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IN THE PICTURE #70: ELLEN VAN OLST
In this feature called ‘In the Picture‘ we ask great photographers from all over the world to share their 10 most favorite Thailand photos with our readers. See Thailand through the lens of the photographer, read the background stories and learn more about the land of smiles.
Ellen and we share two great passions, electronic music and of course Thailand. So we find it extra nice that she wanted to participate in our In the Picture section of which 70 pieces have already been posted online including this edition. We never expected this section to be so successful and we will continue at least until edition 100!
Super cool that you are participating in this Ellen and we also sincerely hope that you would like to join us in the future for Thailand Magazine. Because if you want too we would love to add you to our team since you love Thailand at least as much as we do!
Hello Ellen, could you please introduce yourself to our readers?
My name is Ellen van Olst. I am originally from Brabant and currently I live in Almere. In 1991 I was in Thailand for the first time and immediately felt at home in this beautiful country. The kind people, the chill vibe and the beautiful nature appealed to me and I didn’t want to return to the Netherlands. When I returned from my first trip in 1991 I immediately started looking for a Thai teacher to teach me how to speak and write the language. Because Thailand kept going through my mind day after day, I finally quit my job in 1992 and left for Thailand with an open ticket. I lived in Chiang Mai and Pathum Thani for about a year and am very grateful to have experienced this.
My biggest passion is …. Thailand and I love to dance to electronic music. Freedom and happiness is important to me!
Who knows, you may see more of me appearing on this site…. Have a nice day/evening,
Ellen van Olst
October 2019 @ Baan Sapan – Sapan Waterfalls
When we stayed in Pua (Nan province) in October 2019, we had a local guide take us to Baan Sapan. On the way, we stopped at Sapan waterfalls. The thick lianas completed the picture.
What is your favorite destination in Thailand?
Since 2009, Koh Lipe has been my big favorite because of its white beaches and clear turquoise water. Koh Lipe is located near the equator and is relatively small which I really like. The atmosphere on the island is very nice and relaxed. Koh Lipe is always on the agenda. It’s just a fantastic island with surrounding islands like Koh Adang and Koh Rawi, both part of the Tarurao National Park.
In addition, I have three more favorites and they are Koh Kood, Koh Phra Thong and Koh Surin. Koh Kood because of its tranquility and palm trees. Koh Phra Thong …. I have no words for. This island does something to me and Koh Surin is enchanting with the high green mountains surrounded by turquoise waters. Waking up in the morning and looking at the sea from your tent is something I would always like to do!!!
Which place / destination in Thailand is still on your wish list to visit?
Phatthalung is currently at the top of my list. It is still a pristine nature reserve and the sunrises and sunsets on Lake Thale Noi seem to be enchanting. And as a true nature lover, I would love to experience this. It has not yet come to go there. Also because I always like to stay for a longer time on Koh Lipe. Moreover, the area of Phang Nga and Trat attracts me very much. Then you have to make choices and the vacation is always too short. I hope to go there this year.
February 2019 @ Koh Phra Thong – Sunset
In February 2019, I couldn’t resist going back to Koh Phra Thong, the golden Buddha island. Tja the sunsets on this island are super beautiful.
Which place / destination do you recommend our readers to visit and why?
I would recommend the province of Nan. Once you enter the mountains near Pua, it’s like driving into a fairy tale. The mountains of Nan are so magical, you must have seen it. Really very special! In the town of Baan Sapaan you have great resorts where you can stay in a teepee or tent. As soon as I get the chance, I will definitely go back.
Where do you like to eat?
3 favorites come to mind:
- Khonlay Thai Food, currently this restaurant is located in Pakbara. The restaurant belongs to good friends and the food is top notch!
- Forever Restaurant on Koh Lipe. The food is prepared with love. The owners are Burmese and Thai. If you are on Koh Lipe, you really must have eaten here. The setting is zen and I love that so much. The menu is simple and the dishes are fantastic and special in terms of taste experience, I have not eaten it like this elsewhere in Thailand.
- Chaiyo Restaurant on Koh Kood. The little restaurant is run by a Thai man and a woman. The woman cooks by herself and conjures up the most delicious dishes from her hand. Once you have eaten here, you will come back every day. That says enough anyway!
October 2018 @ Koh Kood – Dusita Resort jetty
I walk all the way down the dock at the Dusita Resort and look out to sea. As soon as I turn around, I see this picture. The palm trees, the water … fantastic!
Tip us a nice coffee shop or bar where our readers can drop by.
For a delicious Cha Yen/Cha Kieow Yen, go to Good View on Koh Kood! You can sit here relaxing on the hill overlooking the sea and watching the sunset.
Art Beach Club on Koh Lipe is a must to grab a drink (or more) after dinner. Because of its location on Pattaya Beach, the sea breeze hardly affects you and you have several hangouts where you can look at the stars (swoon).
What is your favorite Thai dish?
You can wake me up in the night for Tod Man Pla!!! And furthermore, I love a good vega Massaman curry. I like the diversity of flavors in both dishes. And….I love Cha (Kieow) Yen, the Thai iced tea. Fortunately I don’t have to wait until I’m in Thailand I can make all these dishes myself.
February 2020 @ Koh Kood – Fisherman’s village
Looking at this picture makes me happy. What a beautiful community and everyone lives so peacefully with each other.
October 2018 @ Koh Phra Thong – Shrimp fishermen
On a tour, I see these local shrimp fishermen and they are so busy doing their thing that they don’t notice me taking a picture.
What is your favorite accommodation in Thailand?
Dusita Resort on Koh Kood! What a fine resort this is. It is located on a private beach and the resort is run by a Thai family. All top notch and super friendly. The resort is well maintained daily. I don’t want anything else and will only go to this resort as soon as I go to Koh Kood.
Do you have a (travel) tip that might come in handy in Thailand?
Show respect for the Thai people and the nature around you. Be cheerful and friendly and most of all enjoy what Thailand has to offer you. Thailand is addictive hahaha.
Is there a Thai phrase or word our readers need to learn?
Mai pen rai = It doen’t matter / no problem
Deejai maak tee ma tieow Muang Thai dai na khaaaa = I’m happy to travel to Thailand!
February 2018 @ Lampang – Wat Chalermprakiat
This was a unique experience. You were first taken by a red cab car to a point and from there you could continue on foot up the mountain. When you arrived at the top, you had a wide view. I was attracted to these three towers.
October 2019 @ Pua – Happiness in the rice fields
The photo was taken by a dear Thai friend and looking at it, I know how it is. I intensely enjoy the moment and the surroundings, here I feel at home!
What type / brand of camera do you use?
All images are created with my iPhone.
Where can our readers find your work / photos?
Last question, who should we also ask our ‘In the Picture’ feature?
I have been following Barefootthailand for a while now. His photos are pure and I love that.
October 2018 @ Koh Phra Thong – Arrival
The longtail came to pick us up from the pier in Khuraburi to sail to Koh Phra Thong. The island is different from other islands I know in Thailand. It is quite flat and the vegetation is very diverse. The middle of the island looks like an African landscape. Upon arriving at Koh Phra Thong, I became emotional and wiped away tears. This island is special!
February 2018 @ Koh Surin – Arrival
As you notice, I’m a real island lover. This one is special again. I always call islands like this jungle islands. At the core you find jungle surrounded by white beaches, turquoise waters and an amazing underwater world.