Inside the Christendom of Trang Town
The town of Trang in South Thailand has its origins in tin mining and rubber plantations, but nowadays it’s just another stepping stone for travellers barely pausing there and heading towards islands such as Koh Ngai, Koh Mook, a.m.o.
Good riddance as Trang is a pretty laid-back place with plenty of attractive old houses, markets and more.
Not that we needed any reason for stopping here, Trang just happened to be on the way to Surat Thani and provided therefore an opportunity to stretch our legs off the tourist track.
Coming by minivan from Pak Bara and getting dropped off in front of Trang Railway Station, we quickly wandered over to the Station Hotel, checked in, dumped our luggage and started walking.
Public transport in Trang includes light green Ayutthaya style tuk tuks, at least we didn’t see any other colors…
Some towns/cities use specific decorations for their street lights and on one street here we noticed that as well, not sure though of what it signifies, a kind of spaceship or an artistic dugong???
In a distant past Thai movie posters were hand painted and provided a lot of work to commercial artists.
On the market we encountered a former poster artist who now tries to make a living by selling fruit and vegetables, tough job…
When it comes to street art, Trang has some as well, often focussing on its symbol; the dugong!
Cafe Amazon is nowadays established in most cities in Thailand, but the one in Trang moved into a classic vintage style building with a very unusual ‘decoration’: HIAI, IHIA, or AIHI?!
Quite a surprise to realize that Trang is part of ‘Christendom’, not something you’d expect of a city in the predominantly muslim South!
As for the ‘ancient remain’, that obviously referred to us…
We blundered into a place called Cinta Garden, obviously a kind of vintage night entertainment place but at this time of the day utterly desolate and deserted.
Never realized that The Beatles were that big in Trang, but of course I couldn’t resist and had to be a part of this Abbey Road display.
The motorbikes with sidecars on display were great as well, I had to take some photos…
Trang fortunately has a fair number of old houses in good condition and the window shutters with their embellishments above looked great.
Every weekend there’s a lively Trang Railway Station Trade Zone happening of which we didn’t know about but were more than happy to explore.
The other name Trang City Train Market seemed more suitable as there were loads of food stalls.
We ended the evening with paying some bars a visit, including a rooftop bar and a ground level place called Be Here Now, excellent pub!
The next morning we wandered around the markets not unlike (though not in ‘competition’ with) some monks doing their rounds.
Lots of fruit on sale including cat apples…
And these special 'bitter green beans', in Thai 'sa-toh', well known for smelly after-effects following consumption!
All good things must end and we had a train to catch to Kantang, the end of the line, but Trang is one of those places I wouldn't mind returning to.
At Trang Railway Station, notice the single track working token which each train driver must have before entering a section of single track!