Why Trat? Ask anyone from Trat and they’ll tell you it’s the best place in Thailand (and therefore – the world). This local-patriotism is not unique to Trat, but in this town’s case – it’s quite justified (after all, we’re from Trat too ).
The area has a lot of water and yields delicious fruit and vegetables. The nearby sea provides excelent fish and sea food, and enables trade with Cambodia. In fact – people have so much to sell, Trat has more markets for its size than almost any other town in Thailand.
In order to preserve all this local home-industry and commerce, Trat province has managed to keep large-store chains from opening branches and malls. This makes Trat more traditional than the large cities, but modern enough to have computer repair shops and decent internet bandwidth.
For tourists, Trat is mainly known as an access point to the islands Ko Chang, Ko Kood, Ko Mak and Ko Wai. Many expats on a visa run go via Trat to the Hat Lek border crossing with Cambodia. This means that the town has been exposed to farang enough so that many restaurants have an English menu.
On the other hand – Trat is not a tourist-oriented place where there are different prices for foreigners, and locals have strange yet firm beliefs about what farang like (e.g. macaroni or “American fried rice“).
Whether you’re planning a vacation in Ko Chang or a visa run to Hat-Lek, you can incorporate a few days in Trat and experience a very comfortable version of “the real Thailand”: not a trek in a Jungle or a visit to a mountain tribe. Just tasty food, beautiful places, and good people. We know. We live here.