We weren’t planning a trip to Chantaburi this morning. At least I wasn’t. But there was a restaurant that my significant other wanted to try for a long time and as I wasn’t so busy we headed off. Chantaburi is only an hour’s drive from the mainland ferry pier and is a very interesting town to explore but also one that gets very few foreign tourists. It’s built on heat treating gems and fruit farming- it’s pretty much the main place in Thailand for both these activities. Turns out it was also the second day of the 10 day Chantaburi Fruit Festival.
There’s a large man made lake in the centre of the town which, for the period of the fruit festival, is bordered by street markets, pop up restaurants, music stages and , of course, loads of fruit. Especially Durian, every year it hold’s the ‘World Durian Festival’. I’ve no idea if anyone outside Chantaburi province attends but , as far as the locals are concerned, the winner of ‘Best Durian’ is the best in the world. No point trying to argue with that. The festival is held now, as this is the start of peak fruit season in Thailand. Where you get the most varieties and cheapest prices for all types of fruit.
The fair only really gets going in the evening. we were there in the daytime, so many stalls not open. The rafts were part of a competition to design Chantaburi themed fruit based decorated rafts. And why not. Some pretty impressive structures. Mostly photos of these below as one Durian looks pretty much like another.