Looking back at the Bangkok-Phuket tour, it could easily have been a disaster. We were 15 riders from 7 different countries, had never ridden together, had language and cultural differences, and rode at different paces. The youngest rider was in their early 30s and the oldest was in their early 70s. It would have been easy to find small things to whine about and overlook all the wonderful sights and sounds we experienced everyday as we rode South towards Phuket. Thailand is a Buddhist country so perhaps we were unconsciously following the teachings of the Four Noble Truths. Whatever the reason we formed a nice cycling sangha that helped us all enjoy the trip and experience parts of Thailand that are missed many visitors. Let me share some of those with you.
The Buddhist wats, or temples, and Buddha statues were everywhere. I never tired of looking them.
Some were surrounded by animals. I liked these which appeared to be guardian roosters. We also saw elephants at a number of temples.
One would also see small shrines for offerings and prayers. I saw them near hotels, in service station parking lots, and along the road. You could leave fruit, drink and incense.
The rubber plantations were especially interesting to me. Most now operate at a low level of productivity but are absolutely beautiful to look at as you ride by.
When we rode across Thailand from the Gulf of Thailand to the Andaman Sea, we were treated with various signs for waterfalls. Most were too far off the road for us to stop but we did get to see this spectacular waterfall which had a welcome cooling effect on a rather hot day.
We were never far from the beach.
Recalling the sights and sounds of the trip through these photos makes it easy to understand why so many of the riders were repeat customers. One rider had been on 6 trips with SpiceRoads and several had been on 2 or more trips. I am certainly coming back for another tour.