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  • Travel Plans by Brittney Johnson 2008

    I am so excited for the upcoming vacation. We have all of October off. A full month to do whatever we want….so many possibilities. I’m on a budget. In fact, when I travel, I’m always on a budget. I don’t like paying a lot for a room when I’m never there. I like to get out and see where I am and eat the local cheap food.

    I traveled to Thailand November of 2009. I was here for 2 weeks. Thailand had been my top destination to travel to for years. However, I ended up being disappointed. I was with two friends and they wanted to go the easy, hassle-free way to travel. So, we purchased a tourist package. We hit the hot spots. Transportation and accommodation were all included in the package. We went to all of the most traveled places. We went to some beautiful places, I didn’t see any of the authentic Thailand. We mostly saw westerners acting crazy.

    So, I’m excited to see a different side of Thailand this time. I’ve been living in Surat Thani for almost three months now. I feel at ease getting around and with the people, so I hope that will help while I travel throughout the country.

    My roommate, Amy, and I plan on going up to Chang Mai and Pai for at least 1 week. We are going to travel by train up north. It’s going to be a long trip. We’ve heard amazing things about both places. Mountains, cooler weather, hiking, trekking, and being outside, surrounded by nature. There are several teachers from Surat that plan on making it up to Thailand. So we are planning on meeting up dates.

    We then plan on staying a few nights in Bangkok. Amy has some friends from England coming so we figured that is a good place for them to start. I look forward to doing some shopping, eating, and getting some cheap dental work done.

    After Bangkok, I hope to go to Kho Tao to get my Advanced PADI certificate. I’ve heard mixed reviews about diving in Kho Tao, so I think I better see it for myself.

    Once I have my advanced certificate I want to go to The Similian Islands. I’ve read that it is the best diving in Thailand and in the top 10 best diving locations in the world. You can only go to the islands certain times of the year. It’s not cheap, but I always find a way to travel cheaply so I’m sure there is a way.

    I am also dying to go rock climbing and Krabi & Railay are famous for their rock-climbing activities. I went to Railay about one month ago and it was absolutely gorgeous! You have to take a 15 minute boat ride from Krabi. It’s not nearly as touristy as Krabi. There are no chains or fast food. I can’t wait to go back there!

    I also have a friend coming to Thailand in October so I will meet up with her at some point. I’ve never been to Kho Samui so that is an option for us. I’m looking forward to relaxing, sleeping in a bit, exploring, reading, diving, swimming, eating good food, being active, meeting new people, and so much more. I’m excited to see how different parts of Thailand are. Now that I live here, I think I will appreciate Thailand much more than when I visited the first time. Thailand is really starting to feel like home and I’m really falling in love with the country and its people. There is so much to look forward to! What an incredible job I have!