Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Driving in Hua Hin, Thailand

Let's start with this picture. This is me showing my new motorbike. Sure it looks like a moped, but it is really a motorcycle. Just a small one which gets you through traffic easily and fast. Maximum speed around 80km / 50miles an hour.

When you are visiting Thailand you probably will see children as young as 10 years driving a motorbike like this. It is not allowed but no one is stopping them. Even handicapped people can drive these bikes. Sometimes we see a man with a muscular disease standing straight and tied down to his bike. Or we see a bike with a side car and on it a paraplegic man in a wheelchair. But we foreigners are not allowed to drive this bike unless you have a motorcycle driver license. And this is not all. You need an international driver license too. So before you rent a bike like this make sure you are allowed to drive one.

And about the insurance. These rental bikes have only a basic insurance which is obligatory for all bikes. Don't expect more. And the price: around 150 Baht per day. As a driver wear your helmet. Or pay the fine of 200 Baht when the police is waving you over. Be careful when driving. They have some strange traffic rules.

Monday, 28 June 2010

Hua Hin Jazz festival

We already wrote a little piece about the coming up Hua Hin Jazz Festival sponsored by our home country brewer Heineken. The festival is pastence. And it was not the only one on this planet. The Hua Hin festival was a great success. I don't know how succesful the Bonaire festival was. In case you want to see pictures of the 2010 festival look here. And for those who didn't know, the main stage near the Intercontinental Hotel is close to our wheelchair accessible home where disabled people can spend their holidays. And close to this hotel is a beach access ramp for wheelchairs and scooters.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Hua Hin Nadpob market, wheelchair accessible

This is news. This is hot. Wheelchair Thailand is happy to announce that Hua Hin Nadpob Market will be wheelchair accessible. Hua Hin Nadpob Market is being built at Satukarn Square in the centre of Hua Hin. The building site is surrounded by a very colourful fence.

Nadpob Market will provide:
- Ramp access with rail at the front, the back and the side entrances.
- Elevators from the uderground car park to the 1st and 2nd floor.
- Wheelchair accessible restrooms on the 1st and 2nd floor.
- Ramp access to the hotel Baan Silarhom Hua Hin at the backside.

WheelchairThailand will take pictures of the accessibility when Nadpob Market is open and publish these on this Weblog and on our Picasa Webalbum. Hua Hin Nadpob Market is located just 500 meter from our apartment Tira Tiraa for disabled people.

Hua Hin Nadpob will have shops for products and services of premium quality for standard or lower price. The restaurants on the 1st floor will serve good quality food with fine taste. And the food court on the second floor will serve local food from Petchaburi, Hua Hin, Pranburi and Prachuap Khirikhan.

We like to thank Mrs. Primprao Punsoni for the information. We wish her and Hua Hin Nadpob Market good luck.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Wheelchair accessible, World Cup Soccer

We are no great soccer fans but when Holland is playing we like to watch. And here we are in front of the Hilton Hotel, Hua Hin. They have a big screen and show all the games. Even when people want to watch the games played in the middle of the night. This spot is just 800 meters from our wheelchair accessible apartment Tira Tiraa. So you don't have to miss out on any game.

Monday, 21 June 2010

Boarding for wheelchair users

This video shows how disabled people can board a plane. It is really fantastic. Take a look and prepare yourself for take off. Click here to watch.
For powered wheelchair users we have great tips. Don't hesitate to write an email to

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Computers for charity

Hello everyone,
Since we have started to rent out two accommodations in Hua Hin, Thailand we were thinking about a good cause, what to do and what to give. Jan is totally into computers and I as a teacher think education is very important. Jan and I have been using computers since the early 80's. And now after 30 years developments in IT are so fast that every 4 years you need a new computer otherwise you are not able to run your software. So the computers in our accommodations needed replacement. The old once were still working and we were wondering what to do with it.

A search on the internet lead us to the website Hua Hin after dark. Here was a threat about donating computers. The Ham and Bacon shop in Hua Hin at Soi 41 is collecting all kind of computerparts for orphanages and schools. This was the perfect cause to donate our old computers. After making an appointment they came to collect our computers.

We like to thank Martin for picking up these computers and we hope the children will learn how to use a computer. Good Luck.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Shopping and entertainment

Shopping in Thailand and shopping in Hua Hin is something different. Big shopping malls in Bangkok offer all brands you are looking for. Small shopping centres in Hua Hin are much alike. The only thing Bangkok and Hua Hin have incommon is the food and drink stalls. Eating and drinking is very important to Thai people. It is their way to come together and meet with friends and family. So in shopping malls, big or small, is always a place to meet, eat and drink. And most of the time these shopping malls have entertainment too.

One of these malls is Plearnwan in Hua Hin near the Index. Build by a Thai man whose father is disabled and uses a wheelchair. So with his father in mind he made his shopping mall accessible for wheelchair users. Perfect. Thank you very much. I'm very happy with this initiative. So I made a little movie to show the accessibility of Plearnwan. Take a look here.

Monday, 14 June 2010

Hua Hin Jazz festival 2010

 Do you like music? And are you staying in Hua Hin this weekend? Then have a look at the Hua Hin Jazzfestival 2010 sponsored by our national brewer Heineken. There are two stages. One near Sofitel hotel and one near Intercontinental Hotel. The main stage near the Intercontinental Hotel is just 700m from our wheelchair accessible holiday home Coconut Grove and close to one of the best wheelchair access ramps to the Hua Hin beach. And the second stage near the Sofitel hotel is just 900m from our apartment Tira Tiraa which is adapted for disabled people. Cleck here for the line up.
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Hua Hin, Khao Takiab beach, Thailand, my wheelchair way

Do you like to go to the beach? Are you always get stuck in the sand? No possibilities during your holiday abroad? Here is the solution. has two beach wheelchairs available for their guests from Villa Coconut Grove and Apartment Tira Tiraa. And the guests can use it for free. How? Take a look at our movie. It was taken on February 7, 2010.

© 07-02-2010, Hanneke Fronik

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Thailand “copy copy” and the competition

Many people who have visited Thailand for their holidays know Thai people are very well in copying originals. Tourists buy t-shirts, handbags, underwear, etc. and show them off as originals in their home country.

Since 2001 we are in the rental business. Jan has a lifetime experience in being disabled and using a wheelchair. And I, Hanneke, have worked as a policy maker within the Dutch Disabled Association pushing accessible housing and public transport and as a consultant in adapting inaccessible houses. We have used our experiences and our personal savings to set up wheelchair accessible holiday houses in different places. Now we rent out these wheelchair accessible holiday homes to disabled people. We put our hearts and souls into our business. This is what we do best. And over all these years we have had many happy customers.

Sometimes people try to copy. Now we are experiencing the copy act in Hua Hin, Thailand. We have experienced it before in Hungary and France. Our business is copied by resort developers, condo builders and owners of individual houses. We feel proud our houses and our business are used as an example and worth copying. This competition only stimulates our ongoing effort to satisfy our customers. We even wish our competition good luck in starting up their business. Only the future will learn if they will be as successful as we are today.

However a warning is in its place. You are paying a lot of money to make this trip. So make sure you get your holiday of a lifetime.
• Check the accessibility before making reservations. Do you want to be disappointed due to poor access?
• Check the location. Do you want to stay in a place where you are always in need of a car or a taxi?
• Check if the house or resort is finished? Do you want to stay on a building site during your holiday? Or even worse. Do you want to look for another accommodation short before arrival?
• Check the services. What is included in the price? Do you have to pay additional fees for using medical equipment?

And in case you still doubt the given information feel free to contact us. We know local people who can check it and we are happy to help out.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Protesters gone and visa for free

Here an up-date to the red shirt story. The protesters are gone, the curfew has been lifted since May 30 and Bangkok is safe again. Hurray. Let the tourists come again. They probably can have a bargain when they want to stay for over one month. Because at the Dutch Consulate in Amsterdam 3 weeks ago the tourist visas were free of charge. It will last till March 31, 2011. You can read more about it on the website of
The ministry of foreign affairs, Kingdom Thailand.
And we are really happy. We have followed the news about the protest and riots very close since our arrival in Hua Hin on May 18. We wrote messages to our future guests to give them up dates on the story. And now our guests have decided to come to Hua Hin because it is safe. Seaside resorts like Hua Hin depend on tourists. And Thailand depends on tourisme industry for 7-8% of the BGP.
We are very glad the situation is back to normal. It feels great the government has succeeded in their mission to end the protests. However we regret it came with losses of shops/jobs in the burned down shopping malls, losses of life and injuries.