Romance, Leeches and Elephants?

Thailand is likely best known for its inviting beaches and vibrant cities.  One of the best kept secrets of old Siam is its rain forests.  A short and affordable drive from either Phuket or Krabi, is the crown jewel of the Thailand forests, Khao Sok National forest.   Khao Sok is perfect for the active couple.  There is so much to offer!

Romance Tree HouseOne fun idea for lodging is to stay in a tree house deep in the forest!  We chose “Our Jungle House” located on the edge of the national forest.  It offers “rustic” accommodation with excellent service.   The Jungle House is located right on a small river that offers great wading and if you wish, take an inner tube float from the bridge down to the resort.  The resort has a main lodge and a number of cabins and tree houses along the river.  Many command excellent views and all are spaced out enough to make you feel like you’re the only ones out there!  Of course the “Fighting Couple” elected to take “Romance Tree House”.

 

What to do

Bird of ParadiseDay hikes

There are so many great little day hikes all through the park.  When you arrive at the entrance, pay your 100Baht entry fee and they will supply you with a really good map.  Scope out your adventure according to your time.  There a many lakes, waterfalls as well as caves to explore.  Remember to pack your water and take your time as you hike due to the extreme heat and humidity.   Take your time and don’t overdo it.  Better yet, pack a picnic and spend the entire day exploring one of the pristine rain forest in Asia.   Hiring a guide is up to you.  It is Thailand, so they do come cheap.  Many of the hikes are just fine as self guided adventures.

 

If you are looking for more pictures of the Rain Forest, check out the Fighting Couple on Facebook.

Night hikes

You can arrange through the park or your lodging a night hike to explore the jungle.  A number of the creepy crawlers can only be seen at night.  Our guide’s command of english was limited, but the flora and fauna was truly beautiful.  One thing to be mindful of when traipsing through the rainforest is to beware of Leeches.  Yes, we said leeches.  They fall from the trees and are about an inch long and very skinny (that is before they latch on and begin to vampire you).   Our guide was wearing shorts and sandals.  He kept picking these little things off his toes.  Mike was supremely confident since he was wearing long slacks with tall socks and shoes that no harm would come from these pesky things.  Oh contraire!  Once we returned to our “romance” tree house,  Mike found that he had acquired an unintended souvenir, a leech.  It latched on just above the kneecap.  It came off fairly easy, but the blood flowed for quite awhile.  following are some of the shots we caught while in the Jungle:

Thailand night hike

 Elephant expedition  This is Thailand, so everywhere you turn there is a vendor wanting you to sign up with them to “ride and elephant”.   If all you want is a quick photo op, go ahead.   On you hop, then a quick saunter around the parking lot, and you are done.  Boring!   If you really want to experience a true elephant adventure, work with your accommodation to take a half day trek.  Our elephant wranglers loaded us in the back of a pickup at our hotel and took us up in the mountains.  We were assigned an “elephant driver”.  We mounted our pachyderm and off we went.  The driver sits on the elephants neck offering verbal cues as to our path.  Words and pictures cannot capture just how gorgeous our trek was.  It felt like something out of Jurassic Park.  Stunning!  At our turn around point we had a swim in a waterfall fed lake.  It was a great day!  (Sorry, no fighting on this one)

Thailand Rain Forest

 

Thailand Rain forest

 

Thailand Rain Fores

The Thailand rain forest is not to be missed.  Thailand has it all, lovely beaches, lush rain forest and  the people are some of the most welcoming and gracious we have come across in our adventures.  So, have you been to Khao Sok?  What were your impressions?

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.