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Another Portland Blog

Thursday, December 21, 2006

 

It's Christmas all over the world

Earlier today I received an email from Pete, a colleague who will be spending the holidays in Thailand. Currently, he's hanging around Koh Samui. I doubt that Christmas is widely celebrated on the country's second largest island but, after spending some time on Wikipedia, I know plenty of other factoids about it. Including:


  • Reflecting Samui's growth as a tourist destination, the Cunard ship MS Queen Victoria (a 2000-plus passenger ship) will dock at Samui during its 2008 world cruise.


  • Muay Thai boxing takes place regularly at the island's stadium in Chaweng.


  • Numerous animal attractions are dotted around the island, including a crocodile farm, monkey theater, elephant trekking, a snake farm, an aquarium and a butterfly garden.


  • Big Buddha is a twelve-meter high statue of the Buddha, which lies at the top of ceremonial dragon-steps at the Wat Phra Yai. Samui also has a number of other impressive temples, including Wat Khunaram, where the mummified body of Loung Pordaeng, a monk who died in a meditating position, is on display.


  • The Grandmother and Grandfather rocks close to Lamai beach are an occasional source of amusement for tourists, due to their striking similarity to a penis and vagina, male and female respectively.


  • Monkey theaters, elephant rides, kickboxing and geological formations that resemble "naughty parts"? A "Christmas in the Northwest" has nothing up on a Christmas spent in Southeast Asia.

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