Thailand Opening

Effective from 1 July 2022, Thailand ends the Thailand Pass registration and a health insurance of 10,000USD for foregin visitors. Both requirements were initially removed for Thai nationals from 1 June, 2022. The mandatory facemask is also lifted.

At the point of entry into Thailand, travellers will only need to show proof of either a certificate of vaccination or a negative RT-PCR or professional ATK test result within 72 hours of travel.

Updated 5 July 2022

Thailand Covid-19 update

From 1 July, 2022, foreign nationals are only required to show proof of either a certificate of vaccination or a negative RT-PCR or professional ATK test result within 72 hours of travel. These can be in a print or digital format. Random checks will be made on arrivals at Thailand’s international airports or land border checkpoints (in 22 provinces). Unvaccinated/not fully vaccinated travellers who are unable to show proof of a pre-arrival negative test will be required to undergo a professional ATK test at the point of entry.

Starting 1 June 2022, Thai nationals (Thai passport holders) are no longer required to register on Thailand Pass and may enter Thailand without quarantine or COVID-19 tests upon arrival. However, they must bring either their certificate of vaccination or, if unvaccinated / not fully vaccinated, a COVID-19 RT-PCR or Professional ATK test result issued within 72 hours before departure

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Katathong, hidden pearl of Thailand
Written by JUHA-MATTI VUORINEN Have you heard about Katathong Golf Resort in Phang-nga? It is a relatively new golf resort that not many people have heard about.  “I hadn’t heard about it until recently.  It was a coincidence that I ended up here at Katathong Golf Resort. I was at a meeting in Hua Hin on Saturday where I mentioned that I was going to drive to Phuket on Sunday. At the same table sat a Thai man who asked why I wouldn’t leave a little earlier and visit a resort in Phangnga that he had been setting up five years ago”, says Juha-Matti Vuorinen, a pro golfer in Thailand. Katathong Golf Resort is located in Phanga province about 1-hour drive from Phuket and about 40 km away from Khao Lak. The course is literally “hidden” in a valley surrounded by mountains. Tranquility and away from the hustle and bustle is probably close to how to describe this course. It offers mountain views from every part of the course. The course includes 18 holes, a range, two putt and chipping green, and a training bunker. “Katathong Golf is one of the most interesting courses, especially its layout, I have ever played in Thailand. Each fairway has its own character and it feels like I have never played once”, says Vuorinen. Most holes follow the natural contours of the land. Fairways are not long, but very narrow. The par-3’s holes are all up-and-down and offer significant changes. Greens are for the most part flat. There are several fairways that are played steep downhill. The course is classified as Championship level and is challenging, but still playable for those who have less experience.  Resourceful and reliable caddy Caddy praised my game a lot after the third fairway: “I’ve never seen anyone play so well.” Suddenly, my back straightened. I did par-par-bogey, and I felt like I was Rory. I found out later that I was his second client, as he had started only a few days ago. The caddy training deserves a special mention, as he was resourceful and good at his job, sharing lots of information about the fairways and knowing all the rules of golf – I tested him on purpose. All of this thanks to the good caddie training at the course. All caddies need to undergo a two-week training that ends with an exam Amazing breakfast The food at the resort was excellent (breakfast, lunch, dinner). Adjacent to the clubhouse is a 75-room hotel that has been officially rated four stars but is fully equivalent in quality to a five-star hotel.  Rooms are available in five categories (superior, deluxe, suite, family suite and bungalow). The resort’s internet worked perfectly, so distant working can be easily combined while on holiday. This resort is definitely worth joining for your next vacation if you plan to be in Khao Lak or Phuket. At its best, it’s worth staying a few nights and playing a few rounds in the tranquil settings before heading back to the busy life in town. The staff deserves special mention for their friendliness, helpfulness and their English language skills. I am sure this resort will still gain great popularity as the word spreads and the situation in the world improves! Contact information Juha-Matti “Juhis” Vuorinen is a golf teacher and progolfer. He lives half of the year in Thailand and the second half in Finland. He provides golf services and tours in Thailand.  Juha-Matti ”Jimmie” Vuorinen Golf Professional +66928086911 (thai) +358443026196 (fin) juhamatti_vuorinen@hotmail.com LINE,WhatsApp,iMessage,FaceTime,Messenger  FB: GOLF Juha-Matti Vuorinen IG: juhamattiv
7 best things to do in Khao Lak
Khao Lak, just about an hour drive north of Phuket, is located in Phang Nga province. The region is known for its laid back and family-friendly atmosphere. Many come here to relax, recharge energy. It is an excellent base to explore the beauty of the Andaman Sea. There are no less than 3 national parks and the surrounding hills that sweep down to the long stretching coastline. Khao lak is an oasis for relaxing. Between it’s gorgeous laid back beaches, fantastic accommodation options, low-key restaurants, and fun activities, there is a little bit of everything in Khao Lak. We reveal our seven secret things to do in Khao Lak you should not miss. 1. Snorkel and relax at the deserted Na Yak Cape Beach Although many people automatically head straight to the Similan Islands or the Surin Islands to explore the underwater world, Khao Na Yak is the closest snorkeling spot to most Khao Lak resorts. The peninsula is controlled and maintained by the Royal Thai Navy and the Khao Lampi Hat Thai Muang National Park. This spot has been kept secret for years and is known among the locals. This is the snorkelling haven with only 30 minutes from Khao Lak. Here you can snorkel in warm, clear blue water and enjoy the rich marine underwater world or  relax on a quiet deserted white sandy beach. 2. Learn to surf Khao Lak is one of Thailand’s premier surfing destinations and has basically been unexplored. The area features gentle beach breaks great for beginners, as well as reef breaks for more experienced surfers. The location is more open to the swells out of the Indian Ocean. This means Khao Lak has slightly bigger waves than Phuket.  The heart of the surf scene in Khao Lak is at Memories Beach Bar at the northern end of the gently sloping sandy Khuk Khak Beach. Waves here break out at the back, then roll in a long way as gentle white waves perfect for beginners trying to learn the popup. Fairly often you can get great conditions with occasional overhead waves. The wave is normally very good for longboards, but often has nice fast sections to provide good fun for shortboard riders. The surfing season coincides with the monsoons of late April through early November.  Check your surf weather here. 3. Explore beautiful beaches  Khao Lak is a home to many beautiful beaches. There are lots of options for beach exploration in this part of Thailand.  Nang Thong Beach is a popular spot due to its location. Located within the main shopping, dining and nightlife area. It is ideal for those who want to stay within walking distance and modern day comforts. Bang Niang Beach is in close competition with good accommodation facilities and restaurants popping up. For those who wish for a hideaway and escape from the hustle and bustle, Bang Sak Beach and Pak Weep Beach are your option. It is tranquil, suitable for book reading and swimming or strolling along the beach and enjoying the sunset. 4. Hike to Ton Chong Fah Waterfall (Fitness level: Easy-Moderate) Chong Fah Waterfall is a part of Khao Lak-Lam Ru National Park and about 9 km from Khao Lak. The waterfall contains 5 different levels and spills down a series of rocks into a large pool. Between the entrance of the park and the waterfall, the hike is relatively easy. Take a dip into the water for refreshing. On the right side of the waterfall, there is a small, steep and quite slippery track that leads you to the different levels. A wonderful spot for a picnic lunch, the waterfall allows you to appreciate the beauty and tranquillity of wild Thailand. 5. Chill out during bamboo rafting at Kiang-Koo Waterfall    Enjoy bamboo rafting around Kiang- Koo waterfall. Located in Thaimuang district, around 20 minutes drive from Khao Lak. Enjoy the sights and sounds of the waterfall as well as the green scenery along the trail while rafting down a stream. Swim in a cool clear water to refresh. You can also visit an educational Sea Turtle Conservation Center, located inside the Navy Base- This project is to save and increase the number of sea turtles in the region. 6. Visit the International Tsunami Memorials Khao Lak was hit hard by the tsunami in 2004 and has since bounced back remarkably. Take a daytrip to the museum to reflect on the momentous impact the 2004 had on the Khao Lak area through the documented stories of locals. Do not expect a full-blown museum with lots of memorabilia and exhibits.  A visit here is important to understand what the locals in Khao Lak went through as nearly all of them had family and friends who were killed or displaced during the tsunami. If planning on visiting, there is the Baan Nam Khem tsunami memorial park as well as another memorial site where you can see a large Police patrol boat which was carried 1 km in-land. The boat was left there and has been since. 7. Visit the Turtles in Khao Lak The Royal Navy Third Fleet Sea Turtle Nursery is worth your visit. Just about 15 minutes outside Khao Lak, here you can learn about these fascinating creatures. Turtles lay their eggs between October and March. Once the turtles have laid eggs on the beach, the staffs will put a fence around them and guard for 24 hours from any predators. When the eggs are hatched, the turtles are brought to the center and being looked after until they are released back to the wild when they are about 8 months old. The center is not only a nursery for baby turtles, it is also a place of rehabilitation for sick and injured turtles. More than 500 green turtles are released from this center every year during the Turtle Release Festival held in the beginning of March. There are tours that offer a dual experience. You can combine the bamboo rafting with a visit...
Thailand’s 5 top golf courses
Thailand has gained its repuation as Asia’s most popular golf destination. With a heritage dating back to the 1920s, Thailand is home to some spectacular layouts that have played host to international golf tournaments. You can find golf courses around Thailand with various landscape, from mountain courses in the north to sea view courses in the south. Here is a list of Thailand’s 5 top golf courses around the country. Thailand ticks all the boxes. The beaches are among the best on the planet and the cuisine is irresistible. The urban vibe with bustling bars and restaurants and epic nightlife, the tranquil beautiful nature, rich cultural heritage and splendid golf courses all over the country offer an exhilarating unforgettable travel experience. Here is the list of Thailand’s best golf courses (in no particular order) to help you decide where to play for your next golf holiday in Thailand. Pattaya – Siam Country Club Old Course The Old course at Siam Country Club has hosted many international golf tournaments annually and is home of LPGA Thailand, Honda Classic from 2010 onwards. The course is set in the low hills just a few kilometers from Pattaya. The course is characterized by matured trees, shrubs and plants. It has an out and back layout with many of the golf holes placed strategically near creeks. Long, straight driving is required to negotiate the larger fairway bunker complexes. Hua Hin – Banyan Golf Club Located just about 20 minutes from one of Thailand’s beach destinations, Hua Hin, Banyan is a very playable layout with plenty of water and sand traps. It is a challenging course, but not too tough and not too easy. It provides a good challenge for the seasoned golfers. The course offers spectacular mountain and ocean views from almost all of the holes. The signature 15th hole is a 139 yard par-3 with panoramic ocean views all the way to Singtoh (Tiger) Island in the Gulf of Thailand. Strategically placed water hazards, waste bunkers and sand traps are spread throughout the course. Bangkok – Nikanti Golf Club Situated in Nakhon Pathom province about 1 hour from Bangkok, Nikanti Golf Club is unlike any other in Thailand and indeed the world, designed by a Thai architect Piraporn Namatra of GolfEast, one of Thailand’s premiere golf course design firms. Nikanti is a course with a significant challenge even for professionals, yet par-3 and par-5 hole give golfers many more scoring opportunities than usual. The fairways feature plenty of mounding and elevation changes. Flat lies are rare. Many of the greens are strongly undulated, run fast and are guarded by bunker complexes. Water comes into play on many of the holes. Chiang Mai – Alpine Golf Resort Nestled in a valley between the mountain ranges in Chiang Mai, north of Thailand, Alpine Golf Resort Chiang Mai is a 27-hole golf course. No matter where you are on the course, you are sure to enjoy nature at her best with beautiful lush green forests from the golden teak wood, mahogany and many more. One of many challenges is the island fairway on the par four ninth hole of the A course. Playing over water twice and directly into the prevailing wind makes this hole a challenge. The eleventh hole, a 524-yard par 4, is without a doubt the most difficult on the golf course. Phuket – Red Mountain Golf Club Thrills abound – both in every view and every shot to be played, Red Mountain is now considered Phuket’s most spectacular golf course. Superbly maintained and challenging yet playable, it requires delicate shots with pinpoint accuracy to keep your boll in position. The course is designed to take advantage of a huge variety of landforms and dramatic elevation changes which makes it Phuket’s hilliest course. Golfers face the full range of natures hazards from wind, water, slopes to elevation changes. This is the highest golf course in Phuket and dramatic view can be seen from many points of the golf course. Are you interested in other Thailand golf destinations, here is more extensive tips where to find best golf courses around Thailand. Experience a true golf paradise and enjoy golf retreat in Thailand with tropical weather, great food, friendly people and amazing nature go to Golfdigg.com