Thailand! The country with some of the most beautiful islands, untouched nature, sandy beaches, turquoise water, breathtaking views and many more adventures. Thailand! Sounds exotic, vintage, buoyant, one of a kind. Everyone somehow has that one person that they know who has been to Thailand or who will go very soon or at least you read an article or two in one of the travel blogs that pops out on your dashboard, or maybe simply you saw a photo from one of the very popular destinations, but just didn’t know that it was from Thailand. In my case, I know that a few of my friends went to Thailand on holiday, my middle-school teacher moved there many years ago, one of my friends from university also moved and I have been hearing the experiences of the people about Thailand whom I host via Couch Surfing. ( by the way how many times did I write Thailand? 🙂 if you didn’t go there yet, maybe this article is a sign for you 😉 )
You may expect to hear about Phuket or Koh Phi Phi or many more famous sights in this article. However, I’m going to tell you about one of the less known places of Thailand, yet also very important. If you are a real traveler, you might know what I think about ”discovering” the places where not so many others go. It makes you understand the importance of being away from the crowds, you appreciate more what you see/have or want to explore more, when it comes to the less or non publicized spots, because all the places deserve to be discovered. You may never know what you will learn from your trips to “hidden corners” of the world, and probably it is one of the best ways to ”be in the know”.
Leaving my home in Fethiye in November (2015), it took me three days getting to Nakhon Si Thammarat where my friend, Pelin lives. It has been almost five years that we didn’t see each other since university days and it was even thrilling to think of meeting her first time in years and in Thailand, I was chuffed to bits.
When we met, we talked for hours about our university days and the years we didn’t see each other. We didn’t even noticed the time passed so quickly. Fortunately, we had enough time to fulfill our longing and we took it easy to go hither and yon.
Thanks to the technology we have today, ”out of side, out of mind” is not always a valid expression, especially for like-minded. However spending time face to face is another value that no other application could give you.
Pushing aside the details of our joyful companion years after, I would like to write about Nakhon Si Thammarat . It was my first time in south East Asia and I directly arrived in NST. From 7/11 shops to the imported products, the narrow streets with full of cables on the electric poles, it reminded me of my days in Japan.
When I flew from Bangkok to (south) NST, the green view and the islands in Thai Sea that I saw were beyond praise and nothing like what I had seen until that day. First twenty days rain didn’t stop at all. Yet as a rain lover, I didn’t complain at all. On the contrary, I was enchanted with the sound of it, while sitting at patio with a lovely cup of coffee.
As well as there are many people who prefer Thailand for its countless, most famous beaches and vivacious islands, there are also those who prefer the virgin nature and the less recognized counties. Nakhon Si Thammarat fits very well to the second description. There are many spots to discover, parks to catch your breath, cozy cafes to chill out with ice-coffee and restaurants to enjoy the local cuisine, it is nearly impossible to get bored in this city and you will feel the real Thai Spirit to the cells, where the locals are so generous to give you a big smiling face and making an effort to help you even if they don’t know much English.
A very well known place not to miss is Wat Phra Mahathat Worawiha,n which is said to be the most famoust temple in southern Thailand. It contains quite many statues of Buddha and many smaller chedi ( buddhist stupa) in the main garden around the highest chedi. There is also one small temple museum in which you can see many items from the history of the city.
Besides the wide temple area, City Wall is another attraction to walk around which is almost one thousand year old. It is located in the heart of the city, within the public park where you can see many locals doing their evening exercise, with the sunset and various street vendor are set up around park. Moreover, within the same area, not so far, City Pillar Shrine elegantly catches your eyes with its snow-white form. Last but not least, National Museum that contains many precious pieces is worth to visit.
Nakhon Si Thammarat has a very long coast to Thai Sea and many adorable ( fishing) towns and beaches along the coast, which may cause you lose yourselves taking another path on the actual destination. Khanom has been my favourite. We stayed at Sea Breeze House at seafront, where the waves of the ocean made me have a sound sleep and we had an adventurous turn to Nakhon Si Thammarat which is about 85 km away, on motorbike under a heavy rain.
I can not finish without mentioning about our stay at Khao Men Resort, where we arrived after a very tasty road trip again on motorbike. Waterfalls in the depth of the woods, palm trees at every length along the road, the shadow play of the thick rubber trees, cleanest air in our lungs, I was simply captivated. If you happen to pass by Nakhon Si Thammarat, I strongly recommend Khao Men, you will not regret or forget the amazing view and the nature.
Time passed quickly and I didn’t even understand when my time was up. As they say, ”when you enjoy utmost, time perception is lost”. I found myself at Railway Station where Pelin came to farewell me to Bangkok. She was so kind to take me everywhere even when she was so tired after work. First time in my life I felt the necessity of being able to drive a vehicle ( at least a motorbike ) 🙂 because we rode to many places in the area and I was the one who was sitting at the back all that time.
+Where have you been in Thailand?
– Nakhon Si Thammarat.
– Nakhon Si Thammarat.