Just outside Bangkok is Sampran Riverside which has been a unique family-run property for generations. Here visitors, students and corporate groups can come learn and experience, the authentic Thai way of life in a replica Thai village. Rice growing and processing, musical instruments, vegetable carving, pottery, umbrella painting and silk weaving are all there and hands on if one wishes.
After walking through the village we were entertained by an elephant show that explained and demonstrated to the audience, full of excited children, how these magnificent, and gentle creatures, were such an important part of Thailand history in the teak logging industry.
Sampran, formally The Rose Garden Riverside, started in 1962 by a family cultivating roses for the Bangkok flower markets and became an attraction for visitors. Since then the property has been expanded by the family adding a 4 star riverside hotel with 160 rooms, 6 unique Thai houses around a serene lake, Arusaya Spa, 4 restaurants, 10 meeting rooms and a 10 acre organic farm. We had a delicious lunch at a riverside restaurant with local Thai and international fare. While sitting at this serene restaurant we talked about all how nice it would be to come for a weekend to escape the bustle of the city.
After lunch we were entertained by a Thai culture and heritage show featuring dancers in colorful costume, Thai boxing, sword fights, bamboo dancing, an authentic Thai wedding ceremony, finished off with a colorful parade complete with elephants!
If you want to experience authentic Thai heritage and Thai way of like, an eco-cultural tour or just escape and relax, this is where I would recommend you come! Be sure and check out their special packages.
Sampran Riverside was presented the Award of Excellent in Best Tourist Attraction, Recreational from the Tourism Authority of Thailand in 1996 and 2008.
Some comments from visitors:
Swedish visitor – I visited The Rose Garden Riverside many years ago and was pleasantly surprised by the nice additions to the property. Still peaceful and serene but with the added Spa that looks too good to pass up. The rooms have a beautiful décor and a most pleasant and welcoming staff.
Thai visitor – I am happy to see our culture and heritage being preserved. I’m all for progress but this is one area that should always be saved for future generations.