Monday, January 14

Since late September I have spent whole days and entire evenings on the net planning ‘our first ever holiday as a family’. I started when my brother was here, we mapped out a route together, which changed a few times before I finally settled on one that I thought would suit us. I’ll never forget the look on his friends face when, whilst looking at flight routes I muttered, “at this rate we’ll forget to pick Skye up from school at midday…” We both glanced at the clock, it was 12.20.

Carlo has a whole lot of holiday leave saved up and was given permission to take it all in one go, and Skye won’t be missing out on anything important in kindergarten, in fact she’ll probably learn more travelling around with us (especially with all the ‘learn to read and write books that I have bought to take along). So we decided to spend a month travelling abroad, cushioned between some family time in the UK.

I wanted us to go somewhere that we had never been to before, somewhere that we could explore together as a family. So we ruled out the US, Caribbean, and the rest of Europe. We nearly decided to go to South Africa and stay with my godfather in Jo’berg before exploring the rest of the country. This was actually a big family plan that was supposed to take place last year, with my parents, brothers but the unexpected happened and without Mum the plan fizzled out.

Over the last few years many Positanese have started to spend their winters in Thailand. Nearly everyone we know has been there and loved it so naturally we became curious.
“But, it’ll be full of Positanese!” I protested. “We’ll have nothing new to tell everyone because they’ve all been there and done it before us!”
“I think it’d be fun, bumping into all sorts of neighbours on faraway beaches!” Carlo was more enthusiastic than me. “Think of it this way; if we get Thailand out of the way, then next time we can go somewhere the others haven’t been.”

So I started looking at flights to Thailand, but they were very expensive if leaving from Italy and not much cheaper from the UK. I got my atlas out and started feeding city names into various airline websites. Finally I had a plan. I booked the flights and started looking for places to stay, then how to get from the airports to the hotels, then what to see, what to do, where to go and how to get there. And how to move on to the next destination, and how much it would all cost. I think I did pretty well.

I’ve got the first 10 days organised.
We're flying to Hong Kong first. After a few days there we move on to Bangkok. Then a few days in Phuket and onto Krabi where we’ll stay for a while before moving on southwards through Thailand and Malaysia until we reach our final destination, Singapore. It’s the Malaysia bit that is bothering me. I am trying to narrow it down to 2 or 3 different places to visit in Malaysia. Should we choose Penang or Langkawi? The Cameron Highlands or Perinthian Besar? Visit the Tioman Islands before hopefully meeting up with family friends in Kuala Lumpar? Who knows where we'll end up?


  1. Wow! I was waiting to hear where you're going! You say that I'm adventurous - it sounds awesome! It's high on my list.

    Unfortunately I've never been there so I don't have any good suggestions for you. :(

  2. I'm SO excited to finally find out where the "explorers" are going. HOW FUN! This will be such a great adventure.

    Have a WONDERFUL time. Can't wait to hear all about it and see photos.

  3. Hi,

    From someone here in Singapore, I would like to suggest;

    > Penang. You can have the beach as well as the quaint town to explore.

    > Perhentian Besar and Tioman Island are similar (to me) both have beautiful beaches. If I’m not mistaken, the ferry ride from mainland to Tioman Island is much longer than ferry ride from the mainland to Perhentian Besar.

    And the wonderful thing about Perhentian Besar is, it has fewer tourists.

    Enjoy your holiday :)

    Ohh, when in Singapore, I highly recommended the Night Safari.

  4. I was in KL on Friday. Have fun. Make sure you ride the elephants. The word they say to tip you in the water is "kill"!

  5. You're going to love that! That's great that you will see Hong Kong and Singapore as well, it will be quite the contrast! And be sure to check out al the shopping in Hong Kong - from the night market to the malls - and don't forget the Ladies Market!! They won't let you try on, but you can buy for cheap!! The malls have some really cute kid's stuff, for Poppy, too!

    And yes, the night Safari!! I have never been, in all my times to SIngapore. Maybe this year, I'll get the day off work when the ship is there!

    Looking forward to the pics and your perspective!

  6. l had an uncanny feeling your were going to Asia. l think you will all have a great time. The furthest l have gotten in Thailand was a long stop over in Bangkok and an over night stay in Hong Kong a couple of times so lm looking forward to hearing all about it!

  7. Here is a native Malaysian... ask him! This is his blog
    I know, I spend too much time reading... this is what happens in between caretaking a 97-y.o. mother and pretty much being unable to leave town. Have a great trip yourself!

  8. Have a wonderful time Nicki. I must admit that I've never been to Thailand despite living so close to South East Asia. I always seem to just change planes there on my way to Europe. Everyone that I know who has visited sayd that it is fantastic! Give Poppy a big kiss from me and above all have a great holiday! I look forward to hearing all about it. xxxx

  9. You are right about Poppy learning more on your trip than in school. Have a great time.

  10. What an amazing trip! If Poppy can't go, I will be your daughter! ;-)

    Can't wait to hear about it. When do you leave? Did I miss that?

  11. i lived in's a fun place if you love to eat! the food is fabulous. email me if you want some tips.

  12. Have wonderful trip, sounds exciting. xxxooo

  13. I use my phone take pictures too. I always have it on me so why not.

  14. what an exotic vacation you have planned. i had no idea that thailand was a popular winter destination for positanese.

    i've always wanted to lay on a thai beach. hope you guys have a blast!

  15. Hi Nik - Great blog. I live in Malaysia and travel frequently other parts of southeast Asia. For beach holiday in Thailand, I would suggest Krabi instead of Phuket (certain areas in Phuket are suitable of children). In Malaysia, Penang is great for a good mix of culture and beach. But the beach in on the eastcoast is heavenly. Shopping is good in Bangkok & Kuala Lumpur. You should also consider Chiang Mai, northern Thailand. Good place for family vacation. Food is always good in this part of the world. Spicy no doubt. If you need to verify any information, just leave a message here.


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