"For me, Sakhon Nakhon sprang
up like an oasis after a 200 km motorbike ride. Doesn't look like
I'm alone. During World War II, Sakhon Nakhon was also an oasis
for the Thai resistance to the Japanese. And in the late 1950's,
Communists saw the town as an oasis for disseminating then hip socialist
How do you get from Mukdahan back to Nong Khai by motorbike on the
quick? You stop in Sakhon Nakhon for the night.
I'll repeat what I've said often in this Thailand section.
Thailand has 76 provinces -- actually 75, but
Bangkok is considered a special administrative region and governed as a
province. Foreigners don't usually make a distinction between the
provinces. If someone says he's taking a one-week vacation to
Chiang Mai, all assume he's going to Chiang Mai town, the largest town
in Chiang Mai province, not Doi Lo, a tiny village still located within
Chiang Mai province.
you've heard of Sakhon Nakhon, where the hell are you?
Often you're not aware you've crossed a provincial border.
I did not know I entered Sakhon Nakhon province until I saw
Welcome To sign across the highway, which always shows 3
key attractions in the province. These blink-or-miss
signs, while large, are easy to pass without you remembering
you've seen them.
I'll be honest. A year ago I never heard of Sakhon
Nakhon. A fellow American posted a note on my
books section. He was a writer
now married to a Thai and living in Sakhon Nakhon on his
wife's family's farm. That did not inspire me to
visit. The stop came out of necessity. It's too bloody
long to motorbike from Mukdahan to Nong Khai, especially
when it's rainy season.
I stayed only a single night, but enjoyed it. Towns
like these are descriptive of the real Thailand, and I'm
sure I could stay a week in any one of them without boredom
setting in. I found a USD 12 aircon room and dined on
a tasty meal at the Dusit Hotel. The place is
easy to get around and, hey, it even boasts a vegetarian
restaurant. Vietnamese food lovers
can toast Ho Chi Minh around the clock.