To continue my experiences in Thailand I will tell you about our second stop after Bangkok. My sister and I knew that we want to travel to the south of Thailand. To avoid the long direct train ride we were searching for a place to visit between Bangkok and Surat Thani. This is how we ended up in Prachuap Khiri Khan.
To reach this little town lying on the golf of Thailand we took the train from Bangkok. It took us about 5 hours to reach Prachuap Khiri Khan. When you travel by train in Thailand you can decide whether you prefer first, second or third class. Third class is obviously the cheapest one, that’s why we choose this option 😉
The second and first class would have been with bed and service like in an airplane, but we wanted to try the local way and sat 5 hours in a full train on normal benches. It was not the most comfortable way of traveling, but it was totally fine. The coolest experience we made there was people selling fruits, snacks and even warm dishes at every stop. So you don’t have to worry before your trip what to bring and what happens if your water isn’t enough. You can always shop on the way 😉
Arriving Prachuap Khiri Khan it was already dark, so we just searched for our guesthouse and checked out the city. It’s a really small city, with a few shops and restaurants – but not touristic at all. Prachuap Khiri Khan is located next to the ocean, but unfortunately, it’s not possible to swim and lay down on the beach. Due to the extreme high tide during the day there is no beach visible.
That’s why we decided to rent a bicycle the next day and explore the surrounded beaches and temples in a sportive way 😉
Our first stop this day was a temple which is located on a mountain directly in the city. All we knew about Wat Thammikaram Wrawiham was that on the top of the mountain you should have a fantastic view over the city, the beaches and a nearby national park. Arriving there with our bikes we were totally surprised! On the streets as well as in the entry we met so many monkeys!!
Seems like this mountain is home to hundreds of them! We were absolutely amazed and in love with these little animals that followed us on every step we took. It was a real adventure climbing up the stairs in the company of crazy monkeys. When we arrived at the top of the mountain we recognized that the former temple is already closed and everything looks like the monkeys home now. Incredible!
Enjoying the view we met a guy who travels to this area for a few years now. He told us about another “monkey mountain” next to the beach that we were already planning on checking out. He also explained that these monkeys on Wat Thammikaram Wrawiham are really aggressive, steal things like mobile phones and cameras frequently and if they smell some food in your backpack they will take it as well. So for real, we were absolutely lucky for not being attacked 😀
The monkeys on the other mountain should be a different species, totally lovely and would hurt no one. Since we were already planning on going to Ao Manao Beach, which is just a few kilometers far away, we decided to visit the lovely monkeys as well 😉
So we jumped on our bikes and rode approx. 45 minutes to reach the beautiful Ao Manao beach. We were a little bit surprised when we had to enter the military zone “Wing 5”. Apparently the beach is directly located inside the military zone. By entering you have to show your passport and sign into a registration book. It’s totally harmless and the soldiers are really friendly – just be aware to bring your passport or some kind of ID.
Inside Wing 5 you have to cross the military airport – literally the landing strip. Strange but fun 😀
Arriving at Ao Manao we were stunned! Nearly no people, a lot of palm trees, lonely beaches and crystal clear water! Amazing! We spend some time there playing the guitar, eating fresh watermelon and enjoying the beach and the sunshine. Unfortunately, we could not enter the sea because of the strong waves. But it didn’t hurt the chilled and amazing ambiance at all.
After relaxing we decided that it’s time to visit monkey mountain nr. 2 😉 So another 20 minutes bike ride away we reached the point where you start climbing the mountain. To our disappointment, we had to realize that the way up the mountain is just opened on some days – and this was not one of them. Sad that we could not see the sweet monkeys we prepared on leaving and going back to the Hostel. When suddenly some other tourists drew our attention by pointing at a huge tree.
There we saw it: Dozens of little monkeys hanging around in the tree, playing and inspecting us from up there. They were so sweet! We were feeding them with pieces of Papaya and having so much fun taking pictures of these lovely monkeys. There were even some little baby monkeys hanging on their mummies belly. Adorable!
Reaching the city of Prachuap Khiri Khan again we checked out the huge night food market that shows up every evening on a big marketplace in the middle of the city. You can try every imaginable Thai food there. It’s a little bit hard to understand what people are offering because no one speaks English and the menus are written in Thai. So it’s an adventure to eat there, but it was really good and cheap as well 😀
Since we wanted to go south as fast as possible we decided to take the night train to Surat Thani, which was leaving at 1 a.m. Again we choose the third class – we thought that not a lot of people would take the night train so we would have enough space to sleep peacefully… Well, the train was nearly full and we just had little space to sleep on the hard wooden banks. But it was just a few hours, so we survived it and now we can look back at an adventurous train ride through Thailand 😀
Visiting Prachuap Khiri Khan has not been on our list before (actually I’ve never heard of it before going there :D), but I am very happy that we decided to go there. It’s a chilled and nice little town with really friendly locals, loads of good food and a lot of possibilities for adventures (There is also a Nationalpark and different caves you can explore if you have more time).
So if you’re heading south from Bangkok and want to get to know a non-touristic Thai town, I totally recommend you visiting Prachuap Khiri Khan.
Read about our further adventures in Thailand soon. ❤️
Have a nice day!