Thursday, December 29, 2016

Explore Khao Yai [ 考艾 ] - Day 1

I read that there are three seasons in Khao Yai and if you wish for a more cooling weather, the best time to visit will be during winter season which is usually from November to Febuary. It is also when most of the farms will be in operation.

According to the driver, January will be much more colder than any other months. The temperature in the day can be in the low 20 degree and night time can be even lower. Meanwhile the dry and hot season will be between March - April and the wet months will be from May till October.

My initial plan was to visit Hua Hin but Khao Yai is a much more beautiful place to visit as recommended by my cousin. I googled for information and managed to plan some activities for the family. There is something for everyone and  this beautiful state has so much to cater for, to satisfy visitors of young and old.

This december holiday was madness again as we planned our trips back to back again ! We spent one week in Malaysia, flew back on the fifth day so that Vera does not get too long a break away from her treatment. We flew off again to Thailand the very next day again from 6th - 14th Dec, of which 6-9th Dec was spent in Khao Yai [考艾].

I missed the sunflower fields in Hokkaido and was pleasantly surprised that there are actually alot of sunflowers blooming in Khao Yai ! About 3 hours away from Bangkok, our driver, Khemika (Ms Neck) picked us up from the airport and drove us to Khao Yai with a lunch stopover at a "Food Court".

Passing by Saraburi Province as we headed to our resort, Neck asked if we wanted to visit this field (smaller) than the one I wanted to go initially. I though why not since it's nearer and we could ave more travelling time. Despite the fact that it's smaller in scale, this sunflower field looked as awesome with the sunflowers heading towards the direction of the sunlight. I feel that the best time to visit is in the morning or between 2pm - 4pm, least the sunflowers would be more upright ?

A selfie stick is always useful when comes to taking family pictures ! Love the sea of sunflowers behind us! 

Caught a bee at work !

The kids could run freely in the field ! Neck's daughter happened to be with us on the trip. We did not mind and infact more than happy to have her around to explore the places with us. She took some really nice pictures for us too !

Photo credit: Pla

Just taking one shot does not do justice. I guarantee you that you will be snapping away like us. A group picture before we left the lovely field.

From the left: Pla and Khemika, us

Our next stop Primo Piazza ! Where you can find the most adorable Alphacas  !

In a Europe look-a-like, rustic and relaxing setting, this place is a must come for photography lovers!

We spent most of the time feeding in the shed. Vera showed no sign of fear towards these gentle alphacas! We were happily feeding them, the donkeys and the sheeps !

Look Mummy !!

First encounter with the donkey

Love this scenary !

 Grazing Alphacas and sheeps got fed too ! The kids and ourselves were totally in love with them !

The vast space to run free and Vera was happily rolling and sliding down the slopes ! Had to take one shot of us without the kids. We had to leave the place reluctantly as according to whwat we have planned. But I swear this is a really nice to bring the kids !

Primo Piazza
Address: 861 Moo 6, Thanarat Road, Tambol Nong Nam Daeng, Pak Chong District, Nakhon Ratchasima 30130

Opening hours:
Fri - Sat: 9am -12pm
Sun - Thurs: 9am - 10pm

Entrance Fee:
100 Baht / USD $2.80 (Adult)    
50 Baht / USD $1.40 (Child)
If you need to contact Khemika, you can watsapp her at:
+66 83 305 5270

Let her know you are recommended to go to her by Piggy Family. Not that I earn a commission from her but because she can communicate in English which makes things so much easier and we personally find her service reliable. We told her to personally drive our friends should they engage her service.

Just incase you have mistaken Neck for a Tour Guide. Nope she is not one. She mainly does Airport Transfers to Hotels or maybe you can check with her on Bangkok City Tour if you need a driver. In Khao Yai, the hotels charge by per destination. Hence, we felt that engaging a driver will be a much better option. Khao Yai is pretty much new to Neck as well but we used GPS to locate certain places we wanted to visit when Neck could not find. Nevertheless, my places of interests were all covered during the 4D3N stay in Khao Yai and Neck drove us back to Bangkok.

If you just want to engage her service in Khao Yai for a day but decided to take another transport back to Bangkok, most likely Neck will not take up the job as it does makes sense that she be driving back an empty vehicle all the way from Khao Yai and it's not worth the time, effort and of course her expenses for petrol back.

Updated on 17 April 2018: I received quite a few similar enquiries. My bad for not jotting it down. I cannot remember exactly how much we paid. But it was between $160 - $180 Sgd per day of 10 hours, not inclusive of attractions entrance fee and meals. I would say both parties give and take on the timing and it is totally up to your own comfort to include Neck during your meal times. It is not compulsory but we thought it was nice to have them dine with us.

Accomodation for the driver is solely their own responsibility. You do not need to cater to their lodging. They will get it settled. =)

We stayed at Thames Valley during our visit.

Stay tuned for the next post on our next adventure in Khao Yai !

Khao Yai Day 2
Khao Yai Day 3 

Thank you for reading and if you would like to stay tune for future updates, do follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram !

Disclaimer: This holiday is a NON SPONSORED post. All expenses are paid through our very own pocket. Just purely documenting down these lovely memories and to be shared to all who are looking into kids friendly places in Thailand!

Monday, December 26, 2016

[Media Invite] Christmas Wonderland 2016

Christmas Wonderland 2016 has transformed the iconic Gardens by the Bay into a festive playground filled with activities for the all ages over the expanded 57,000 square metres event ground. It actually expanded from 35,000 square metres! If you have not visited, Christmas Wonderland will be there for another week till 1st Jan 2017 !

Most of you may have read from other blogs on what's happening. Here's my experience with the family on last friday. What's are the differences from last year's and this?

#1 Better Crowd Control = Overall visitor expereince is enhanced.
I had an easier time to capture pictures this time round as the crowd was relatively so much better than last year without having difficulty to jostle among the crowd. This was done so with ticketed entry into Christmas Wonderland. Tickets are strictly to be purchased online at . Do note that there will be no sale of tickets on-site. As the festive season is drawing near, tickets are priced at $8 Sgd per person.
- A paying adult can bring up to 3 children under 0.9m free of charge.
- A child more than 0.9m would require an enry ticket.
- Tokens for carnival rides and games are to purchase seperately. You can get it at the Token booths.

The Spalliera Castel del Monte is the highlight of Christmas Wonderland ! It is always so beautiful and captivating ! The largest Luminarie ever built in South East Asia, standing at 19.7metre tall and 24 metre wide. It is the highest ever this year ! It lights up at 7pm and Blizzard time starts at 8pm and at hourly interval until 10pm daily. Get ready to experience "snow" in the tropics !

If you would love to enjoy the beautiful sights of the Spalliera Castel del Monte, magestic Supertrees and the Festive Market, go for a meal at the two-storey Glass House by Harry's !

#2 New rides on the Fairgrounds !
Rides start from $6 Sgd, you can choose to enjoy these carnival rides:
Bumper Cars (Seats up to 2 pax) Minimum age: 3 years, Children below 1m to be accompanied by an adult.

Bug Cars , Christmas Train,

Magical Mini Ferries Wheel Minimum height of 0.8m, Children below 0.8m must be accompanied by an adult.

Personally I feel it's a little costly that even the accompanying adult has to pay for the ride. Imagine if the child needs a parent's accompany due to height restriction, it's as good as paying $12 for a ride for three rounds on the Mini Ferries Wheel. Xav found it too kiddish and chose not to go for the ride. Hence, Vera went ahead instead under my accompany.

Her signature wink for now. =)

#3 More Game Stalls! Last year, there were 7, this year there are 11 traditional carnival game stalls to pit your skills against in winning one of the really adorable plushies ! Games start from $4 Sgd.

#4 Double the size for Ice Palace with new activities! Last year, it was a 48 square metre snow playground, this year's 96 square metre!

Ice Palace

Apart from the Ice Skating (Tickets at $18 per person inclusive of skates rental, for a 45 mins). First session starts at 4.30pm. Socks and gloves are available for purchase else do bring your own pair during your visit.

The new addition. - 25 metre long Ice Slide. Tickets at $4 Sgd per pax. From where I viewed, it went really fast!! Nice for you if you like to have a feel of thrill!  Children below 0.9m must be accompanied by one adult.

Note: To view website for full session timings, do pre-book your preferred sessions to aavoid disappointment.

There is also a Snow Playground, priced at $16 Sgd per child, from 2 to 12 years of age for a 20 mins session. Snow boots from size 26 to 36 (Euro sizes) are available for rental.

You can also savour signature pastries from the French patisserie PAUL’s in an alpine house setting inside the Ice Palace at the same time overseeing the skate ring!

#5 Hi-5 Funtastic House (located at the Meadow), it has 3 distinct areas within it's tentage. Your little Hi-5 fans would love this ! Ticket is at $24 Sgd for one child + one accompanying adult not inclusive of the entry tickets $8 Sgd into Christmas Wonderland Sg.

They could groove along with their favourite Hi-5 hits together with a facilitator,

dress themselves up with the adorable Hi-5 costumes props and take a picture in them! They get to bring home a polaroid and a balloon as momentos.

Or Go WILD, just like Xav when he first saw the Hi-5 castle obstacles course, Hi-5 Tumble house which is a bouncy castle as well as Hi-5 Super slider slide. Here's my tour in it. It's a pity that tickets for the later 2 sessions were all fully taken for that evening. I wish we could have return and take more pictures of the kids while they continue their fun in the Hi-5 Funtastic House.

Furthermore, there are 27 unique craft and food outlets right at the European- Style Festive Market for you to shop and bring back one-of-a kind gifts. Christmas is over I know but that does not mean you can't get a gift !

For more details, do check out
Facebook: Christmas Wonderland Singapore
Instagram: @ChristmasWonderlandSG

Should you decide to visit, I would advise you to bring along an unbrella or a poncho just incase the wet weather persists. I feel that at least you can still walk around without getting stuck at any shelters. Have fun and take lots of photos ! And also if you would want more time to shop around, do visit earlier!

From our family to yours: Merry and Blessed Christmas, Peeps !

Thank you for reading and if you would like to stay tune for future updates, do follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram !

Disclaimer: This is a media invitation by Blue Sky Events, no money compensation is involved and all opinions are of my own. Thank you for having us !
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