Favorite tropical retreat getaway

thailand-beaches

Yearning for a well deserved vacay from the hectic Western lifestyle where each day flashes by with little in the way of cultivating our inner soul and playful spirit?

When was the last time you’ve enjoyed some quality personal time at a writers’ retreat to tap in to your creative side or a yoga retreat for some much needed relaxation and meditation to re-energized? Or if food is your motivator, treat your palate to a Thai foodie adventure and add a side trip to learn how to cook Thai dishes.

Where can you find a warm sun drenched tropical beach town away from the main tourist destination where your dollar goes a long way? Prachuap, Thailand offers one of the best value off the beaten path vacation getaway.

Prachuap Khiri Khan, a scenic beach town five hours by train from Bangkok, checks off our list of requirements:

✔ Off the beaten tourist path
✔ Swaying palm trees
✔ Scenic beaches and warm ocean water
✔ Tropical warm sunny weather in an exotic locale
✔ Quiet, relaxing setting
✔ Inexpensive lodging (unbeatable price value comparatively)
✔ Inexpensive Thai food with availability of Western restaurant options
✔ Local small beach town charm
✔ Outdoors recreation: scuba, snorkeling, water snow sports, hiking, biking
✔ Night markets
✔ Open air farmer’s market
✔ Local music scene entertainment
✔ Inexpensive massages($5 foot massage) and spa treatments

For a $1,000 USD monthly vacation budget; this rental in Prachuap, South Eastern Coastal Thailand checked off all of our requirements in addition to being inexpensive with prices starting at $21 USD per night so one month’s stay (31 nights) would cost $651 which leaves $349 for food, entertainment, and Thai massages, etc. In terms of food cost, a meal of savory grilled chicken or fish with sticky rice plus freshly made to order papaya salad and Thai iced tea will set you back only $3.50 USD.

If a non-touristy small beach town appeals to you, Prachuap is that place.

This vacation rental retreat aptly named Baan Aomjai (which means “home of warm hearts” in the Thai language) is located in Prachuap Khiri Khan, a beach side town in Thailand accessible by daily air conditioned deluxe express bus directly from the Bangkok International airport. Upon arrival at Bangkok International Airport (aka Suvarnabhumi Airport code: BKK) you can choose to take the express bus to Prachuap or alternatively take a taxi/Uber into Bangkok then take a scenic train ride from the Bangkok Train Station – namely the Hua Lamphong Railway Station to the beach town of Prachuap.

Baan Aomjai is available as a nightly rental or long term vacation rental; great for all travelers, digital nomads and writers. This beach town is a perfect retreat getaway from the busy city life in Bangkok. “Baan Aomjai consists of just five unique boutique holiday rentals, varying from a petite 15 square meter studio to a spacious 80 square meter 2 bed, 1 bath unit, all equipped with WiFi, air-condition, modern amenities, brick pizza oven and a covered patio.”

Fully air-conditioned apartments features free WiFi, a mini-fridge, towels, bed linen, terrace, free parking, washing machine​ ​and​ ​flat-screen TVs. Enjoy their ​​relaxing patio aka sala​ ​equipped with an​ ​opened kitchen and dining area.​ It is a very relaxing location surrounded by swaying palm trees. There’s also a swimming pool​, gym ​and ​restaurant ​​​​within 5 mins walk of the guesthouse apartment and the scenic Ao Manao beach is within a 20 minutes bike ride.

If you’d like a change from the local Thai food, there are excellent Western food options such as pizza, pasta (Italian), German and French food available​ ​in town.

The owners are helpful in getting you acquainted with Prachuap and​ ​can help​ ​you pick daily activities to enjoy your vacation or relax at scenic beach near by and ​go for a swim, get a tan or ​kick your feet up and relax under a palm tree reading your favorite book.

Interested in bike tours? Check out their fully supported fun bike tour adventures; sign up for their Ride, Eat & Sleep Package Tours.

Prachuap is a scenic beach town for those seeking an alternative vacation destination to noisy​ ​city life in​ ​Bangkok.​ Added perks include inexpensive Thai massages in town that start at only 150 Baht (which equals to approximately $5 USD) and enjoy night markets for good value tasty eats and a great place to buy souvenirs for friends and family.

This is a newly built August 2016 vacation rental; the property is well maintained with daily maid service. A great place to stay for couples, solo adventurers, business travelers, and families with or without kids.

For freelancers or digital nomads or those looking to retire or live a life of an expat, Prachuap is one of the best expat options because of the (1) inexpensive cost of living (2) modern healthcare system where many doctors are trained in the UK, Australia and the USA (3) safe with low incidence of crime (4) modern transportation infrastructure (5) speedy internet (6) availability of many food options including Western styled restaurants and (7) abundant indoors entertainment options and outdoors adventures, and (8) Bangkok is the inexpensive travel hub for Southeast Asia where you can hop on an inexpensive flight to explore other regional destinations like Penang, Malaysia, Ankor Wat in Siem Riep, Cambodia, Saigon aka Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Bagan Myanmar, Coron, Philippines, Bali, Indonesia, Luang Prabang, Laos and Singapore.

Browse Baan Aomjai’s Website: https://www.baanaomjai.com

For short stays, check availability by browsing their Airbnb rental calendar at https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/14749791.

For stays longer than two weeks, make a reservation by contacting them on their Facebook page.

Foodies, explore and enjoy some of Thailand’s best street foods; watch the video below to prime your palate for a foodie vacation (for reference: $1 USD = 32 Thai Baht (as of September 2018); a bowl of Tom Yum Shrimp noodle soup will set you back about $2.50 USD or about 80 Baht; a freshly made to order Papaya Salad (som tum) will set you back about $1.25 USD or 40 Baht:

Can’t wait to start making some Thai dishes; try out recipes from the cookbook, “A Culinary Odyssey: A Cookbook Diary of Travels, Flavors and Memories of Southeast Asia” by Andrew X Pham – This is the culmination of a lifetime of passionate eating, traveling, writing, and cooking: 45 favorite and simple recipes from the cuisines of Thailand and Vietnam, then and now. “It’s so much more than a cookbook. It’s love, it’s life. It’s about living, culture, and food from the land of my birth and my chosen home for the past decade.” – Award wining author Andrew X Pham

A Culinary Odyssey

Before you go, check out Conde Nast Traveler’s list of “The Best Street Food in Bangkok” which serves as a handy guide to what’s best to eat while touring Thailand.

YouTube Video from a tourist who booked a stay at Baan Aomjai:


Baan Aomjai’s Vacation Rental Photo Gallery

Is a vacation to Thailand on your bucket list? Here’s why it should be:

If you plan to go, key resources to check out:

+ For a travel guide to the city of Prachuap, read https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prachuap_Khiri_Khan_Province.

+ Browse airfare pricing from Google Flights from San Francisco (SFO) to Bangkok (BKK), Thailand.

+ Express Airport Bus to Hau Hin (check-in airport counter on Level 1, Gate No. 8), a beach side city close to the beach town of Prachuap. Check out the bus schedule and info at http://www.airporthuahinbus.com/V2/airport-to-huahin/

+ For transportation options from Bangkok to Prachuap, Thailand, read http://www.prachuapkhirikhan.org/practical-prachuap/transportation-prachuap-khiri-khan/prachuap-bangkok/.

+ Scenic aerial view of the beach town Prachuap:

Watch the video below for the key attractions and things to do if you’re planning a Thailand vacay getaway and aiming to check off traveler’s top ten to do list:

“Thailand, also known as the Land of Smiles, is a jewel of Southeast Asia. Developed enough to provide most comforts yet still wild enough to offer off-the-beaten path adventure, Thailand is a country ripe with opportunity for once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences. Whether you start with the scenically stunning world-class beaches in the south or the mountain villages in the north, Thailand will not disappoint.” -planetware.com

Btw, if you’ve seen the movie,’The Beach’ starring Leonardo DiCaprio filmed in Thailand, you might want to visit the famous FILM SET of Maya Bay on Ko Phi Phi Lay, an enclave of paradise on the coastline of Koh Phi Phi Leh in Southern Coastal Thailand. Imagine a stunning beach cove, located 30 minutes away from a populated island. A cove whose crystal blue waters are almost glowing (swim, scuba, snorkel to your heart’s content), the sand silky soft dancing between your toes, the surrounding cliff faces beautifully dominant in a protective hug and where the surrounding choppy waters protect the enclave from human invaders.

“You fish, swim, eat, laze around, and everyone’s so friendly. It’s such simple stuff, but… If I could stop the world and restart life, put the clock back, I think I’d restart it like this. For everyone.” – Alex Garland, ‘The Beach’.

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    Comparison of best multi-resort ski season passes for 2016-17

    alternative-to-airbnb-vrbo

    For the 2016-17 winter season, what’s the best multi-mountain/resort ski season pass?

    We’ve crunched the numbers and compared the best multi-mountain/resort passes; the following is a summary guide. Remember that the more days you ski or ride, the more value you get from your pass. Also, keep in mind the best time to purchase a pass is in the spring, typically around early April. Many resorts offer a discount bonus and a spring ski / ride FREE the remainder of the current ski season when you buy your pass early.

    Epic Pass

    One of the most popular ski passes, the Epic Pass gives you unlimited access to twelve resorts, including Australia’s Perisher.
    Adult Pass: $849 (Pays for itself in 6 days)
    Resorts: Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone, Park City, Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood, Afton Alps, Mt. Brighton, Arapahoe Basin
    International Resorts: Verbier (Switzerland), Perisher (Australia)

    The Mountain Collective

    The Mountain Collective pass offers two days at each of its 14 resorts for a total 28 days of skiing/riding. Home resorts are SunValley, Stowe Mountain Resort, Taos, and Thredbo.
    Adult Price: $419 (Pays for itself in 5 days based on on individual resort pricing)
    Resorts: Alta/Snowbird, Aspen Snowmass, Jackson Hole, Mammoth, Ski Banff/Lake Louise/Sunshine, Squaw Valley/Alpine Meadows, Stowe Mountain Resort, Sun Valley, Taos, Thredbo, Whistler Blackcomb
    International Resorts: Valle Nevado (Chile), Hakuba Valley (Japan), Chamonix (France)

    M.A.X. Pass

    The M.A.X Pass gives you access for five days at each of its 39 participating resorts. There are no blackout dates and many options on both the east and west coast.
    Adult Price: $699 (Pays for itself in 7 days)
    Resorts: Big Sky, Boreal Mountain Resort, Brighton, Copper Mountain, Crystal Mountain, Lee Canyon, Mt. Bachelor, Steamboat, The Summit at Snoqualmie, Winter Park, Boyne Highlands, Boyne Mountain, Killington, Loon Mountain, Pico Mountain, Snowshoe, Stratton, Sugarloaf, Sunday River
    International Resorts: Cypress Mountain (Canada), Blue Mountain (Canada), Tremblant (Canada)

    Tahoe Super Pass Gold

    This pass includes unlimited access to Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows, four days at Sierra-at-Tahoe and Sugar Bowl, unlimited 50% discounts on lift tickets at Mountain Collective resorts, and a worry-free guarantee that will credit users up to four days towards a 2016/17 pass if they don’t ski at least five times this year.
    Adult Price: $899 (Pays for itself in 9 days)
    Resorts: Squaw Valley, Alpine Meadows, Sierra-At-Tahoe, Sugar Bowl
    International Resorts: Two days at Zermatt (Switzerland)

    Rocky Mountain Super Pass Plus

    Get access to multiple resorts in Colorado as well as resorts in places like New Zealand, you’ll be able to enjoy the snow year-round. Additionally, the Rocky Mountain Super Pass Plus offers many benefits from free “friends and family” tickets to discounts on rental equipment and tuning.
    Adult Price: $629 (Pays for itself in 7 days)
    Resorts: Winter Park, Copper Mountain, Eldora Alpine Pass, Steamboat, Crested Butte, Alyeska Resort
    International Resorts: Tomamu (Japan), Alts Bandai (Japan), Nekoma (Japan), Cardrona (New Zealand), Mt. Ruapehu (New Zealand)

    Cali4nia Pass

    Access Southern California’s mountains every day with this pass. It offers unlimited skiing, five “bring-a-friend” tickets, and up to 20% off lodging at Mammoth Lodging Collection properties.
    Adult Price: $849 (Pays for itself in 11 days)
    Resorts: Mammoth Mountain, June Mountain, Bear Mountain, Snow Summit

    *Listed pricing is current as of November 1, 2016. Click on the name of the pass for the most up to date pricing details.

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