On New Year’s Day we went on a family outing to Khao Yai. I don’t know what it is about this first day of the year, but I always like to visit somewhere outdoors. This is our second New Year in a row visiting Khao Yai, but last year we stayed overnight. I did look around for hotels this time, but everywhere was already booked out. The Thais love this mountainous area and this is their favourite time of year to go there. Many of the Bangkokonians view it as an opportunity to wear their winter clothing even though it isn’t much cooler than Bangkok – even first thing in the morning the temperature was still 25 degrees Celsius.
Life Park Khao Yai
I came across Life Park during an internet search for hotels in Khao Yai. It is right next to the Greenery Hotel not far from the Thanarat Road entrance to Khao Yai National Park. The website for Life Park made the place sound wonderful. I’ve been fooled by false advertisements on the web too many times before so I wasn’t really expecting much. I just hoped that it would be interesting enough to keep a four year old boy happy for a couple of hours.
It was just after 9am when we arrived at Khao Yai and there was already quite a crowd there. I would imagine that around New Year is their busiest time. There was no admission fee but instead you need to buy tickets for whatever rides you wish to go on. We bought a 450 THB ticket that allowed Timmy to go on 5 rides; there are other more expensive tickets that allow for more rides.
The scenery around Life Park is quite pleasant and the area is large enough so that it does not feel crowded. Timmy tried out the ‘brum brum’ mini cars first of all, and he enjoyed that. He got to drive around a little town complete with small houses and roundabouts. He was only allowed ten minutes in the car and this felt an unreasonably short amount of time.
After the cars Timmy tried out the ‘pony pony’. These are a type of rocking horse that can actually move around. They looked quite fun but they weren’t exciting enough for my son – perhaps we should have taken him here before the cars.
Probably the best ride of all was the kiddie bumper boats. Timmy felt a bit nervous at first but he started to really enjoy himself near the end of the ride. The boats move around a pool that is fairly small so I’d imagine that it can be chaotic when it gets busy.
Our final destination at Life Park was Inflatable Land. This is an area full of slides and inflatable structures that kids can crawl up and down on. The nicest thing about this place is that you can stay here as long as you want. The woman behind the counter even said that we could leave and come back again later if we wanted. There are a couple of places for adults to sit and still be able to supervise their kids.
There were many other rides in the park but I didn’t get a chance to try them out. From a look on the faces of other people they were all having fun. Timmy enjoyed his visit to Life Park so we will almost certainly visit again. It is a good place to visit as a day trip from Bangkok.