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Bangkok Day Trip: Must-see attractions in Chanthaburi province

Bangkok Day Trip: Must-see attractions in Chanthaburi province

Chanthaburi province, pronounced Jantaburee, is located 245 km from Bangkok, Thailand. Chantaburi is notable for tropical fruits, particularly durian, and gems. The surrounding hills are rich with lush forests and scenic waterfalls. Nearby are quiet fishing villages and peaceful beaches.

Chanthaburi is among the 12 hidden gems, or provinces that are renowned for their unique history, culture and lifestyle, recommended as part of the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s 2015 Discover Thainess campaign.

To get to Chantaburi from Bangkok, you can either self-drive with a hired car or take a bus from Bangkok Eastern Bus Terminal (Ekamai) on Sukhumwit Road. The drive is around 4 hours from Bangkok. Details. 

I visited Chanthaburi with a local guide after spending a night in Rayong province.

Our first stop was at the Sea Farming Demonstration Unit in Kungkrabaen Bay, part of the  Kung Krabaen Bay Royal Development Study Centre (Khlong Khut, Tha Mai District, Chanthaburi, +66-3936-9216-8). This was set up by the Thai King back in 1981 with the objective “to conduct study, research and experimentation on appropriate development methods suitable for the development needs in the coastal area of Chantaburi Province.”

Sea Farming Demonstration Unit in Kungkrabaen Bay

Sea Farming Demonstration Unit in Kungkrabaen Bay

Beautiful place

Beautiful place

Flags

Flags

Colourful hammocks

Colourful hammocks

Specimens

Specimens

An octopus

An octopus

At the centre, the general manager shared with us some of the sustainable fishing practices which they are engaged in. One of the project is the removal of crab roes from pregnant female crabs, nurturing them into little crabs and returning it to the sea.

The centre general manager sharing his experience

The centre general manager sharing his experience

Pregnant female flower crabs

Pregnant female flower crabs

Releasing the roes

Releasing the roes

Scrubbing out the roes

Scrubbing out the roes

Closing back the shell after the roes are extracted

Closing back the shell after the roes are extracted

Another female crab with even more roes

Another female crab with even more roes

Me at work

Me at work

It's actually much harder than it looks as the crab will fidget

It’s actually much harder than it looks as the crab will fidget

Microscopic baby crabs

Microscopic baby crabs

Other projects include clams cultivation, housing of rescued sea creatures like sea turtles and sharks, with the eventual goal to return them back to the sea.

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The workshops were pretty educational to me, a city folk who do not know much about fishing, much less about sustainable fishing practices.

Making ropes for use to cultivate clams

Making ropes for use to cultivate clams

Making little clay bits for the clams to grow on

Making little clay bits for the clams to grow on

Here's how they look when the ropes are ready to be dipped into the sea

Here’s how they look when the ropes are ready to be dipped into the sea

Clams cultivation

Clams cultivation

We got to feed some rescued sea turtles

We got to feed some rescued sea turtles

Dashing for food

Dashing for food

Sea turtles everywhere

Sea turtles everywhere

Sharks feeding next

Sharks feeding next

Here's a hungry one

Here’s a hungry one

Next, we made at stopover at Noen Nangphaya viewpoint, near the Nang Phaya Hill Scenic Point (Na Yai Am, Changwat Chanthaburi) to get a picturesque view of the area.

At the scenic spot

At the viewpoint

The view

The view

From another angle

From another angle

Vespa gang

Vespa gang

Locks of love

Locks of love

Here's a cute one

Here’s a cute one

 Badly vandalized tree trunk - don't do this please

Badly vandalized tree trunk – don’t do this please

We then had lunch at a popular local eatery, เจ๊เพ็ญเย็นตาโฟ ปู กั๊ง @จันทบุรี (there is no English name), famous for their Jae Phen noodle, kind of like yong tau foo noodles in Singapore, but served with seafood.

Thai yong tau foo

Thai yong tau foo

Cooking

Cooking

Jae Phen Noodles

Jae Phen Noodles

Lots of sea creatures like this inside

Lots of sea creatures like this inside

Fried tofu with thai chili dip

Fried tofu with thai chili dip

Thai satay

Thai satay

Lunch

Lunch

The dish looks really colourful when it arrived at our table. While I enjoyed the noodle, the sauce and the seafood, I feel that the portion of seafood and ingredient to noodle is way too much, especially the crayfish and other unidentified funky sea creatures which I counted at least 6 or more pieces per bowl. Still, it is a very interesting local delicacy which I feel you must try it at least once when in Chanthaburi. Try not to think of what sea creatures you are eating when you wolf everything down.

Restaurant interior

Restaurant interior

Menu on the wall

Menu on the wall

Our next stop was Ban Samet Ngam Chanthaboon Mat Handicraft Center (Nong Bua, Chanthaburi, +66-3931-1565), where we get to try our hands on weaving traditional thai mats and other handicrafts.

The staff giving us an introduction on thai weaves

The staff giving us an introduction on thai weaves

Colourful straws

Colourful straws

Professionals at work

Professionals at work

Spot the amateur

Spot the amateur

Professional at work again

Professional at work again

Another amateur

Another amateur

We then rested for the night and had dinner in the Chantaboon Waterfront Community which I will be writing a separate post in detail.

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The next day, we continued touring Chanthaburi. Our first stop after breakfast and after exploring Chantaboon was Sen Chan Noodle Factory (2/3 Thachalab Road, Talad, Chanthaburi, 087-723-55-99). Here, we witnessed how the flat white noodles used for cooking Pad Thai was made.

The female boss of the noodle factory

The female boss of the noodle factory

White and yellow versions

White and yellow versions

Noodle sheets

Noodle sheets

Processing machine

Processing machine

Sliced noodles

Sliced noodles

Sorting

Sorting

Drying outdoor

Drying outdoor

Packing

Packing

Noodles models

Noodles models

After the noodle factory visit, we ended our tour in Chanthaburi at Chanthorn Restaurant (1102 / 5-8 Benjamarachutis Road, Wat Mai, Chanthaburi 22000, 039-312-339) where we got to witness a cooking demonstration, followed by lunch.

The food was fantastic and there was large lunch crowd of mainly locals, testimony that it is not a touristy restaurant, but one that appeals to local tastebuds too. For those who are looking to buy back some local delicacies, the restaurant has a retail corner which is pretty well stocked with local produces from durian cakes to coconut chips to soft-shell crabs.

Chanthorn restaurant exterior

Chanthorn restaurant exterior

The first floor of the restaurant

The first floor of the restaurant

The second floor where the cooking demonstration was conducted

The second floor where the cooking demonstration was conducted

Things which you can buy home at the restaurant store

Things which you can buy home at the restaurant store

More stuff to buy home

More stuff to buy home

Interesting snack

Interesting snack

Cook demonstration

Cooking demonstration

Pad thai noodles

Spicy dry pad thai noodles with soft-shell crabs

Ingredients

Ingredients

Seasonings

Seasonings

More seasonings

More seasonings

Noodles are almost done

Noodles are almost done

Ready to serve

Ready to serve

Dinner is served

Dinner is served

My magical colour changing drink when lime was added

My magical colour changing drink when lime was added

Coconut dessert

Coconut dessert

Assorted desserts

Assorted desserts

It was back to Bangkok after that and we arrived before dinner. A day trip to Chantaburi from Bangkok with a one night stay is very manageable and definitely worth exploring! 🙂

About The Author

alvinology

Alvin is a marketer by day and blogger by night. He is a 100% geek who spends too much time surfing the web.

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