Dannok & Hatyai, Thailand
September this year has far too many holidays --every weekend is a long one! Hooray, I love September!
Last weekend, we brought our little darling to experience some "real-life" dinosaurs at Dinosaur Land in Dannok. Then it was northwards to Hatyai for some shopping and R&R time.
This was my first time to Hatyai. Previously, my impression of Hatyai was a bustling town just north of the border where people go to buy bras and Zebra cookware and to eat Thai food. Well, that is still partly true except there is another town in between and that is Dannok.
Let's talk about Dannok first. From what I heard, Dannok is a red-light district where many people cross the border in search of some hanky-panky. But the mayor of Dannok wants to transform it into a more family-oriented place so he brought in MBI International to develop the town by building amusement parks, hotels (and also clubs and discos). Hence the Dinosaur Land and Panda Park and Water Park and White Temple and etc...
It cost 250 baht per adult to enter the Dinosaur Land. Those dinosaurs were made out of soft rubber and looked very realistic. Other than the normal exhibits that make dinosaur noises and move their heads from side-to-side, you can even ride on the dinosaur parade that walks around the place. Soon, they'll be making dinosaurs that are intelligent enough to chase and hunt you down.
Hayley enjoyed the Dinosaur Land very much, she was excitedly running around the place talking and singing to herself. When we went inside the man-made cave she even changed the lyrics to her favourite song to become like this:
"Scary dinosaur, scary dinosaur, be careful it will eat you in the night.
Scary dinosaur, scary dinosaur, be careful it will eat you in the dark.
Scary dinosaur, scary dinosaur, be careful it will eat you in the cave."
Such a clever girl. *beaming with pride*
It started to rain so we left the park and checked-in to our hotel. It was a very nice hotel with a huge room and a huge bed. We bathed and put Hayley to sleep and then took turns to go for 2-hour oil massage and Thai massage inside the hotel. Sooooooo good.
For dinner, we drove to the Water Village which was a restaurant by a man-made lake. It was rainy and driving at night on the very ulu kampung road with steam rising from the ground made our flesh tinge with fear. I kept asking hubby "did TripAdvisor really recommend this place"? It was actually not a very long drive from our hotel but it was quite a scary one. But once we reached the Water Village, it was actually quite a good one. The highlight of it was we were seated right on top of the water and a motorboat would come deliver our food to the table. The selection of food was good and delicious! We ordered steamed seabass, steamed lala in lemon sauce, fried chicken with Thai herbs, coconut juice and Chang beer. The total bill came up to less than 800 baht, which was quite a good deal! Too bad there were too few of us, if not I really wanna try the crab and tomyam!
After dinner, we went to see the lights at the amusement park. There were a few themed restaurants and shops that mostly catered to Chinese tourists. The decor and facilities available there really amazed me. After walking around for a bit, we drove back to the hotel as it was drizzling. The next morning, we had breakfast at the hotel, then stopped for a while to take pictures with the pandas and left for Hatyai.
*Due to this trip was a long time ago, I really can't remember the details now.
It took us about a 45-min drive from Dannok to Hatyai. We went to a few of the popular shopping malls - Lee Gardens, Odean, a new one beside Odean, and another very big mall - Central Festival Shopping Mall which is quite a distance away. We also visited the big street market at night... was it the Asian Bazaar?
There's just so many things to buy in Hatyat. Fashion women's wear, shoes, slippers, nice bra-and-panty set, cute little bags, and there's also an Australian pharmacy inside Lee Gardens from which I bought some shampoo and lotion. Such a nice place to spend money $$$$$
As for food, we ate around the Lee Gardens area - the buffet at the top of the hotel was very worth our money. Bird's nest, pork leg rice... etc etc! Happy tummy.