Betong, border town in the far south of Thailand
Betong is certainly worth a visit. Not only it's a handy border crossing with Malaysia but there are a few worth to explore sights in the area not to mention the last 50 or so km's cycling from Yala through the hills and passing the dam and lake, see this page for those details.
Betong is located as far south in Thailand as you can travel with the Malaysian border at just 8 km away.
The town has an attraction primarily to Malaysian weekend tourists. They come for cheap massage, good food and shopping Thai goods which are cheaper here than in Thailand. In for example Penang, tours are organized for locals to have a weekend in Betong.
Sights in Betong
There are some temples in the city which are worth to explore.
The Pha Mahathat Chedi is a beautiful temple and monastery with a giant Buddha taking care of the city.
A trip to the Piyamit Tunnel, 17 km from Betong city center is worth the exercise. The complex is a small network of tunnels in the tropical rainforest made by Malaysian Communist. The Piyamit tunnel is the Malaya communist's base build for bombshells and storing food supplies.
Entrance is B50. Follow the path up on the hill passing charcoal production place and the kitchen. Here you get an explanation about the tunnel. Once inside you will find resting places, work rooms and escape route.
Cooking was done in a way the smoke would not let the site to be discovered but layering the smoke out of the area. It took 50 man hard work in the jungle to build the tunnel complex. And considering the present situation, with a nice path leading up, it must have been a very difficult task at the time, without additional facilities etc to bring all the materials up the mountain.
Other attractions in town
Closer to the town center is a nice Chinese temple.
The temple is reasonable new and very active. Worth a visit.
The Art Cultural Center
The Art Cultural Center is a little hidden. Apart of a nice collection of Buddhist architecture, the center is still in the process of being build (September 2012). Regardless, it's worth half an hour of your time to have a look at the art work.
On the way to the Piyamit Tunnel, at 10km from Betong, you can have a relax at the Hot Springs. There's not a lot to see but the Hot Springs are popular thing to do for visiting local tourists.
New! CommentsHave your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.
The road from Hat Yai to Betong
A pleasant bike ride from Hat Yai to Yala and Betong, this is truly out of the ordinary cycling in Thailand.
The Thai-Malaysian borderposts
There are a total of 8 borderposts available to cross from Thailand into Malaysia. Which one do you want to use? And are there arguments to use one of the lesser known posts? Here are the answers:
Hat Yai - Betong-North Malaysia
There are several ways to enter/leave Malaysia:
South East Thailand
Why you should visit South East Thailand: a description of the roads and what to see and explore in Pattani, Narathiwat and Yala.
Cycling in South Thailand
South Thailand is very well accessible and well known with places like Krabi, Phuket and Ko Samui. There is more: