Indulge with the ultimate beauty and serenity on Koh Mannork
Part of the Man islands, which consists of Koh Mannork, Manklang and Mannai. The three islands are all beautiful, but Koh Mannork is no. 1 and is also the biggest. Owned by the Thai Navy, the island is private. Come enjoy stunning natural scenery in peace and quiet and meet the gorgeous local residents: peacocks. You can start your journey from either Koh Samet or Rayong city. Nearby is Koh Mannai and the island is home to a Sea Turtle Conservation Project.
Go bananas in Supathra Land
Photo Richard Barrow
Supathra Land is a huge orchard growing all kinds of exotic fruits. You can buy a trip for 450 Baht around the area. A golf cart will take you to witness how durians, mangosteens, rambutans and many other kinds of Thai fruits are farmed and harvested. At the end of the trip, you will be able to try them all at a fruit buffet and after sample one of the best Thai dishes, som tam (papaya salad).
Enjoy a history walk on Yomjinda Road
The most important and most beautiful road in the old town area, Yomjinda Road is a strip of quaint century-old houses. Some of them are refurbished into local museums, art galleries and cafés. Said art includes photography by famous Thai photographer, Niwat Pao-in, at DaVinci Studio. You will also find his collection of retro stuff and works by his artist friends.
Visit the Rayong Aquarium
Most visitors to the Rayong Aquarium go inside with low expectations but leave with big smiles. It is a somewhat-limited aquarium compared to the massive operations seen in other cities, however, the 43 tanks and glass tunnel contain just enough underwater wonders.
The Rayong Aquarium does not take long to visit, and the entrance fee of 30 baht (USD $1) is especially reasonable. Families traveling with children should keep the aquarium in mind, particularly for hot or rainy afternoons when going to the beach sounds less appealing.
Relax by the sea in Phe Arboretum
If you do not have enough time for Koh Samet, Suan Son Beach is a good option for relaxation. It is swimmable and has good seafood restaurants and picnic spots. It also has a unique charm, tunnel-like rows of tall casuarina trees.
Scramble Around a Warship
After visiting Tung Prong Thong, walk (30 minutes) or drive (10 minutes) over to the HTMS Prasae, a retired Royal Thai Navy warship converted into a historical display. You can explore and climb around on your own, but do not expect it to be clean, the ship is decaying and largely unrestored.