Thailand, the Land of Smiles, has always been a canvas that draws the broadest spectrum of travellers with its enchanting beaches, breathtaking landscapes, and rich cultural tapestry. Now poised to enter the limelight of world-class tourism, the coastal hideaway of Sichon is gearing up to become Thailand’s latest sensation.
With the impending inauguration of the international terminal at Nakhon Si Thammarat Airport in Q4 2023, this serene, idyllic destination is on the verge of being unveiled as the crown jewel of Thailand’s tourism scene, championing “tranquil tourism.”
Sichon, steeped in traditional Thai essence, provides an experience akin to stepping back in time. It’s where the rhythms of an unhurried lifestyle infused with centuries-old customs unfold before your eyes. From devout Buddhists paying homage at age-old temples to fishermen hauling in their bounty from the emerald-green Gulf of Thailand, Sichon exudes an unspoiled charm. Framed by the shimmering waters of the Gulf and backed by the majestic Khao Luang mountain range, Sichon presents a rich tableau of experiences for the discerning traveller, merely 40 minutes away from the new international airport.
The potential of this tranquil locale didn’t escape the notice of Mr Ravi Chandran, former CEO of Laguna Phuket, who played a pivotal role in transforming Phuket’s former tin mining district into Southeast Asia’s premier integrated resort destination. Currently serving as Senior Advisor to Urasaya, an upcoming residential and hospitality project on Sichon Beach, he envisions Sichon as a flagbearer of well-planned, environmentally friendly, and locally-inspired tourism.
“Sichon is genuinely unique. This region represents southern Thailand as it was 30 years ago – naturally stunning, culturally rich and incredibly peaceful,” says Mr Chandran, “This is the Thailand visitors yearn to see, and it provides a canvas for creating an abode. I truly believe that this marks a new dawn for southern Thailand. It’s an opportunity to establish a future shaped by heritage, nature, and sustainability.”
The tranquillity of Sichon will not be compromised for mass tourism. Visitors can expect a serene experience, absent of high-rise hotels and the cacophony of watersports. The tranquillity is its main allure. It allows guests to explore local beachfront markets, saunter through coconut groves, or take a refreshing dip in the Gulf’s cooling waters with a picturesque backdrop of Koh Samui and pods of pink dolphins.
The province of Nakhon Si Thammarat, renowned for its rich heritage within Thailand, offers an immersive journey into the country’s past. The province’s capital, Nakhon Si Thammarat, is among Thailand’s oldest cities, housing Wat Phra Mahathat [Link to Wat Phra Mahathat], the Kingdom’s oldest temple and a focal point for Buddhist pilgrimages.
Active adventurers and wildlife enthusiasts can explore Khao Luang National Park [Link to Khao Luang National Park], home to Thailand’s second-highest peak and diverse flora and fauna. The park is a paradise for nature lovers, with over 300 orchid species, 340 bird varieties and mammals like tapirs, leopards and porcupines.
“Sustainability will be the cornerstone of Sichon’s future development,” adds Mr Chandran. “Local communities have been practicing responsible, eco-sensitive crafts for centuries. For instance, the Kiriwong Village, where materials are hand-woven and organically dyed using local fruit from indigenous trees, including mangosteens. Or Pak Phanang River, where one can watch fishermen cast their nets. I believe Sichon is Asia’s most authentic and natural destination.”
As we look towards a future where travel choices are increasingly influenced by eco-consciousness and authentic cultural experiences, Sichon promises to be a beacon of tranquil tourism, a standing testament to the evolving face of global travel.
Written by: Supaporn Pholrach (Joom)