Unseen Thailand: Beautiful Islands, Historical Temples and Authentic Thai Food

If I asked you to name some places in Thailand you've been to, you'd most probably say Bangkok, Pataya, Phuket, or perhaps Koh Samui. Some of you might even mention Krabi, or Phanga. But I bet very few of you were enjoying Thailand off the 'tourist track'. I've been lucky to discover the real Thailand....in the Trang and Nakhon Si Thammarat provinces of South West Thailand. These provinces are home to beautiful islands, green national parks, historical temples and amazing, authentic Thai food.

We began our journey in Bangkok; staying overnight in the amazing luxury hotel, Dusit Thani Bangkok, which needs a whole separate story. The next day we took a one hour flight from Don Muang airport to Nakhon Si Trammarat.

Wat Phra Mahathat Woramahawihan royal temple Thailand Bangkok

This city is famous for its Wat Phra Mahathat Woramahawihan royal temple; one of the most important historical sites in southern Thailand.

Wat Phra Mahathat Woramahawihan royal temple entrance statues Wat Phra Mahathat Woramahawihan royal temple monk statues

The temple has a distinctive Sri Lankan style with its top entirely covered by pure gold, and is famous for its expensive clay amulets made by the monks there. The most expensive one was sold for 12 million bahts (this is equivalent to a private island with a luxury villa). Hopefully its new owner is now enjoying even greater prosperity that he did before.

I would also suggest that you discover the Khao Luang National Park and visit the huge waterfalls at Karom or at Namton Kring Ching. They have many levels, and on some of them you can see water falling from 100 meters. You can even stay overnight at the local community village of Bam Khiri Wong. The peaceful villagers live from growing Durian (the awfully smelly, but incredible healthy, fruit), mangosteen and rambutan fruits; and you can experience real Eco tourism here. If you are up for some hidden luxury then I suggest that you stay in Khanom, at Aava Resort and Spa.

Trang Archipelago Thailand island boat girl

On the way to Trang it's great to discover the beautiful islands around the area (the Trang Archipelago consists of 46 beautiful islands).

Trang Archipelago Thailand boat ocean rock

Island hopping, with some stops to snorkel and have lunch, is a great way to spend your day. I recommend that you visit Koh Mook and Koh Kradn and then go to Koh Hai Fantasy Resort where you can have lunch on the beach.

Thram Morakot cave Thailand long line

On our way around the archipelago we also visited the Thram Morakot cave which has a small secluded beach surrounded by beautiful green hills on either side of the dark cave. Unfortunately we couldn’t enjoy this miracle of the nature on our own, as it were many tourists there.

Anantara Si Kao Resort Spa view relax

If you are too tired to travel onwards you can stay overnight, or a few nights, at Anantara Si Kao Resort and Spa. Here you can enjoy first class Anantara service in a completely remote area.

Sunset Palm Tree Anantara Si Kao Resort Spa Sunset beach view mountains Anantara Si Kao Resort Spa

Just ask for the room where you can enjoy the sunset lying on your bed, or in the bath.

infinity pool green hills Anantara Si Kao Resort SPA

The best thing about the hotel is an 'adults only' infinity pool overlooking the green hills of the islands nearby covered in a mysterious fog...

Thai food breakfast Thailand

When you arrive in Trang make sure you have breakfast or brunch at one of the local cafes. A wide variety of food choice here includes Thai, Malay, Indian and many more. The town, and the surrounding area, is well known for its delicious food, and for the strong coffee cut with sweet condensed milk.

Thep Tharo Wood Carving handicrafts Thailand

In the area you can visit many organisations selling handicrafts. Like this one – a local home industry of Thep Tharo Wood Carving. If you buy something made from this type of pine tree you will enjoy its amazing aroma for years.

Rua Rasada Hotel cruise-ship Trang Bangkok

In Trang you can stay at Rua Rasada Hotel famous for its cruise-ship design. From the hotel it takes only 15 minutes to Trang airport to return back to Bangkok.

Ocean Thailand longtail boat view rock

So we didn't regret we’d chosen to explore the 'unseen' Thailand as even here you can stay in a luxury hotel and combine it with an authentic Thai experience.

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Written by

I fell in love with traveling much earlier than I fell in love with my first man. And I'm still faithful to that love (But I have exchanged some men since my first one). I have never had a reason to regret my passion. I constantly dream of going further, it gives me indescribable emotions and meaning to my life.

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