Thailand time differs by minus one hour from Malaysia time. It was about 9 AM local time when I arrive Hat Yai, hence Malaysia time was about 10 AM. Our bus final stop was in-front of Sheutit Road. From there, we get meet our Tuk-tuk driver for two days. I’m gonna share with you our activities of the day and the must-go foodie places in Hat Yai that I went on this weekend getaway. This getaway is actually a tour organized and planned by a friend of mine. I just pay, and go :))
1. Breakfast at Sheutit Road
We went to a restaurant not far from our bus final stop. The restaurant is halal and the staff are able to converse in Malay with Kelantanese dialect. Can’t remember the name of this place. I had bai kaprau fried rice (minced chicken or minced beef, cooked with scramble egg and tasted with fresh thai basil eaten with white rice). That morning alone I had rice twice. Nasi lemak at Changlun at 6 AM Malaysia time. Then this bai kaprau fried rice at 10 AM Malaysia Time (9 AM Thailand time). It’s okay… It was a foodie trip after all!
2. Check out hotel surrounding area
After we had a nap and shower, all of us went out to get to know hotel surrounding area. Our hotel was not far and walkable to Lee Garden, at the east. And to the west is Hat Yai train station. In overall, our hotel location was in the middle of everything and convenient, 24 hours convenient shop (7-Eleven), massage places, cafe, and outdoor bazaar with cheap clothing, shoes, kitchen-ware, dinner-ware, and household items.
3. Khlong Hae Floating Market
There is a on-the-water market section and off-the-water section. Market is open on Friday, Saturday and Sunday only from 1 PM – 9 PM.
We shared our dish as we wanted to try a bit of everything. Almost all sellers are able to converse in Malay too. We bought:
- Pad thai – Taste good!
- Deep friend som tam – Deep fried green papaya Thai Salad. This was something different as it was deep-friend. It was tasty that it has the crunchy texture, but I prefer the usual fresh papaya salad
- Ha Mok Pla – grilled fish cake where ground fish meat is mixed with corn starch and spices. Really good, moist, and flavourful. In Malaysia it is a bit drier than Thai version and we call it otak-otak
- Sausage Thai salad – I did not taste it, but from what I heard it was so-so
- Yellow rice with fried chicken – Taste good. There was strong cumin aroma
- Seafood fried rice – Great! The best dish we had here
- Mango sticky rice – So-so, because the coconut milk was runny
- Dim sum – I did not try as I was already full.
4. ASEAN Night Market
This is the place for bargain hunting. You can get clothing items, shoes, bags, lingerie, scarves and so much more at ground floor, and there is food court at the first floor. There is a nice Tom Yum noodle there.
5. Massage at Lee Garden
Next, we went for a massage. One trip member and myself did foot massage, while the rest had Thai massage. We bought the one hour service.
6. Dinner at Lee Garden
Here, you will find rows of food stalls. We shared our food again, and we had:
- Pad thai – Good!
- Fried prawn – Good!
- Mango sticky rice – Really good! This time, we requested to see the coconut milk prior to buying. We bought when we were able to find a satisfactory-level of consistency. No shame at all when it comes to food
- Tom Yum – Really good! I learnt that the secret that made Thai Tom Yum taste divine is they add a little coconut milk at the last stage, making the broth taste richer while balancing all other flavours of sweet, sour and a hint of fiery spicy from the bird’s eye chilli
- Nasi lemak – The nasi lemak sambal here is different from Malaysia’s nasi lemak, it tasted like there is ‘petai’ inside. We tried to look for it but could not find any. If you love sambal petai, then you will love Hat Yai nasi lemak
- Thai pancake – I did not taste it as I was already full, but from what I heard, Thai pancake are always yummy
- Lai Chee Kang – I had this on second day in Hat Yai. Nice, refreshing, a lot of condiments
- Oyster omelette – I tapau this on second day for our dinner in the bus
- Seafood fried rice – Nice. Also tapau on second day
7. Breakfast at Tamrab Muslim Restaurant
This is on day two of the trip. We had 2 dishes here:
- Nasi kerabu – totally different from Malaysia’s version (more savory and spicy). Hat Yai’s version is more towards sweet and sour. Not exactly my cup of tea .
- Sticky rice with fried chicken, fried shallot and Thai sauce – Great!
Note: Come early before 8, if later, the nasi kerabu will potentially be sold out, and this place can be crowded. There are also other food here like roti canai, sate, briyani, and so much more.
In overall, I will come to Hat Yai again if I need a quick authentic Thai food fix, as its really easy to come from KL, just take a bus or train. Bus schedule fits me the best.
Read about the Songkhla half-day trip on day our two here.
Read my Kuala Lumpur to Hat Yai Journey By Bus Post here.