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Thailand’s newest island almost came about by accident and was in the way before it became a place of interest.
Bangkok’s wide Chao Phraya is a major waterway in the capital but historically traffic was slowed on it because of a bend in the river.
Around three centuries ago a broad canal was dug to straighten the river and this created an island called Koh Kred.
The island is roughly rectangular in shape and is home to around six thousand people, many of whom descent from Burmese immigrants. The island is also home to temples and other buildings with a blend of Thai and Burmese styles.
The island is close to the Nothaburi section of Bangkok and what was popular day trip destination for Thais is becoming a popular destination for foreign tourists.
The best time to go to the island is in the morning so you can come back in the afternoon. Getting there is half the fun with a ferry trip to be had on the Chao Phraya river. There are no beaches or glamorous resorts on the island, just an interesting slice of semi rural life.
You can explore Koh Kred by foot, takes around two hours, or by bicycle. Wat Poramaiyikawat is worth a visit and has an adjoining museum filled with Buddhist artifacts. Wat Chimpli is less imposing and smaller than Wat Poramaiyikawat but greatly revered. There several other temples including one that has its ceiling covered in intricately detailed religious paintings.
Walking, or cycling around tree stumps, rice fields and bamboo is certainly a far cry from the city only a short longtail boat ride away. The markets bulge with tropical island fruits, vegetables and lesser known fish varieties you can sample is local restaurants and food stands that range from the basic to the elaborate. While you are there try the one of the local delicacies such as deep fried flowers.
Why you are there you can take a one hour boat ride to the mainland to the rear of the island where you will find a floating market type boats that announce their arrival to the home owners long the river banks via load speaker.
There are many souvenirs you can buy to remind you of your trip to the capital city’s island, pottery pots and incense holders, vases, miniature temples.
To get to Koh Kred take the skytrain to Saphan Thanksin station. Board a ferry at an adjacent pier for a scenic trip to Nonthaburi, once there bargain with a river taxi for a ten minute ride to the island. Organised tours to the island are also available