Kanchanaburi to Ko Lanta via Bangkok
An interesting hello kitty number plate we saw in Kanchanaburi;
Kanchanaburi to Ko Lanta is not a straightforward journey, especially as we already had enough experiences with minivans and buses that we wanted. Instead of taking a 14+ hour journey on minivans, we opted to go for a sleeper train from Bangkok. But before we started our journey, we needed something to refresh ourselves along with an early lunch.
Kanchanaburi to Bangkok (just towards the west of the river due to protests – otherwise the destination would’ve been Khao San Road) on minivan took 150 Baht per person for the 3 hour trip and negotiated 100 Baht for two large bags. From there to Hua Lamphong took 75 Baht on a metered taxi.
After a two hour wait, we grabbed some snacks and boarded the train. My husband paid for a croissant, but as I walked away during the transaction, he got distracted, and walked towards me without realizing that he hadn’t picked it up.
There is a prayer area in the station on the second floor, and a food court containing halal food. The smell in the food area was sickening, and I walked out and opted to have a hot drink instead.
Hua Lamphong to Trang was 2760 Baht for two people sharing a first class cabin.
The tiny cabin (alot smaller than my expectations) had a sink, but the toilet facilities were shared, and it was unfortunately one of those flat toilets; very hard to use especially because of the rattling train and the dirty floor. At least I could let my hair down in the privacy of our cabin. A staff member came to make our beds in the evening and i was glad to see clean sheets. They serve halal chicken on the train so we were able to order some dinner.
Due to the constant noise outside of people trying to sell drinks, snacks and people walking about – it was hard to sleep which i did after 2 am, and breakfast was served at 6.40 am followed by the same person coming to make our beds. I was dead tired, having boarded the train at 5 pm previous day and arriving at Trand at 8.45 am with still the journey left!
Arriving in Trang, we booked at a tour office near the station for the minivan ride to Ko Lanta, took a stroll around the morning stalls nearby and waited at a halal food shop – Masala Station for our scheduled departure with food.
The owner of the shop greeted us and told us after some conversation that he was going to Ko Ngai for some research work.
It was 2.5 hours journey, but took over 3 hours, atleast the drive was scenic and i had a re-charged phone, which was another advantage of 1st class cabin in train. The minivan left Trang and went all the way above Ko Lanta North. Then took the first ferry and drove to take another ferry to Ko Lanta South where all the hotels are. The queuing for ferry was frustrating in the heat.
Finally, after almost 28 hours, we were here!