First-time Thainess: celebrating a rural Songkran


tat-songkran-2014Like any first-time tourist landing in Bangkok in April, I knew a little about the Songkran Festival.  I’d seen the pictures of a nationwide, free-for-all water battle, fought annually by wet warriors daubed in powder and armed with space-age water pistols and huge smiles.  It looked fun.

Desperate to take part, I checked into a hotel on Khao San Road, which I was told was the heart of the Songkran action. Soon I was in the world’s biggest water fight, dripping wet and enjoying a Bacchanalian battle with fun-loving locals. “This,” I said to myself “is Songkran!”  How wrong I was.

The following year I accepted an invitation from my neighbour Jeab, to celebrate the Thai New Year in her sleepy hometown of Phitsanulok. The trip was to show me a whole new side of Songkran – the real Songkran. Read more

Colours of Doi Tung



Colours-of-Doi-Tung 1

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is inviting tourists and visitors of Thailand to enjoy the “Colours of Doi Tung” celebration during this festive season to take in the spectacular scenery of the Doi Tung Development Project, and the pleasant weather in the north of Thailand during the country’s cool season. Read more

Ao Nang , 1of 10 Destinations on the Rise for 2015 by TripAdvisor



Ao Nang, one of the most popular tourist attractions in the southern Thai province of Krabi, was named among the 10 Destinations on the Rise in the World by TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards, released earlier this month.

Mr. Thawatchai Arunyik, TAT Governor said, “Ao Nang is popular for its scenic beach and relaxing ambience, and a selection of nice accommodation, restaurants and bars. The beach is also a transportation hub to enjoy the beautiful nature of nearby islands, including Rai Le Beach, Phra Nang Cave, Ko Poda and Ko Kai. Having been named among the 10 Destinations on the Rise in the World for 2015 by globetrotters will help enhance the attractiveness of this lovely beach destination, and attract more visitors.” Read more

Open Mercure Pattaya Ocean Resort



The newly-built Mercure Pattaya Ocean Resort opens its door earlier this month with 210 guestrooms and suites. The resort is the sixth Mercure hotel in Thailand and the fifth Accor hotel in Pattaya.

Mercure Pattaya Ocean Resort occupies a prime location in North Pattaya with direct access to the beach. Its highlight is the mini water park with a dramatic rock wall, caves and a giant slider, surrounded by tropical gardens for a full relaxation and family fun.

The resort offers three F&B outlets, including all-day dining Molten Restaurant, meeting rooms equipped with the latest audio-visuals and broadband Wi-Fi internet access, a lobby lounge, a fitness centre and a Kid’s Club.

All rooms and public areas of the hotel offers free Wi-Fi internet connection for guests.

To celebrate its opening, Mercure Pattaya Ocean Resort is offering an introductory rate at 1,890 Baht per night from now until March 2015 when booking through or

The rate is subject to service charge and applicable tax.

Via tatnews