Goodbye to Thailand (in more ways than one?)

Goodbye to Thailand (in more ways than one?)

Our last night in Thailand took us to the border town of Hat Yai. This is Thailand’s fourth largest city and is very popular with Malaysians due to it’s close proximity to the border.

We left Koh Samui at 8:00 am and got the 9:00 am ferry back to the mainland. We then had a rather uneventful coach trip and arrived at Hat Yai at around 4:30 pm. Unfortunately, the nice weather didn’t follow us from Koh Samui and it started pouring down shortly after we arrived. This part of Thailand is renowned for bad weather at this time of the year – just a couple of weeks earlier part of the city was under a couple of metres of water!

Because of the bad weather and the long day we just went for a quick walk around and got some dinner and then had an early night as we were heading off to Malaysia at 7:30 the next morning.

This brings us to the end of our time in Thailand! Not only have we really enjoyed our time here but we have confirmed many cliches that you may have heard about the country. I can confirm the beaches are beautiful and covered in white, fluffy sand, the Bangkok nightlife is mad and the red light district full of middle aged, grey haired men all over young ladies and ladyboys really does exist! (And for those of you wondering, Rich can confirm that yes, it can sometimes be quite tricky to tell the difference!)

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Thailand is one of those places that grabs you and we found that the longer we stayed the less we wanted to leave. The north of the country is green and mountainous, with amazing scenery and fantastic food – further south the landscape starts to flatten out and the taste of the food changes but is still nice. The people are friendly and helpful, the roads are smooth and in good condition, the prices are cheap, the beer is good and the country is steeped in interesting history.

Having said all that it just didn’t ‘wow’ us like it’s neighbours (Laos and Vietnam in particular). For years Thailand’s main industry has been tourism and rightly so, it’s all in all a fantastic place and does exactly what it says on the tin. However, we’ve been fortunate enough to go to other countries in South East Asia and we’ve got to say, we’ve tasted better food and seen better beaches in Vietnam and Cambodia; the scenery in Laos is spectacular and people there are truly amazing. Laos also beats Thailand for nightlife – Vang Vieng comes to mind here!

Maybe these countries seem better because you just don’t expect all of this as you do in Thailand or maybe it’s time for Thailand to move aside and let one of it’s neighbours shine?


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