Sunday, April 14, 2013

The Lives of Expat Families

Whelp, the day has come all too quickly. My parents fly out this afternoon and head back home. I can't even express how wonderful it was to have them here even for a short while. I feel so blessed to have family that is physically and financially able to come visit us in addition to being able to take time off of work to do so. So while hubs and I recoup (aka sit on the couch eat takeout) from the hectic week and nonstop weekend we just had, I have the lovely Elizabeth from The Bradley's to share about her experiences as an expat family. This is something that hubs and I have talked about doing and we both feel that the benefits of living abroad with a family, as difficult as it may be to be far from immediate family, far outweigh the negatives. Be sure to head over to her blog and show her some love!

Around 4 years ago, our family decided to relocate to Asia. Initially we lived in Paju, not far from Seoul, where my husband taught English in the GEPIK program. We then took a sabbatical in Italy for around six months and decided after much thought we wanted to relocate to Phuket, Thailand. We spent part of our honeymoon on the beautiful, exotic island and had vacationed there with Kaya before we went to Italy. Asian food and culture is something we have always gravitated towards, for many reasons, and its allure has never let us go for more than a few months.

Phuket is Thailand's largest island, and is around the same size as Singapore. Although millions of tourists visit it, parts of the island are less congested and expensive than the main vacation areas ( Patong and Kata being the main haunts). Southern Thailand has some of the most delicious food in the world, whether you eat at a small stand or at a 5 star restaurant. It's relatively cheap to live here too, with houses and townhouses ranging from 250 to 800 dollars a month.

Not too far from Phuket is Khao Lak, our favorite place to vacation ( the second and last photo). During off season, one can find 5 star luxury hotels for around 40 dollars a night! There are also fantastic guest houses and safe hostels in the area. It's quieter than Phuket and with much less to do, but it has stunning foliage and is the perfect place for a family to vacation.

As a family, we value having affordable fruits, vegetables, and healthy dishes within our reach, which is one of the reasons we love living in Thailand. We are able to eat well and have an inexpensive place to live in a safe neighborhood-never too far from the beach!

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