Welcome to our Thailand Guide - Gulf of Siam
The coastal provinces of East peninsula are : Chumphon, Suratthani, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Phatthalung, Songkha, Pattani et Narathiwat.
The Thai peninsula looks like a Elephant trunk would have slipped between China Sea and the Andaman Sea.
It held its carpet of coconut and rubber to Malaysia, with its long white beaches, the islands surrounded by coral reefs and crystal waters, its picturesque fishing villages with boats painted in bright colors, its historical city where the juxtaposition of Buddhist temples and mosques suggests the proximity of the Malay world.
With the exploitation of tin and rubber, it did not wait to discover the tourism prosperity.
The Gulf of Thailand is not very deep, with an average depth of 45 m and a maximum of 80 m.
At the end of the last glaciation, the Gulf did not exist due to sea level while lower than today.
With its tropical temperatures, the Gulf is home to many coral reef. The tourist resort best known is the island of Ko Samui in Suratthani province of Thailand.
Backpackers first discovered Koh Samui in the early 1970's, and at that time, the island was simply called "heaven on earth". The place boasts such an incredibly rich variety of beaches, bays and coves that it might seem like several islands mixed together into one.
The island has been inhabited for aproximately 1500 years and for the moment there are approximately 40,000 local Thai people living on Koh Samui. They are an extremely warm and friendly people. Most of them are Buddhist, but there is also a small community of Muslim people, all living together in a perfect harmony.
Koh Samui Tour : You'll be amazed by the strangely erotic rock formation called "Grand Father's" and "Grand Mother's" rocks in Lamai (Hin Ta & Hin Yai), as well as the impressive Namuang waterfalls with its 30 metres steep drop, near Nathon. For a refreshing break, you'll be able to swim in the sandy bottom pool at the base of the waterfall. In Big Buddha beach there's a gigantic Buddha statue overlooking the bay.
Snake Farm : Snake charmers from Northeast Thailand handle some of the deadliest snakes in the world, including king spitting cobras. The show takes place in a circular arena with the snake handlers in a central pit. A steep wall and a moat separate spectators from the snakes.
Safari Tour & Elephant trekking : You will be impressed by the skills and intelligence of the trained elephants and will enjoy a 60 minutes trek on the back of one of them. Then you'll be taken to a local farm for an ox's cart ride through the coconut plantations and cashew nut trees. Observe the monkeys at work, picking up coconuts, which is one of the most ancient activities on Samui. Learn about rubber tapping and the processing of rubber sheets. Short walk through the jungle and swimming at Namuang waterfall No2.
Jeep Safari Mountain Tour : Explore the parts of Koh Samui, which are still only accessible by special cars. You'll get across coconut groves; learn about rubber tapping in a plantation and admire a unique view of the island 635 metres above sea level. Discover the most delicious of Southern Thailand's fruits, such as ramboutans, mangostines, mangoes, bananas... Have a bath in the 2 small lakes, then on the road again to reach Ta-Nim and the stone garden with Thai mythical characters. After a 10 minutes drive through the jungle, discover a hidden waterfall.
Snorkelling & Diving in Angthong National Marine Park : A short speed boat trip will take you to the marine park, where you'll enjoy the fantastic panorama at Koh Wua Talap, you can marvel at the varied sculptures formed by the stalagmite and stalactite formations of Tum Bua Boke's cave. Boat trip around the small islands and to Mae Koh to see the beautiful emerald saltwater lake at the top of the island.
Discover Koh Nangyuan by speed boat. This small archipelago comprises three small islands joined by a sand bank. There, you'll get the chance to climb up to a superb view point at the top of a mountain, 90 metres above sea level, snorkel or simply relax on the beach. Lunch entails some traditional Southern Thai cuisine in Koh Tao followed by a boat trip to Aow Luek Bay for a bit of snorkelling and fish feeding.
Big Game Fishing : On board a fully equipped 45 feet authentic Thai fishing boat with an all important roof to provide cool shade and protection from the sun, you'll cruise around the see-through waters surrounding Koh Samui. Snorkelling gear is available on board. Big Game includes rods and lines, trawling equipment and fresh bait.
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Koh Phangan has long been "the" favorite destination for backpackers and ravers from all over the world. They still gather on the island all year long to join the different parties that made it famous, like the Full Moon Party happening every month for 20 years on Haad Rin Beach.
But the magical spirit of Koh Phangan makes it also perfectly suitable for those travellers looking for tranquil and wilder surroundings in a preserved environment. The island also has heaps of quieter and undeveloped spots that will remind you of Koh Samui as it was 15 years ago... With a pinch of luxury, if you're in the mood, as many new resorts offer for just a few years now, new services like swimming pools, air conditioned rooms and even Spas and health centers, bringing them closer to the hotel standard of Koh Samui...
Wat Khao Tam is a small temple located on top of a hill near Ban Tai Village. An American monk lived in it for over a decade and his ashes were scattered over a cliff overlooking a field of palm trees at the foot of the temple. This is not a real "Wat" as only a couple of monks and a nun live there. But the place is quite famous for its Buddhist Meditation Centre, run by foreigners for decades, where "retreaters" have to remain in total silence for a period of 10 days, as per the Theravadin tradition.
Wat Pho, is a very popular temple among the Buddhists of Ban Tai, as well as among foreigners, as it hosts an Herbal Sauna. Come and enjoy the many great benefits of a traditional herbal steam sauna where natural herbs are heated on a log fire to create the steam that filters into the room. On top of the cleansing and relaxing effects of a session, you'll even get to keep the smell of the herbs for a few hours...
Chinese Temple is located on a hill on the road to Thong Sala, 1km from Chaloklum. This temple owes its edification to a woman who came some 15 years ago to attend a ceremony in Sangthom Wat. She claimed to have dreamt about the Chinese Buddha, who told her that he wished for a new temple to be built there for him. After raising the funds the building started to be completed in 1992.
Nowadays, new extension buildings are still under construction, and its decoration gets richer and richer months after months. Tourists and locals go there to get a blessing from the resident nun and to try to discover their fate throwing the "Prediction sticks".
Than Sadet Waterfalls. King Churalongkorn, the Great and revered Rama V, came here on several occasions to bathe in the natural pool at the base of the waterfall. King Prajadhipok, the Great Rama VII, and the current King Bumipol Aduldej, the Great Rama IX, are also known to have visited it. Recently declared a National Park due to its great historical importance and abundant wildlife, the place is just fantastic and well worth the trip. The only small problem here is to get to it: one must be extra cautious when driving as the road is in rather bad condition and presents many difficult parts.
Angthong national marine park, famous around the world since "The Beach", this place has some of the most spectacular landscapes of all Thailand. As it is protected, you can reach this group of islands only with day-tour excursions. Many agencies offer to bring you there by speedboat, with some excursions on Angthong, the main island, and, even, some sea kayaking in the archipelago. The place and its surroundings are simply magical.
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Located in the Gulf of Thailand off Koh Phangan, Koh Tao, or Turtle Island, offers the opportunity to spend a very happy holiday and to discover and practice scuba diving in immersing you in a turquoise blue water, decorated with coral reefs and giant anemones and multicoloured fish.
Koh Tao also invites you to relax on its deserted beaches and enjoy the pace of life rather relax, relaxation here is rigorous, perfect for holiday in Thailand. Here, it is also important to marvel at mid-day the corals during your dives, but to hold output festive night.
Located in the middle of the Gulf of Siam, a hundred miles from the coast of Thailand, Koh Tao is in a few years become a Mecca for scuba diving in Asia for all lovers of corals and other whale sharks.
GULF OF SIAM
THAILAND TRAVEL TRIPS
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