Koh Samui features some
scenic waterfalls that afford the leisurely hiker a pleasant few hours of exploration.
Hin Lat Falls can be found south of Nathon. After arriving at the entrance to
the falls, a 30-minute hike will take you to the top. Na Muang Falls is further
south again, about a 2-Km walk from the marked turn-off.
how to prepare some famous Thai specialties, such as tom yam soup or red curry
with chicken. More and more restaurants are now revealing the secrets behind their
dishes during 2-hour lessons in fully-equipped, modern kitchens. Prices are around
900 Baht including lunch for two persons. Fruit and vegetable carving lessons
are also quite popular. These will often include instructional booklets and carving
tools in 6-hour courses for about 3000 Baht.
Thai (Thai Boxing)
you dont mind the violence, a Thai boxing match is worth attending for the
pure spectacle and the wild musical accompaniment, the ceremonial beginning of
each match, and the frenzied betting around the stadium.
training of a Thai boxer, particularly the relationship between the boxer and
teacher, is highly ritualized. As the boxers enter the ring, they perform a special
pre-fight dance known as the "ram muay". During the dance, they wear
a headband given by their trainer. It is a sacred talisman earned after years
of dedication to the art. The dance starts with "wai khru" -- each boxer
kneeling and bowing three times, which is a show of respect to his teacher. With
the ceremonies complete, the fight begins.
A match consists of five rounds
of three minutes each. Accompanying the fight is music stimulated by action in
the ring, rising and falling as the boxers battle it out. All surfaces of the
body are considered fair targets, and any part of the body except the head may
be used to strike an opponent. Common blows include high kicks to the neck, elbow
thrusts to the face and head, knee hooks to the ribs, and low crescent kicks to
the calf. A contestant may even grasp an opponents head between his hands
and pull it down to meet an upward knee thrust (ouch!). Punching is considered
the weakest of all blows and kicking merely a way to soften up ones
opponent; most matches end with a knee or elbow strike.
origins of this martial art and sport are thought to stretch back to the wars
with the Burmese during the 15th century. Thailands first famous boxer was
Nai Khanom Tom, who was said to have single-handedly defeated a dozen
Burmese fighters in a wager for freedom. A Thai King, Phra Chao Seua (The Tiger
King), is said to have been an incognito participant in many boxing matches in
the early part of his reign. The sport has changed a lot from the days when boxers
would wrap their fists in thick horsehide trimmed with cotton then soak them in
glue and broken glass for maximum impact. The many changes initiated to make the
sport safer have reduced the high incidence of death and injury. But Thai boxing
is still a violent contact sport and considered by many as the ultimate in unarmed
Thai boxing matches are held every Monday and Friday
night at the stadium in Chaweng. Occasional matches are held on other days (usually
announced by pick-ups with loud speakers). Demonstrations of Muay Thai are held
in many of tourist areas but they are mostly for show.