The province of Trang located directly south of Krabi is best known for its beautiful islands. The town of Trang, however, does not attract as many visitors, which is a shame, because this town is really underrated. With old Sino-Portuguese shophouses, street art, some excellent dim sum restaurants and coffee shops, Trang Town reminds me a bit of Phuket Town — both with a mix of cultural influences from Thailand and China. But what Trang Town is most famous for is its unique green tuk-tuks you won’t see elsewhere in Thailand. We stayed one night at a budget hotel situated next to the train station and the lovely weekend market before continuing southeast to Phatthalung.
Before going to Trang Town, we stopped by Pak Meng Beach 45 minutes west of the town for some lunch. But I wouldn’t recommend dining here as it was quite pricey and not super delicious. But you should definitely stop for a cold one to enjoy the view and snap a picture or two.
If you have been in Phuket’s Old Town, you will recognize some of the colorful Sino-Portuguese houses built during the tin mining boom in the late 1800s.
A ride with the unique green tuk-tuks is a must-do and a great way to see the town. I think we paid 150 baht and was driven around for an hour.
My wife standing in front of the ‘Si Trang’ trees — one of the town’s many wall paintings.
I particularly liked the paintings of the rubber trees and the woman wringing rubber sheets in a mangle machine.
Thailand is the world’s largest natural rubber exporter and the country’s first ever planted rubber tree is standing outside Trang Town (see further down).
Thailand is a country of beautiful temples, but in Trang, there is a church simply known as Trang Church being one of the town’s most famous landmarks.
But for westerners traveling in Thailand, temples are far more interesting, like Wat Tantayapirom Phra Aram Luang as one of the most beautiful temples in Trang.
I recommend visiting Trang Town on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday when there is a lovely night market right in front of the train station with lots of local food.
My wife bought some dried squid which was first heated up quickly before being pressed with a mangle machine to snack on at our hotel room.
We stayed at Ban Aothong Hotel just steps from the market for 20 USD (170 Norwegian kronor), and it was perfect for our purpose.
We didn’t book a room with breakfast included since we wanted to try the popular Pong O Cha Dim Sum (Chinese tapas) the next morning famous for their Moo Yang made from a whole roasted pig. You should also try the ‘kopi,’ which is an old traditional coffee. I just love those moments when you’re on vacation in a hot country sipping your morning coffee with snus under your lip watching the world go by.
Outside Trang Town
Before heading to Phatthalung, we drove 30 minutes south of Trang Town to visit the historical Kantang Railway Station which was built 106 years ago. This station with its yellow-brown wooden terminal building is the end of the Andaman route railway with one train running daily to Bangkok stopping in Trang Town.
Also in Kantang along a road stands the first rubber tree in Thailand planted by Phraya Ratsadanupradit in 1899 to pioneer the rubber plantation industry.
The islands of Trang
Most people visit Trang because of the beautiful islands which are far less crowded than Krabi. We visited Koh Kradan a couple of years ago which you can read about here.
How to go to Trang
Trang, located 2 hours from Krabi, is reachable by air from Bangkok. You can also take an overnight train from Bangkok, which takes around 15 hours.