Lifelog / Thailand

Hat Yai Travel: Weekend Roadtrip to Hat Yai from Penang

It’s been a long time I’ve never been to Hat Yai, Thailand already, very very very long time. I hardly have the memory in my mind. I know my parents always bring me to Hat Yai when I was small but my real Hat Yai trip would be this time which happened two weeks ago on the weekend.

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Hat Yai located on the southern part of Thailand and it’s just right across the border of the northern part of Malaysia. So they’re connected, and dad drove all the way there, for like 2 hours. It’s shorter than going to Kuala Lumpur from my Penang.

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Dad didn’t bring the Touch N Go card so have to go back to the ancient way of paying toll which is queue for ticket and pay by cash. It’s smooth smooth all the way, no traffic jam or anything, passed by a lot of padi field which usually don’t get to see when traveling north and the rest houses are not so pretty. Hehe.

The road trip was good, I slept all the way, it’s so sleepy when sitting in the car for a long time and nothing to do. Didn’t even bother to listen to the music, sleeping is good for pasting time.

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We then arrived at place called Changloon, no idea where the place is, but I only know the name and at there, we were already very close to the Thai border.

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This is the place where we stopped by for a coffee break, toilet break, money changing and the purchase of insurance for entering the Thai.

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I didn’t have toilet feel or anything, so I just wait my dad to settle the car insurance thing. It’s like around RM14 per car for entering Thai and a car can stay in Thailand for 14 days, after that need to come out and renew again.

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Then back to car and drive for like 10 minutes and we arrived the border where the immigration buildings of the two countries are.

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After passing the Malaysian custom, we need to park our car and got out to go to chop our passport. I waited so long at the queue for like half an hour, very very very slow Thai officer. I was like OMG and the line was so long already.

Mom told me to place RM1 note or 10Baht inside the passport when passing it to the officer. I didn’t know about this because the place didn’t have any sign for us to pay 10Baht for going into Thai, I think this is tips for them.

After the long long wait at the immigration, finally I got cleared and got into Thailand. Mobile phone still showing Malaysian mobile at that time and after a while it only changed to Thai roaming mobile.

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It’s not Hat Yai yet, it’s only I-don’t-know-what-it’s-called after the border. I still have to sit in the car for another 45 minutes to reach the city of Hat Yai.

There’s no high rise building but you will see building almost the same height at like 7-10 floors and there’s the city. After a long hour car ride, we arrived in Hat Yai, the city. We went to lunch first only then to look for the hotel. We didn’t have any hotel booking in advance which made us encountered a little problem when looking for hotel.

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IMG_3782 by nicholaschan. IMG_3783 by nicholaschan.

Dad dropped grandma at a relative’s house, only we went to look for hotel. We actually wanted to go for New Season Hotel, but then it’s fulled. Then walked down a few blocks to May Flower Hotel, it’s full again, in the end went to Novotel Central Hotel. Mom doesn’t really like that hotel because she said the toilet is not very clean. They like New Season Hotel more.

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Now we only know that so many Malaysian like to come to Hat Yai on the weekend and we need to book the hotel in advance.

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Hat Yai is much alike like other place in Thailand, like Phuket and Bangkok, they all look the same with many cables and not so pretty building and same Thai architecture.

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After we parked the car at the hotel carpark, checked in, dropped all our luggage in the hotel room, we went out to walk! Dad went to massage, mom went to shopping, I went to walkaround. Stay tune!

About Author

Nick is an interior designer and tech enthusiast based in Penang, Malaysia who constantly exploring places, indulges great food, discovering good design and is a shutterbug. Nick usually writes about Penang, happenings, travel, food, design and personal thoughts.


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