Discover the Undiscovered
  • Sawatdee ‘Trang’
  • Date: 2015-09-10

  • Situated at the shoreline of Andaman Sea is Thailand’s most beautiful province Trang, an amalgamation of stunning beaches, jungles, mountains, waterfalls and more Trang has everything a travel enthusiast looks for in his itinerary. The world class heritage and cultural beauty of this thrilling destination make its travellers enthralling for more.
    — Text by Sonika Bohra

     

     

    Thailand is one such country which leaves you with not just memories but stories for lifetime. The Wanderlust inside a travel junkie would never miss a chance to visit this little heaven on earth. Trang province though a little less explored is a one stop destination for all the adventure and nature junkies. The province has abundance of beautiful jungles, beaches, waterfalls and mountains. Analogous in scenery to neighbouring Krabi, Trang features peaceful islands with spectacular karsts formations and pure beaches, making it the hot new destination for those looking for less developed yet beautiful Thai beaches and islands. The waters off Trang have also become a safe haven of the threatened dugong, the “sea cow” cousin of the manatee. Trang city, the provincial capital, is a centuries-old seaport with a multicultural population of Thai, Malay, and Hokkien Chinese residents, a mixture that is best appreciated while dining on the local cuisine or mingling with the locals at a local coffee shop.

     

     

    What to see in Trang
    Rubber
    Since the early 20th century, rubber has been a main product of the Trang region, with plantations everywhere. Trang was in fact the first place in Thailand to start commercial production of this substance, and the industry is certainly still going strong today.

     


    Waterfalls
    If all this history and materialism is too much for you, don’t worry, Trang still has plenty to offer. Two waterfalls particularly stand out as being worth the visit – Namtok Ton Tok and Namtok Ton Te waterfalls. Both of these are excellent for swimming, with Ton Te being the more spectacular of the two.

     


    It cascades down a huge exposed section of granite, down a total drop of 320 metres, to a large pool at the bottom, which when we visited was full of locals having the time of their lives in the beautifully clear and warm water.

     


    Chinese Temples
    With so much of chinese influence, Trang manages to pack in a fair number of Chinese temples around the town, which are easy to walk to. These differ quite a bit from the Thai wats, largely due to the many dragons that adorn them. And I do like a good dragon or two. They’re certainly worth a visit.

     


    The Botanical Garden Skywalk
    Just outside the city, and by the airport, is the Trang botanical garden, where you can find countless types of trees, and in particular palm trees, that you might not find anywhere else. Of course, the real highlight is the skywalk, where you can climb up above the jungle canopy to get the sort of aerial view that is usually reserved for monkeys or people going zip lining. It’s not quite as action packed as zip-lining, but you do get a bit more time to look around, and it’s free. This is tough to argue with!

     


    Trang Night Market
    If you’re at all hungry in Trang, then the evening night market, located not too far from the clock tower, is a must-visit. Here you’ll find all kind of treats on offer, from delightfully fragrant curries through the inevitable fried chicken and of course a whole variety of seafood.

     


    You’re going to have to master eating from a plastic bag, which seems to be the Thai way of serving any street food that comes with a sauce, but it’s a worthwhile skill to have.

     


    On weekends there’s often a second night market in the region of the train station. We weren’t there at a weekend, so I can’t comment on that one. If you go, let us know what you thought!


    ‘USP of Trang’
    Your trip to this stunning province is curtailed if you don’t stopover or experience these mesmerising and spell bound adventures of Trang. 

     


    Island Hopping
    Stretching between feathery green hills and the sapphire blue Andaman Sea is the thin slip of an offline coast of Trang Province.  A resident to some of the best snorkeling and low-tide sandbars is Thailand’s most spectacular islands which gives its travellers a time of his life. Island hoping is not a new thing that you will try here but it is surely worth an experience. Hopping between islands is so interesting that you almost forget doing other activities on your itinerary list. 

     


    Emerald Cave
    These stunning caves will encounter  you while you are literally hopping between the serene islands of Trang, The Emerald Cave or ‘Tham Morakot’ is more often than the underline of the famous four Island Tour – a not to be skipped day trip to the Southern Islands, near Trang. The Emerald Cave is a clandestine tarn concealed within the isle of Ko Mook. The only way in to this astounding site is to swim 85m through a sunken tunnel that opens out into the covert bay with limestone cliffs soaring high above you on all sides. Emerging from a dark tunnel into a stunningly green tropical paradise, complete with large white-sandy beach is truly an experience in itself. And we strongly recommend you to carry a water proof bag, so you don’t miss on your beautiful pictures in your camera.

     


    Into the Dragon’s belly
    The real highlight of this trip though, is the journey out, which the locals refer to as passing through the belly of the dragon, and is definitely not for the claustrophobic. The cave roof is incredibly low, and you have to lie totally flat in the boat for around fifteen minutes, as solid rock brushes past your noise. The Thai believe that this is a very auspicious activity. Vera, who isn’t the best with claustrophobia, only just about made it through – and she’s going to have a full post on this coming soon. It’s worth doing, but not for the claustrophobic!

     


    ‘I do’ in Trang
    The Trang Underwater Wedding originally started as a one-off event in the mid 1990s with just one couple marrying undersea, but its fame increased and in 2000 it gained official recognition from the Guinness Book of Records as the largest underwater wedding in the world.


    Trang’s gastronomical journey
    Trang unlike its neighbours is not just famous for its scenic beauty or adventure but has something more to offer. Trang is famous for its lavish breakfast spread and sumptuous cake. The cultural regime of a Trang breakfast begins with an old-fashioned coffee called ‘Ko-Pi’ which is a coffee mixed with condensed milk.   Black Ko-Pi without milk is called ‘Ko-Pi-Or.’ Ceylon tea mixed with coffee and milk is called ‘Ko-Pi-Cham’. Coffee is the beverage of the residents of Trang, regardless of age. They can drink it all day long from dawn to late in the morning, noon, afternoon, dusk, early in the evening, and late at night. The coffee shop is always packed.  The main menu to go with coffee is roast pork. Trang roast pork is famous nationwide. It is a special ancient menu created by a Cantonese immigrant who came to Trang. The recipe has been passed down for more than 150 years. You’ll also find the Muslim influence which means that Roti places are all over, and of course the aforementioned night market is a must for cheap and tasty evening eats. In short – you’re not going to go hungry in Trang!


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