Who stole the beach and the happy cabbie
Hua Hin Travel Blog› entry 7 of 8 › view all entries
November 26th, 2007 – by: bcbusdriver
The car we got was basic but most importantly had padded seats. So many forms of transportation in Thailand have the hardest seats in the world. Heck even some of the cheaper places I stayed had beds harder then cold steel. Like I said last post this car had no air con but had huge fans on the ceiling and large windows that opened so it was cool except during the hottest time of day and even then it was bearable.
The train ride took about 17 hours to get to the main station in Bangkok but you know it was worth it. The tracks took us through some beautiful hills full of lush greenery nothing like I had seen before. Also as the train was a non express it did stop a lot and gave me a chance to see regular Thai people and how they travel. Food was never a problem as folks would jump on at each station and sell fruit and cooked food. It was a bit too hot for my tongue but it was better then going hungry. With that all said we were more then happy to finally got off the train and head to our Bangkok hotel.
I was getting near the end of my trip and I planned on staying in Bangkok the last couple of days so the next morning we got up early and tried to make our way back to the train station.
A word about taxis in Bangkok. Just about all the cabs in Bangkok are Toyotas and most are in good condition. They do tend to be colourful with yellow/green and bright pink ones being the most common. The taxi are everywhere and at time the drivers on some of the streets can be aggressive when trying to attract costumers. The problem at times can be to find one that will take you to the location you want. Some drivers seem to only want short trips and others only long trips. A few drivers will refuse to take passengers to parts of the city if they think the traffic is too heavy.
So on this morning we set out to the main local street and start waving down taxis. In typical fashion the first three drivers refuse to take us. I miss most of the conversations as they are generally conducted between the driver and my Thai friend in the Thai language. Finally we get a driver that not all will take us he welcomes me in English.
The driver was a really nice guy my age and his car was brand new. He quickly asked me why were going to the train station. After being told we were going to Hua Hin he told us that driving there was much quicker then by train. Thinking he was trying to sell us mini bus tikcets, I told the driver I was tired of mini buses so we would go by train. He quickly offered to take us but his first price was too high buy he quickly cut the rate to be about $40 so I agreed and it was one of the best decisions I made all trip.
I forget he name but he was super nice and a pretty good driver. He mostly did not speed and when he did drive on the shoulder of the highway it was in a controlled manner. I am a very talkative and he was more then happy to to hold up his side of the conversation. He even stopped twice, once for lunch and the second time when we needed a bathroom break. He even knew a decent hotel in the town.
Once we got in Hua Hin and checked into our hotel it was time to explore. From what I can tell this town is one of the Thai's Royal Family's favourite towns and is still home to a large Royal Palace. The view from my room seemed to show the direction of the beach as I could see the ocean so we headed out in that direction. The road leading that way were narrow, winding and full of tailor shops and seafood restaurants. Through the restaurants we could see the ocean but never could get there as there did not seem to be any public access. After almost giving up we reached the end of the street and suddenly we were in the middle of a fish market and could see dozens of fishing boats lining a long wharf. On the docks edge the were large buckets, some of them sitting on scales, so I took a look into them. Each bucket was full of freshly caught squid. This was interesting but where was the beach?
We headed back the direction we came and tried all the side streets. Some did lead to the ocean but this area was very rocky and we knew there was a beach somewhere. We ended up all the way back at the hotel and turned down the only street we had not tried but we were not hopeful. This streets looked to be only a market street full of things I had seen sold at every town and city I had been in Thailand so far. Just like the previous street though it suddenly ended and and we could see the beach, well sort of.
The beach we saw was no more then 3 meters wide. We did however see a lot of beach chairs and beach side bars so we figured it was just high tide. We decided to walk along the beach for a while in small sections the beach did open up, once wide enough that a beach soccer game was being played. The water here was nowhere near as nice as Pattaya or even close to Ko Samet so we did no swimming and waited until we got back to our hotel that had a pool.
The next morning we headed back to the beach hoping for better luck. The beach was larger but not by much. Not sure what the deal was but the beach here was very narrow but at least the water was warm. We found a nice beach side bar and had a couple of beers and fruit (good breakfast) and letting sea waves lap right under our beach chairs and onto our feet. This area did seem to have more Thais then the other resorts we had been to. There was a fair amount of young Thais playing soccer and swimming in the sea. We also found a bar in town that was run by a really nice British man that allowed me to use his high speed internet. We also tried to play pool and found that everyone including the waitress could beat us without much effort. In fact I think the stray dog on the street wanted a turn but we decided enough was enough.
After a couple of days here it was time to get back to Bangkok and plan the end of my trip. So we called our cab driver and asked him to come get us the next morning. At the crack of noon we were back on Highway 4 and heading to the big city. So long beaches see you again one day.
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