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  1. #1
    Thailand Expat
    dirtydog's Avatar
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    NongKhai, Is it really that dreary?

    Frequently, people are drawn here to see the famous Sculpture Park, Salakeawkoo with its serpent images reaching over seven stories high... Quite a few come on a quest to see the magical Maekong Fireballs... And many others because they have heard of the truly mysterious mushroom shaped rocks of at the Phu Phra Bat Historical Park, which people lived under more than 3000 years ago.
    The mekhong fireballs, real or fake?

    An extraordinary happening takes place on the Maekong River on the last day of Buddhist Lent, which this year will be on Tuesday, 18th October 2005. For on that hallowed night, pink points of light arise noiselessly from the river after dusk and fly high into the sky. Only appearing either on that one evening every year, or the following night, so far nobody has been able to explain why...

    Are the "Fireballs" a truly natural occurrence, or are they a giant hoax? And, if they are real, what process causes them, and why only on those special nights?
    probably a hoax i reckon.

    What these pink points of light actually are nobody knows... but every year, for as long as anyone can remember, they have been seen to arise soundlessly from the Maekong River just after dusk at various locations along its banks, most famously at Phon Phisai forty kilometers to the east of Nong Khai. However, in 2004 a dreadful thing happened... for on the first night of Okk Paan Saa there were no fireballs!
    those ones were to soggy to light.

    Some say that the fireballs cannot be photographed,
    niether can most ghosts, they aint real either..

    its actually a really nice site

  2. #2
    born of a jackal
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog
    NongKhai, Is it really that dreary?

    I guess the overwhelming response to this thread must answer your question.


    Spent a night there once - hit a few bars but couldn't really give you the definitive lowdown on the place.


    anyway I'm in the depths of this section (page 5) as I'm looking for info on Surat Thani - I'll start a new thread - have you been there Dog?

  3. #3
    Thailand Expat
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    Page 5? of course I have, ahhh, Surat Thani, only for the one night many years ago, it's full of backpackers going, "fok, I missed the last ferry, now I got to stay in this dump for the evening."

  4. #4
    born of a jackal
    colourful-era's Avatar
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    So that was in your backpacking days I take it........and you were wandering around late at night going "fok, I missed the last ferry, now I got to stay in this dump for the evening."


    I've heard it's a shitehole but that doesn't bother me.

  5. #5
    Thailand Expat
    dirtydog's Avatar
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    naaa, I was driving down to Malaysia, spent 5 days getting there and 22 hours getting back, can't remember what bike I had at the time though.

  6. #6
    befuddled
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog
    can't remember what bike I had at the time though.
    Raleigh Grifter?

    Nong Khai for me is the tuk-tuk trip to the Friendship Bridge trying to avoid visiting the drivers mate's travel shop.

  7. #7
    Have you got any cheese Thetyim's Avatar
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    Well I actually like Nong Khai.

    It is a sleppy town with some nice cheap hotels, good vietnamese food and a big chinese market.

  8. #8
    befuddled
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    ^I may well stay over next opportunity. My avoidance has been a matter of conveniance rather than a deliberate act. Same same with ChiangRai. I have only seen it as a terminus - dumb really.

  9. #9
    Cynical Member
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    I like Nong Khai. Almost no foreigners, a great market, and some nice temples and some restaurants along the Mekong. Was there for about 6 hours on my way back from Laos. They've also got a great shop for silk and cloth products - Village Weavers I think it's called. Anyway, here are some piccies.

    Some temple I don't know the name of:



    Students at a school buying sodas:


    The Mekong River, looking over at Laos


    Covered Market -- this is actually quite big, and has some very cheap stuff. A handmade coinpurse (for my mother, not for me) is 5 baht. 35 baht in Pattaya!
    "Fuck off. And take your stupid cult with you."

    -Scarlett Johansson to Tom Cruise

  10. #10
    Thailand Expat

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    We took a road trip to Nong Khai and vicinity in January of this year. Here are some photos:

    Nong Khai

  11. #11
    Thailand Expat

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    A few years ago 5-10 in eiter Forbes or Fortune magazine Nong Khai was listed in the top places for Americans to retire to.
    No idea why

  12. #12
    Thailand Expat

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    Quote Originally Posted by Troubled
    A few years ago 5-10 in eiter Forbes or Fortune magazine Nong Khai was listed in the top places for Americans to retire to.
    No idea why
    Nong Khai is the seventh best place in the world for senior Americans to live in.

    The magazine Modern Maturity rates Nong Khai as the seventh best place in the world for senior Americans to live in. The article in the May-June copy is entitled "Life Abroad: The World's 15 Best Places for a Home Away from Home." About the article the magazine says:

    The World's 15 Best Places to Live Abroad: Modern Maturity sent teams of researchers out in search of 40 exotic locales around the globe to determine the absolute best places for a home away from home. The magazine graded each destination using 12 categories, ranging from weather and cost of living to cultural programs and political stability. And the winners are:

    1. Costa del Sol, Spain
    2. Cinque Terre, Italy
    3. Provence, France
    4. Bouquete, Panama
    5. St. Vincent & The Grenadines
    6. County Clare, Ireland
    7. Nong Khai, Thailand
    8. Crete, Greece
    9. Ambergris Caye, Belize
    10. Tunis, Tunisia
    11. Algarve, Portugal
    12. Cayman Islands
    13. San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
    14. Pafos, Cyprus
    15. Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

  13. #13
    Thailand Expat
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    A while back i saw that Nong Kai was on a list as one of the best places in the world to live! Anyway, I like the city and always manage to have a real good time when I visit it. Of course, I know a lot of the ex-pats living there.



    Mommy plays with my wee-wee - Every Korean boy under 21

  14. #14
    Thailand Expat

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    So Nong Khai is still up there in someones estimation.
    so where do they all live?
    posters previously have said not many foreigners about and mainly backpackers
    backpacking senior citizens seems somewhat of an oxymoron

    personally have never been but would like to give it a looksee sometime

  15. #15
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    I went to KFC there once.

  16. #16
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    I went to KFC there once.
    Your adventures in Thailand are always a marvel to me

  17. #17
    born of a jackal
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    I went to KFC there once

    Marmite is a culture vulture though.


  18. #18
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    Modern Maturity teams of researchers, where they all senile or jes retarded?
    There ain't one foking place of the 15 quoted, i'd care to make a home away from home at.


    The magazine Modern Maturity rates Nong Khai as the seventh best place in the world for senior Americans to live in. The article in the May-June copy is entitled "Life Abroad: The World's 15 Best Places for a Home Away from Home." About the article the magazine says:

    The World's 15 Best Places to Live Abroad: Modern Maturity sent teams of researchers out in search of 40 exotic locales around the globe to determine the absolute best places for a home away from home. The magazine graded each destination using 12 categories, ranging from weather and cost of living to cultural programs and political stability. And the winners are:

    1. Costa del Sol, Spain
    2. Cinque Terre, Italy
    3. Provence, France
    4. Bouquete, Panama
    5. St. Vincent & The Grenadines
    6. County Clare, Ireland
    7. Nong Khai, Thailand
    8. Crete, Greece
    9. Ambergris Caye, Belize
    10. Tunis, Tunisia
    11. Algarve, Portugal
    12. Cayman Islands
    13. San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
    14. Pafos, Cyprus
    15. Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

  19. #19
    Thailand Expat

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    Quote Originally Posted by in4zip
    Modern Maturity teams of researchers, where they all senile or jes retarded?
    There ain't one foking place of the 15 quoted, i'd care to make a home away from home at.
    I wondered the exact same thing when I first read the article. It would be interesting to know what their real criteria were. Certainly, whoever visited Nong Khai can't have spent much time there.

  20. #20
    Thailand Expat

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    Quote Originally Posted by buadhai
    Quote Originally Posted by in4zip
    Modern Maturity teams of researchers, where they all senile or jes retarded?
    There ain't one foking place of the 15 quoted, i'd care to make a home away from home at.
    I wondered the exact same thing when I first read the article. It would be interesting to know what their real criteria were. Certainly, whoever visited Nong Khai can't have spent much time there.
    I've been to some of the places and nice they are but, not to retire in for many reasons..expensive, cold winters, lack of basic health care for elderly gents or just too much on the far side of the world.. like Belize

    but again everything being relative.. and us here in the LoS would be probably be classified as cheap drunk whoremongers by their team of researchers.. oh well

  21. #21
    Thailand Expat Texpat's Avatar
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    I'm building a home in Nong Khai this summer. It's in a village called Ban Ponsa about 25-30 K west of Nong Khai City. It's a heavily agricultural area with low rolling hills. Lots of rice and tobacco. You still see buffaloes plowing fields and people are friendly even if they can't say hello. The pace is slow and people have fun drinking Beer Lao and moram dancing. There are many poor people and some elementary schools still have dirt floors and few desks. The people are industrious and can make a game from a stick and a string. They make their own Loy Krathong floats and most can shimmy up a tree to fetch a coconut. If it's pubs and night clubs you're seeking, NK is probably going to dissapoint you. There is a smattering of hotels and pubs near the Friendship Bridge and a few more out near the train terminus, but it's very sedate.
    Below is one of my favorite pics from Nong Khai. I took it one hot afternoon and except for this old guy, there wasn't a sole within miles. ('cept me)

    Last edited by Texpat; 22-03-2006 at 02:07 PM.

  22. #22
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    Nice pic, TP.

  23. #23
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by colourful-era
    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    I went to KFC there once

    Marmite is a culture vulture though.

    should be KFV then

  24. #24
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    Ken May's Avatar
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    I like Nong Hai. The city itself isn't my favorite, but there are some cool places nearby. One of my favorites is this national park with cave drawings all over. There are some surrealistic rock formations. Giant boulders balancing on tiny rocks, homes dug into rock croppings, and unusual temples built into the stone. I can't remeber the name of the park, vut it was worth a visit. There are a lot of expats in Nong Khai, maybe they can turn you onto to a few places.

  25. #25
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    Some nice pictures there Sir,


    Thanks for posting

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