A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#21 Post by ajay » Thu Jun 19, 2008 3:01 pm

cflai wrote:Dear ajay

One thing I encountered in my last trip to Hatyai is that prices of shopping has gone up in line with the fuel costs. Most stuff can be bought in Malaysia for the same prices or cheaper - perhaps the only attraction to buy there is the psychological effect of shopping in Hatyai :thumbsdown:
u are right. just the excitement of shopping overseas get into u i guess. from hatyai, i went to the padang besar market & could see the same items similarly price. recently i went to petaling street & realise it's still the best place for shopping :)
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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#22 Post by cflai » Fri Jun 20, 2008 4:34 pm

Bro Ajay

Yes, it is crazy isn't it for people to go somewhere and could not resist in buying?

I had a couple of friends who bought loads of wine in China (Chinese Wine from Hakka country) during our last 4X4 trip and another bought a lot of French wines at the duty free shop at Laos/Thailand border. (You must wonder how they got them through the customs)!!!!

I asked them about the wines 3 years later and they said they have not yet finish them yet. I am sure the wines would have turned undrinkable by now but they are happy - they could have passed some to me but I guess there is satisfaction in this habit!

cflai

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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#23 Post by cflai » Mon Jun 23, 2008 10:11 am

Bro feiluman

You are right, the coastal way has much more interesting scenery although it could take about 1 hr more compared to the Don Sak-Thungsong way. On our way back, The GPS suggested Don Sak-Thungsong but we did as you suggested - vis Nakhon Si Thamarat town, then to Songkla and back to Hatyai.....

cflai

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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#24 Post by ajay » Mon Jun 23, 2008 11:20 am

cflai, sometimes u want to buy thing overseas to keep as memory, eventhough after that u realise the item you bought is made in malaysia :)
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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#25 Post by kentng » Sun Jun 29, 2008 11:44 am

Hi Cflai,

I will be going end of september as well.

Need a few tips from you.
1) Just to comfirm from your first post, ticket is available at the jetty at Donsak, so I don't need to purchase from the sales office from Surat Thani.

2) How is the facilities at the Jetty as most of us will be family with young kids.

3) Distance from Hadyai to Donsak ?

4) Any interesting place to visit along the highway from Hadyai to Donsak ?

Thanks for your information.
Kent
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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#26 Post by cflai » Mon Jun 30, 2008 11:05 pm

Hi Kentng

1. Confirmed, just go to the ferry point and buy your tickets there - that is what we did.
2. Once you park your cars to queque, everyone gets down and go to a waiting lounge with chairs to sit, non-airconned, but there is a small restaurant that is airconned and next to it is a mini market... nothing much but better than nothing.
3. Hatyai to Don Sak is about 320km straight up via Thungsong
4. From Hatyai to Don Sak, nothing much really, just drive and get there in 4 hrs...? ... Unless yu get a tyre burst like we did..... then I suppose it gets interesting.... :finga:

Regards

cflai

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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#27 Post by saijaz77 » Mon Jun 30, 2008 11:39 pm

Kentng,

End of September would normally be the wet season in Samui. Being a regular Southern Thailand driver myself, it would be best to check the weather as it gets close to the date. Koh Samui was once badly flooded in 2005, luckily our convoy went there in 2004, 2 weeks before the Tsunami hit Phuket island. I went to Koh Samui again last year, but brought fewer cars in the convoy than the first time.

I heard from another car club that they took the Raja Ferry instead of Seatran. It depends on which entrance you come in towards Donsak. You can come in from Surathani, and when you reach Donsak, you should be turning left. There, you would see Raja Ferry's signboard first and drive up a bit Seatran. If you come from the coastal area towards Khanom (Hatyai-Koh Yo-Nakhon Si Thamarrat-Donsak) you will turn right into Donsak.

I still prefer the coastal route to go up because you get to pass Koh Yo (Yo Island) which is on a fresh water lake. You drive onto the island and off the island back to mainland plus there are lots more scenic routes. Once at Nakhon, you may want to stop at Twin Lotus Hotel for lunch or tea (which ever time you arrive) and continue on. A very popular stop for Malaysians' and Singaporeans' on the way up or down Koh Samui or Surat Thani.

As you get closer to the turning into Khanom, you can stop and buy some pomelo's on the side of the road for 20baht, or a bunch of bananas for the same price.

There are several interesting caves as you get towards Khanom area, one is called Khon Ket Cave. It is on the mainland, but you need to ride a sampan to go spelunking and the sampan needs the right weight, or else, you will get stuck in between the water and the cave's ceiling. At some parts of the cave, you need to lie down flat on your back in the sampan and the ceiling of the cave will be inches from your nose.

Hope you enjoy traveling to Thailand as much as I do and do watch out for the speed strips that makes 3 tones of sound, alerting you that there is a corner coming up. Interesting.

Saiful
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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#28 Post by cruiser » Tue Jul 01, 2008 6:41 am

Those were nice pics you shared here Cflai... much appreciated and it gave me some ideas too for the future. May be heading there someday myself as part of entourage guiding Investors on our projects and Villas on the island. Nothing definite but would be great to get a swim around the waters... were they clean & clear where your group went?

You said the prices were now higher than back in Malaysia, what about those in the Makro itself?

Cheers...

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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#29 Post by cflai » Tue Jul 01, 2008 7:03 am

Hi Cruiser

There is definitely much real estate activity in Ko Samui island especially along the beah front areas although I must admit I did not explore this end while there......

After having taken the family to visit Port Dickson beach in Negri Sembilan just before going to Ko Samui, I have to say the beaches there will put our local ones to shame. My first impression at Port Dickson was to go back immediately and design a beach cleaner and clean up all the debris .... and make some money selling my beach cleaners to the local governments.......

Ko Samui is a place to remember and most worthy of regular visits being quite near to Malaysia whether by road or by air.

Prices of shopping at Tesco, Big C and Makro is quite similar to that in Malaysia. Although at Ko Samui it is easier to find clothes with extra large sizes (Presumably for the foreign tourists). I particularly like the food courts where you buy dockets to pay for the food you choose and claim back what is not spent....

cflai

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Re: A driving holiday to Ko Samui Island in South Thailand

#30 Post by cflai » Tue Jul 01, 2008 7:25 am

Bro Kentng

Go to my first posting and download the complete set of tracks attached, you will see the routes we took - going by Surat Thani way and back via the coastal road. If you want to know where Twin Lotus hotel is located in Nakhon Si Thamarat as Bro saijaz77 suggested -can give you the corodinates - it is just opposite the Tesco shopping centre accros the road.

With the tracks you download, zoom in close and you will see the tracks will lead you to both the Seatrans and Raja ferry points both on the island as well as on the main land..... make your choice and have a nice trip....

Regards

cflai

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