During our Thailand travel tour 2006 Marius and me was in Phang Nga in the south of the Kingdom. We stayed at the Thawisuk guest house. The price for a doble room with fan was 150 Thai Baht for two persons. At this Hostel is nothing special, a bed, a window and thats it. But for 150 Thai Baht the Thawisuk is one of the cheapest guest houses in Phang Nga Town and a good address for backpackers and travelers. More accommodations you can find in the Lonely Planet Guide for Thailand or Southeast Asia. We travel here from Phuket by public Bus. The Hostel is just a short walk from the Bus Terminal. The landscapes here in this city in Thailand are dominated by chalk rocks and tight forests. It’s a nice view when the mountains catch the clouds.
Phang Nga City
We come here to visit the Sa Nang Manora Forest Park a bit out of Phang Nga Town. Here you will find a small river who flow slowly thru the jungle. The water pass many small waterfalls and rattan palms. The way threw the Sa Manora Park is a normal jungle way how you can find in many National Parks in Southeast Asia. The entry to the Forest Park was free, we just had to pay for the taxi. The best way to travel here is with a Motorbike because in lowseason its difficult to get a taxi back to Phang Nga Town in Thailand.
Phang Nga Forest Park
From here we traveling to Ranong by public 3th class bus the travel turn took us about five hours. Phang Nga is a nice and quiet city with many untouched nature. I can recommend this town for one or two days stop for traveler and backpacker in Thailand. For more Informations about Hotels, guest houses and Restaurants read your Lonely Planet travel book.
Thailand Hotel booking here.
On the travel tour in 2006 i was staying in Ayuthaya to visit the Historical Park of Thailands old capital. We paid 170 Thai Baht for one double room with fan in the old BJ guesthouse in central Ayuthaya near Tony´s place which offer good meals, drinks and a pool table. We arrived by train from Bangkok. The travel turn took us 2.5 hours and it was 15 Baht per person. The City was from 1350 till 1767 the capital of this country in southeast Asia. After two years war with the burmanese the Royal family fled to Thonburi. The old historical temples and building of the national park are the tourist monopole at Ayuthaya.
Ayuthaya Historical Park
After we checked in we go to the old temples who are surrounded of three rivers. The Mea Nam Lopburi, Mae Nam Pasak and the Mae Nam Chao Phraya formed a natural barrier around the beautiful old buildings. The sunset at the national park of Ayuthaya is beautiful! The temple ruins shine in the red sun of Thailand. The park is easy to reach by foot or taxi. On this evening we was visiting the Wat Suwannawat, Wat Ratburana, Wat Thammikarat and the Wat Mahathat which is close to the Beung Phra Ram lake. The temples are connected by beauties walking streets.
Walking Street in Ayuthaya
When we come back we took a shower at old BJ and than we was going in the city in a pub to drink some Chang beers. Opposite of the Moon Cafe we meet some Australian and Japanese backpacker. We took a taxi to a disco where we made party till the early morning. On the next day we woke up at 2pm at our home stay hotel. On the way to the Ayuthaya historical Park we saw some elephants who share the streets with many cars and scooters. A nice view for two guys on the first big travel tour far away from home.
Elephants in Ayuthaya
Our point of interested was on this day the Wat Mongkhon, Wat Phra Si Sanphet, Wat Lokaya Sutha and the old Royal Palace. After this station we had enough of culture an we gone back to the city for yummie food at Tony’s place.
Historical National Park
The old ruins of Ayuthaya was a highlight of our travel tour at Thailand. I can recommend Thailand’s old capital for all travelers and backpackers in southeast Asia. Ayuthaya isn´t far from BKK. You have many options like train, bus and minibus to reach this amazing city in Thailand. From here we travel by bus to the Kanchanaburi province.
Sunrise at Angkor Wat
In the end of january 2009 Moun and me was traveling from Koh Chang to Siem Reap for see Angkor Wat. The temples of Angkor are the biggest religious building in world and from Koh Chang easy to reach with the minibus. We was starting at 7 o´clock here on the Island. Our first station was Aranya Prathet in Thailand. Here we cross the border to Poipet in the Kingdom of Cambodia. The border was buisy and we need about 2 hour to come into Cambodia. Direct after the duane of Thailand are many casinos and big hotels, many people of Thailand make holiday over here for have moneyplay because on thai side it´s illegal.
Highway in Cambodia
From Poipet we took a taxi to Siem Reap. The turn needs 3 hours thrue Cambodia over sand streets. Compared to other countries in southeast Asia the Kingdom Cambodia is less develloped but everywhere they build, Many projects are supported by states like south Korea or Japan. Wat AngkorIn the late afternoon we arrived our hotel “Bequest Angkor Hotel”. The room had air-con, TV, fridge and hot water for 15 USD. Here in Cambodia rule the dollar, even if you go to a ATM you get the US notes. 1 dollar are around 4000 Cambodian riel. In the morning of the next day we was going with a Tuk Tuk to Angkor Wat for watch the sunrise behind this spectacular Buddhist temple. This Wat are built for King Suryavarman 2th in the 12th century. The entry fee is 20 USD so really expensive for Cambodia but ok for this amazing wat (wat = temple). When the sun was up we gone inside to view the spectacular architectural and the old Buddha statues in the floors of Angkor Wat.
After we took breakfast in a small Khmer restaurant near the temple. The next point on our day plan was Wat Byon which is a Buddhist and Hindu temple. The 54 Gothic towers of Bayon temple are decorate with 216 Avalokitesshvara faces. Bayon are planed from Cambodias legendary King Jayavarman 7th.
For me was the highlight the Ta Prohm temple. This atmospheric ruin at Angkor is famous from the movie Tomb Rider. At the temple of Ta Prohm you can see the might of the jungle. Big vast roots locked like tree muscles the walls of this beautiful monument of Siem Reap.
Wat Ta Prohm
Some years before it was danger to go around Angkor because of the landmines from the Khmer Rouge. But now it´s ok around Angkor, but still here in Cambodia many people lost a leg, a arm or the life from the weapons of Pol Pot´s clique.
Ta Prohm Temple
After 7 hours exploring the Angkor we drove back to the Bequest Angkor Hotel to taka a nap. In the afternoon we walk to a restaurant which we found in the Lonely Planet Cambodia travel guide. The “Butterfly Garden Bar” close to the “Stung Siem Reap” river are nice for a brake for a fresh fruit shake. In the tropical garden here are many butterfly’s under a net. We was sitting under a palmtree next to a pool with koi-fishes. A good place to take a deep breath in this busy city in Cambodia. A bit south of Siem Reap are the floating village of Chong Kneas on the Tonle Sap Lake. We was visit this fisherman village on the 3rd day of our travel tour through Cambodia we took a boot from Siem Reap to the capital Phnom Penh. The boot pass the Tonlé Sap Lake into the Tonle Sap river. After this six hour bootstour through Cambodia we arrived Phnom Penh.
Fisher on Tonle Sap River
The landscapes and the Khmers are nice. We was sitting on the boots roof and watch the people during they take in they nets. Every year the cambodian fishing about 430000 tonnes of freshwater fish out of the Mekong and the Tonle Sap.
Cambodia is beautiful for travellers who want to traveling a less develloped country. My Lonely Planet travelguide was a good choice for this trip. I will come again to Cambodia to visit the sea region and the islands like Koh Kong for scuba diving. The locals invite you, with a smile, to a great country in southeast Asia! Cambodia is easy to travel, many TAT´s offer bus and boot tours to many destinations in Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam. Angkor Wat is amaizing, i can recoment this old monument in Siem Reap to all people who are intresting in magic places and great cultures.