkok seems to have a favorite Wat Arun has its cool riverside porcelain monuments; Wat Pho, its 145-foot-long Reclining Buddha; Wat Traimit, a 10-foot-high Seated Buddha of solid gold. My favorite is the Wat Saket, situated on the Golden Mount, a century-old concrete mountain that towers 254 feet above the city. That may not sound like much, but on the dead-flat plains of Bangkok-just slightly above sea level-it is something out of a dream, a miniature alp floating on high like a mirage.
 There was a sense of timeless calm within those walls, but there was vitality, too. Most of young monks would leave the temple after about three months and return to the secular world outside. Spending two months-a period describes as blissful-in a monastery, they would get jobs, marry, and raise families. But they would never completely lose the peace, the transcendent wisdom they had found in that magical place.
 The effects of the monastic experience, common to almost all-young Thai men and many young women, are palpable. Thais are tough folk-if you harbor any doubts, just watch a local kick boxing match or check out the paratroops that guard Chitaladda Palace.
Now to Bangkok's earthier, more worldly side. If two terms sum up the Thai attitude to everyday life, they are "Sanook-Have a good time," and "Mai pen rai-Never mind." The city's carefree attitude is manifest in myriad shopping centers, bazaars, hotels, restaurants, nightclubs, massage parlors, and discos.
  Always the unexpected, the revelation, the happy surprise, the pearl in the oyster. Even the city's name. Bangkok means "Village of the Wild Plum", from a small trading settlement on the banks of the Chao Phraya River, long since swallowed up by the mushrooming metropolis. The authentic name, the one Thais use, is Krungthep-"City of Angels." But even that is only an abbreviation of the real name, which is, in fact, in the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest place-name on earth: "Great City of the Angels, Supreme Repository of Divine Jewels, Great Land Unconquerable, Grand and Prominent Realm, Royal and Delightful Capital City, Full of the Nine Noble Gems, Highest Royal Dwelling Place and Grand Palace, Divine Shelter and Living Place of Reincarnated Spirits."

Bangkok Songkran Festival 

April 12-14
The traditional Thai New Year is an occasion for merriment all over the city, but most notably at Sanam Luang, near the Grand Palace, where the revered Phra Phuttha Sihing image is displayed and bathed by devotees. In the Wisutkasat area, a Miss Songkran beauty contest is held and accompanied by merit-making and entertainment. Khao San Road, Bang Lamphu area is also one of the high-spots in the city to experience the water-throwing activities between locals and tourists.
Royal Ploughing Ceremony

An ancient Brahman ritual, conducted at Sanam Luang, in which farmers believe is able to forecast the abundance of the next rice crop. The event is a result of a series of ceremonies that are conducted by Phraya Raek Na, portrayed by a high-ranking official from the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives who wears colourful traditional costumes. This ceremony was re-introduced in 1960 by H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej and is considered the official commencement of the rice-growing season.

Honeymoon in CHIANG MAI

Popularly known as the Rose of the North, Chiang Mai is blessed with stunning natural beauty and unique indigenous cultural identity. Founded by King Mengrai the Great as the capital of the Lanna Thai kingdom by merging the various city-states in the region in 1296. Today Chiang Mai is the economic, communications, cultural and tourism centre of Northern Thailand.
About 700 kilometres from Bangkok, Chiang Mai is situated on the Mae Ping River basin some 310 metres above sea level. Surrounded by high mountain ranges, it covers an area of approximately 20,107 square kilometres. The terrain is mainly jungles and mountains, parts of which are within national parks which are still fertile and verdant with plentiful flora and fauna. There are many sites and locations where tourists prefer to visit to study the lifestyle of the tribal people who live on high hills.

Bo Sang Umbrella Festival is held in January in Bo Sang Handicraft Centre. The festival features paper products, paper parasols in particular, cultural shows, a parade showing traditional ways of life, and several contests.
Flower Festival is held in February. The festival includes ornamental garden flower contests, floral floats parade in the morning and beauty pageants. The parade begins at Chiang Mai Railway Station and passes Nawarat Bridge and ends at Nong Buak Hat Park.

Songkran Festival is held annually from 13 to 15 April. The 13th of April is the Great Songkran day featuring the revered Phra Phutthasihing Buddha image parade around Chiang Mai town for bathing, sand pagoda making, blessing of elders, and water splashing.

Doi Suthep Pilgrimage On the night of Visakha Bucha Day, worshippers gather to light candles and make the 7-kilometre pilgrimage up to the temple on Doi Suthep.

City Pillar Inthakin Festival is held to invoke blessings of peace, happiness and prosperity for the city and its residents. Buddha images are paraded around the city. It is held at Wat Chedi Luang for 7 auspicious days and nights in the 7th lunar month.

Yi Peng Festival is held annually on Loi Krathong day. It is a very interesting event of Chiang Mai. The festival features the release of lanterns into the sky to worship the gods. There are also fireworks, lantern contests, and beauty pageants

Honeymoon in PHUKET

Phuket is Thailand ’s largest island, approximately the size of Singapore. Phuket nestles in balmy Andaman Sea waters on Thailand’s Indian Ocean coastline 862 kilometres south of Bangkok.

Phuket formerly derives its wealth from tin and rubber, and enjoyed a rich and colourful history. The island was on one of the major trading routes between India and China, and was frequently mentioned in foreign trader’s ship logs.

The Portuguese, French, Dutch and English traded with Phuket. Other visitors were less friendly. Phuket’s most famous monument is the memorial statue of the heroines Thao Thepkasattri and Thao Sisunthon, who rallied islanders in 1785 to repel Burmese invaders.

Phuket is blessed with magnificent coves and bays, powdery, palm-fringed white beaches, sparkling island-dotted seas, sincerely hospitable people, superb accommodations and seafood, delightful turn-of-the-century Sino-Portuguese architecture; numerous sporting and leisure opportunities; a lush tropical landscape – all of which combine to create a delightful ambience for truly memorable holidays.

Phuket has two major seasons: the Rains Season from May through October, and the Hot Season from November through April. There are many sunny days throughout the Rains Season: showers customarily last little more than 2 or 3 hours. September is the wettest month. The best months are November through February. Average temperatures range between 22 and 34 degrees Celsius.

Thao Thep Kasattri and Thao Sisunthon Fair is held on March 13 every year to commemorate the two great heroines who rallied the Thalang people to repel Burmese invaders. Many activities and celebrations are organised.

Seafood Festival, held around May yearly, is designed to publicise the delicious seafood of Phuket and attract visitors during the rainy season. Activities include a Marine Tourism Resources Parade, seafood stalls, demonstrations of regional cuisines and cultural shows.

Vegetarian Festival is held on the first day of the 9th lunar month (usually October). Phuket islanders of Chinese ancestry commit themselves to a 9-day vegetarian diet, a form of purification believed to help make the forthcoming year “trouble-free”. The festival is marked by several ascetic displays, including fire-walking and ascending sharp-bladed ladders.

Phuket Travel Fair , held on November 1, was first initiated in 1985 at Patong to welcome in the tourist season and designed to foster co-operation among tourism-related operators both in the private and public sectors. Many colourful and interesting activities are organised, such as merit-making in the morning, water sports contests, a Miss Visitor Contest, among others.

Phuket King ’s Cup Regatta is held in December. The Phuket Yacht Club hosts international yachtsmen, largely from neighbouring countries who compete in the Nai Han Beach area for royal trophies.

Laguna Phuket Triathlon is held in each December. The triathlon (a 1,000-metre swim, a 5-kilometre bike race and a 12-kilometre run) attracts world-class athletes from all over the world.

Tourist Season Opening Festival , starting from November 1, is usually called the Patong Carnival, from the place where celebrations occur. Colourful parades, sports events, and a beauty competition for foreign tourists are major activities.

Turtle Release Fair is held on Songkran, the nationwide Thai water festival, on April 13 which is also National Fisherman’s Day. Baby turtles are released into the sea at various locations.

Chao Le (Sea Gypsy) Boat Floating Festival falls during the middle of the sixth and eleventh lunar months yearly. The sea gypsy villages at Rawai and Sapam hold their ceremonies on the 13th; Ko Si-re celebrates on the 14th; and Laem La (east of the bridge on Phuket’s northerntip) on the 15th. Ceremonies, which centre around the setting adrift of small boats similar to the Thai festival of Loi Krathong, are held at night and their purpose is to drive away evil and bring good luck.

Honeymoon in SURAT THANI

Surat Thani is southern Thailand's largest province, covers some 12,800 square kilometres, and has an extensive coastline lapped by Thai Gulf waters. The provincial capital is 685 kilometres south of Bangkok.

Surat Thani boasts some of Thailand's loveliest islands namely the Penang-sized Ko Samui, Thailand's third largest island, palm-fringed jewel of a sparkling archipelago that includes the stunning 250-square-kilometre Ang Thong Marine National Park.

Surat Thani once formed part, and may have been the centre, of the Mahayana Buddhist Srivijaya Empire which steeped in legend and mystery, dominated the Malay peninsula and much of Java some 1,500 years ago. Srivijaya was best described by the itinerant Chinese monk I Ching after a pilgrimage he made to India during the late 600s. Archaeological discoveries at Chaiya district indicate the former empire's splendour.

Rambutan Fair 

The annual August fair celebrates the delicious fruit, first planted in Surat Thani during 1926. Highlights include floats adorned with rambutans and other fruits, exhibitions of local products and ornamental plants, and demonstrations by specially trained monkeys who harvest coconuts.

Chak Phra Festival 

Surat Thani celebrates the official end of the annual 3-month Buddhist Rains Retreat (Ok Phansa) in mid-October with the Chak Phra Festival (literally 'the procession of hauling the Buddha image’). The tradition stems from the belief that the Buddha ascended to Heaven during Phansa to preach to his mother. The festival marks the Buddha's return to Earth, and is an occasion for religious merit-making and general celebrations. Local people organise dazzling land and waterborne processions of revered Buddha images (to symbolise the Buddha's return to Earth) and boat races on the Tapi River where long boats, manned by up to 50 oarsmen, are ebulliently raced. Religious devotion, spectacle and merriment combine to make Surat Thani's Chak Phra Festival a memorable annual event.

Honeymoon in Pattaya

Pattaya is renowned as one of Thailand’s premier beach resorts and honeymoon destinations – the perfect setting for a romantic getaway or honeymoon holiday.

This once sleepy fishing village offers more than 15km of sandy coastline backed by a huge range of entertainment and accommodation options to suit all tastes.

Things to do and see 
Although well-known for its notorious go-go bars and raucous nightlife, Pattaya also offers couples (and families) a relaxing, fun-filled holiday with a wide range of theme and water parks, cultural attractions and inexpensive land- and water-based activities.

Go windsurfing, waterskiing, jet skiing, parasailing and strap on a mask for a snorkelling or diving trip out to one of the nearby offshore islands. On land, go elephant trekking or tee-off from a choice of several golf courses all located within a 15-minute drive of the town centre.

And if bustling Pattaya is not to your liking then try neighbouring Jomtien, Wong Amat and Naklua beaches – quieter and popular alternatives and long-time favourites of Thai and expat families.

Ankita Mishra [MBA,Marketing+HR]
Marketing Manager
AeroSoft Corp

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