A Road Trip to Southern Thailand

Published on: February 11, 2020

What’s it like to travel to the south by car? Dharak lets us experience her road trip through this article along with pointers to must-see places.  By Dharak Dhamarongrat My partner’s family has a tradition of annual reunions. No matter how far away from home, everyone in the family travels back to meet their grandparents and relatives who live in Hatyai city, Songkhla province. This time, it was a special journey for me, because it was my first visit to the south by car. The fun part was that we moved from place to place without booking any accommodation ahead.  Overall, the journey took about 3,000km. Routing from Bangkok – Phetchaburi – Prachuap – Chumphon – Surat Thani – Nakhon Si Thammarat – Phattha lung – Songkhla – Trang – Krabi – Phuket – Phang Nga – Ranong – Chumphon – and returning on the main route from Prachuap to Bangkok. 


From Hatyai we drove the western route towards Phuket Island. We passed by the most respected province in the past, Trang, as this used to be the province of diplomats and educators.

Classical tuk tuks only seen in Trang

In Trang, we can still see the traditions and lifestyle of homemade food, the 100 years market, the Trang TukTuk, and the Memorial Wall where people post announcements for the funeral event where all the villagers are welcome. Trang used to be a small community of Chinese descendants so people are connected and recognized by their family names. 

Phuket Island

We then crossed the bridge to Phuket Island where we loved visiting different beaches to explore the unique atmosphere and peaceful surroundings.  If you would like to spend your vacation at the most popular sites, then Phuket is perfect for all family members. Keep in mind that the southern beaches have higher waves and some rain at the end of the year. So if you like surfing, you may want to pin your destination to Gata Beach.

Phuket old town

Khao Lak

Departing from the lively community in Phuket Island, we stayed overnight in Khao Lak which is also a well-known area of diving resorts and family long stay accommodations. Here you can find a warm welcoming international community — I felt like I was in Bali. 

A famous crispy pork food stall

From there, we drove toward the western route passing Ranong, Chumphon, and Prachuap, which are provinces that are mainly known for having the best tropical fruits like coconuts, pineapples, ladyfinger bananas, and dried seafood souvenirs.  We found a nice private beach hotel, Lamkum Beach Resort, which I believe would be a great destination for a big family and friends retreat. While it’s not 5-star accommodation, the rooms are neat and the food is great.

Hua Hin

On our last stop before reaching Bangkok, we dropped by the famous town of Hua Hin, where we visited our favorite restaurant near the Hua Hin market for a late lunch. It’s at the Sailom Hotel and serves up very traditional Thai food along with a variety of international dishes too. I recommend that you try it sometime!   Photos courtesy of the author.  

About the Author

Dharak Dhamarongrat is a senior trainer for Rainbow Kids Yoga Training (rainbowyogatraining.com) and a senior trainer for Pilatesprop, Pilates Training & Equipment (inspire-moves.com). She is also a BAMBI Yard Sales Coordinator.
The views expressed in the articles in this magazine are not necessarily those of BAMBI committee members and we assume no responsibility for them or their effects. BAMBI News welcomes volunteer contributors to our magazine. Please contact editor@bambiweb.org.