Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Cha-Am, Tha-Yang, Kaeng Krachan, and Petchaburi. Discussion on areas north of Hua Hin.
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Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by Big Boy » Thu Jul 31, 2014 3:59 pm

I decided to call in to have a look around the newly opened Camel Republic on the way home from Petchaburi. Camel Republic is situated just North of Cha-Am on the main Bangkok Road.
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amel Republic is now open.
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We arrived at about 11am, and there were only about a dozen cars in what seemed to be a more than ample car park. From the outside everything was looking shiny & new.
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From the outside everything was looking shiny & new
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From the outside everything was looking shiny & new
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From the outside everything was looking shiny & new
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DSC06592.jpg
From the outside everything was looking shiny & new
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From the outside everything was looking shiny & new
As we walked through the car park, they were testing one of the attractions rides, the Sky Fly. This was a ride I'd only ever seen on TV. Basically people thrown themselves into a 20' deep pit (I didn't actually measure it), and put their faith in being caught in a massive air cushion. Once caught, the rider then flies Superman style on the air cushion as the operator turns the speed of the air up. Unfortunately, I was so fascinated watching this, I didn't think of taking a photo until the test was over. For some reason, this attraction is situated outside of the park walls, although I can't really see the connection with camels.
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the Sky Fly
We walked into the entrance, and were given a very personal welcome, and were led to the ticket office.
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the entrance
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the entrance
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the entrance/attractions inside
Now the sting........ like other attractions in this area, there is dual Thai (including resident)/Farang pricing. I thought, "I know how much they're going to charge me :? " I was wrong, my wife told them that I was resident, and that was good enough. Children were charged at 80 Baht (free under 1 metre tall).
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Admission costs - rides extra
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We were inside. Everything was still new and shiny. As we walked in, there were a couple of fairground rides, and as with other attractions close by, there were plenty of photo opportunities.
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We were in - photo opportunities everywhere
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photo opportunities everywhere
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a couple of fairground rides
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a couple of fairground rides
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a couple of fairground rides
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There was the mandatory food court, selling fast food at fast buck prices. This was supplemented by small fast food outlets around the park. Mind you, the entire park was relatively small, and a walk to the main food outlet wasn't exactly vigorous exercise.
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the mandatory food court
At last, we'd spotted the camels, what a disappointment. You know, you imagine what is going to happen inside a new establishment. I imagined that people would be taking camel rides into the nearby hills (I wouldn't have been one of those people by the way, I'd have probably been the proverbial straw). There were half a dozen camels inside an inadequate cage, being fed bits of grass by young kids. The camels looked in good condition, but I still felt quite sorry for them.
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the camels
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the camels
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the camels
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the camels
There were quite a few animals in the little zoo. All but one of the animals looked familiar, apart from these guys, which looked like a cross between a dog and a rabbit. Does anybody know what they are?
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Does anybody know what they are?
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The highlight of my day were the ostriches (or were they emus?). Again they were locked behind a huge fence. I spotted some steps up to a platform. As I approached the platform, the birds came towards me - absolutely fantastic. Around the corner from the platform was a bucket of food, and at feet level, there was a little feeding trough. I took a handful of pellets from the bucket, and the birds became quite excited. I reached down to put the handful of food in the trough, but one of the birds was too impatient - he grabbed my hand with is huge beak - wow, brilliant :D . I love most animals, and didn't panic, I just waited for him/her to release my hand. Once I'd been given my hand back, I released the food into the trough, and watched them eat.
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the birds came towards me
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watched them eat
I then moved on to the big bird cage. Unfortunately, although there were some beautiful birds there, they were either chained to their perches, or in very small cages.
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beautiful birds - chained to their perches
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beautiful birds - in very small cages
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When we'd finished looking around the mini zoo, we came upon a large shed (obviously a nicely decorated shed) full of smaller rides and attractions.
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smaller rides and attractions
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smaller rides and attractions
All rides and attractions seemed to work on a ticket basis i.e. 1 ticket for a small ride, 2 tickets for a large ride (this is what I saw, but no guarantees that I am entirely right). I did not see how much a ticket cost. In fact, I didn't see tickets on sale.

On 3 sides of the park are small shops. However, I only saw 2 units occupied (again, that was my view, and it might change - especially on weekends).

So, what did I think of Camel Republic? There has obviously been a lot of investment, and it was looking very nice. However, this is just another 'plastic attraction' with a few fairground attractions. The animals in the mini zoo currently look well cared for, but how will they look after a few months in the IMHO inadequate cages? The weekend Bangkokians will love the place.

I went there today for the Forum. It is not somewhere that I would normally go to without my granddaughters who were at school today. Now that I've been, I wouldn't rush back.

Probably a nice day out for a young family, or big kids.
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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by europtimiste » Thu Jul 31, 2014 4:10 pm

One more show for Thais, The region will be soon a huge Disneyland.

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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by Dannie Boy » Thu Jul 31, 2014 4:20 pm

Just a coincidence, but I visited somebody at a hospital in Petchaburi this morning and on the way back noticed the shiny new Camel Republic, but was almost past it before I could even consider whether to stop to see what it was. Now that I know, I might give it a try in 2 weeks time when we have visitors with two boys aged 6&7. As for the large rodent looking animal, it looks to be a Patagonian Mara, http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patagonian_mara and definitely Ostrich rather than Emu (at least I couldn't see Rod Hull). The camels did indeed look in good condition and better than some I have seen in Saudi and the UAE, but as you say, come back next year and they might not look so good.

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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by Big Boy » Thu Jul 31, 2014 4:28 pm

Dannie Boy wrote:it looks to be a Patagonian Mara
Thank you - another of life's mysteries solved :D
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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by christopher1 » Fri Aug 01, 2014 7:17 am

Thanks for the report,BB. Just saved me 120 baht!

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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by Takiap » Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:33 pm

Thanks for the report BB, maybe I'll take the girls there on the weekend. Like you say though, I too would have expected camel rides. Maybe rides will come later? In fact they could include ostrich rides as well, which are great fun too. That Sky Fly thingy looks like it could be fun. :thumb:


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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by Big Boy » Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:42 pm

Takiap wrote:That Sky Fly thingy looks like it could be fun. :thumb:
It was the one thing, apart from my hand in the ostriches mouth, that really caught my attention. However, the thing that would worry me is does it have a safe loading limit? If it did, would the Thais take my money, but wait until I was laying at the bottom of the pit before telling me?
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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by prcscct » Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:53 pm

I think you have to break/train a camel the same as you do a horse. If those are out of some zoo, or even straight out of the ME, and not broken, I don't think you'll want to ride them. They may find you in Pranburi. :shock: :laugh:
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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by richard » Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:30 pm

prcscct wrote:I think you have to break/train a camel the same as you do a horse. If those are out of some zoo, or even straight out of the ME, and not broken, I don't think you'll want to ride them. They may find you in Pranburi. :shock: :laugh:

Thay may be the ones that have parked (grazing) up the Pala-U road for years
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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by Terry » Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:31 pm

In the mid 1980's (the Thatcher years) I was living and working in Cairo.

I had to be the 'tour guide' several times to various work colleagues and engineers visiting our construction works.

The favourite trip was of course to the Pyramids on the Giza plateau. I went many times and frankly (together with the Cairo museum) it was always fascinating.

There were of course the tourist 'Camel rides' - I did this only once - on a totally obnoxious, smelly, fly infested, spitting creature with the biggest pair of bollox that I had ever seen on any animal - let alone a camel. :shock:

The camel equivalent of the mahout proudly called his camel - 'Maggie'

We told him that maybe Dennis would have been more appropriate. 8)

Lovely creatures Camels - and Camel Republic is one place I won't be visiting any time soon.

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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by Nereus » Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:37 pm

prcscct wrote:I think you have to break/train a camel the same as you do a horse. If those are out of some zoo, or even straight out of the ME, and not broken, I don't think you'll want to ride them. They may find you in Pranburi. :shock: :laugh:
Yes, the mongrel things do have to be trained--a big heavy stick being the best tool. :twisted:
Those look happy enough and appear to be used to being handled. Australia has millions of the bloody things running wild, and in fact, exports them to the Middle East.
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Re: Whats On & Where To Go Hua Hin - Camel Republic

Post by Big Boy » Sat Aug 02, 2014 8:25 am

:lach:
Mrs BB has just passed me the tickets we were issued for Camel Republic.
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Of course, I'm sure it was a genuine mistake :twisted:

Incidentally, it looks as though I reported the wrong admission cost for kids. Only 60 Baht, not 80 Baht as I reported.
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