18 Apr - 22 Apr 2013 Phetchaburi

Kingdom of Thailand aka The Land of Conditional Smiles
Klong Gra Chaeng
Sheesra-inn Road 1
Rabieng Rimnum Guest House +6632425707 rabieng@gmail.com
Basic, somewhat rugged and run-down twin room with fan, private terrace (with partial river view) and shared, mosquito-infested bathroom for THB 240.- or US$ 8.40 per night. Wifi between 08:00 a.m. and midnight.
English speaking, but indifferent and uncaring staff.
Beer: 640-ml bottles of ice-cold Chang Classic (6.4 % alc./vol.) for THB 40.- or US$ 1.40 per bottle from a friendly, well-stocked Sino-Thai bottle store east of Chomrut Bridge.

Click below for an interactive road map of the Rabieng Rimnum Guest House and for directions:

Peeling back many intriguing layers of Thai history and exploring the traditional town of Phetchaburi with her (i) century-old teak houses, (ii) old Buddhist temples and (iii) delicious culinary heritage (our favourites: thin rice noodles with fried spicy fishcake aka khanom jeen tod man for THB 25.- per plate at the local night market and spicy banana-blossom salad from our guest house’s excellent restaurant by the river).

Deepening our knowledge about Thai temples, spending many hours in Phetchaburi’s atmospheric old wats and listening to the monks’ electronically amplified praying and chanting at (i) the 17th century Wat Yai Suwannram with its well-preserved murals and beautifully designed old tripitaka library aka haw trai located in the middle of a pond, (ii) the important and busy Wat Mahathat with a tall white prang which can be seen from a distance and (iii) the brand-new Wat Khoy where we met our Thai friends Tanya & Paul together with Watcharavich, the brilliant designer of this architectural marble who showed us the temple’s many interesting and challenging subtleties (without him we would never ever have spotted the graphic presentation of an iPad in the classic murals).

Exploring the wats and various components of King Mongkut’s palace (Khao Wang) on the Holy City Hill aka Phra Nakhon Khiri (entrance: THB 150.- or US$ 5.20 per person), enjoying great views from the top and fighting off the most brazen monkeys ever.

Converging almost to the centre of the earth and visiting the cave sanctuary at Tham Khao Luang, 5 km north of Phetchaburi (mini-săwngthăew for THB 40.- per person, one way), which is filled with old Buddha images, many of them already put in place under King Mongkut aka Rama IV.

Taking together with fellow traveller Martin a fast public bus (1 ¾ hours, c. 100 km, THB 50.- or US$ 1.75 per person) from the comfortably situated bus stop in downtown Phetchaburi to the modern, relatively low-key resort town of Hua Hin, famous for its 5km-long sandy beaches, umpteen seafood eateries and umpteen plus girlie bars.

Click below for more blog posts about Southern Thailand 

Click below for a summary of this year's travels

Recommended products – click below for your Amazon order from Canada:

For Amazon schnaeppchens from Germany, please click here
For Amazon bargains from the United States, please click here
For Amazon bargains from the United Kingdom, please click here

From the 2013 Moral Travel Compass for our Grand Children's Journey of Life: 
It’s bad to march;
It’s good to dance.
Keep your bearings!