Category: Food and Drink

GOLF – IN THE BEST CITY ON EARTH

GOLF – IN THE BEST CITY ON EARTH

Bangkok has always been a favourite for travellers around the globe; it’s the heart of Asia after all. Packed full of great shopping, the best street food ever (I can vouch for this) and a hugely diverse cultural heritage, Bangkok is THE go to city.

The Continent - Deluxe Room

Hotels are plentiful, all priced very competitively to suit your budget. Location is very important in Bangkok, being close to the bts (sky train) is a must. Feel free to email any questions you may have in order to pick the right hotel. The Continent is a hotel we use a lot, not only because of its superb value for money and its great location, but also because the hotel itself offers everything you will need to make the most of your stay. A beautiful roof top bar & restaurant, plus the pool, give the best views over the city. The Westin Grande, in the same area, also offers the opulence needed from a luxury stay. Situated right next to the famous Terminal 21 shopping mall, as well as some of Bangkok’s top eateries, this hotel has become one of our best selling hotels. Both hotels are easy to get in and out off, making the transfers to the golf course easy.

 

Thai Country ClubNow, golf in Bangkok is becoming a must for golfers from all over the world. The only difficulty is how to pick which courses you want to play at! For the best advice, it’s best to ask, as I’ve pretty much played them all. There are around 40 courses within the area, and new ones being designed as we speak.  The newest of these is Nikanti. Located 35 km’s west of Bangkok, around an hour’s journey from most downtown hotels. Nikanti is Asia’s first 18 hole par 72 course comprising of 3 six hole layouts Each individual layout consists of two par threes, two par fours and two par fives. The design allows for starts at three different points on the course adding to your flexibility in the number of holes played. Yet whatever your handicap, you’ll definitely enjoy the day. All-inclusive rates include: green fee; golf cart with GPS technology; caddie fee; and meals before, during and after each round. Of course the one that usually springs to every golfers mind is The Royal Gems Golf City, indeed a unique course. This is Asia’s first course that incorporates copy holes from around the world. Included on the front nine is the Road Hole from St Andres, the Postage Stamp from Royal Troon and Sawgrass’ famous 17th Island Green. To top it all, the back nine copies the back nine of the Augusta National, including Amen Corner. Greg Norman, Gary Player and the late great Arnold Palmer have their courses in Bangkok. Jack Nicklaus also has a number in the area.

 

So, why not enjoy the sites, sounds, tastes and, of course, the golf, in Bangkok. Golfasian can take care of everything. For a full and comprehensive quote, or just for some advice, please don’t hesitate to email info@golfasian.com

What Makes A Great Golf Vacation In Asia Even Better

What Makes A Great Golf Vacation In Asia Even Better

For a lucky few of us, vacations are taken several times a year. But for most of us we can only grab the odd week or maybe a fortnight away to play our golf.

Not everyone in the family is going to get excited, when you tell them you plan another family vacation, where you will travel miles to find your ultimate 18 holes.

OK I think we have found the answer to your predicament, the Kingdom of Smiles, namely Thailand.

Swinger I am positive it will not be hard to persuade you to experience Thailand’s marvellous Championship courses. However, first you need to let the rest of your tribe exactly what you have in store for them too.

Firstly there is the climate which is hard to resist, especially lying by the pool with a cocktail and you’re I Pod.

What female can resist a bit of retail therapy? Well if you include Bangkok in your itinerary, they can shop almost 24/7 and find local Thai designer ware at very reasonable rates. From swanky air conditioned shopping malls to the massive weekend markets they will be spoilt for choice and it won’t break your bank balance either!

If there are teenagers involved, I am sure a bit of river rafting, bungee jumping or checking out the DVD’s for sale at the night markets will keep them happy.

Through in the odd elephant trek, a visit to the floating market and add the fabulous Thai cuisine, and you will have a very satisfied family.

They will not even notice you quietly creeping out of your hotel suite at 7am with your golf bag, as they will all be exhausted and sleeping soundly.

Thailand is a golfing country and the sport is taken very seriously by the local tourist board, as they can see that overseas players are an important income earner for their hospitality industry. We golfers spend money and naturally they want you to spend your dollars here in Thailand.

Having said that, golf across Thailand is actually very reasonable, and according to a recent survey, their green fees are 29% lower than all other Asian and Middle East golf clubs.

Tour operators such as Golfasian, run a very well oiled operation, so you the golfer can just enjoy the game, while they look after getting you to the course and handling the payments.

Tour Operators are the life blood of most golf club’s income, as the will be able to fill a substantial number of tee times over a twelve month period. Hence you are likely to benefit from some good tee times and at very competitive rates too.

Many of Golfasian‘s staff are also crazy about golf themselves, and like you, they try to play as many courses around Thailand as possible. If you need to know where to play, bearing in mind your type of golf handicap, they can advise you.

If during your fortnights family holiday, you want fit in around 6-8 rounds of golf, don’t worry. I am sure the rest of the family will be too busy to even notice you’re away enjoying some first class golf on some great Thailand Championship courses.

Remember if you could do with some family bonding, you can always suggest that everyone goes to a Thai Spa. I am sure your back swing will improve after a deep tissue sports massage, and they rest of your brood should also enjoy their Thai massage as well.

Enjoy and happy golf vacation to you all!

Bangkok Dining

Bangkok Dining

Bangkok Dining Many on a Thailand golf package spend at least a few days in Thailand’s capital during their golf holiday as it offers convenient flight connections to around the world in addition to great golf, high standard accommodation, shopping, dining and entertainment. I am often asked for restaurant suggestions and while I do not claim to be a foodie, I know what I like. Here is a brief list of some of my favorites:

ITALIAN
There are many good Italian restaurants all over Bangkok in various price ranges. The ones at the Sheraton on Sukhumvit and the Dusit Thani hotels are both very good at the higher end. Others I like a lot that are more moderately priced include La Gritta on Sukhumvit Soi 19, Basilico on Sukhumvit Soi 33, Via Vai on Sukhumvit Soi 8 and Limoncello on Sukhumvit Soi 11.  All offer a great pizza and nice wines as well as an assortment of homemade pastas and more.

THAI
This one is almost impossible because great Thai food is served up in so many places. Even the street food can be good though I don’t particularly enjoy sitting in plastic chairs on the sidewalk and dining a few feet from diesel belching busses while dodging the motorcycle taxi boys flying past our table.  For cheap and good, I like the outdoor corner restaurant just a few meters down Sukhumvit Soi 14 from the Asok Skytrain. At the higher end, the better hotels almost all have good Thai restaurants. It’s hard to go wrong with Thai food in Thailand and often the difference in price is more related to the atmosphere than the food itself.

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Back To The Sixties! – Titanium Club in Bangkok

Back To The Sixties! – Titanium Club in Bangkok

I have to admit I do like to relax after a day on the golf course, perhaps with a cold beer listening to some great music.

Once you have discussed all those great shots you thought you made around some of Bangkok’s many wonderful golf courses, had the massage, eaten, then it’s time to hit the town.

Bangkok's night life has literally hundreds of bars, night clubs and discos to choose from, ranging from a roadside vans blasting out the hits, to the swanky hotel clubs.

Personally I am not into drum and bass or garage music. In fact I’ve been known to panic when they say ‘Who is this Eric Clapton you talk about?’

Well for all you middle age hippies out there all is not lost. While Red Mountain maybe my golf course heaven down in Phuket, Titanium is now my music base when in Bangkok.

Titanium-disco-bangkok Located off Sukhumvit on Soi 22, Titanium Club and Ice Bar is one of Bangkok’s coolest bars with innovative lighting, creative drinks and great sounds.

Upstairs, check out their Ice Bar, where the temperature is down to minus 10degrees C and offers the most spectacular array of vodkas in all of Thailand.

There is a great house band called Unicorn, an all female group who can really play with passion.

But for me and my golf buddies, the star attraction undoubtedly is to hear at full blast Brick in the Wall by Pink Floyd played to perfection by the club’s other house band, The Big Boy Band.

Five middle aged Thai guys who can achieve a perfect rendition of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody with all the harmonies is my type of music high.

They give it all and play all the old favourites from Dire Straits to the Rolling Stones.

They don’t play every night so best check out what’s on by calling tel +66 (0)2 258 3758.

Give the girlie bars a rest next time and head down to Soi 22. Apparently the club holds a Doctors and Nurses night once a month as well. Get your Vodka injections here, and watch your drive go that extra few more yards !!!

After Bangkok Golf Cheap Restaurant Guide

After Bangkok Golf Cheap Restaurant Guide

Bangkok_golf_bbq After a long day at a Bangkok golf course where is the best cheap restaurant to eat at? Excluding sidewalk restaurants (the topic for another post) here are four places that you should investigate after your next round of golf in Bangkok, all under $10 USD a head, including alcohol!

1. Steak Lao restaurant is on Chang Wattana in Ram Intra, 100 yards from the outer ring road exit. The restaurant is an ideal place to visit after golfing at Panya Indra Golf Club, Legacy Golf Club, Windsor Park or President Country Club. It has a true rustic Thai feel and the sizzling steak Lao dish is fantastic. By the way in addition to beef “steak Lao” comes in pork, chicken, and fish. Yes that’s right fish and if you have to ask, well just order one of the other varieties!

2. Via Vie is an Italian restaurant on Soi 8.  What better than a pizza and beer after a day at the golf course? Well this jewel of a restaurant has the best wood fired pizzas in all Bangkok, if not Thailand. The other night after dropping off my mates from a round at Thai Country Club, I went into Via Vie for their specialty pizza margarita and a warm spinach salad. Ricardo the owner cooked for me as usual, came over, and we even shared a beer. The total tab, including 2 beers was not even $10 dollars.  As an added plus for those golfing at Santiburi Country Club, the original Via Vie is on Chewang beach and is run by Ricardo’s brother!

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Thai Golfers Stomach

Thai Golfers Stomach

Thai_golfer_nokSometimes, I as an amateur golfer in Thailand together with my professional golfer friends often look for new local talent at the driving ranges around Bangkok.

This week, continuing with my regular visits,  I once again bumped into this Thai lady, who is the girlfriend of a very good friend of mine.  An attractive 28 year-old lady, Nok (Thai for ‘bird’) is of slightly larger stature than the traditional Thai but by no means does that mean she is a big girl. Nok possesses a talent that I have to explain.

Having seen her taking past lessons with the local Thai professional, Nok has conquered the grief of over setting her wrists, collapsing her left side and a straightening her right leg. This time, as before, I was really looking forward to seeing her get her usual joy from hitting one crisp strike after another. Imagine my feeling when she turns up and cannot hit a single shot! Balls are topped off the tee and flying in all directions. Definitely not the norm for Nok and she was not a happy girl.

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Insider’s Guide To Non Golf Activities in Bangkok Thailand (Part 2 of 2)

Insider’s Guide To Non Golf Activities in Bangkok Thailand (Part 2 of 2)

Lumpini_park_bangkok_thailandHere are the final 8 of my best suggestions for non golf and non tourist activities to do while winding down or taking a day off from your Bangkok golf.

9. Take a walk in the park. Lumpini Park, at the intersection of Silom Road and Rama IV, is the city’s oldest and most popular park. It’s location near the centre of the business district means that is attracts an upscale early morning crowd of exercisers and Tai Chi practitioners from the time it opens at 6am until around 8am. The park has two lakes, and paddle boats are available for rent. There is also a library, and at certain times of the year the park becomes the domain of the city’s kite flyers.

10. Use an Internet Café. Over the past few years the number of Internet Cafes has grown enormously, not only in Bangkok, but across Thailand. Regardless of where you stay there will almost definitely be an Internet Cafe within walking distance. Most offer high speed broadband access at reasonable cost and some offer refreshments and food.

11. Shop at Chatuchak "Weekend" Market. Claimed to be the biggest weekend market in the world, it’s actually open every day except Tuesday, but with many more traders at the weekend, especially on Sundays.

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Insider’s Guide To Non Golf Activities in Bangkok Thailand (Part 1 of 2)

Insider’s Guide To Non Golf Activities in Bangkok Thailand (Part 1 of 2)

Bangkok_thailand Some people come to Thailand on golf trips, play golf everyday for two or three weeks and, by the end of their trip, whilst still enjoying their golf, are beginning to tire of tourist traps, partying, or sitting in their hotel room or in a bar each evening.

Over the next 2 days I will discuss 16 alternative things to do in Bangkok on your days off from golf or in the evenings. Please note that I am not talking here about the ‘must do’ tourist attractions such as the Grand Palace, the Chao Praya River, Wat Arun , Wat Pho, Jim Thompson’s House, the Floating Market, etc., or the usual nightspots.

1. Take in a movie. Most of Bangkok cinemas are world-class – crystal clear viewing, digital sound and very comfortable seating. Some theatres even have a first class section with  lazy boys in single or love seat configurations, free blankets, soft drinks, hors d’oeuvres and of course popcorn. Check the English language papers (Bangkok Post and The Nation) for locations and current offerings. The Emporium and Siam Discovery Centre are convenient as both can be reached by Skytrain. The very latest films are shown, sometimes months before the overseas release date, with the normal English soundtrack subtitled in Thai.

2. Experience Thai Boxing.  Muay Thai, is best enjoyed at Lumpini Boxing Stadium. You can get front row seats and meet the star attractions after their bouts for a photo session.

3. Go bowling. Usually located on the top floor of shopping malls alongside a host of other entertainments – cinemas, video games, karaoke, computer games and food halls- bowling alleys in Bangkok are state-of-the-art.

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Food and Drink Costs at Thailand Golf Courses

Food and Drink Costs at Thailand Golf Courses

Thailand_golf_food_and_drink As with almost any golf course throughout the world, food and drinks are available at all Thailand golf clubs. On the other hand, unlike golf clubs in the USA or Europe, the food and drink prices at Thailand golf clubs are very reasonable and of good value.

While more expensive than outside the course, 15 baht (US$0.40) for bottled water is not bad. Coke and other soft drinks can be purchased for around 25 baht (US$0.70).  At each of the rest stops, found every 3 holes on Thailand golf courses, you will also find an assortment of food for the golfer on offer.

The selection varies greatly among the courses and even from day to day at the same place. Some courses are well stocked and others have only 1-2 items available at their halfway houses. Most common are an assortment of snacks and chips (30 baht a bag) and hot items like Dim Sum (steamed dumplings, 30 baht for 5), boiled eggs (10 baht each) , fresh fruit (10 baht for one piece), flavored sticky rice wrapped in banana leaves (25 baht each), and fried chicken or hot dogs (30 baht each).

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Songkran Festival Golf in Thailand

Songkran Festival Golf in Thailand

Songkran_thailand_golf If you are thinking of a Thailand golf trip in next few months, why not aim to be here in April and join in Thailand’s Songkran Festival. Songkran is the Thai New Year celebration which starts on April 13, when the sun moves into Aries. This national holiday customarily lasts for three days, and even longer in Chiang Mai and Pattaya. The word ‘Songkran’ originates from the Sanskrit meaning ‘beginning of the solar year’. So, the holiday-loving Thais get to celebrate New Year three times each year: the Western New Year on January 1, the Chinese New Year in February, and the Thai New Year in April.

Traditionally, Thais visit temples at this time of year to offer food to the monks and to participate in bathing ceremonies for Buddha images. Another custom is the releasing of small fish into rivers and canals. This merit-making act is thought to come from the old practice of collecting small fish from dried out pools, to keep and later release back into the wild.

These days, during Songkran festival most people throw water on one another to keep cool and have fun. It is the one time of year where the Thais and visitors freely mix together and let their hair down, so to speak. Whatever part of Thailand you happen to be in, you can go out on the streets and enjoy the good fun. But watch out, and keep your cool the first time you get wet!

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Golf Holiday in Phuket: Four Insider Tips

Golf Holiday in Phuket: Four Insider Tips

Phuket_golf_1 Here are four of my top tips to make your golfing holiday in Phuket more enjoyable:

1. Changing money: There are lots of banks and exchange booths both in Phuket Airport and in the main tourist areas such as Patong and Karon/Kata Beaches and Laguna Resort. They are all competitive and it is much better to change your foreign currency there than at your hotel. You need to have your passport if you are exchanging traveler’s’ checks or getting cash (or shopping) with your credit card.

2. Eating out etc.- there are loads of restaurants, bars etc. in Patong. Walk along the beach road until you get to Soi Bangla. ‘Soi’ means street. Turn right. Explore the small Soi’s leading off Soi Bangla, and also go to the top of Soi Bangla onto the second road back from the beach (200 Year Road). There are also restaurants going past Soi Bangla on the beach road. Some recommendations: for seafood, The Savoey (sic) and No. 6 Restaurant. Good inexpensive Thai: Sabai Sabai Soi Post Office, and Kaab Gluay on the outskirts of Patong near the (only) Temple (soon after the Esso Gas Station). If you get tired of Thai food and just want a good steak: Sam’s in the Holiday Inn, not far from the Amari. Out of Patong: Kang Eng Chalong Bay, about 30 minutes from Patong by tuk-tuk, and Ka Jok Si in Phuket Town (you need to make a reservation).

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Golf in Thailand: 5 Essential Items to Bring to the Course

Golf in Thailand: 5 Essential Items to Bring to the Course

Thailand_golf_1Golf in Thailand can be different from golf in other parts of the world and many of the unique attributes of Thailand golf have been covered in my previous posts. One area that is often overlooked or assumed to be the same is what to bring with you to the golf course.

Five of the essential items to bring to the golf course in Thailand (aside from your golf clubs) include:

1. Light, loose fitting, cotton garments, including cotton socks. Many golfers prefer to wear tailored shorts (with black socks!) rather than long pants as this affords the best balance of comfort and fashion. Whilst Thai golf courses tend to be more relaxed than those in other parts of the world, the usual standards of dress still apply. Pretty much anything you feel comfortable in will be “allowed” ,the only exceptions being cut-off jeans and t-shirts which are frowned upon.

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Thailand Golf Food and Drink

Thailand Golf Food and Drink

Thailand_golf With great Thailand golf plans in hand, golf holiday dates firmed up, and tee times confirmed, what else do you need to be aware for your Thailand golf vacation? 

The short answer is food and water! Here are some tips to help ensure that you enjoy your time golfing in Thailand.

Before play, don’t skip meals. This could affect your focus and energy levels dramatically. I suggest you eat a small, balanced meal 30 to 60 minutes before tee time. An example of this may be a low-fat and low-carbohydrate snack, a piece of fruit and at least 12 to 16 ounces of bottled water. Skip the caffeinated drinks like soft drinks, coffee or tea. Caffeine will cause you to dehydrate, which is a very bad situation when walking a hot Thailand golf course.

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Thailand Golf Tips Or Giving Tips in Thailand? (Part 2 of 2)

Thailand Golf Tips Or Giving Tips in Thailand? (Part 2 of 2)

Thailand_tips Thailand golf is what you are all here for and in today’s continuation post I will cover common tipping practices on the golf course, in bars, and while traveling on the road here.

On the golf course, tips are one of the main ways the caddie generates their income. Although you pay a caddie fee in the cost of your green fee, only a portion of this goes to the caddie so the emphasis is then on them receiving good tips. At my golf travel company a 300 baht minimum is suggested to all Thailand golf holidaymakers. Although you can consider paying more, 500 to 1000 baht, if you have a particularly excellent caddie that helps you shoot under your handicap or you feel overly generous. Certainly any caddie that gets a 500 baht or more tip, will be the pride of her group for the evening.

As for the bars tipping again is expected, although certainly not compulsory. Although the girls employed in many of these establishments will very tactfully try to ensure you buy as many drinks as possible, a small tip at the end is expected. A guideline here would be to leave around 50-100 baht ($1.25 to $2.50 US), especially if you are satisfied with services received.

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Thailand Golf Tips Or Giving Tips in Thailand? (Part 1 of 2)

Thailand Golf Tips Or Giving Tips in Thailand? (Part 1 of 2)

Thailand_golf_tip_sheet1I bet you thought I would post another golf tip. The next 2 articles deal, not with golf advice, but rather with gratuities. I find this an even more appropriate discussion topic since many golf travelers to Thailand may be wondering about local practices.

Although not traditional in Thailand, you should plan to tip drivers, porters, and restaurant and bar staff and of course your golf caddies.

However, please note that the level of tipping is still extremely small in comparison to that in the US and Europe, where as much as 10 – 15% of your bill in a restaurant would be expected. In Thailand, tips are much less and the following is a guideline which will ensure you are neither offending, nor over generous whilst tipping.

In hotels, a porter will take care of your luggage both whilst checking in and leaving. A tip of around 20 baht (50 cents US) is sufficient, although if you would like to give more, then this will be gratefully received.

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Nighttime activities, will they influence my golf in Thailand? (Part 2 of 2)

Nighttime activities, will they influence my golf in Thailand? (Part 2 of 2)

Nana Here is the second and final part of my post. Hope you enjoy and please do comment on anything shown or mentioned.

Whether you want to play pool, sit and joke with the girls in the many beer bars, enjoy the numerous go- go bars and shows on offer, or sample a special type of massage, then it is all readily and openly available.

On many occasions I have witnessed both first time visitors, and many people who know Thailand well, caught up in the amazing atmosphere which certainly adds to an additional handicap whilst playing golf the next day. Golf in Thailand is difficult enough with the challenging courses and hot climate, but add a hangover and only a few hours sleep – well I don’t need to say anymore.

That is not to say I do not recommend it. Heck,  I came here myself as a single golfer for almost 15 years  until meeting and marrying my beautiful Thai wife 4 years ago and even now once in a while I can be persuaded to join some friends for a night out on the town. I appreciate that the main purpose many people come is to combine the nightlife and golf, and I am just trying to make the first time visitor more aware of what to expect.

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Nighttime activities, will they influence my golf in Thailand? (Part 1 of 2)

Nighttime activities, will they influence my golf in Thailand? (Part 1 of 2)

Pattaya_at_night For anyone who has not visited Thailand previously, then the simple answer to this question is a definite yes! For those that are familiar with Thailand then you will know exactly what I am talking about.

There is no hiding the fact that Thailand is popular with many visiting tourists, primarily male, for the unbelievable nightlife and availability of beautiful Thai girls for company. This is something that is unique to Thailand, and whilst variations occur in other Asian destinations, you will certainly not find anything like it outside Thailand.

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10 Best Reasons to Come to Thailand to Play Golf (Part 2 of 3)

10 Best Reasons to Come to Thailand to Play Golf (Part 2 of 3)

Floating_market_medium Here are the next 4 great reasons to choose Thailand as your most favored golf holiday destination.

4. The locations. Thailand is a beautiful country and offers a number of totally different destinations to play golf. From the bustling capital of Bangkok, to the beautiful mountainous countryside of Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai. From the stunning beaches in Phuket and Koh Samui, to the bright lights and amazing nightlife of Pattaya. From the quieter seaside town of Hua Hin, to the waterfalls and stunning scenery of Khao Yai, Thailand has a location for everyone.

5. The people. Without doubt I find the Thai people to be the friendliest I have ever found throughout the world. Always with a smile on their face (it is not called the ‘land of smiles’ for nothing) I find them very humble and always extremely welcoming towards visiting tourists. You will be stunned by their hospitality and how much they are prepared to do for you.

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10 Best Reasons to Come to Thailand to Play Golf (Part 1 of 3)

10 Best Reasons to Come to Thailand to Play Golf (Part 1 of 3)

Koh_tao As an expatriate living and working in Thailand, I cannot think of many better places to come and play golf.

I have been fortunate to play golf all over the world including the most popular golf tourist destinations, such as the United States, Scotland, Spain, Caribbean, and Mexico. I have also played in several other Asian countries, like China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, and Australia, but still find Thailand a pretty difficult experience to beat.

Over the next few days I will explain my 10 best reasons why I think Thailand is the best place in the world for a golf holiday. i would love to get some feedback and opinions, both supportive and contrasting.

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Phuket or Koh Samui – A Comparison of 2 Beach Resorts for a Golf Holiday (Part 2)

Phuket or Koh Samui – A Comparison of 2 Beach Resorts for a Golf Holiday (Part 2)

the web site.This is the continuation about Phuket and comparison to Samui as  golf holiday destination.

In Phuket in the evening there are many choices for dining and entertainment especially in the lively town of Patong where selections range from beer bars to live music, and shows. The restaurants provide a massive choice from local seafood to 5 star international cuisines. There is an abundance of night markets and there are modern shopping malls, selling all brand name products.

Without doubt, Phuket is most definitely one of the great holiday destinations in the world and will provide you with a golfing holiday you are sure never to forget.

Koh_samui_chaweng_beach Koh Samui, referred to as the island of coconut trees, is Thailand’s third largest island and is now host to one of the most stunning championship golf courses in Asia. The only course on the island, Santiburi Samui is set in the northern part of the island, and provides some of the amazing sights of the surrounding ocean and mountains that you are likely to see anywhere in the world. I have been recommending this course since it opened a couple of years ago and the feedback is always first class.

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Phuket or Koh Samui – A Comparison of 2 Beach Resorts for a Golf Holiday (Part 1)

Phuket or Koh Samui – A Comparison of 2 Beach Resorts for a Golf Holiday (Part 1)

PhuketPhuket, Thailand’s largest island, is without doubt one of the most exotic destinations in Southeast Asia. The island hosts a number of first class golf courses, and is a dream destination for those wishing to combine golf together with some stunning beach resorts, providing total relaxation.

Fully recovered from the tragic and unfortunate events of the December 2004 tsunami, Phuket is looking better than ever and a continuing to attract huge investment in further developing the island.

In addition to the world famous Blue Canyon Golf Resort which has 2 different courses, Phuket hosts other championship courses in Laguna, Phuket Country Club, Loch Palm (soon to open a second 18 holes), and the recently completed Mission Hills resort. This gives golfers plenty of options whilst holidaying on this stunning island. The one strange fact is that only half of the courses (Loch Palm, Mission Hills, and the Blue Canyon Lakes course) have golf carts available for rent. This strikes me as rather odd since practically all other Thailand golf course have carts available. Moreover, since Phuket is a resort area one would think that all of the courses on Phuket would provide for this optional service.

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Myths and Facts About Playing Golf in Thailand (Part 2)

Myths and Facts About Playing Golf in Thailand (Part 2)

Hua_hin_beach_1 Here is the second half of "strange facts about Thailand golf". I hope you enjoy reading the post and find a few things of interest. Please also let me know your experiences and comments.

Also, can anyone recognize this beach? A copy of the soon to be published 2007 Thailand golf map awaits the first person who can correctly identify it by submitting a comment to this post.

Now on to the Myths and Facts.

Myth – The courses are of inferior quality. Thailand hosts many championship standard courses designed by leading golf professionals and top golf course architects. Many of these courses are simply stunning, and are of excellent quality and in extremely well maintained condition. Overall, the quality of courses in Thailand is far superior than I have come across in other established golf tourist destinations throughout the world.

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Myths and Facts About Playing Golf in Thailand (Part 1)

Myths and Facts About Playing Golf in Thailand (Part 1)

Wat_po2 There is no doubt that many people have many misconceptions about Thailand as a golf travel destination.

Over the years, Thailand has developed a reputation for many of the wrong reasons, and only those who have visited, realize what a wonderful and beautiful country it is, with so much to offer the golfing traveler.

Thailand is now by far the leading travel destination in South East Asia, and is now regarded as one of the leading tourist destinations in the world. With regards golf, it has recently been voted by the world golf travel agents federation as the best up and coming destination in the world, now competing with many of the established European and American resorts.

In order to give you a greater insight into golf in Thailand, below, are some of the facts and myths that hopefully will assist you in selecting your next golf holiday.

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Thailand Golf Holiday and Travel Budgets (Part 2)

Thailand Golf Holiday and Travel Budgets (Part 2)

In this second part of “Thailand Golf Holiday Travel Budgets” I will give some examples of typical costs for golf holidays. These costs are approximate and will vary depending on time of the year. I have included the top and best golf courses in each area along with private transportation to and from each of the courses.

Examples of such packages including accommodation golf and transport are as follows.

In Bangkok, a one week stay at a nice 4–star accommodation in a central location, together with 4 days golf at leading courses, should cost you around $700 US dollars.

Read more about other examples and specific prices of food drinks and shopping in the continuation of this post.

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Thailand Golf Holiday and Travel Budgets (Part 1)

Thailand Golf Holiday and Travel Budgets (Part 1)

Amata Spring Country Club, Bangkok Thailand For anyone considering a golf holiday in Thailand, it is important to know the potential costs of your whole package in order to help you budget accordingly.

In order to help you with this, I have detailed below some information including the choice and costs of hotels, golf & transport, and additional expenses you will likely incur during your visit.

When selecting your holiday the most important aspect for most people is their accommodation. If they are traveling a long distance from home, they wish to ensure that the accommodation is the best possibly suited based on their budget. After all, you are on holiday, and it is important you relax and enjoy things as much as possible.

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Thailand Seaside Golf Destinations : Which is best? (Part 4 of 4)

Thailand Seaside Golf Destinations : Which is best? (Part 4 of 4)

Hua Hin Golf Resort Hua Hin & Cha Am

The Hua Hin and Cha Am area is located on the western side of the Gulf of Thailand, and is approximately a three hour drive from Bangkok. Thailand’s original beach resort, it now sports a selection of 7 excellent golf courses and is a much quieter destination that Phuket or Pattaya, although is particularly popular with visiting Eurpoean tourists during the cool season from November to February.

Although Hua Hin still retains the intimacy of a village, it has successfully incorporated modern luxuries without the commercialism of other resorts. There are now a wide choice of luxury hotels and resorts, but they are discretely located not to affect the original image of the town. Hua Hin is also still a thriving fishing village with its own local fleet, and on most evenings, holidaymakers stroll down to the harbor to enjoy the fresh seafood available in many of the fine waterfront restaurants.

Read more about Hua Hin in the continuation of this post

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Pattaya Golf: Playing and My 5 Favorite Courses (Part 1)

Pattaya Golf: Playing and My 5 Favorite Courses (Part 1)

Pattaya Golf Courses (Part 1)

This is a sister article to my posts last week about golf in Bangkok. Also, due to the length of the course descriptions I will again post this article as a multi-part series.

Pattaya can now be easily be reached from Bangkok by car in around 1.5 hours due to the completion of the superhighway and motorway between the 2 cities, There have always been some excellent golf courses in the Pattaya areas but many golfers shunned the idea of going to Pattaya due to the cities dirty and run down feel as well as availability of accommodations of international standard. Now however, there are some excellent 4 and 5 star resorts open in the area and many actives are available for both golfers, non-golfers, and families. The nearby golf courses number around 20, of which 15 of them are of championship quality. Of course it is difficult and takes time to play at each course, so I thought it would be useful to share my thoughts on my favorite 5 courses in the area. Again, these are my personal favorites and I welcome any comment on other courses that should be added to this list.

Here are my 5 favorite courses, in no particular order in the Pattaya area.

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