Drive around Thailand in 14 Days – Day 1

1 Thailand Road

Date : 18th December 2006

Time : 6.30pm – 7pm
Destination : Nakhon Si Thammarat
Distance : About 700KM

Departure at 6.30am where Zheng Hao, Zheng Ni and Zheng Yuan are still sleeping. Our destination is Nakhon Si Thammarat, about an hour drive from Hadyai where most Malaysian are familiar with. Its a quiet jourway until Tapah Rest Area where we stop for breakfast and get the kids to wash up and change.

So how do you keep kids occupied inside the car for long hours… lot of toys, their favaurite story book, drawing board, kids computer, their favourite song and off course some junk food. Not forget pillow, blanket, soft toy to make their journey comfortable. We reach Changlun border town about 12.30pm, take our lunch at one of the rest area/food court area which cater for cars, buses, lorries traveling to Thailand. The food court comes with money changer, sundry shops as well as Thailand Insurance agent where it is compulsary when your drive to Thailand.

We get all the documents done ( Insurance, entry pass/white card ) while waiting for others convoy member to arrive.

A total of 15 cars in our group and we departed at 2.30pm from the Changlun town, stop at the last petrol station to fuel up a cheaper fuel in Malaysia before travel to immigration check point at Bukit Kayu Hitam.

Going through Malaysia customer is a breeze and Thailand customer do not post any problem at all. Please make sure that you submit your insurance policy together with your original car registration card for verification and the Thailand customer will issue you a car entry permit. Keep the copy with you in the vehicle in all time and return when you are exiting Thailand.

Here we are, Sa-Wa-Dee-Krab ( Sa-Wa-Dee-Ka for if you are lady ) Welcome to Thailand.

The road towards Hadyai town is dual carriage highway and tol free. Since it is neighbouring to Malaysia border, the buildings and the environment are similar to what you see in Malaysia, except that all the advertisement signboards are in Thailand language.

The road sign in Thailand is very clear and the map produce by Thailand Tourism Board is very detail as well. Off course you still need a GPS to assists you if you do not want to waste any time figure out where you are and how to go to your destination.

An hour later, we stop by a rest area to take a pee stop. The small rest area in Thailand Highway is usually a petrol kiosk, a convenient shop like 7-Eleven and some food stall.

We finally reach Nakhon Si Thammarat at 7pm, check in to Twin Lotus Hotel and proceed to dinner at one of the unique restaurant build above a river. First night at Thailand and first Thailand food.

Back to hotel rest after the dinner, we need a rest after a long day drive. I did a short walk to Tesco right in front of the hotel to refill some food and drinks for tomorrow drive. Basically it is not much different from Tesco in Malaysia in terms of size and variety.

We do not have time to explore Nakhon Si Thammarat and we arrive late. For what my understading and what I see during a short distance from Hotel to the restaurant this is an ancient town and I saw an ancient wall in the city – Old City Wall The wall is 460 metre wide and 2,230 metre long. It was first constructed during the period of Phraya Si Thamma Sokarat and later renewed twice during the Ayutthaya Period.

Information and Photo from Wikipedia.The city of Nakhon Si Thammarat is one of the oldest towns of southern Thailand. Its origins are not fully known. Most historians recognize the Tambralinga kingdom of Chinese records as a precursor of Nakhon Si Thammarat. The town chronicles of this time are hardly separable from legend, but they do tell of an abandonment and refounding of the town, which would explain the break in history between Tambralinga and Nakhon Si Thammarat.References to a country named Poling appear in Chinese chronicles from the Tang dynasty period down to the early Ming dynasty. Many scholars identify Poling with Maling and Danmaling was one of the member-states of Sanfoqi (mean Srivijaya in Chinese language) in the central part of the Malayu Peninsula or now a day the southern Thailand. Consequently, Poling may also be equated to the Tambralingarat (Tambralinga state) that appear in Indian sources. By the end of the 12th century, Tambralinga had become independent of Srivijaya kingdom. Its rapid rise to prominence since the 13th century till the beginning of 14th century, Tambralinga had occupied the entire Malay Peninsula and become one of the dominant Southeast Asian states. By the end of the 14th century, Tambralinga had become a part of Siam (now Thailand) named Nakhon Si Thammaraj.At the time of the Sukhothai kingdom, the Nakhon Si Thammarat kingdom was already listed as one of the kingdoms under control of the Thai, which it has remained during most of its history. It was usually known as Ligor to European merchants in the 16th century. At the end of the 19th century, the kingdom was finally fully absorbed into Siam by converting it into the Monthon Nakhon Si Thammarat. With the abolishment of the monthon system in 1932, the town now is simply a provincial capital.

Drive Around Thailand in 14 Days – Day 1

Drive Around Thailand in 14 Days – Day 2

Drive Around Thailand in 14 Days – Day 3

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Drive Around Thailand in 14 Days – Day 5

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Drive Around Thailand in 14 Days – Day 14

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