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The Southern Region of Thailand

Krabi

Krabi

Phang Nga

Phang Nga

Phuket

Phuket

The Southern Region of Thailand is truly a paradise on earth. With The Andaman Sea on one side and The Gulf of Thailand on the other, the region has some of the most beautiful beaches and islands in the world. All 14 provinces include Chumporn, Ranong, Suratthani, Phang-Nga, Phuket, Krabi, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Trang, Phattalung, Songkhia, Satun, Pattania, Yala, and Narathiwat 

The gorgeous islands of the South, with the warm breeze blowing through the coconut leaves and crystal clear water and powdery white sand, have always drawn tourists from all over the world. Some of the more familiar ones include Ko Samui, Ko Tao and Ko Nangyuan on The Gulf of Thailand side and Phuket, Krabi, Ko Phi Phi, Ko Lanta, Moo Ko Surin, and Ko Tarutao on the Andaman side. The best months to visit The Andaman Sea are from November to March, and May to September for The Gulf of Thailand 

Ko Samui, considered a part of Surat Thani, can be reached in 1 hour by plane from Bangkok. This lovely island is ideal for visitors who enjoy partying, dining, and shopping since the place is filled with hotels, international restaurants, and shops. Ko Tao and Ko Nangyuan which can be reached by ferry from Samui Island and Chumporn, has a true island feel to them. Visitors come for the sole purpose of being on the beach, sun bathing, snorkeling and driving. Hiring your own private long tailed boat for 4-5 passengers around the islands for snorkeling can be great fun as well. 

Phuket, the country’s largest and perhaps most visited island of Thailand, has many popular beaches like Patong, Karon, Kata, and Panwa. The whole province is filled with beautiful hotels and international restaurants of all kinds. At night, Patong beach is filled with little shops along the streets. As you stroll by, seaside restaurants display an assortment of freshly grilled sea food that can’t help but make your mouth water. 

Krabi and Ko Lanta also have breathtakingly beautiful beaches where you can find many wonderful 5 star boutique hotels. In Krabi, Railey beach, Ao Nang, and the surrounding areas are also gorgeous paradise, with caves and fun activities such as cliff climbing to try. Apart from the beautiful beaches of Ko Lanta, there are wonderful dive sights nearby as well. 

The famous ‘Ao Maya’ of Phi Phi Island was the setting for Leonardo Dicaprio’s movie, ‘The Beach’ filmed just a few years ago. The beaches there are absolutely gorgeous, truly a paradise on earth. The island has a variety of hotel accommodations, shops and restaurants yet manage to maintain a true sense of island living. Also famous is the ‘Jame Bond Island’ in Pang- Nga, where Roger Moore shot the villain with his golden gun. 

Another seaside province with beautiful islands and unspoiled coral reefs is Trang. Attractions include Ko Libong, Ko Muk, and the fascinating Tham Morakot (Emerald Cave). The entrance to the cave is small with an 80 meter winding path that gets completely dark after a few meters inside. At the end of the tunnel….there is light! and clear emerald green water with powdery beach surrounded by high cliffs. 

Apart from lying in the sun, sipping fresh coconut juice, most visitors never pass up the opportunity to explore the beauty under The South Sea. For the less demanding divers, snorkeling is quite sufficient for inspecting the coral reefs and colorful fishes, not to mention swimming with the sharks in certain areas. For the more serious divers, there are several amazing dive sites around like the ones in Moo Ko Surin. For beginners who wish to explore further, certified dive courses with licenses by PADI can be arranged in the many diving schools around.

Trang

Located approximately 828 kilometers from Bangkok, Trang Province covers an area of 4,941 square kilometers. The province borders on Nakhon Si Thammarat Province to the north, Satun Province and the Indian Ocean (Andaman Sea) to the south, Phatthalung Province to the east and the Indian Ocean and Krabi Province to the west. Trang is considered a magnificent coastal province as it long, beautiful coastline stretches 199 kilometers along the Indian Ocean. In addition, the province has two major rivers flowing through it, the Trang River, which originates in the Khao Luang Mountain Range and Maenam Palian from the Banthat Mountain Range.

Despite the fact that Trang City plays a key role in facilitating trade and communications to Nakhon Si Thammarat, Thailand’s southern commercial hub, Trang is a province less traveled to by tourists. It was only recently that Trang has been poised to establish itself on the international travel map.

Trang has geographical advantages similar to that of Krabi and Phang-Nga. This includes breathtaking islands and astounding beaches along the coast as well as awe-inspiring inland limestone- propped mountains. The province consists of an archipelago in the Andaman Sea with over 46 islands. Of these, 12 are in Amphoe Kantang, 13 in Amphoe Palian and 21 in Amphoe Sikao. The best time to visit Trang is between December and May.

Trang has both mainland beaches and a whole string of offshore islands. For visitors interested in light-adventure activities such as cruising coastal waters, visiting notable sights such as the enchanting Emerald Cave, which is accessible only by water, will prove to be remarkable experience. Additional attractions include the Mu Ko Petra National Park with beaches and islands lapped by the warm waters of the Andaman Sea. Some of the dive sites in the National Park are world-class. There are also wildlife sanctuaries such as Namtok Khao Chong and Khlong Lamchan Park with waterfalls, nature trails and caves. For those looking for a relaxed, tranquil ambience, Trang is a perfect place to unwind amidst stunning scenery.

With an abundance of blissful attractions mixed with cultural heritage, Trang Province is truly an emerging fascinating tourist destination with numerous jungles, mountains and waterfalls.

The City also has numerous attractions. Walking around Trang City, visitors will be amazed at the mixture of Western, Chinese and Thai cultures reflected in the architecture that range from the Sino- Portuguese shop houses to the Chinese temples and shrines. The Pan-Ya House is the local style of houses in Trang, which offers an insight into the architectural heritage of this town. In addition to architectural attractions there are many parks to stroll through and markets to explore. The main two markets in Trang are Ta Klang and Municipal markets.

History of Trang

Trang or Muang Thap Thiang used to be a port engaged in foreign trade. It was the first city where rubber was planted after Phraya Ratsadanupradit Mahison Phakdi brought it from Malaysia in 1899. Since then, rubber has become Souths major commodity and is now considered an important source of income for farmers.

Todays Trang

Trang has a total area of 4,941 square kilometers and is divided into 10 districts (Amphoe) and 1 sub-district (King Amphoe); Amphoe Muang, Amphoe Kantang, Amphoe Huai Yot, Amphoe Yan Ta Khao, Amphoe Palian, Amphoe Sikao, Amphoe Wang Wiset, Amphoe Na Yong, Amphoe Ratsada, and King Amphoe Hat Samran.

The best time to visit Trang

The best time to visit Trang is between December and May. As it is located on the same coastline as Phuket and Krabi Provinces, Trang Province is also influenced by the monsoon. The temperature is generally warm all year round with an average temperature varying from 20 Celsius to 36 Celsius.

In April, the daytime temperature is highest and it is also the hottest period of the year. The rainy season, which is from May to September, has rains and short downpours during the daytime. The monsoon period comes from September to November and then from December onwards the weather generally becomes more pleasant.

 Attractions

Monument of Phraya Rasdanupradit Mahissara Phakdi Located 1 km out of town on the road to Phatthalung, this is the monument of an important ruler of Trang who first initiated the idea of growing rubber plants in Trang. Nearby Kraphang Surin is a broad lagoon where the surroundings are suitable for relaxation.

Khao Chong Wildlife and Nature Education Centre This is located on the Trang-Phatthalung Highway, 20 kms. from town. Walking trails wind through the forest past some streams and waterfalls such as Namtok Ton Yai and Namtok Ton Pliu.

Khlong Lamchan Waterfowl Park Declared non-hunting zone, the area consists of a big reservoir which is home to a large number of teals, mostly found during January to March. The park is located 17 kms. from town along the Trang-Phatthalung route.

Namtok Sai Rung This waterfall, where a rainbow is often seen on a sunny day, can be reached by Route Nos. 404 and 4125. Turn left at Km. 12 and go for another 3 km.

Namtok Phrai Sawan Travel 3 kms. beyond the Sai Rung Waterfall along Highway No 4125 and turn left for another 3 kms. It is a huge waterfall consisting of 3 cascades ideal for picnics and swimming.

Namtok Lam Plok Located at Km. 20-21 of Highway No 4125, the waterfall has more than 6 levels and its power is used for producing electric energy.

Namtok Chong Banphot At Km. 26-27 of Highway No. 4125 turn left and travel for another 3 kms. There are numerable little falls scattered widely in the area, flowing down past limestone and trees.

Namtok Ton Te 7 kms. further on from Namtok Chong Banphot, this waterfall is 300 meters long and can be seen from a distance. It is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Trang.

Namtok Ton Tok is some distance before reaching the Ton Te waterfall.

Ko Sukon this island with a Muslim fishing village is accessible within 40 minutes by boat frm Amphoe Palian. Accommodation is available.

Mu Ko Phetra National Park This national Park covers an area in Amphoe Palian and Amphore Langu (a district in Satun). It consists of a group of a group of islands varying in size; Ko Phetra, Ko Khao Yai, Ko Lanti, Ko Lidi, Ko Bulon, Ko Lao Liang and Ko Perama. Boats can be hired at Kantang Port or at the Pak Bara Pier (in Satun). The peak season starts from December and ends in April. Accommodation is available on Ko Lidi , Ko Bulon, and at Ao Nun on the mainland where the park office is situated.

Hat Chao Mai National Park This park covers the coastal areas in Amphoe Si Kao and several offshore islands. Beautiful beaches in park include Hat Pak Meng, Hat Chang Lang, Hat San, Hat Yao, Hat Yong Ling, and Hat Chao Mai. The park office is situated at Hat Chang Lang 50 kms. from town on the Trang-Si Kao Route. Many offshore islands accessible by boat from the Pak Meng Pier (38 kms. east of Trang) include:

Ko Kradan, one of the most Beautiful islands in Trang is located about 40 minutes by boat from the mainland. Some parts of the island are private rubber and coconur plantations. There are white sandy beaches and coral reefs around the island. Accommodation is available.

Ko Muk and Tham Morakot, the most wonderful island in the park, is located 30 minutes by boat from the Khuantungku Pier. There is a fishing village on its eastern coast. The other areas abound in limestone cliffs which is home to numerous swallows. There is a truly amazing place called Tham Morakot where a lagoon with a small sandy beach is surrounded by high cliffs. The entrance to Tham Morakot is mostly underwater and can be entered only at low tide.

Ko Libong, Trang’s largest island, can be reached within an hour from Amphoe Kantang. As a part of Mu Ko Libong Non-Hunting Area, various species of birds have gathered on the coast, especially at Hat Tup and Laem Chu Hoi. Around the island, there are several beaches, fishing villages as well as many islets. Accommodation is available.

Ko Ngai, a small island under the administration of Krabi province, is a shorter distance from Trang. The boat trip from Pak Meng to Ko Ngai takes about 1 hour. The island contains white sandy beaches and the surroundings abound in marine life. Accommodation is available.

Khao Pina Located in the area of Amphoe Huai Yot, some 47 kms. from Trang, this is a lonely hill standing amidst rice fields. The hill itself is hollow from the foot through the top. At the foot of the hill, there is a temple called “Wat Pina” and caves which house stalagmite and stalactite formations.

Thale Song Hong This attraction with unusual features is located in Tambon Bang Di, 27 kms. from Amphoe Huai Yot. Its a hilly area that stretches out and divides the water surface into two parts.

Tham Khao Kop One of the most wonderful caves in Trang is only 5 kms. from Amphoe Huai Yot and can be visited only during the dry season. The cave is full of fascinating stalactites and stalagmites. Boat trips along a narrow steam winding through the dark cave offer visitors an impressive experience

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