Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Thailand on the Map

World's Best

Thailand On The Map

Thailand on the map

Thinking about heading east for Christmas or the New Year? Rick Jordan rounds up the latest luxury options from north to south

Traveling guide from North To South In Thailand.

By Rick Jordan

Bangkok Guide:
The cultural and commercial centre of Thailand.

Best Asian Spa:

Conde Nast Readers Name the Best Places to Go, Where to Stay, and How to Get There

Conde Nast Readers Name the Best Places to Go, Where to Stay, and How to Get There
By Libby Zay

October 20, 2009

Conducted since 1988, Conde Nast Traveler magazine's Readers' Choice Awards is one of the most esteemed in the industry. Over 25,000 travelers were polled this year, each ranking the best-of-the-best when it comes to places to go, where to stay, and how to get there.

Here is the partial list:

Top 20 Scores
01. (Resort) Four Seasons Tented Camp Golden Triangle, Chiang Rai, 98.9
02. (Hotel) Peninsula House, Dominican Republic, 98.6
03. (Hotel) Blanket Bay, South Island, New Zealand, 98.3
04. (Hotel) La Scalinatella, Capri, 97.3
05. (Resort) King Pacific Lodge, British Columbia, 97.8
06. (Hotel) 21C Museum Hotel, Louisville, Kentucky, 97.2
06. (Hotel) La Colombe d'Or, St-Paul de Vence, France, 97.2
06. (Hotel) Oberoi Udaivilas, Rajasthan, 97.2
06. (Resort) Oberoi Vanyavilas, Rajasthan, 97.2
10. (Resort) Mombo And Little Mobo Camps, Botswana, 97.1
11. (Hotel) Il San Pietro Di Positano, Positano, 97
12. (Hotel) Ritz-Carlton, Tokyo, 96.8
13. (Hotel) The Peninsula, Hong Kong, 96.5
13. (Resort) Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan, Bali, 96.5
15. (Resort) One&Only Palmilla, Los Cabos, 96.4
16. (Hotel) Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinski Dresden, Dresden, 96.3
16. (Hotel) The Saxon, Johannesburg, 96.3
18. (Resort) Sandibe Safari Lodge, Botswana, 96.2
19. (Hotel) Grand Hotel A Villa Fel Trinell, Lake Garda, Italy, 96.1
19. (Hotel) Il Pellicano, Porto Ercole, Tuscany, 96.1

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The 10 Best Retiement Havens.

In Pictures: The 10 Best Retirement Havens
By Richard C. Morais

© Inti St. Clair/Getty Images


Elegant architecture, classical music, trams that run. Vienna offers the highest quality of life on the globe, according to Mercer, and medical insurers say its private clinics are world-class. Salzburg, Graz and Kitzb├╝hel and surrounding hamlets have much to offer those who love mountains and the outdoors. Look at Austria as a lower-cost Switzerland.

Downside: no Mediterranean-style love of life. Icy reserve.


Warmly welcoming of retirees and ideal for seniors on modest budgets, Thailand has everything from bungalows on Phuket's blue lagoons to urban living in bustling Bangkok. Considered Asia's best buy for quality health care at reasonable costs. But the good private hospitals are in Bangkok, so make sure your retreat on the water is within three hours of the capital.

Downside: unpredictable politics.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

World Most Beautiful Sunset. #2

Rudy Maxa, TV personality, travel journalist: Ban Talae Nok, Thailand
© Rudy Maxa

Rudy Maxa, TV personality, travel journalist: Ban Talae Nok, Thailand

Beautiful sunsets aren't just about the sun. Surroundings, and even local history, add to the experience. Rudy Maxa recalls a recent visit to Ban Talae Nok, Thailand, a small community that lost more than 200 villagers in the 2004 tsunami, including 16 schoolchildren who were playing near the beach. Today, a new school stands out of harm's way high on a hill. And every evening at sunset, Maxa says, "a herd of wild water buffalo go down to the deserted beach and pause as if not sure they want to get their feet wet. Then, as the sun threatens to sink into the Andaman Sea, they step gingerly into the small waves and begin wallowing in neck-high water for about 15 minutes. It's one of the most unusual sunsets I've ever seen."

Rudy Maxa is host and executive producer of Rudy Maxa's World, which airs on Travel Channel International.

World 25th Sexiest Beach 2009

Phang Nga Bay, Phuket, Thailand

Thailand runs the gamut in terms of sexiness: There’s everything from romantic seclusion to all-night barely clothed partying. No one can argue with the beauty of the stunningly scenic Phang Nga Bay, where giant limestone formations spike dramatically out of the jade waters. National Park protection has guarded the area against creeping over-development.

SEE ALSO: The World's Best Cruises, Period