We had a great flight from Manchester to Frankfurt, then from Frankfurt onto Bangkok, it was basically an overnight flight and the kids slept 80% of the time, we also got through immigration and customs quite quickly in Bangkok. As expected when we got out of the airport the heat hit us, it was in the middle of a storm and some lightning hit the airport with the loudest crack, we thought that a bomb had just exploded in there, bit scarey but someone assured us it was just lightning. When we got to Hua Hin, 3 and a bit hours later, it had been exactly 24 hrs from doorstep at Penglannau to doorstep C1 Manora Village,Hua Hin, bit of journey but everyone had slept quite well and was in good spirits. When we got to our villa, Rhys said "now this is more like it!". It was lovely and huge, beautifully furnished, I think we will be able to rough it here for 10 nights we said……….
Side by side frames on my camera, what a contrast, snow to hot humid heat.
Just a few pictures of our villa, It was really really nice and a lovely way to spend our 10 nights in Hua Hin.These villas are privately owned but most of them only use the villas themselves, and some live there permanently. We met quite a few of the owners around the pool, and if I had a few quid spare, I think it would be a lovely place to buy a holiday home. Some days we would just chill out by the pool and go back and forth to the villa, and some days we would head out and about.
This was the Hua Hins night market. At the start the kids were unsure of the smells, the crowds, it was still quite hot when the sun went down, the beggars and the whole concept of bartering to buy something. The first time we went there we didn’t buy that much, we sussed out how much you could get things for and what things were actually there. In the end of the second time we went the kids were bartering themselves, it was great watching them hold their ground and say no this much. Gwynfor wasn’t very good at it ,they would give him a price and he would say OK! Doh! I kept telling him that’s only the amount to start bartering at.But anyway we had fun and lots of laughs at each other and a few bargains as well.
We found this ice-cream chain store (we think maybe American) that had the hugest sundaes that we have ever seen, the kids were in their glory. This was on November the 1st, my birthday not sure how we ended up eating ice-cream but later I had a few margaritas to celebrate my birthday ….love them margaritas! We would get a ride into Hua Hin from the village in the back of a ute, Thailand doesn’t believe in seat belts or helmets for the millions of moped riders. On the way home from town we would get a tuk tuk it was a bit slower but lovely and breezy, we all liked it.
We went on a 2 hour elephant trek up a mountain, not far out of Hua Hin. The girls went on one and the boys went on the other.Ella was a bit scared at the start but soon relaxed into the motion as the elephant plodding along. Aislins sunglasses fell off and and the elephant behind us stopped and picked them up for her, they are quite amazing creatures. They are quite different to the African elephants as well and the kids were pointing out the differences, it was good to compare them. It was pretty cool when we went through water holes.On the way down the mountain the riders got off and let the kids ride the elephants bare back, they thought that was amazing, and a once in a lifetime opportunity.
When we got back to where we had got on, the kids fed the hard working elephants.Then they had ice-cream and fresh pineapple waiting for us, which we ate while an another elephant put on a little show for us.I bet you never knew an elephant can do a hand stand……the kids thought that was very clever. Rhys and the elephant played soccer, the elephant kicked it and Rhys blocked it from the goals. He said it stung his feet because of the speed that the elephant kicked it. We all really enjoyed our trek and time with the elephants.
This lovely secluded beach was only about 3 mins from Manora Village where we stayed. We had a great afternoon at San Hoi Beach, so relaxing,As we walked up to the beach we were ushered to a group of deck chairs and a table, drink orders were taken and very diligently refilled as soon as they were empty, the beers were going down wonderfully, while the kids were playing in the sand and the water. The kids really chilled out as well on the deck chairs. Just behind the beach up on the rocks we discovered this Thai sculpture and on the other side of the rocky hill we could see the top of a massive gold Buddha ,I’m talking about 4 or 5 stories high that over looks Hua Hin.
This was a very special night, we were picked up by "Sasi Restaurant" which is where we had dinner, and while we ate dinner a traditional Thai show was performed ,all in traditional dress and costumes. Alot of the dances tell a story, later we discussed with the kids what we thought they were about, and I think we had it pretty sussed. At the end of the show they did a traditional bamboo stick dance and then got people off the restaurant floor to join in. Rhys ,Aislin and Jack got up and got the hang of it really well, you could tell they enjoyed it and afterwards they said it was one of the best parts, It was all outside and it was a nice warm night, with great Thai food and fantastic entertainment.
This was a very interesting outing, it showed us the stages of how silk is made ,from the larvae to the cocoon, to how they extract the silk thread from the cocoon, how they make it softer , how they dye it and how it is then made into fabric with pattern. This poor women sits here all day to weave 3 inches of fabric , that’s how long it takes her. Then they had a shop and you could buy silk and get it made into a garment. We all found it very interesting , I liked how they extract the silk from the cocoon .
This was on the same day as the silk factory. It is always interesting to go food shopping in a foreign country especially when you cant read the labelling so it always a bit of hit and miss to what you are actually getting. Anyway we needed to restock supplies and get some food for a bbq we were having around the pool with some of the lovely residents of the Manora Village that we had met around the pool and the village.
we had a lovely night around the pool, we had plenty of food and more than enough wine it took me quite a few days to be able to look at another wine ….
Once we got to our hotel, which was near the airport in , Bangkok we got settled and headed for the Grand Palace. On the way in you had to make sure your legs were covered and no singlet tops, all the boys had to wear these groovy(not) pants and Ella had to wear a sarong skirt which was way too long for her, and I had to wear an ugly shirt, but we were respecting their beliefs so that was the main thing.Once we had finished laughing at each other, we set off to look at the Grand palace which has many many buildings. You need sunglasses on as everything is extremely shiny and full of bling. The work put into these buildings is amazing and they are still adding to it. It’s not only the buildings but how intricately they are decorated truely amazing.The floating emerald Buddah was a sight, we wernt allowed to take photos inside this temple shrine ,but to sit on the crowded floor and watch the Thai people pray and that ,had a good feel to it.They are very religious people,and very patriotic to their king and queen.You could also hear the monks chanting through the palace it was quite calming.
This was funny, we were standing looking at something, and all these Thai school kids came up to Rhys and started asking him questions and wanted their photo taken with him. I think he thought "he was pretty fly for a white guy" LOL!!!!Not sure who they thought he was? or if it was the Liverpool top???? But it was funny watching him deal with a crowd, he did well.The next day we were up early and on our way to Melbourne ,Australia.
Well this is where our AMAZING year ends. We have all enjoyed everything ,we have seen and done, and all of the lovely people we have met along the way. And the people we already knew and spent some unforgettable times with. I will keep all of you up to date with our life here in Australia. Keep posted.