Infobox Thai Province
name = Trang
thai = ตรัง
area = 4,917.519
arearank = 44th
population = 595,110
population_as_of = 2000
populationrank = 40th
density = 121
densityrank = 36th
isocode = TH-92
governor = Anon Manatwanit
governor_since = November 2006
Trang (also Muang Thap Thiang, _th. ตรัง) is the one of the southern provinces ("changwat") of
Thailand, at the western shore of the Malay Peninsulato the Andaman Sea. Neighboring provinces are (from north clockwise) Krabi, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Phatthalung and Satun.
Trang used to be a port involved in foreign trade. It was the first city where rubber was planted. Phraya Ratsadanupradit Mahison Phakdi brought rubber from Malaysia and planted it here before anywhere else in southern Thailand in 1899. Rubber is now considered an important commodity of Thailand. The important Trang River flows through the province from its origin in the Khao Luang mountain range and the Palian River from the Banthat mountain range. Trang province has an area of approximately 5,000 square km.
The province is located on the coast of the
Andaman Sea, and contains 46 islands together with the mainland area. There are only few plains, and most of the area is hills. The Khao Luang and the Banthat mountain range are the sources of the two main rivers of the province, the Trang Riverand the Palian River.
It has along western coastline of about 119 kilometres. The province consists of an archipelago in the Andaman Sea with over 46 islands. Of these, 12 are in Amphoe Kantang, 13 in Amphoe Palian and 21 in Amphoe Sikao. The best time for sea travel is during October to May. Situated along the Andaman coast, Trang province is home to innumerable beautiful islands, while the mountainous eastern region is home to dramatic waterfalls, caves and pristine jungle. Between the mountains and the coast are extensive plantations of rubber.
The southern coast of the province is protected in the
Mu Ko Phetra National Park. The estuary of the Trang River together with the Hat Chao Mai Marine National Parkand Ko Libong Non-hunting Areaare also a registered Ramsar wetland.
AirTrang has its own airport in Mueang district. Thai Airways and Nok Air operate daily flight to Trang Airport. Rail
Trang is one of the southern destinations offering a train routes to Bangkok’s Hua Lamphong central station starting from Thung Song Station in Nakhon Si Thammarat province, this south-western route passes Huay Yod station to Muang station and end at Kan Tang terminal in Trang.
RoadMajor road to and from Trang are:
#Highway No. 4 (Bangkok-Chumphon) to Highway No. 41 (Surat Thani-Thung Song- Huai Yot-Trang), total distance of 828 kilometres.
#Highway No. 4 (Bangkok-Chumphon) to Ranong-Phang-nga-Krabi-Trang, total distance of 1,020 kilometres.
#Highway No. 404-416 (Satun-Palian-Trang), total distance of 140 kilometres.
#Highway No. 4-407 (Hat Yai-Phatthalung-Trang), total distance of 148 kilometres.
#Highway No. 4-402 (Phuket-Phang-nga-Krabi-Trang), total distance of 312 kilometres.
These vans ply between Trang and neighbouring provinces on a regular basis.
Songthaew (public passenger pick-up vehicles)
Songthaew are the most popular form of local public transportation around both the town and rural areas.
There are buses to and from Trang to Bangkok and every province in the south.
Boats to islands
Trang has 3 main piers for boats to the islands, they are Pak Meng Pier, Ban Chao Mai Pier, and Kuan Thung Kuu Pier.
Unlike its big sister provinces of Krabi, Pha-nga and Phuket, Trang’s tourism is on a much lower level with little in the way of major development. That is not to say however, that Trang has little appeal, as it certainly does – but the tourist crowds that Trang mostly pulls in are Thais and not foreigners.
*Ko Muk and Tham Morakot (เกาะมุก-ถ้ำมรกต) are the most prominent points in the Trang Sea. Ko Muk is mostly occupied by sea-facing towering cliffs to the west. Located on the eastern side of the island is a village of fishermen who have still maintained their ways of life as islanders. On the island to the west is Tham Morakot, a unique sea cave. With light from the outside, emerald water can be seen inside the cave; it is unusual and beautifully nature.
*Hat Yong Ling and Hat San (หาดหยงหลิง-หาดสั้น) is on the way to Chao Mai Beach and a 2-kilometre road leads to Yong Lin Beach. This curved beach parallels a pine forest. At the beach’s end is a high mountain with holes and caves that can be passed through to a cliff with more caves and rocks similar to a fortress encircling sand dunes.
*Ko Chueak - Ko Waen (เกาะเชือก-เกาะแหวน) are small islands between Ko Muk and Ko Kradan. They are teeming with shallow and deepwater corals and many types of fish.
*Ko Kradan (เกาะกระดาน) is arguably the most beautiful island in the Trang. It has an area of 600 acres. Most of the island (5/6) is under the responsibility of Hat Chao Mai National Park. The rest are privately owned. The most striking feature of Ko Kradan is its powdery white beach and crystal-clear water that permits a decent view of the coral reef underneath that stretches from the beach’s northern end to the coast. A variety of colourful fish inhabit the shallow water corals. Ko Kradan is to the west of Ko Muk and Ko Libong.
*Hat Pak Meng (หาดปากเมง) is at Tambon Mai Fat, 40 kilometres from the city. The 5-kilometre long beach is in the shape of a crescent moon. A pine forest fringes the beach. Assorted large and small islands dot the sea, looking like a person lying face up in the ocean. Trang locals and people from nearby provinces like to come here to relax and sample seafood in the restaurants.
*Namtok Ton Te (น้ำตกโตนเต๊ะ) is 45 kilometres from the city. It is the tallest and most popular waterfall in Trang with water that drops down 320 metres of rocks. The source is in the Banthat Mountain Range. Assorted tropical floras cover the surrounding area.
*Tham Le Khao Kop (ถ้ำเลเขากอบ) This cave is a popular natural wonder with a stream flowing through it. The cave itself looks like a high and steep cliff with layers of rocks. A canal from the Banthat Mountain Range divides into 3 waterways upon reaching Khao Kop, 2 going around the mountain and the other flowing through the cave under the mountain. Stalactites and stalagmites line the cave for about 4 kilometres. Currently the Khao Kop Tambon Administration Organization provides rowboats for visitors to view the cave and to be an eco-tourism and adventure activity by the locals.
*Namtok Sai Rung (น้ำตกสายรุ้ง) This single-level waterfall falls from a high and huge cliff. The water turns into a rainbow as the sun shines through it.
*Koh Lao Liang (เกาะเหลาเหลียง) These two islands, located in between Koh Libong and Koh Petra. The color of the sea around Koh Lao Liang is emerald green. The sea between these two islands is deep and swift. Both islands are big limestone mountains. There are highly sloped cliffs on both sides. The beach has white sand.
*Koh Takiang (เกาะตะเกียง) is a small island on in the group of south Trang islands. It is the island with only 100 meter long beach. However, this beach is quite clean. The rest area is covered by rocks and hillocks. There is a lighthouse for chip in this region.
Trekking The province has plenty of forest, wildlife and more than 20 waterfalls, so making the province suitable for trekking. trails include:
*Tontok Waterfall-Sakai Village-Klongtok Waterfall
*Sairung Waterfall-Nanmuang-Khao Rutu
*Tontok Waterfall-Bantra Ranger Center Huaysom-Sahaipakao Camp-Chedchan Waterfall
*Tonte Waterfall to Khao Chedyod
Diving Trang offers divers coral reefs, clear water and colourful marine life.Unfortunately, most divers on coming to the south to dive fail to realize that Trang province offers diving sites on a par with neighbouring Krabi, Pha-nga and Phuket. So, Trang is appropriate for those who wish to get off the beaten track and away from the tourist crowds.
Chaomai National Park This area, 20km in length, is said to have one of the best diving sites in the world. Among the 40 islands in Trang, Koh Kradan is considered the best. Other popular islands for diving include Ko Chueak, Ko Ma and Ko Ngai.
Bird WatchingFor bird watching, Ko Libong is the well known place to go.
GolfFor a game of golf, there is the Sri Trang Golf Club and Prayarassadanupradit Camp.
Spa service is available at some of the leading resorts. The most well known resorts with spa facilities are:
*Sivara Spa at Amari Trang Beach Resort & Spa.
*Rueansuanchan Massage& Spa
*Spa at Koh Ngai Fantasy Resort & Spa.
Trang has a few local products which are popular as souvenirs, they are Suea Toei or Suea Panan (mats woven from screw pine), Muk (container for small things), ray leather products; namely, bags and shoes, basketry made of cattail stems, carved-wood products from Thep Tharo wood, para rubber toys, and ‘Na Muen Si’ local woven cloth. Products of local food include Trang roast pork, Trang’s cake, ‘Khao Chong coffee, ‘Kapi’ or shrimp paste, etc.
Types of nightlife available in Trang include:
*Discos in town are popular with the younger trendier crowd.
*Live Music Joints play Thai Folk or classics.
*Karaoke clubs can be found all around and customers can either sing to everyone or rent a private room.
*Barbecues are large restaurants which play music and serve alcohol to the wee restaurants (unlike the other venues).
*There are some bars on Pak Meng Beach.
*Thai Pubs are not like Western ones, they are usually huge. Visitors enjoy live music.
*Manora or Nora (มโนราห์หรือโนรา) is an art form native to southern Thailand. The performance has dance postures. The singer sings the lyrics ad-lib. Accompanying musical instruments include drums, cymbals, gongs, Java pipes, and castanets. Nowadays Nora has developed into incorporating modern instruments.
*Shadow Play (หนังตะลุง) is a popular art of southern Thailand. Dried animal hide is carved into drama figures like a hermit, a lord, a lead actor, a lead actress, a giant, and a clown. The figures are held up behind a lighted screen to create shadows on it. Nai Nang or the puppeteer sings verses or narrate the performance. Musical instruments used are the same as for Nora, with perhaps So U and So Duang (stringed instruments) added in.
*Li-kae Pa (ลิเกป่า) is also called Li-ke Bok or Li-ke Rammana. This type of performance is different from the usual Li-ke as the performers wear other kinds of costumes. Li-ke Pa is popular among Thai Muslims. Only 3 performers play in a single set the whole show. However, the set has a location name change to correspond to the story being played. Musical instruments used include 2-3 tambourines, cymbals, gongs, and pipes.
Events and Festivals
Trang Tourism Festival (งานเปิดฟ้าเมืองตรัง) is an activity for the public relations of Trang tourism at the beginning of the tourism season. The event is held in the third week of January. Trang Underwedding Ceremony (พิธีวิวาห์ใต้สมุทร) Activities in this unusual event include a welcoming ceremony for the brides and grooms (Thais and foreigners) at the Trang Airport, a bridal procession around town, and a dowry procession by long-tail boat to Ko Kradan. A wedding ceremony is performed on the beach by means of pouring blessed water from a conch shell onto the bridal palms and followed by underwater marriage registration at a depth of over 12 m. The event is held on 13-15 February. Trang Food Festival (งานมหกรรมอาหารดี ศรีตรังบาน) is held to promote dishes of Trang province renowned as the city of food lovers. There are a myriad of food stalls of Trang restaurants offering dishes at discounted prices. Various kinds of food including Chinese, Thai and local meals, as well as seafood are available. Additional activities are an eating championship and diverse forms of entertainment. The fair is scheduled for 30 March – 3 April of every year at the Somdech Phra Srinagarindra Park 95 (Khao Pae Choi). Trang Cake Festival (งานเทศกาลขนมเค้กจังหวัดตรัง) derives from the fact that Trang people are well known for making delicious cakes. This is particularly true for the villagers of Ban Lam Phu Ra where making cakes dates back generations. The cakes of Trang have no frosting and have several flavours like orange, coffee, three-flavoured, etc. The festival is scheduled for every August. Trang Roast Pork Festival (งานเทศกาลหมูย่างจังหวัดตรัง) is a tourism promotion activity of Trang, held every September. The festival features Trang roast pork is of a special recipe. The pork skin is crispy, the meat is tender and it is delicious due to a process by which the pig is fermented with herbs then roasted whole on a specially made grill. Trang’s roast pork is sold daily and eaten with morning coffee or can be a banquet dish. Moon Festival (งานประเพณีไหว้พระจันทร์) is a tradition long observed by the Chinese people of Tambon Thung Yao, Amphoe Palian, to commemorate the fight for the nation against the Mongols. A ceremony is held in late September or early October on the full moon day in the eighth month under the Chinese calendar. Vegetarian Festival (งานประเพณีถือศีลกินเจ) is a traditional festival of the Chinese in Trang, held around October every year on a full-moon night. Thais of Chinese heritage would become a vegetarian (no consumption of meat and certain kinds of vegetables) and dress in white for 9 days and nights. This is to bring good fortune and make merit. Throughout the 9 days and nights, the spirit in the “medium” would go out and give blessing (some call it out touring) to households where there are offerings set out in front. The procession bearing the medium must light thousands of firecrackers, creating a deafening din. The medium would also perform supernatural feats to show that the spirit is in him. The Buddha Image Procession and Trang Cultural Festival (ประเพณีลากพระและมหกรรมวัฒนธรรมสัมพันธ์จังหวัดตรัง) is aimed to preserve, revive, and pass down ancient customs and traditions which are local uniqueness. It is held during the first and third days of the waning moon in the eleventh lunar month (at the end of the Buddhist Lent). Activities include a contest of Buddha image boat floats, local sports competitions, Southern-style folk arts and cultural performances, concerts, entertainment, sales of Trang OTOP products, and merit-making for the Buddha image processions. Four-wheel Drive Vehicle Competition (การแข่งขันรถยนต์ขับเคลื่อนสี่ล้อ) (The Nature Adventure of Southern Thailand – NAS Challenge) is an off-road circuit for members of off-road racing clubs in Thailand and from foreign countries, such as Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, etc., with more than 100 cars participating. It is scheduled for November of every year. The circuits in use are in Trang town and other districts of Trang. Taphao Shell Festival (งานเทศกาลหอยตะเภา) is aimed at promoting the conservation of nature and the environment. The festival is held at Pak Meng Beach every November. There is a contest to gather Taphao shells. Fishing Competition at the Trang Sea (การแข่งขันกีฬาตกปลา “เบิกฟ้าทะเลตรัง”) is organised around December of every year in the waters of Trang and Krabi provinces. More than ten categories of fishing are arranged for the game.
H.M. the King’s Birthday Celebrations and Red Cross Fair (งานเฉลิมพระชนมพรรษาและงานกาชาดจังหวัดตรัง) are an annual magnificent event of Trang, which has been continued since the reign of King Rama VII. It is scheduled for 5-15 December of every year at the Thung Chaeng Stadium in Amphoe Mueang Trang. Activities include exhibitions of agencies in the public and private sectors, sales of food and products, concerts, entertainment, naval Red Cross activities, etc.
Even though it is Malay in origin, the art of batik has embedded itself within the local culture.
Some visitors come to Trang to learn about the rich diversity of colourful coral and others, the huge variety of bird species on Bird Island.
In general, Southern Thai food is renowned for its spiciness. Much of the cuisine has its origins in Malay, Indonesian and Indian food. Favourite dishes from the south include Indian-style Muslim curry (massaman), rice noodles in fish curry sauce (Khanom Jeen) and chicken birayani. Trang also has a unique breakfast cuisine found nowhere else in Thailand.
Trang is well-known for its many local foods such as Mhu Yang Trang (Trang-style roasted pork), Trang cake, Trang breakfast (Dimsum).
Local coffee shops (Ran Gafae) in Trang have their own special menu with Go pii (black coffee served with sugar) on it. The other is the local breakfast, Ja Kuai (deep fried bread). Go pii and Pa Tong Ko (local sweet donut) make the essence of the traditional Trang breakfast.
Medical Health Care
The provincial town has one quality hospital which provides top-class service named
*Trang Ruampat Hospital
Moreover, in all areas of Trang, clinics and pharmacies can easily be found.
Media / Contact
Local television, satellite TV channels are available. English language newspapers and magazines are available in some bookstores.
Landline telephone, satellite phone and all mobile phone systems are available at available downtown and village areas. Internet can be had in hotels, resorts and internet cafés. There are Post Offices in every district.
* [http://www.tourismthailand.org/destinationguide/list.aspx?provinceid=72 Province page from the Tourist Authority of Thailand]
* [http://www.trang.go.th Official website] (Thai)
* [http://www.thailex.info/THAILEX/THAILEXENG/LEXICON/Copy%20of%20Trang.htm Trang provincial map, coat of arms and postal stamp]
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