Botanical Gardens of Trang, Thailand.
Getting There: I hired a motorbike for ฿150 for 24 hours, it is easy enough to get a TukTuk from Central Trang
Costs: entrance is free, the only costs incurred are on your transport there
Suggested Time: I’d recommend you spend a morning or afternoon here, avoid the middle of the day when the jungle can be at its most humid.
Trang doesn’t have a lot of tourists destinations, but among the few attractions worth visiting in this city the Botanical Gardens are gorgeous and a great half day trip. These gardens are free to visit and really nice to do enjoy on a lazy afternoon. When I visited, and a slightly cloudy weekday afternoon, we were the only people there, apart from one class of school children.
The gardens are easy enough to find if you head south out of Trang on route 404, after passing the airport the entrance is a Jurassic Park style gate which is hard to miss. The gardens are fairly substantial so you can easily spend a few hours exploring and the network of marked pathways make it simple to navigate, always letting you know which track you are on and what to look out for. Even better is the way in which the vast amount of plants and trees are labelled so for the naturalists among you, you’ll always know which tree is which!
There are so many trails to follow and while wandering around you will see several signs warning you of poisonous animals, there are a few poisonous snakes, spiders and other creatures that are living in the park… luckily I didn’t see any the whole afternoon I was there, but I’m glad to know that there are warning signs for visitors!
What drew me to the Botanical gardens were the canopy walkways… this is where it gets more adventurous! Suspended between 10 and 20 meters above the ground are 5 metal canopy walkways which take you up above the trees for sensational views over the grounds and even the opportunity to spot birds, bats and tree dwelling animals. Built in 2003 the walkways are slightly shaky which adds to the fun, traversing them is tricky and you’ll find that the walkways move up and down a fair amount, don’t worry there are handrails and they seem perfectly safe!
The first of the walkways is the smallest, you still have to climb 3 flights of stairs to get to it! Each of the walkways after that goes up in height until you are above the trees staring out over the vast expansion of the park in front of you. For me this was the highlight of the botanical gardens, it took a leisurely stroll through a nice park into something more adventurous with the opportunity of spotting some rare wildlife.