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Eric and Evanne, Author at Poplar Travels - Page 2 of 3
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Nov 28 2014

Two Days In Singapore With City Pass

When we started planning a trip to Singapore, we were told by many of our friends who had been there before that one day would be plenty of time to see everything. However, the more research we did, the longer our list of must-dos grew, and the more we wondered if we would end up having enough time. We had a total of four days in Singapore, and we spent two of them touring with a City Pass. If you are wondering what to do with two days in Singapore...

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Nov 25 2014

Fah Lanna Spa Chiang Mai

After six hours of driving our scooter back from Chiang Rai, Thailand, the day before, we were more than excited to spend the morning at Fah Lanna Spa. This traditional Thai spa sits on a beautiful street in the northern part of the Old City of Chiang Mai. At the entrance, we were met with tropical trees and flowers surrounding a calming pond built under a walkway extending back to the private treatment rooms. We were warmly greeted as soon as we stepped inside and sat watching the Koi fish...

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Nov 18 2014

A-Star Phulare Valley: Chiang Rai Countryside Resort

A-Star Phulare Valley Resort in the hills of Chiang Rai, Thailand, is a unique resort with a variety of Chalets and spacious Pool Villas. The expansive grounds spread over the top of a large hill, and the resort is laid out so that all the rooms and villas have beautiful views of the trees and countryside. The paths within the resort are well manicured and the large infinity pool in the center adds a breathtaking viewpoint to the relaxing scene. We enjoyed our time away from the busy streets of Chiang Mai...

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Nov 12 2014

Cape Panwa Hotel: The Best Beach in Phuket

On the last night of our trip to Phuket we traveled all the way down to Cape Panwa to stay at the Cape Panwa Hotel. The hotel is set back from the main road and sits on a steep hillside above the private sandy beach below. We were glad we came here last or we would have been ruined for the rest of Phuket by that perfect beach!   The Grounds The hotel is more of a boutique resort and features a few different restaurants and bars on the property. There is a...

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Nov 07 2014

Thavorn Palm Beach Resort: Phuket

The Thavorn Palm Beach Resort's bragging points are its lush grounds similar to those at Thavorn Beach Village and Spa, and its five swimming pools. Jumping in and out of each you will find waterfalls, crocodile fountains, a swim-up bar, multiple lounge areas and kiddie areas all with a view of the ocean. The resort is in a great location in Karon Beach, Phuket, right across the street from the beach and surrounded by a few other hotels, restaurants and bars. At night tuk-tuks lit up with neon lights and fitted...

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Nov 07 2014

B-Lay Tong Hotel: Patong Beach, Phuket

The B-Lay Tong Hotel, an M Gallery Hotel, is an eye-catching design hotel in the perfect location at the north of Patong Beach in Phuket, Thailand. Details like honey comb shaped mirrors and door numbers adhere to a loose bee theme. The throne in the lobby temporarily dubs those seated in it the King and Queen Bee. The gallery restaurant (The B-hive) features intricate murals by local artists and each room has a unique woven art piece above the bed. The overall feel is trendy and interesting without crossing the...

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Nov 04 2014

Karon Sea Sands Resort and Spa

Karon Sea Sands Resort and Spa is tucked away from the noisy street just around the corner from hundreds of bars, shops and tour operators and right across from the beach. You can see the beach from the lobby, yet the pool is in a quiet little pocket so you can easily relax. At night, the surrounding streets are crowded with tourists in beachy outfits buying souvenirs and enjoying the nightlife. [gallery type="rectangular" ids="1924,1925,1921"] The pool was surrounded by lounge chairs and had several water features that create some pleasant ambient noise....

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Nov 01 2014

Thavorn Beach Village and Spa

As you wander the grounds of Thavorn Beach Village and Spa in Phuket the resort’s history and legends about the area unfold. Statues of mythical and earthly creatures alike emerge from the dense tropical plants and fountains that are incorporated around the resort’s focal point, the lagoon pool. When Mr. Thavornwongwongse built the resort, the land was given to him by an elderly couple who used to farm the area. This couple told Mr. Thavornwongwongse that this property is the place where Naka the dragon-snake fell in love with a woman...

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Oct 30 2014

Sofitel Krabi Phokeethra Golf and Spa Resort

Our last stop on our journey along the Andaman Coast was at the Sofitel Krabi Phokeethra Golf and Spa Resort. The resort is located about 20 minutes away from Ao Nang across from a quiet beach and surrounded by palms and meticulously manicured grass. The Sofitel brand is famous for adding their touch of French art de vivre and local culture to their luxury properties. Somehow through the interaction of their attentive and friendly staff and the layout of the hotel, the 276 room resort felt small and cozy. Even while...

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Oct 29 2014

Ananta Burin Resort: Krabi, Thailand

We were welcomed to the Ananta Burin Resort in an open air lobby with free wifi and grouped seating. Several guests were still lounging there on their smartphones in the evening. We headed straight to the pool after checking in to escape the heat. The pool was refreshing, and with the resort surrounding it, it stayed very quiet and relaxing while we were there. A small pool bar was open outside during the day to serve anyone enjoying the lounge chairs. There is no gym on the property, but the pool...

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Oct 26 2014

Aonang Phu Petra: Mountain View Villas In Krabi, Thailand

After our short flight from Bangkok and our extremely long and slightly confusing bus ride from the airport, we arrived in the small and beautiful Aonang Phu Petra Resort in Krabi, Thailand. The drive in took us through the busy walking street and endless rows of tour operators in Ao Nang and turned onto a green residential road leading to the resort. The stark contrast of quiet leafy Phu Petra to the bustling beach town down the road emphasized the breathtaking view of the mountains in the distance. The pool, which...

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Oct 24 2014

The Hilton Sukhumvit Bangkok Hotel

The Hilton Sukhumvit Bangkok Hotel is located just minutes away from the best nightlife and shopping in the Sukhumvit business district. This hotel boasts classic elegance and sophisticated 1920s Italian-American design. The hotel has many well designed spaces including New York penthouse themed meeting rooms and a rooftop infinity pool with sweeping city views. During our stay we saw business travelers, families and couples alike relaxing in style in this centrally located luxury hotel. The rooftop infinity pool had a great view of the city, especially at night when everything lit...

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Oct 23 2014

Double Tree By Hilton Hotel: Sukhumvit Bangkok

Double Tree by Hilton in Bangkok is only about 1.5 years old. You can tell it is almost brand new by the trendy styling and pristine interior. The modern decorations follow a musical theme and include such funky details as a collage of cassette tapes and one made of vintage radios. Our room was on the smaller side, but sunny with marble floors and a spacious contemporary bathroom. The Sukhumvit location is close to Suk Soi 11, a popular nightlife destination in Bangkok with plenty of dining options. Around the corner...

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Oct 21 2014

VIE Hotel Bangkok

The lobby at the VIE Hotel Bangkok has a lounge-like atmosphere, but the rooms have strong traditional Thai influences. Silk pillow cases on the couches are from the historic Jim Thompson House nearby and the dark wood furniture resembles traditional teak. We were upgraded to a corner suite with expansive views of Bangkok through floor-to-ceiling windows. One of our favorite details at this hotel was the pillow bar. We didn't ask for any other than what was already in our room because the massive down and synthetic pillows on the bed...

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Oct 21 2014

Rock Climbing In Chiang Mai With CMRCA

Our Introduction to Rock Climbing Class with Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures (CMRCA) was just as amazing as our caving experience with them. I have taken rock climbing classes many times before in Colorado and the quality of CMRCA’s class and instructors was up to par. All their instructors are certified under American climbing standards and pay close attention to safety. We arrived at the office of CMRCA about half an hour before we were supposed to meet them so we could grab a quick breakfast and coffee at a nearby cafe....

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Oct 20 2014

Ibrik Resort: The Smallest Resort In The World

The Ibrik Resort in Bangkok is a cozy boutique hotel in the perfect location to explore the Grand Palace. The website describes this tiny hotel with only three rooms as "the smallest resort in the world." While we enjoyed our stay and the service was incredible, bed and breakfast might be a better descriptor. The entry to the Ibrik is easy to miss, so keep an eye out for the sign. A narrow alley squeezed between a private residence and a small office building goes back through the gate to the entryway....

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Oct 17 2014

Bangkok Tree House Hotel: A Green Oasis Inside The City

We began our first trip to Bangkok with a night at the Bangkok Tree House Hotel, an environmentally friendly, uniquely designed hotel in a quiet section of the city. We weren't exactly sure what to expect when we arrived, but it turned out to be a wonderful experience. The mission of this small hotel is to allow guests the opportunity to connect with nature and provide an escape from the bustling heart of the city. However, this hotel goes far beyond ambient bird sounds and picture windows. One room option even...

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Oct 10 2014

Intro to Caving Course: Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure

Our Introduction to Caving class with Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventure (CMRCA) ended up being a lot more rappelling and scaling up ropes and a lot less crawling through holes than we expected. It was an unforgettable experience and the cave was an amazing natural phenomenon to behold. We met the team at CMRCA's office in the southeast corner of Old City where they fitted our gear and we filled out some short paperwork. The drive from the office out to Crazy Horse Buttress was about an hour filled with lovely...

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Oct 08 2014

Flight of the Gibbon: Zipline Through the Jungle in Thailand

If you have ever visited Chiang Mai, you've probably seen the brochures and banners promoting the zipline company Flight of the Gibbon around Old City, on tuk-tuks and in Cafes. We knew we needed to give this popular tourist activity a try, and we were not disappointed. We were pretty excited to fly through the jungle and spend a day eye-to-eye with the treetops of Thailand. Flight of the Gibbon picked us up from our apartment and drove us in a van with other adventurers about 45 minutes to the zipline...

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Oct 02 2014

How to Extend Your Thai Tourist Visa in Chiang Mai

We previously wrote about how to get a Thai tourist visa and, with a multiple-entry visa, how to extend each entry. This time, we will go more in depth on the extension process which can be used to extend any 60-day entry for another 30 days. We have triple-entry tourist visas and we just extended our first entry (valid 60 days) for another 30 days (giving us 90 total days on our first entry). The extension is added to the end of your entry period, so you don’t have to go the...

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Sep 29 2014

Volunteering in a Hilltribe Village with Amigo Vision Thailand

Recently we had the amazing opportunity to volunteer with Amigo Vision Thailand, providing free eye exams and glasses to schoolchildren in a Karion hilltribe village in Northern Thailand. Our experience brought us outside the city to a place where no one spoke English and introduced us to a wonderful group of like-minded fellow travelers and expats. Our trip was a unique one, spurred by grassroots efforts, word of mouth and chance meetings of people who came together to support a common cause. One night while eating at Mammary Delicious restaurant, we...

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Sep 23 2014

Basil Cookery School: The Thai Home Cooking Experience

We can’t rave enough about Thai food. We loved it at home in the States and we have tried so many new things here in Thailand that have only made us like it more. While it is easier and usually less expensive to run out and grab dinner every night, we are still excited to learn to cook for ourselves so we can share authentic Thai food with our friends. Our second Thai cooking class was with Basil Thai Cooking School in Chiang Mai. After our host, Apple, picked us up...

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Sep 18 2014

Asia Scenic Thai Cooking Class: Cooking on an Organic Farm

One of the main draws of traveling to Thailand is the amazing food. What better way to take that experience home than to learn how to cook it yourself. Chiang Mai offers lots of opportunities to take a Thai cooking class and we decided to do our first course with Asia Scenic Thai Cooking School. We were excited about their philosophy of sustainable tourism and their classes offered on their organic farm. The owner and one of the class instructors, Gayray (or Gay for short), has traveled the world learning about...

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Sep 13 2014

Elephant Nature Park: Chiang Mai

Long before we decided to travel to Chiang Mai, we had a strong desire to see and interact with elephants and always knew we wanted to do it in a responsible manner. Wildlife tourism is something that should always be approached with skepticism and plenty of caution. Elephants, especially, are mistreated in Thailand. Elephants in Thailand Historically, elephants in Thailand were used in the logging industry. When the Thai government banned all logging in protected areas in 1989, thousands of elephants were left homeless. Mahouts, the elephant handlers, resorted to using their...

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Sep 02 2014

How to find an apartment in Chiang Mai

When we moved to Chiang Mai, we knew that we wanted to rent an apartment for 3-6 months. After living in a small, old apartment in D.C., we also knew we didn’t want 75 layers of lead-based paint on the walls, nor did we want to live on the fourth floor without an elevator. We needed a furnished apartment, too, and we wanted to be close to the Old City. So we were faced with the question of how to find an apartment in Chiang Mai. After asking around, we learned...

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