Meandering cows, tenacious bicyclers, fearless pedestrians, a few disastrous roads maybe? As said, don’t be a fool for the city lights! My humble apologies to the buzz of Bangkok, the spark of Phuket and Samui, also to the incredible lodging and food of Chiang Mai. The above mentioned aren’t less fun but just deluded to be the only fun and authentic side of Thailand.
Right out from the nursery rhyme,’ Old Mc Donald had a farm’, is my least explanation of how enchanting, Thailand village life is. Needless to say, you can meet a mere six hundred to seven hundred folks while exploring the low charm locales in Thailand. That is how sparse yet compact every village is. Talking about forte? Well, it is agriculture and farming like all the villages across the globe and precisely Asia.
Before I start listing out villages’ names you should put your travel foot in, let me brief why do you even need to do so. Offbeat travel has a different charm to it and a freshness to it. So hear the monks chanting, Puyaiban (village headman) giving judgments and people coming together to celebrate life and festivals in local villages.
WELCOME TO THE RICH RURAL
The Charming Lowkey Hotspot, Pai
Pai is a lounge of the hippies in Northern Thailand and a right start for your rural voyage. This locale has a natural charm enhanced by waterfalls and hiking trails. What makes me glad is that increasing tourism or any man-made interference hasn’t yet ruined the serenity and natural backdrop.
The best to see here apart from beautiful spots and hot springs to chill, is the Shan market being put in the midweek with some unusual handicrafts on display. Oh! You can also take up some cooking classes or yoga sessions in case planning to stay a little longer. Learning on vacation sounds fun?
Chiang Khan, Offering A Painted Canvas View
Blurting out the traditional ways and boasting of a perfect sunrise view, this is a little locale in North Thailand. Here the Mekong River offers a blissful soundscape and tiny wooden houses are aligned in perfect harmony.
Vendors and their stocked carts are a common sight here but instead of just food and snacks, they also have some colourful artifacts and handicrafts for sale. To see the best of Chiang Khan, you got to wake up earlier than usual and capture the promising landscape.
Koh Kret, The Pottery Island!
Close to the buzzy capital yet far away is this calm delight. The silent paths lead through the sober greens and tiny houses which emit quiet vibes, loud enough to reach your soul. Pottery making is considered to be sheer leisure as this small Island accommodates pottery mon community majorly.
Try a hand at this art and unleash your creativity that might have been passive all this while. The locale has some significant religious spots worth paying a visit to witness the traditional ways of praying.
Ban Bo Luang, a Little Salty!
Much of salt extraction from the salty walls make this village a salt well. Located 100 kilometers north of the capital this village is sandwiched between two national parks and a border. You can opt to visit these mountainous parks offering a dramatic landscape and go on a hike.
If battling water is your forte, dive into the Mekong river and satisfy followed hunger thuds by sipping and munching the traditional Khao Soi Pa Orn, what a name for noodles!
Mon Cham, Prism Of Colours
A rainbow on land! The flowers, fruits and vegetation here breathe out scents in abundance. The hills of this locale seem to be all brightly lit up and cheery, blooming with joy. Stocked with a mountain farming community, this lively village is located an hour away from the ‘rose of the north’, Chiang Mai.
Walk past the flowers of all creeds and kind or hold a seat for yourself in a small cafe on a hilltop offering a panoramic view of the seven colours blended perfectly.
Kanchanaburi, for Relaxation, Adventure & History
Gorgeous small town stocked with memorials for history geeks and of course delight for nature admirers. At River Kwai, relax or walk over the famous bridge. Take a train to witness Death Railway. Apart from some best of wilderness at the national parks, here there are several restaurants offering vivid Thailand delicacies.
Tom Yum and sticky mango rice are two handpicked suggestions to give your mouth and stomach a good time. If bored and planning to leave, unpack as you got to go for the watersports and boat tours, yes all of it in a town!
Phetchaburi, City Of Diamonds
Long walks on sandy beaches is a dream turn into reality in this locale, as it remains unspoiled and untouched by the herd of chaotic tourists. It has some goofy caves and religious institutions offering a curated traditional and cultural face of Thailand.
Apart from this, you can go strolling in and around the ancient royal palaces to taste some kingly experience. Some suggestions, to go where? Wat Mahathat Worawihan temple, Wat Yai Suwannaram, Kaeng Krachan National Park, Mrigadayavan Palace and of course the local streets.
Lamphun, Where Art Meets Culture
This old charming town close to Chiang Mai is on the Kuang River and remains least explored. Its ancient temples echo times past and it carries a laid back vibe through the sleepy town center.
To gather some insight into the great Lanna Kingdom, just step out the relics and you’d know the tales. For a lazy day out or vacation, land straight into this locale and it will take care of your slow cruise.
Ban Mae Or The Ban Rak Village, a Clayey Locale
Pretty green! The mountains, lakes and the unmatchable vibe is what marks the presence of this village felt, even by just looking at the pictures. As a child, I made clay homes not realizing that they aren’t just a part of my imagination but a residence for real humans.
Well, not just clay but rice straws are also a part of the construction, sounds interesting yet? The homes here have Chinese style features giving them an edge over usual. Witness the vivid tea plantations holding a major contribution to the economy of this locale.
Sam Phan Bok, Grand Canyon of Thailand
The regionals say you can witness three thousand holes on a section of a wide river bed, now eroded. It is as interesting as it sounds because to see holes of vivid shapes and sizes all around is a rare sight of its own kind.
The task is to find some different shaped holes like heart-shaped or Mickey mouse’s head shaped! The entire locale looks like a meteor hit land, gifted by nature. Unusual rock forms and craggy walls is a sight you see if on a boat tour. To see the best of the above-mentioned, plan a visit here when the sun shines with all its might, brightest and the warmest.
Amphawa, Home To Unique Markets
West of Bangkok and close to Samut Songkhram, this locale hosts an extravagant floating market. So, in case you are a foodie and plan to make your eve worth remembering, head to have this floating food experience. Apart from food, vivid assortments are on display here, some of which are too authentic to be found anywhere else.
All you need to do is hop on a boat and further, witness the riverside temples too. Go boating here to capture the true Thailand. If this is not enough, also visit the nearby train market and do not forget to click amazing pictures of this place.