TAT Newsroom Short Documentary
The Seasons Episode 8: Shades of Beauty
Duration: 3 Minutes
Theme: The Reflection
Location: Sam Phan Bok, Ubon Ratchathani
The mighty Mekong River runs through six countries, nurturing multitudes of lives along its banks. Yet in the height of the dry season, from January to April, this great river recedes, revealing a strangely shaped outdoor sculpture, a rock reef with over 3,000 holes.
‘Sam Phan Bok’ in Ubon Ratchathani province is that very place.
Sam Phan Bok is famous for its thousands of holes of varying sizes and shapes in which the water creates spectacular reflections of the sky, the bright rays of the sun, and even the stars. These nature-sculpted holes make up Sam Phan Bok’s main spectacle, whose appearance changes as the sun crosses the sky. And this is the amazement of the ‘Grand Canyon of Thailand’.
Besides, Sam Phan Bok is also the largest natural breeding site for freshwater animals along the Mekong River. The abundance of aquatic creatures has given rise to the local ‘Fish Scooping Festival’, which is a pride of native Ubon Ratchathani residents.
Using a unique method, the locals lower large dip nets into the water to scoop fish swimming upstream towards their egg-laying sites. Sam Phan Bok owes its fertility to its residents’ unity and cooperation in having preserved its ecosystem up till now.