Friday, 14 October 2016

Review of Sparrow Bar

Bang Niang is a growing centre for wining and dining. In recent years the area has developed a bit of nightlife. One great example of this is Sparrow Bar. Since its opening in 2013 the restaurant and bar has been attracting plenty of custom thanks to its friendly atmosphere, live music and good food.

Sparrow Bar is found on the main Bang Niang drag, about 100 metres down the road from the 7-11. It is run by Jack and his Thai partner. Apparently if you are a foreigner in Thailand with the name 'Jack' it is almost inevitable that you are going to be named after the Disney pirate Jack Sparrow. It looks like Jack has turned an annoyance into a positive by opening the 'Sparrow Bar'.

Naturally it is a pirate themed bar. It has a pool table and a large indoor stage. Jack is something like a celebrity back in his home country of Holland for his music. He loves banging drums. He has taken this passion for music and set up a house band that plays every night. Their remit is to do 50% Thai songs and 50% English lyric songs.

The bar serves a range of spirits, beers, wines and cocktails. They also have a  small  menu that includes both Thai food, more traditional pub grub and Dutch food. The bar and restaurant are ably worked by a collection of friendly staff.

Jack is keen to promote environmental issues. They have hosted awareness events connected to diving. Recently he has helped raise money for shark preservation - not something a pirate would normally do. More to the point, Jack and Son are keen to be part of the Khao Lak community and work with those looking to give a little back to the paradise location.


Saturday, 5 March 2016

How to Get from Khao Lak to Pattaya by Road

For those planning on doing a tour of Thailand it is often useful to do some research into travel routes. The Khao Lak to Pattaya route is a little more difficult than others in Thailand as the 2 destinations are not joined by rail links or tourist bus links.

The journey from Khao Lak to Pattaya by road takes about 18 hours. The distance is 560 Km. It takes about 2 hours in a vehicle to get to Phuket and then on another vehicle it takes 16 hours to make it to Pattaya. Currently there is only 1 journey that can be booked online in advance.

Use this link to study travel details and book online

This route involves taking a taxi with PGS either in a 3 seat Toyota Camry or 9 seat Toyota Commuter. You can leave at your convenience but you have to arrive at Phuket Number 2 Bus Terminal before 17.00. At 17.00 Pattaya Sawadee Tour bus departs for Pattaya. It arrives the following morning in Pattaya at 8.50.

The PGS taxi link in the 3 seater vehicle is about 400 Thai Baht more expensive than taking the mini bus 9 seater option.

As of February 2016 the journey price is either 3,198 Thai Baht or 3,598 Thai Baht.

Map Showing Location of Phuket Bus Terminal 2

On Arrival

The Pattaya Sawasdee Tour bus disembarks passengers at its depot at Pattaya Sai 3 Alley, just off North Pattaya Road which is one of the main thoroughfares of the city. See the map below.

We recommend booking Pattaya accommodation in advance as you are going to be tired after a night on a bus and probably in no mood for getting round the city looking for suitable hotel.

By Air

If time is more an issue than cost than of course the quickest way to get from Khao Lak to Pattaya is to get an airplane from Phuket to Bangkok and then minibus or taxi from Bangkok to Pattaya. Bangkok Airways has 1 flight a day direct from Phuket to Pattaya that takes 1 hour 40 minutes.

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Parisia Guesthouse

One of the better budget options in Bang Niang Village is Parisia Guesthouse. It is a traditional Thai style guesthouse that is great value for money and has friendly helpful staff.

For some people the phrase 'guesthouse' is a bit confusing. What is a 'guesthouse' and how is it different to a budget hotel? Well the answer to that is that a guesthouse is typically a small hotel with only 10 or so rooms. Moreover, the owner usually lives and runs the guesthouse. This means guesthouses are normally well maintained. Moreover, they are smaller and more friendly places where you can plenty of chances to chat to the staff and family as well as the other guests.

In contrast budget hotels normally try and pack as many people in as possible. They are big and often a bit impersonal. Furthermore, budget hotels are normally not managed by the owner. This means the staff do not have a vested interest in the business and the cleaners have no one checking the quality of their work.

And of course the best thing about guesthouses is that they are cheaper than hotels and often comparable in price to hostels.

The Parisia Guesthouse is one of the best guesthouses in Khao Lak. It has just 5 rooms. It has a small restaurant downstairs with an attached bar. The guesthouse offers free wifi internet. The rooms are clean and comfortable. They have air-con, hot water, en suite bathroom and balcony. All rooms also have a TV and a fridge.

The rooms are in neutral tones and spacious. They are not going to win any prizes for interior design but that is what guesthouses should be - comfortable and practical.

Prices for Parisia Guesthouse start at 750 Thai Baht a night.

The guesthouse is located near the Tsunami Memorial and just a few minutes away from the beach.

Address: 57/8 Moo 5, Bang Niang Beach, Phang Nga, Bang Niang Beach, 82190 Khao Lak, Thailand