24 September 2012

Muffin's View of Pattaya, Thailand

I mentioned in my previous post that Muffin and I were on a girls-only vacation last week in Pattaya, Thailand. As a single mom for the week chasing after her, I didn't have time for lots of gorgeous scenery photos. I had to get quick snapshots of Muffin being cute to post to Mike's Facebook page.

Road through the resort. No cars allowed!

Beach across from the resort.

I highly recommend Rabbit for a family vacation.

Road between resort and beach; during the day no cars are allowed.

Shrine at the resort.

And to the tiger at the zoo, Muffin just said, "Pooh, pooh."

Last day at the beach.

Kapa maki at the Bangkok airport.
We stayed at the Rabbit Resort, which I recommend for families visiting Pattaya. The owners go by Mr. and Mrs. Rabbit and they were very accommodating. No cars are allowed on the resort compound, and the road along the resort is closed to car traffic during the day so it's safe for kids to run around. There's an adults' pool and a kids' pool, and the kids' pool was perfect for Muffin to test out her swimming skills. The ocean is just across the no-traffic road, and the beach and water were pretty good for letting kids run around. A little debris after a storm blew through, but nothing worse than you'd find at a lot of U.S. beaches. On the best days at low tide the water was very shallow for quite a ways out and safe enough for little legs like Muffin's to wade without fear of undertow or giant crashing waves. There is no spa at the resort but they will arrange for a car to take you to a nearby spa and will arrange for a baby-sitter. (And Mrs. Rabbit herself checked in on the sitter while I was gone.) Pattaya is about a 90-minute drive from Bangkok airport. You can arrange a car with the resort or you can book an airport limo upon landing.

There is a water park within walking distance of the resort, although Muffin and her friend were a little too young for it. Muffin was more impressed that there was a 7-11 within walking distance. Every morning she asked if we could there for a chocolate milk. A good zoo is about a 45-minute drive. We had perfect timing on zoo day, with overcast weather while we walked around; the rain waited until we were back in the car on the way back to Rabbit. There is not much in the way of playgrounds or other kid-friendly areas in Pattaya. There are good restaurants and coffee shops within walking distance; outlet shopping is a short tuk-tuk ride away. The resort restaurant is pretty good and we ate most of our meals there.

We were there during the last weeks of the rainy season, which is the least expensive time to be there. If you are a sun bunny, this is not the best time of year to go. But if you want weather that is warm enough for splashing around in the pool or ocean without too much time in the sun, and afternoon rain storms that are conducive to napping, then it is the perfect time to go.

Thailand has Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts, so if you live in a country that doesn't have those do you really need any other reason to visit?

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