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Thursday, 23 October 2014

Wat Phasorn Kaew (Lomsak, Thailand)



Along route 12, about 15km after Lomsak (coming from Khon Kaen) is on your right hand a beautiful temple build in Gaudi style. It is a medication centre that is partly still under construction. The temple itself is beautiful decorated with colourful mosaic stones. And it is located on a magnificent location on a small mountain with in the background a huge mountain range (Phu Hin Rong Khla).

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Khon Kaen National Museum (Khon Kaen, Thailand)

Although it is called "Khon Kaen National Museum" a name like "National Museum of North-East Thailand" would be more suitable. It is located in the city of Khon Kaen at the area of Government buildings. Although the museum opened in 1972 (rebuild in 1993) it is in a modern and well taken care museum with explanation also in English.  The museum is open from Wednesday to Sunday from 09:00 to 16:00. It is closed on Monday, Tuesday and public holidays. Entrance fee is 20 Thai baht for Thai people but Tourists / Foreigners  have the privilege to pay 5 times as much (100 Thai baht). Unfortunately I was not allowed to make photos inside (but I managed one shot).

In short you could say that the museum is an exhibition of North-East Thailand following the Prehistorical period (Settlement & Tools), the Historical period (Dvaravati Culture & Khmer Culture), Art Evolution and the City of Khon Kaen (Traces of the past, History & Folk Culture).

To begin with I not have a high admiration for museums in Thailand, most times it is Thai language only, old and not taken care of. But this museum is a very good exception of that. Actually it is full of beautiful masterpieces of ancient art & images. Highly recommended!

On show are some maps with the places of importance for  Historical & Prehistorical Period. And it is amazingly to see that almost the all North-East of Thailand is littered with places of interest with archaeologically sites and Khmer ruins. Must be said that the majority are in the lower part of the Isaan.

This museum is very well worth to visit when you are in Khon Kaen and makes a good starting point to explorer Prehistorical & Historical Isaan.

The north of Laos, a country without a hurry

For me it was more as 7 years ago that I was for the last time in the country of the thousand elephants, the visa-runs to Vientiane not included. For the one who has never been there first a small impression of his country that is land-locked by China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Burma.

P.s This story is based on experience in 2004. Some travel facts might not be up-to-date anymore!

After 1 week in the south of Laos we left Don Khong with our big open pickup truck to Pakse to take there the VIP night bus to Vientiane. This bus leaves at 20:30 and arrives in Vientiane about 6 o’clock in the morning. The roads again were very good and they did stop one time to eat something or to use the toilet. It all seems like a very good way of transport but …. It’s an air-conditioned bus and it’s very, and I really men very, good air-conditioned. So good that it was actually bloody cold! Even with the blanket that the sweet hostess will give you.

On the motorbike from Thailand to Laos and Cambodia and back to Thailand

Motorbike trip made in 2012, from Khon Kaen to south Laos (Pakse, Attapeu, Don Khong and Don Det) and Cambodia (Kratie, Kampong Cham, Phnom Penh, Battambang)  and Thailand (Ban Phe, Pattaya). It may look like a technical story about riding motorbikes, but it is not. It is actually more about traveling in Laos and Cambodia.

We did ride with 2 riders, both on a Kawasaki Versys 650. We did a total of about 2800 km in 14 days. And we only had 2 flat tyres!

It was a great & safe trip, no accidents, no racing and a lot learned about riding. After riding in Cambodia & Laos I realize that the roads of Thailand are actually very good and that Thai actually drive & ride not so bad as I always thought.

Faces of Asia .... Laos


Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Pattaya 2 beach (Khon Kaen, Thailand)

Located on the west-side of Ubol Ratana Lake (30 km north-west of Khon Kaen city). As Pattaya (Chonburi) is not famous for its beach, here at Pattaya 2 (Khon Kaen) you do not have to expect much better beach.

The good thing is you can drive your care up the "beach" right next to your deck-chair. And instead of people walking by to sell you things, here you have motorbikes coming by to sell you ice-cream, food & drinks.

Monday, 20 October 2014

Khon Kaen Zoo & Water Paradise (Khao Suan Kwang, Thailand)

It is located on a small mountain, about 40 km north of Khon Kaen city at the border of Khon Kaen province and Udon Thani province. Originally it was called "Khao Suan Open Zoo" but it has been renamed and is targeted to become a provincial tourist attraction.

Let start with the fact that I do not like ZOO's. For me it are prisons for animals, sentenced to life in prison for our fun. But well there are some acceptable ZOO's. Well let me tell you this from the start .... as ZOO this place is not worth visiting.


Sunday, 19 October 2014

My Good Old Midget MK3

In my previous life it all began with failing to get my driver license for my motorbike (although I did drive a Honda CB400four for 2 years). On a summer day full of sunshine I thought "What the heck I am going to drive a old-timer cabriolet".


Sangkhlaburi a hidden gem (Thailand)



Although it is already a long time ago that I did visit this place a few times it is still in my memories as a very special and beautiful place to go. Located along the huge "Khao Leam Lake" and almost at the Burmese border it is about 200 km from Kanchaburi. And it is famous for its "Thailands longest wooden bridge"  (400 meter) connecting Sangkhla on one side of the lake with Wankha at the other side of the lake.

The south of Laos, a country without a hurry

Waterfall at Tad Fan
For me it was more as 7 years ago that I was for the last time in the country of the thousand elephants, the visa-runs to Vientiane not included. For the one who has never been there first a small impression of his country that is land-locked by China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Burma.

P.s This story is based on experience in 2004. Some travel facts might not be up-to-date anymore!

It’s a country with about 5 to 6 million people, who have been in the faraway history a play ball of the Khmer kingdom en the Siamese kingdom. After that it became a victim of the French expansion drift. And in more recent history it became the battleground between communism and capitalism.






Saturday, 18 October 2014

The Ozone Boutique Hotel (Udon Thani, Thailand)

A brand new modern hotel in Udon Thani city, although a bit out of the small city center. They have private parking, free wifi and swimming pool. They serve a simple breakfast buffet.

Rooms were spacious and comfortable with TV, airco, mini-bar, balcony and private bathroom (shower only). Staff was friendly and service minded. All together very good value for money. Recommended!

See The Ozone Boutique Hotel

Our bedroom







The lobby












Friday, 17 October 2014

Huanpak Jumjai Homestay (Phayao, Thailand)

Located 50 meters from the lake side of Kwan Phayao. A small well taken care of hotel or more a Home-stay. The rooms are spacious and clean. Bathroom was very small but the shower was very good. There is free wifi and they have free bicycles to explore Phayao lake side.

All rooms have TV, mini-bar and airco. Of course there is no swimming pool. We liked it very much and I think it is good value for money. Highly recommended!

O ... there is limited private parking for motorbikes.

See Huanpak JumJai Homestay





Our bedroom

The small bathroom

Bedroom