Hey Once Again,
The decision to come to Tak (city) was fairly organic. New Year’s Eve was approaching and Brandy (my partner in crime) and I had only booked our hotel until the 29th. Trying to find accommodations until the first was becoming cumbersome, so as we were trying to determine our next move sitting side by side at a net cafe, I suggested to Brandy “Maybe we should pull up a map of Thailand”. She did. Then asked, “What about Tak?” I had never heard of it; neither had she. It was a go.
Two days and a six hour bus ride later, we arrive in Tak, at nightfall to find the only hotel we knew of in the city to be booked. A Thai friend in Chiang Mai had something to the effect of…”Suuuuuree it’ll be easy to find a hotel in Tak. No one goes there for New Years…” Our songtao (bus/van type thingy) driver recommended another hotel/resort. For whatever reason, I asked, “Is there a hotel near a market….or muay thai?” Perfect thing to ask as we land at an old, bungalow style hotel within a short walking distance of the Taksin Maharachanuson Fair; essentially the only thing going on in the city, which has both a (huge) market and muay thai, every single night of its duration.
Bonus: Baby elephants, one shorter than me, hanging out. Baby elephants.
Much to write on Tak. Too much to write about now as writing detracts from my time to experience our last night here. Plan is to hit the city of Kanchanaburi tomorrow. We know of two routes – (1) Tak – Bangkok – Kanchanaburi by bus. Basically it’s sort of like backtracking. Tak to Bangkok is listed as a six hour trip, this means there’s a good shot it’ll take eight, maybe. Then Bangkok to Kanchanaburi, including waiting time for a Bus? No clue. Was told today all buses are booked to Bangkok as people are going back to work after the New Year festivities, but maybe there will be an opening….Option (2) Take a bus or minivan to Nakhon Sawan in the morning. The bus terminal people believe there is a bus leaving Nakhon Sawan for Kanchanaburi at 4:30 pm, however, there may be others…is the 4:30 pm bus full already? Who knows. Do we know a thing about Nakhon Sawan? There’s a waterfall there….Wish us luck….trying to take a minivan to a national park approximately 20km away, almost landed us in Burma/Myanmar, 80 kms away yesterday.
Situation in short – Woman selling the ticket said the minivan was going to the park. The guy organizing/getting the people on the vehicle confirmed it was going to the park. However, no one told me two things:
1) The van would pass the park enroute to Burma/Myanmar
2) I had to tell the driver where I was going. Although the ride was longer than anticipated, I thought….travel times are rarely accurate in Thailand. In addition, I was trying not to heave as we were speeding through winding mountain. I kept curling up into a ball on my seat.
What tipped me off? Immigration police. Nice one.
Bye For Now,
*As Mae Sot is a highly secured border city to Burma/Myanmar, there was an immigration police checkpoint prior to hitting Immigration at the border.
Tak City hotel review here.
Read the next memoir, From Tak To Nakhon Sawan To Suphanburi To Kanchanaburi, here.
Read the previous memoir, From Buriram To Bangkok To Chiang Mai, here.
For Thailand hotel reviews, travel information and tips, check out Backpacking Thailand, my free Thailand resource.
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