While the majority of the world is in lockdown, I had the special privilege of traveling to a place I had been to just three weeks prior.
On the first traveling trip, a friend and I drove on some dangerous roads through what is NOW KNOWN as the redzone (recent COVID outbreak). This road is decimated with a plethora of construction projects that takes 5x the amount of time to complete because of rampant corruption. However, it’s a very easy shortcut to get to Hua Hin from there, so when we did, we when to Cha-am Beach, Hua Hin beach, ate some amazing food, took some pictures, saw horses running the beaches and so much more. It was a day trip, not overnight.
This time, it was over night, and it started with a new route, heading towards Nakhon Pathom and Ratchaburi (to the west of Bangkok) which is an additional 22km, but a phenomenally beautiful national park, by the name of Kaeng Krachan, is on the way. So, when we stopped there, I saw a lake tucked away high up in the mountains with camp grounds and AMAZING SOUNDS of NATURE. I saw a family on Campsite 2, walking around, preparing utensils for breakfast and playing games. We walked along campsite 1, and this place was just an open ground with a marsh down below, followed by the big lake. There were boats that could take you to watch monkeys swim (I’m not bullshitting), but then we saw the video online and felt like we no longer needed to go. So after hearing 20 different sounds of birds, we had an amazing lunch before going through a desserted highway through the mountain that had the freshest air one could ever breathe in Thailand. After about an hour, we came over a hill and straight ahead was a MASSIVE RESORT — low and behold, it was ours! Hua Hin Hilton. We navigated through some side-streets which were jam-packed with mopeds, and we had finally arrived — to a place that I had seen two years prior on my first trip to Hua Hin.
Wow, I walked in and said “I completely underestimated this place.” A 10ft snowman stood in the doorway of this place of the reception area with copious amounts of space, an amazing chandelier, about 3 staff and a magnificent cafe on the other side of the wall. That wasn’t the “WOW”…..the WOW was looking through the 30ft floor-to-ceiling glass out to the pool area (featuring a pool bar), and the sea. That’s right. Snowman, pool, sea. All in that order. This place was unbelievably gorgeous beyond comprehension (see photos below). After arriving to a lackluster hotel room (not the best but certainly $80 was a suitable price tag for what was inside), we went to the top of the hotel to see the most BREATHTAKING view I had ever seen within these borders. 21 floors up and a sheer amount of beauty down below. I looked in awe while my friend had become a bit annoying due to drink 1.5 glasses of wine. I saw all of these gorgeous women in santa costumes and I said “now this is a Christmas Eve to DIE FOR.” We went ventured out to the pool area, and to our amazement, it was happy hour and the beauty continued to unfold with gorgeous landscaping, different seating areas and a bar…..a bar overlooking the beach and sea down below. I had the BEST PIZZA IN THE WORLD (again, not bullshitting), which was a spicy meatball while my friend had an AMAZING pork chop with two glasses of Chilean wine. MY GOODNESS.
Nonetheless, we walked the beach after dinner, laughs, and mosquitoes (they won, unfortunately)…and hearing the waves while seeing the light reflect, seeing people enjoy their evenings and hearing laughs in the distance — PHENOMENAL.
The next morning was a meditation and photos on the beach with a succulent breakfast that featured PANCAKES AND FRENCHTOAST (just highlighting that my two childhood comfort foods were present)….and very interesting couples sitting sparingly throughout the pretty vast breakfast ground.
All in all, the trip back was a bit lackadaisical, but the trip overall made it the best Christmas I had ever experienced.