Trang Islands


Relatively small numbers of Thai people can claim to have visited this splendidly scenic part of their own land, and if it is amazingly well endowed with natural beauty, its other great asset is being one of Thailand's little-known tourist secrets. Whilst an average of one plane every few minutes uses Phuket's busy runway, Trang's tranquil airport (opened in 1999) welcomes just a handful of flights a day, with the few overseas visitors on board generously outnumbered by Thai businessmen and local citizens. At the nearby seaport of Kantang, the charming 19th century train station marks the terminal of the South-western Thai railway, adding to the comforting end-of-the line feeling in this lovely part of the Kingdom, with the noise and pollution of Bangkok some 830 kilometres and 15 hours up the track.
Here, lazy beach lounging and stunning sightseeing attractions can be enjoyed without the standard recipe that tends to define and often defile tourist resorts everywhere, and since over two thirds of the province has been designated as national parkland, thoughtful ecological considerations are likely to shape future development.