Soft adventure in Nakhon Sawan
Nakhon Sawan taps rafting, trekking and biking to boost its tourism profile
(Published on October 19, 2006)
Who would go to Nakhon Sawan for adventure? The province is not well-known for adventure tourism probably because there never has been an attempt to promote such activities before. But that is set to change as provincial authorities, local tourism associations, tour operators and Mae Wong National Park have joined forces to promote the province as an adventure tourism destination.
"Normally, people see Nakhon Sawan as a passing point on their way to northern provinces. Very few stop over. They don't know what's interesting here," said Surin Nilkamhaeng, the chairman of Nakhon Sawan Tourism Promotion Association.
Nakhon Sawan draws tourists just once a year - during the Chinese New Year because it has the third largest Chinese community in Thailand after Bangkok and Phuket.
But when it comes to adventure, even tour operators are at a loss, although the province does get the occasional mention in the circle of seasoned trekkers who fancy Mt Mokoju because it boasts the highest peak in western Thailand, known for its secluded beauty, which requires five days of trekking to reach the top.
Unfortunately, they prefer to trek there via Kamphaeng Phet Province, even though the summit itself is in Nakhon Sawan.
But if you are not that tough, soft adventures like mountain biking, trekking nature trails, rafting and kayaking are some of the alternative tourist activities now available in Nakhon Sawan.
Let's start at Mae Wong National Park, 80 kilometres from Nakhon Sawan town. Teeming with wildlife, the area was declared a national park over a decade ago but it somehow has failed to catch the attention of average tourists.
However, lately the park has sparked some interest among nature lovers and conservationists. Wildlife like elephants, tigers, and cobras abound, which a park official attributed to growing fertility of the forest and its vast wilderness.
The park provides accommodation as well as camping facilities.
Visiting tourists can relax or go trekking or biking over rough mountain trails that run for miles through dense forest vegetation. Rafting and canoeing in the Rewa River is another option. The current is not that strong, ideal for starters, and tracing the river as it snakes through the park visitors will be blessed with pristine natural beauty along its banks.
The river is fed directly by water running off the mountain, therefore it is not yet contaminated by pollutants as is the case with rivers elsewhere, explained Songsak Sriklueb, the executive of a travel company that organises rafting tours to all parts of the country.
"It's refreshing, safe and fun rafting here," he added.
Visitors are delivered to the starting point of rafting by the E-taek, a locally built motorised transport used by farmers. The ride is bumpy, drawing shrieks and laughter as passengers are tossed back, forth and sideways on a trail laden with potholes. The rafting excursion lasts an hour and a half.
Early risers can catch a glimpse of the breaking of dawn from a view point at Mor E-heud, but to get there you need to trek a kilometre. The view from there is just fantastic.
Meanwhile, some villagers have opened their homes to visitors. However, homestay still has some way to go before it can become a viable alternative.
So next time you are visiting Nakhon Sawan you know where to go looking for some fun and adventure.
Life's like that
ผู้ติดตามบล็อก : 1 คน [?]
เป็นสมาชิกแบบเป็นๆหายๆของท่านนายพันติ๊บ มาก็หลายปีแล้วล่ะ ทำตัวล่อของลับ..เอ๊ย...55..ลับๆล่อๆ อยู่ด้วยชื่อต่างๆ มาหลายชื่อ เลยไม่ดังติดอันดับกะเค้าซักที ตามประสาคนขี้อาย ไม่อยากให้ใครจดจำ มาคราวนี้ ตกผลึกทางความคิด แล้วก็...หาทางแก้ปัญหาชื่อ ล็อคอินที่ไม่เข้าตาตัวเอง ด้วยวิธีการอันแยบยล จนได้ชื่อนี้ในที่สุด พอใจล่ะ ก็ผ่านร้อนๆหนาวๆ มาซะขนาดนี้ ก็พอเข้าใจล่ะ ว่า life's like that.......ชีวิตก็เป็นเช่นนั้นเอง