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After our tour of Loei, we must change into a cross-country vehicle. We wait and see. The way leads 2 km across country lanes in nature before we reach the Sirila Farm Tent Camp Resort. Upon arrival, we are amazed by the lush vegetation.
Four safari tents stand on the edge of a cultivated meadow. The main house serves as a restaurant.
After a welcome drink, our hosts show us the campus.
Wilai Sirila is the daughter of the farmer couple who owns the land. In 2007 she founded the Sirila Farm Tent Camp Resort together with her Dutch husband Peter. Both wanted to show that you don’t need a lot of money for a tourism project. Furthermore, they show that also other plants thrive on this earth, as alternatives to the rice cultivation.
Her brother joined the project later. He studied electrical engineering but preferred to live in the countryside. So he and his sister take care of the guests. Wilai also owns land at the foot of the mountains, where she cultivates pineapples.
On our tour, Wilai and her brother show us the various plants and trees, such as pomegranate, sapodilla, and custard apple.
Furthermore, they cultivate cashew and macadamia nuts, coffee and chili. With particular pride, they show us one of their two perfumes trees (Champaka). They are very difficult to grow. But when they bear flowers and fruits, they are extremely valuable.
One uses them to make “Joy” the most expensive perfume flavor in the world. Then the two trees can also serve as retirement provision.
The Sirila Farm Tent Camp Resort is designed with great attention to detail. The tents stand far from each other, so there is no noise pollution. There is no electrical energy on the premises, except for a small solar installation. With their help, we were able to charge the batteries for our film cameras. For the lighting of the grounds and in the tents one uses torches at nightfall.
A big double bed stands in the midst of the tent. Cupboards and a bench round off the furnishings. A terrace in front of the tent allows you to enjoy the sunshine and sunrise.
The tents have a separated shower surrounded by plants. A surrounding wall protects from prying eyes. But upwards it is open so that one can shower under the open sky. Again, torches glow in the dark. The remaining sanitary area is covered. The water comes from the in-house well and is pumped into containers on a steel tower.
Once it is dark we get a fantastic menu served with meat, fish, and vegetables. Before this, we observe a part of the preparation, which is a challenge only with a torch as a light source.
Our hosts are very friendly and constantly strive to fulfill all the wishes of the guests. So it is difficult for us to refuse a part of the meal, but it is far too much for us. At the end, we still release a Chinese lantern. This will bring luck.
The next morning we experience the sunrise. The chickens are already eager on foraging. After the breakfast, we continue our journey again. It is hard to leave this peaceful environment. We would have loved to spend a few more days with our lovely hosts in this paradise.
A self-made tractor taxi brings us to our bus. After waving good-bye, we already turn the look forwards towards our next destination.
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