6th - 20th August 2004
|From Hua Hin the obvious way south was a big dual carriageway, busy with cars and trucks. We rode it when we had to but as far as possible we stayed off it and took minor roads that ran by the sea. These led us through the Pranburi Forest Park where we enjoyed a stroll along the Mangroves Nature Trail:|
That night we camped amongst pine trees by the beach. In the morning we saw the local fishermen drying squid on racks by the sea:
Next we rode through the Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park where we saw dusky langurs and macaques and karst hills rising up from the coastal plain. Unfortunately almost all the flat land has been cleared for shrimp farming, but the hills are untouched.
Now it was Ju's turn to have the temperature so we spent a day in the National Park and then struggled on to rest in a cheap room in Prachuan Khiri Khan. This is a much less touristy town than Hua Hin with a lovely fishing pier surrounded by boats. These men were busy taking loading an enormous net onto their boat:
In Prachuap KhiriKhan we also met Mason, who was cycling from Saigon to Singapore. We had a good evening's bike talk with him and hope that our paths may cross again as we head south. You can read about his travels on www.masonfuller.com.
Next day we climbed to Wat Thammikaram, set on a small hill and surrounded by hordes of monkeys. Visiting people feed the monkeys, believing that they "gain merit" by doing so.
South from Prachuap Khiri Khan we rode by the sea when we could and on the highway when we couldn't avoid it. Some times we rode a quiet beach front road past coconut palms, at others we plugged down the highway's shoulder with lorries thundering past. During the night we could see boats out at sea with powerful lights to attract the fish.
Camped on the beach not far from Chumpon:
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