March 21st, 2013 , by Krisna
Filed under: Travel Tips
Those who have been to Thailand may have stayed on the island of Phuket and Krabi. But between these two popular destinations lie a group of islands called Koh Yao (เกาะยาว), sometimes written “Koyao” which belong to Phang Nga province (about 42 km south of mainland). There are two major islands, Koh Yao Noi and Koh Yao Yai (with Noi being the more developed of the two).
Koh Yao Noi remains a beautiful island and is often described as one of the last islands in the region to not be overly developed. While Koh Yao Yai is significantly larger, it is less populated due to lack of infrastructure in some areas. Koh Yao Noi is mountainous in the center and has beaches on both sides. The beach on the east is suitable for swimming and snorkeling, while the west offers a blend of rice flats and mangrove trees. The island is a sanctuary for at least 4 species of hornbills.
To get to Koh Yao Noi & Yao Yai, you catch a flight or take a bus to Phuket or Krabi (or get to Phang Nga), and from there you transfer to a boat, long-tail boat or ferry (prices vary).
Upon arrival at Manok Pier at Ko Yao Noi (about 50 km²), there is no accommodation available within walking distance. There will generally be tuk-tuks waiting to take you to accommodation. You may also hire a scooter or rent a bicycle.
Here are some of the best resorts on Koh Yao:
March 16th, 2013 , by Nigel
Filed under: Travel Tips
Tel Aviv. Gay friendly? You bet. This city is one of the best gay destinations in the world with a vibrant gay scene that is renowned for its annual Pride parade ( 6th – 9th June 2013) and fabulous gay beach.
Israel has embraced gay rights for years. Same-sex partners can form a common law marriage, marriages and civil partnerships formed abroad are fully recognized. The LGBT community is protected by anti-discrimination laws and Israel was one of the first countries to permit gay adoption.
This excellent short video by Michael Lucas tells more.
Visit Travel Gay Europe to read more about this exciting gay holiday destination.
February 3rd, 2013 , by Krisna
Filed under: Travel News
So you’ve seen most major attractions in Bangkok, traveled up north to Chiang Mai and ventured down south to the beaches on Phuket, Samui or Krabi. But have you considered Kanchanaburi as a destination? It’s only a 3-hour drive from Bangkok, and there are plenty of things to see and do.
Kanchanaburi is a province in central Thailand, located to the west of Bangkok adjacent to Myanmar where rivers Kwai Noi and Kwai Yai meet. For most visitors, the main attraction is the Bridge over the River Kwai, the start of the infamous World War II death railway, as well as many related museums. The Bridge aside, Kanchanaburi is home to nice waterfalls, national parks and stunning scenery. Its riverside, laid-back vibe makes it one of the most beautiful provinces in the country and a perfect spot for those who wish to get away from Bangkok for a little while.
You can get to Kanchanburi by bus - line 81 leaving from Bangkok’s Southern bus terminal, by train – from Bangkok Thonburi Train Station, by minivan – departing from near BTS Victory Monument, by car – a 3-hour drive along Hwy 4 (Phet Kasem) from Bangkok until it meets Hwy 323, or by limousine taxi - typically from 3,000-3,500 baht. You may also arrange a tour through your hotel in Bangkok.
Kanchanaburi has many hotels and resorts to choose from, depending on where you want to stay and your budget. Here are a few recommendations:
January 10th, 2013 , by Krisna
Filed under: Travel Tips
Thailand is home to several world-famous islands, most notably Phuket, Samui and perhaps Phi Phi. A few lesser-known island destinations include Koh Chang, Koh Tao and Koh Phangan which we have already covered on this site. Last month, Travel Gay Asia had the opportunity to visit another remote island – Koh Lipe.
Lipe is a small island in the Andaman sea in Satun province, close to Malaysian border. The island is on the border of the Tarutao National Marine Park. To get there from Bangkok, you have to catch a flight to Hat Yai province (about 1.5 hours), then take a minibus or taxi to Pak Barra pier (about 2 hours). From the pier, transfer to a speedboat to Lipe which takes a little over an hour.
There are three main beaches: Sunset beach, Sunrise beach and Pattaya beach. Accommodation from bungalows to air-conditioned villas can be found on these beaches. You can walk around the entire island in just over an hour. The best time to go is from November until May. Low season (May – October) tends to be rainy and best avoided.
I was impressed by the crystal clear water and white, soft sand at some parts of Lipe and nearby islands. These islands are great for snorkeling. Large varieties of fish and corals can be seen just a few meters deep straight off the shores.
There is a Walking Street where most businesses open in the evening until late. Here, you’ll find a number of restaurants, cafes, bars, shops, massage parlors and convenient stores. More businesses and hotels are under construction. So, while the island is still not overly developed (no 7Eleven and ATM yet), the sooner you go the better.
Another pleasant surprise for me was the fact that there are many ladyboy waitresses on the island, especially at the resort I stayed at – Bundhaya Resort. With at least a dozen ladyboys working there, this resort (and virtually the entire island) is as gay-friendly as it gets! Of course, when gay boys converse with ladyboys, hilarity ensues. There are plenty of eye candy to keep your mind and whatnot busy!
Here are some of the best resorts on Koh Lipe that I would recommend (or you can click here to search ALL hotels on Koh Lipe):