Our journey today started with a ride past the the salt processing area. Large areas are flooded, looked like rice paddies, with sea water and the water allowed to evaporate leaving a high quality salt behind that is gathered and further processed leaving just the salt crystals.
After about 2 hours we reached our next transport mode, the James Bond boats to the Damnoen Saduak Floating market.
These skinny boats are powered by 4, 6 or 8 cylinder, turbo charged motors with a straight, long shaft to a propeller. The entire assemble is mounted to a swiveling platform the the driver operates from the back of the boat.
As you can imagine they are fast in a straight line but can’t turn unless going very slow. Think Suzuki Hayabusa.
The markets are all professional vendors with the sole purpose of selling you stuff you don’t need, that everyone else is selling. You can walk along the market or stay in your boat and inch along the waterways.
I did manage to find something that I just had to have tho.
Leaving, I found a scooter that would make friends Rachel and Raol green with envy.
Heading north toward Kanchànaburi too much coffee and beer in my system proved to be quite a literal pain. Stopping at the Kanchànaburi War Cemetery I sprinted in my best full bladder speed hoping to find the nearest toilet, empty. Success, so a good end to that story.
The Kanchànaburi War Cemetery is filled with British, Dutch and Australian POWs that died during the building of the rail line between Burma and this point as a supply line for Japan during WWII.
We next were taken to an Elephant trekking camp where tourists could ride the elephants. We fed the babies, refused to ride on the backs of elephants and educated other tourists on the dangers of this activity.
Following this we rafted down some rapids on lashed bamboo rafts, swam in the calm parts along elephants on the side of the river. Very cool.
A plane ride away was Phuket, Thailand, our next destination.
Our hotel was a fantastic place on Kamala beach, the Novatel Kamala Beach resort. Great setting with a swim up infinity pool.
There was a show that we hit the first night, the Phuket Fantasea, which was a cultural show in a very elaborate setting.
In my opinion, the show is overrated and not worth the price of admission, skip it.
Greg “WANDRR” and Melanie