Chiang Mai with Kids Itinerary – Wat Doi Suthep, Wat Chedi Luang, Doi Inthanon National Park

Last month, we visited Chiang Mai and spent four days in the city. I’ve been to Bangkok several times but this was my first time to Chiang Mai – the largest and most culturally significant city in northern Thailand. Much to my surprise, it is full of friendly locals, incredible food markets, dozens of beautiful temples, a relaxed vibe, and beautiful landscapes. 😀

In addition, it has a lot of delicious Western food, cafes and bars all around the city, but despite that the “Thai-ness” of the city hasn’t gone away. A visit to this city will certainly leave you enamoured. And if you travel in December, like we did, you’d love it even more. The cool season (December to February) is the most popular time to visit Chiang Mai, weather-wise. During the day, the temperatures max out at a pleasant 28°C and drop rapidly after sunset, sometimes to as low as 10°C.

Now, let’s check out our suggested itinerary in Chiang Mai.

Things to See and Do in Chiang Mai

1. Visit Wat Phra That Doi Suthep and its 309 Steps

This is a must-visit in Chiang Mai. In fact, when we were there, the temple was full of tourists and buses. We couldn’t even take a decent photo of ourselves, hahaha! 😆

chiang mai with kids itineraryHere we are standing in front of the 309 steps to reach the pagodas!

For those of you who have visited the Big Buddha in Hong Kong, you should have experienced climbing 268 steps. This one is 41 steps more! I almost fainted halfway through it LOL. Nonetheless, the good news is – you can take an electric tram up if you’re not keen to walk (with a small fee of 50 THB for foreigners).

Pullman Bangkok Grande Sukhumvit Review – Luxury and Convenience

Pullman Bangkok Grande Sukhumvit is a 5-star hotel in the heart of Bangkok’s Sukhumvit Road with 325 luxury guest rooms, 3 restaurants and bar, a spa, fitness centre and large convention venue. It is ideally located near the Asoke intersection (connects both Asoke BTS sky train and MRT Sukhumvit underground station), and is just diagonally opposite Terminal 21, shopping malls, dining and entertainment areas. Perfect location, isn’t it?  🙂

Travellers to Bangkok often have different preferences when it comes to hotel selection. Some would prefer staying in shopping districts such as Siam and Pratunam, but some would prefer less crowded areas. But I believe most of us would look for one that is near the BTS or MRT. This hotel is near to both, thus making it the main reason why we chose this hotel.

Truth be told, this was the first time we travelled to Bangkok with Edison – even though we’ve been there several times during our single days (but hey, that was 10 years ago LOL). Naturally, we spent a long time searching for a good hotel. Having a plethora of choices can be mentally-draining too. Hahah!  😆

Our criterias are: 1) near BTS station, 2) 4-star and above, and 3) fits our budget of ~S$1300 for 5 nights. After some research, we found that a 5-night accommodation in the most basic room type in Siam area (Novotel Bangkok, Siam Kempinski, Pathumwan Princess, Mercure Bangkok Siam) would cost $1300 – $1400. Do note that we stayed during the peak X’mas week, thus the rates mentioned in this post were higher than average.

Thus, we began looking at hotels further from Siam and we came across Pullman Bangkok Grande Sukhumvit. With similar price range, we could get ourselves a Deluxe Executive Room with Lounge Access. It costs ~$1000 for 5-night stay in a normal Deluxe Room. Since I’m quite a big fan of hotel lounge, I choose the former with Lounge Access. Further read-up on traveller’s reviews on Trip Advisor sealed the deal. The hotel has good reviews from its guests in every aspect. 

Getting to the Hotel from Airport

There are many ways to get to Pullman Bangkok Grande Sukhumvit from airport. First, you might be tempted to arrange for a Limousine Transfer with the hotel. At this time of writing, it costs THB 1,700 per car/per way (~S$71) for a Toyota Camry that sits 3 persons.

We booked the Suvarnabhumi Airport Transfer from Klook and it costs half the price at only S$37.10. It’s very easy to find the driver, we simply followed the instruction on our booking slip to look for him at Arrival Hall between Gate 4 and Gate 3 holding a Klook sign.  😀

What I like most is the driver will wait up to 2.5 hours from our flight landing time. So, there’s no worry in the event of flight delay. And if you need a child seat, you can indicate your requirement in your booking. First child seat is provided for free, thereafter there will be an additional surcharge of THB200 per child seat, paid directly to the driver.

Our driver can speak English well, helpful and polite. The car was big and clean. We reached our hotel in approx. 45 mins. Overall, it was a hassle-free experience that I’d really recommend.  🙂

Mövenpick Suriwongse Hotel Chiang Mai – Great Location, Near Airport

Movenpick Suriwongse Hotel is a 4-star hotel located in downtown Chiang Mai offering 266 well-decorated rooms and suites. It was re-opened on 7 November 2017 after a revamp and rebranded from Suriwongse Hotel Chiang Mai (now under the Mövenpick hotel chain).

I read a lot on Trip Advisor whenever I’m searching for a hotel. This hotel has really mixed reviews, I guess mainly because it has two wings – one refurbished (new wing) and the other one not (old wing). Knowing that, I’ve specifically requested for a room in the refurbished wing in my booking.

There are two main reasons why we chose this hotel. Firstly, based on most travellers’ reviews, the hotel has a great LOCATION. Turned out, YES! It’s just right outside the night market. But don’t worry, there is no noise issues. Any activity you want to do in the city is only a short trip away. Almost all tours or day activities will do a free pick-up from this hotel – saves us lots of time and energy!

Secondly, most travellers also commented that the buffet breakfast is huge and plentiful (more on this later). Hotel’s breakfast service has always been one of our priorities, and so we were glad to shortlist this hotel for this reason. Price wise, this is a mid-range hotel that also fell within our budget. Considering that we’ll be out most of the day, we were not planning to stay in a luxury hotel.


We stayed 4 nights in a Deluxe Room with an average nightly rate of $160 (all-in with breakfast for 3 pax).

Mövenpick Suriwongse Hotel Chiang Mai
Mövenpick Suriwongse Hotel Chiang Mai | Deluxe Room

The Deluxe Room is 30 sqm in size, which is quite spacious. Available in King or Twin Beds configuration, the room can accommodate 2 adults + 1 child, or 3 adults. The room has an earthy tone with subtle Thai design elements.

Mövenpick Suriwongse Hotel Chiang Mai

Mövenpick Suriwongse Hotel Chiang Mai

There’s a sofa seating area, coffee and tea, mini fridge and bottled waters. The bathroom, however, is slightly smaller than expected. To my dismay, there was no bathtub even though their website clearly stated that bathtub is available for this room type.

10 Days in Thailand Bangkok Chiang Mai Itinerary & Trip Report

Sawasdee ka! 😎 We had an amazing time during our 10 days trip to Thailand. We spent 4 days in Chiang Mai before we flew to Bangkok and stayed for another 6 days. Today, I’ll be sharing our 10 days in Thailand Bangkok Chiang Mai itinerary, cost breakdown and some travel tips.

The weather, the food, the tours and the activities have all met our expectations. Perhaps, my only complaint is the super packed BTS – it was MADNESS! I shouldn’t complain about our SMRT any more, hahah! But honestly, I guess it can’t be helped since we were travelling during the peak season.

Trip Summary

  • Travel Dates: 21 Dec – 31 Dec 2017
  • Days Spent: 10 Days
  • Weather: Chiang Mai 25°C / 10°C, Bangkok 27°C / 21°C (Dry, Cool Season)
  • Airlines: Scoot, Thai Airways, Singapore Airlines
  • No. of Travellers: 2 adults and 1 child
  • Cities Visited: Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai
  • Hotels Stayed: Mövenpick Suriwongse Hotel Chiang Mai (4N) and Pullman Bangkok Grande Sukhumvit (5N)

Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden, Pattaya

Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden is a 500-acre (over 2 square kilometres) botanical garden and tourist attraction in Pattaya that is famed for its themed gardens such as the 17th century French Garden and the European Renaissance garden.

When I added it into our Pattaya itinerary, V was so puzzled and he asked me repeatedly if I’m 100% sure that I want to go. To him, I’m not that kind of person who would enjoy walking around the garden – especially if it’s outdoor and under the hot sun.

Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden is ranked #2 on Trip Advisor Things to do in Pattaya. From the various travel guides that I’ve read, I’m convinced that the garden is breath-taking and worth checking out. So, I thought we should not miss it too. And I’ll prep myself with lots of sun-block, cap and even umbrella, if need to.

Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden

We hired a private car to fetch us from Laem ChaBang port (where our cruise docked) for a one-day tour in Pattaya. Our first destination was Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden. We wanted to reach there early before the weather turned unbearably hot. The journey took an hour as the traffic was quite slow.

Walk-in admission fees (excluding elephant show + ride) are priced at 500 Baht (~S$20) for adult and 300 Baht (~S$12) for child. There are various package prices available with add-ons such as Thai Cultural Show, Elephant Show, Elephant Riding and Buffet Lunch. As we didn’t intend to stay for long, we just got ourselves the basic admission tickets.

The first thing that captured my attention was the massive amount of sculptures of animals and insects in the garden. At first, I thought it was a bit weird but apparently Edison was fascinated with them that he went around taking pictures using his camera phone.

Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden

Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden

Not far from the entrance, there’s also a food court that serves delicious local food. It’s amazingly cheap too. We had yummy glass noodles beef soup at just 50 Baht (S$2 only!).

As we ventured deeper into the botanical garden, we were greeted by an incredible sight of garden landscape. This is the Butterfly Hill where you can see a huge amount of colourful flowers that resemble the colour pattern of a butterfly wing.

Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden

Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical GardenThe Butterfly Hill