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Haad Rin Koh Phangan

Haad Rin is the name given to Koh Phangan's most famous stretch of sand. Loosely translated the term means Sunrise Beach and on the night of the Full Moon you will find several thousand revellers greeting the dawn at the ocean's edge, having partied the night away to the sound of dance beats and electronica.

But Haad Rin is more than just a party venue. Thanks to the enduring popularity of the Full Moon event, the village behind the beach has developed into a sophisticated tourist town with a choice of accommodation, restaurants and retail options serving the constant stream of visitors that arrive in the week leading up the the Full Moon and slowly ebb away during the week that follows.

The festival atmosphere that characterises the Full Moon Party inspires a large number of foreigners to stay on in Haad Rin and many have established successful businesses there, either providing hospitality through food and drink outlets or selling products from around Asia to the tourists that fill the streets almost year round. Thai business people also take advantage of the regular trade, which means the range of shops and services on offer is vast, especially in such a small and relatively remote location.

The proliferation of businesses in Haad Rin has also inspired a number of residential developments in the area with foreign investors building second homes either to enjoy periodically or rent out as a luxurious, private alternative to hotel accommodation. Thanks to the party and its evolution, the non-Thai community that has developed in and around Haad Rin tends to include people of an artistic or musical persuasion. This means there are plenty of social events and gatherings, which often feature live music or include films, art exhibitions and creative  design concepts.

Despite a tendency towards the avant guard, thai life around Haad Rin continues as it has for years. Islanders frequent the local markets and gather at the temple to make merit on important Buddhist holidays. A large influx of Burmese workers adds further to the cultural diversity, making this one of the most eclectic towns in Thailand when it comes to international influence and multi-culture. Wandering the streets of Haad Rin feels a little like strolling around the backstreets of Greenwich Village or Camden Town. A party with a worldwide reputation has created a global community in the Gulf of Siam.




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