Thailand

by kaiconfusion

Malaysia behind us Thailand ahead of us…

At the Thai Malay border in Sungai Kolok.

It might be hard to recognize but the picture underneath shows the military guarded entry to the train station of Sungai Kolok.
The first thing we saw after entering the country, was a military jeep,

with an open roof hatch out of which a soldier was firmly holding on to his huge machine gun. Quite a shock!
We were surprised seeing lots of heavily armed soldiers and secret service agents around the train station.
The trains were guarded for the first view hours by soldiers with pump guns and machine guns hanging off their backs.

 

Sungai Kolok as well as the rest of the southern regions of Thailand are object of violent clashes between ethnic Malay separatists and Thai security forces. The decades old conflict claimed around 3500 life’s since 2004.
The entire region is considered to be unsafe for traveling and foreign office give out travel warnings.

wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Thailand_insurgency#Separatist_movements

news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/

Traveling 3rd class of course.
Taking the train from the southern border of  Thailand Sungai Kolok to Bangkok can be as cheap as 290 Baht which is currently 7,50€ for 1159Km and roughly 22 hours

In most Thai trains the doors of the wagons will be open while traveling.
Unimaginable for European standards but totally normal here, also the back of the train just remains open.

Hotel station!
We though it’s going to be cheap but we had to pay with many mosquito bites…
Overnight at Surat Thani Station…

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