This week, I got the chance to travel to Hua Hin in Thailand. Finally I got the chance to revisit one of my favourite countries anywhere in the world. It has been about 4 years since I returned to my former home, Thailand. I adore this country, it’s wild, crazy and full of fun, but with the best cuisine on the planet and its amazing people, it serves up a winner every time I come.
Having lived in Thailand for 5 years between 2008 and 2013, mainly in Bangkok but with a short time in Chang Mai, I took many chances to travel. I have visited Hua Hin 3 times in the past and it was to here that I was to return. An old friend talented photographer Robert Fretwell from Australia has recently settled here and the chance to travel to Hua Hin to do some work with him was simply to good to miss out.
Travel to Hua Hin: The Journey Begins
I flew into Dom Muang International Airport and made my way to Bang Sue Junction to catch the train. I like train travel, it’s unlike just about any other form of ground transport. Safe and relaxing, it can be a great way to relax or work. Being informed that 1st and 2nd class were all sold out, and only limited seats in 3rd class were available, was not in the plan.
Asian seats are generally smaller than in the West and this was no exception. Aircon came by opening all the windows and the carriage was full of the most amazing Thai characters. People get on at every station, selling pork with basil and omelette, drinks, candy bars, sweet mango and sticky rice, candy floss, popcorn and all kinds of goodies.
As the suburban streets of Bangkok fell away, the countryside started to appear. At first it was wild countryside but slowly but surely the cultivated rice paddies came into view. The birdlife that you can see from the train is amazing. Whit herons, beautiful little egrets, giant Asian storks, mynah birds and all kinds of our feathered friends started to appear through the open window. Taking the train to travel to Hua Hin is a twitchers dream.
Enter the Land of Rice Paddies
The paddy fields ran for mile after mile, this staple crop is a mainstay of Southeast Asia. It’s fascinating just how much land is given over to growing Thai rice, which is among the best quality rices anywhere in the world. Eventually, my travel to Hua Hon comes to a close as we pulled into Hua Hin Junction, probably the most iconic station in the whole of Thailand. Royal Hua Hin was the late King’s chosen city for most of the last 5 years of his life. It is a town that is much valued by the population at large here.
I checked into a guesthouse on one of the piers. Met up with Robert for a couple of beers and stayed out late to watch Manchester City win again. Happy days.