After I had a very short city trip in Bangkok, I took a domestic flight south to explore a more authentic and rural Thailand. While most tourists stay in one of the major tourist hubs like Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket, Chiang Mai or Koh Samui, I was happy to find myself in quieter provinces. I visited Phattalung and Khanom, two tranquil provinces in the south of Thailand and had the most amazing time of my life. Real along to find out how!
To get to Phattalung, it’s easiest to take a flight with Air Asia from Bangkok to Trang, the adjacent province. Phattalung is not very well known by tourists, and that is exactly part of the appeal.
First thing I did was visiting a place where they are weaving baskets. The local handicraft is called Krajood grass weaving. I know it’s a classic excursions but I still wanted to mention it because the local ladies are making them and you can support them by buying one! What’s more is that the baskets are not only crazy cheap but also stunningly made!
Tale Noi lake and Pakpra river
Then I headed to Sri Pak Pra resort, a beautiful eco resort in Phattalung. It is your perfect hideaway to experience a truly authentic Thailand trip. Sri Pak Pra is built near the beautiful Tale Noi lake and the Pakpra river. Activities you will do from there are all community-based and that’s the real added value to your trip. Local guides can pick you up before sunrise with a small boat right at the resort and take you out on the water. During an impressive sunrise, you’ll see the constructions they use to catch fish, it’s a simple yet intricate invention and the lake is absolutely flooded with those! You might even spot some water buffaloes grazing peacefully on the banks of the wetland. A bit further down the lake the already impressive scenery changes dramatically and you suddenly find yourself surrounded by gorgeous lotus flowers! Seriously, Tale Noi and Pakpra are a photographer’s dream!
Spend time with the locals
Locals still lead the simple life amidst nature and fill their days with planting rice, going fishing and keeping cattle. It’s a lifestyle that I’m honestly really jealous of. They showed me that you don’t have to have a brand new car or the latest iPhone to be happy. I met some really genuine and friendly people and hanging out with them for a couple of hours on the rice fields was a very rewarding experience.
Prom Lok is another village that is known for its community-based tourism. Locals will take you out for a bike ride on the countryside. It will be quite obvious that you’re not a local. There aren’t many locals riding bikes in groups and the caucasity of my presence might also have had something to do with it. But I didn’t mind at all as Thai people are incredibly friendly. At the end of the bike tour, you’ll have reached the Prom Lok waterfall. If you want you can even take a refreshing dip in the water.
Khanom pink dolphins
The tiny southern province of Khanom is best known for one thing: the pink dolphins! They are an albino species and that explains the pink color of their skin. The family of dolphins has been around Khanom for a long time so here you have the highest chance of spotting them! Personally I was only half lucky, we were able to spot a few dolphins but they didn’t belong to the pink family. And man, are those mammals difficult to capture on camera!
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