Introduction: Pandas, Golden Triangle and the Beach
We just got back from a relaxing trip with a somewhat unusual itinerary. Going through my bucket list, I’ve been wanting to visit the Pandas near Chengdu for a while. I had also never made it to Thailand’s Northern most corner in Chiang Rai. Checking out flights, Chengdu could easily be reached with a direct flight from Europe. Likewise, there’s a 4x weekly direct flight from Chengdu to Chiang Rai. Icing on the cake is that this would allow is to skip the Chinese Visa process and benefit from the Transit without Visa (TWOV) scheme, something I had done a few years ago.
With animals and nature checked, we wanted to add some beach time and settled on Koh Lipe in the very south, advertised as “the Maldives of Thailand”. The trip would end with some days in Singapore, our old home.
This was our final itinerary:
|Day||Place / Activities||Transport||Accomodation|
|1||Arrival in Chengdu||Wenjum Hotel|
|2||Panda Volunteer - Dujiangyan Base||Train|
|3||Fly to Chiang Rai, White Temple, Night Market||Flight / Rental Car||Bambuh Homestay|
|4||Golden Triangle, Hall of Opium||Rental Car|
|5||Fly to Hat Yai, Night Market||Flight||La Pause|
|6||Taxi / Boat to Koh Lipe||Taxi / Boat||Mali Sunrise Resort|
|7||Koh Lipe||-||Mali Sunrise Resort|
|8||Boat / Taxi / Fly to Singapore||Boat / Taxi / Flight||-|
Looking back, it was probably too much travel for the short period of time. Not necessarily too many stops, but too much travel with planes.
Stay tuned for the trip report!