…Last Year’s Top Ten List.
Strange thing… I don’t feel like I went many places last year. But then, where I lived for most of the year, the island of Ko Yao Noi, was new. Plus, my tootlings came in short bursts as I made my regular 90-day visits to Malaysia.
I suppose I spent a lot of time in Malaysia, Southern Thailand and some of that in what is generally called “The Deep South” so it’s not too surprising that many of my favorite places were mosques. Let’s start with those…
- Wadil-Husen Mosque
Built in 1634 it is made of wood from the hummingbird and ironwood trees. Since nails hadn’t been invented, there aren’t any! It’s all neatly slotted together with joints. Still in use, it is the oldest wooden mosque in Thailand.
It’s in Narathiwat Province, just off highway 42 that runs down to the Malaysian border.
- Masjid Kristal, Kuala Terengganu
On a rather different scale of opulence is the Crystal Mosque in the northern Malaysian State of Terengganu.
It seems to be more of a tourist attraction than a functioning mosque.
I’d seen photos of it spectacularly illuminated at night, but I lucked out. It was dark and gloomy after sunset.
- Songkhla Central Mosque
Still on the theme of tourist attractions, the Central Mosque in Songkhla seems to attract busloads of Malaysians. The resemblance to the Taj Mahal is not coincidental.
- Krue Se Mosque / Masjid Kerisik, Pattani
Its age is unknown, but it is believed to have been built somewhere around 1590, and is the oldest brick built mosque in SEAsia. It has an unfortunate recent history which you can read about at Wikipedia if you wish.
Personally; I was impressed that it is very much still in use, despite its age.
- Pasai Beach, Ko Yao Noi
I guess it’s time for some beaches, and many of the best are to be found on Ko Yao Noi. Pasai Beach is where I spent much of 2019.
My humble abode was somewhere near that red blob, center right.
- Long Beach, Ko Yao Noi
Still on the island, Long Beach was indeed long when the tide was out, but almost non existent when the tide was high.
Aerial photos are best…
- Suan Khuan Muang, Yala
No one goes to Yala. It’s on the road between nowhere and also nowhere. Well, to be honest it’s a fairly easy diversion off the main southbound road. Yala town I thought was very attractive and worth a few hours of tootling.
Pretty-much slap bang in the middle of town is relaxing garden. So, I brought lunch, and relaxed..
- Krabi Town – Riverside
If people think of Krabi they think of beaches. There’s plenty, and they’re plenty busy. I stay away. Often needing to stay overnight before catching the car ferry to Ko Yao Noi, I’ve stayed in Krabi Town.
It’s a place I really like. Good cheap accommodation and great restaurants. For me, one of the attractions is the riverside walk, which has been greatly improved in the last year or two. A good way to walk off the previous night’s over-indulgence…
- Ko Yo, Songkhla
If you’re zooming down to Malaysia you can cross the island of Ko Yo in the blink of an eye. Which would be a shame. It’s hilly with great views…
- Khanom-Khao Plai Dam New Road
Close to my present home is a brand new road running south to Khao Plai Dam. It’s been carved out of the hillside and offers spectacular sea views for almost the whole of its 11km length.
When I first noticed its construction it seemed to be a solution looking for a problem. But, if it was built to attract tourists, it’s worked. On weekends and holidays, for me, it’s a road to avoid. They arrive in in swarms. During the week though, if I’m heading south, I’ll use it to enjoy the views…
So, what does 2020 have in store?