Even though I spent just one night in Chanthaburi I did a lot with my group. I was invited to Chanthaburi by Tourism Authority of Thailand as a post TBEX Asia 2015 FAM trip. I would love to spend more time both at Rayong and Chanthaburi, I did check out many tourist places in Chanthaburi Thailand. The same is true for Rayong.
Our first stop was Kung Krabaen Bay Royal Development Study Center which works for the conservation of turtles and other sea creatures! The visitors can indulge in making artificial reef, collecting crab eggs and feeding the fish and turtles and more.
Quoting from the TAT brochure ” Kung Krabaen Bay Royal Development Study Center was founded in 1982 and it is responsible for studying and researching the natural ecosystem in order to find proper ways to develop the coastal areas in Chanthaburi Province.”
I managed to click the barn swallows at the study center in middle of everything. There was a time I used to click birds quite regularly but now I do it much less!
Our second stop was the view point at Chanthaburi by the sea. As you can see it was a pretty place. There are a few small restaurants and street vendors around the venue.
Along the fence of the area couples come and tie a love lock! Now you know what to bring if you are visiting the are! We went for lunch at a local restaurant after this.
Our next stop was Ban Semet Ngam Chanthaboon Mat Handicraft Center. I did weaving at the TBEX venue itself. Poor Tinin was surprised with all the hands working around him! He often thought they were out to grab him! But he came back alright!
We reached Rajamaitri Historic Inn in the late afternoon. That gave me time to go out and explore the Old Town Chanthaboon Waterfront area. The first picture of this post is from the evening walk.
I turned right from the hotel and literally walked into Chao Mae Kuan Im Shrine which is a Chinese Temple. There were a few cats and I around the premises.
Right next to the shrine was this street art. I spotted art on the walls at many places in Chanthaburi.
Walking a little further I stumbled upon the Wat Bot Muang which is Buddhist Shrine. I walked through the premises and excited via the gate across. That led me to the modern part of the city. There is a big difference between the two! In Old Town Chanthaboon you literally step back in time!
While we were having dinner at the next door restaurant we saw the lanterns floating by on the Chanthaboon River. It was part of the Chinese week long vegetarian festival.
After dinner I was settling in my room when I heard this loud noise on the street. It was the procession of the Chinese vegetarian festival coming back to town. They wear white for the duration of the festival.
As the procession went ahead I too retired for the night. We were starting early by visiting the old market in Chanthaburi.
I did get up early to go to the market. The Old Town Chanthaboon Waterfront is a photographers delight. The model you see are friends from TAT. Kook on the left is a talented photographer. He was not too thrilled to be invited to pose for the camera! Taya should actually try to be a professional model, she is so good at facing the camera! In real life she works with TAT Dubai.
In the old market, which is said to be 100 years old, I had this orange Thai Tea. When I asked my Thai friends why the tea was orange they said because it was from Sri Lanka! I told them I have been to Sri Lanka but I never saw orange tea there. So the mystery remains unsolved.
Our last stop was the Cathedral of Immaculate Conception is a grand place. It has been built by the Vietnamese Christian Community which fled Vietnam due to the pursecution by the then Buddhist King. The migration is supposed to happen about 400 years ago. The statue of the Virgin Mary is covered in gold, gems, and enamel. Her dress is made of blue and white sapphires! Chanthaburi is famous for its gems but I could not explore that aspect of the town.
I have used about 15 pictures in this post and I am still not done with the story. But before I can write more, there will be a break as I am heading to Thailand (again) tomorrow. This time I am leading an all women’s group with Byond Travel to Krabi and Bangkok.
I also took a break (a rare family vacation too) in Goa about which I have not even started. So stay tuned for a lot of stories in the last few days of November and the month of December.