An arresting spectacle of nature stretches along the Prachuap Khiri Khan coastline, which extends over 200 kilometers. From the sands of Hua Hin Beach to the quaint region of Bangsaphan Noi district – one can observe waves as high as 2-4 meters. These towering waves, akin to giant warriors of the sea, are causing quite the sea alteration. They are so phenomenally high in fact, that they are causing seawater to cascade onto beachfront roads, resulting in significant flooding and traffic mayhem.
Your typical lazy beachfront eateries and festive shop houses- the lifeblood of the local economy- have now been temporarily sent into a state of virtual lockdown. Blame it on an unanticipated encroachment by the aggressive tides. This usually bustling road morphs into a lively pedestrian zone every weekend, drawing tourists like bees to honey. However, it has now been reduced to an exhibition of nature’s power, provoking curiosity amongst bystanders who take turns to capture this unusual occurrence.
The competent authorities are responding to this oceanic siege in their own unique way – with sandbags, to be precise. These makeshift buffers are being used as minuscule fortresses along various spots, trying their best to hold off the furious sea waves running amok on the beachfronts. Residents living in proximity to these coastal areas are being warned about the potential dangers of the unruly winds and towering sea waves that might continue to invade the shore.
Moreover, more than a hundred small fishing boats have resorted to playing safe by seeking shelter ashore, rather than braving the furious sea. The local military at service, lending a helping hand in towing these temporary refugees of the sea back to the safety of the shore.
The surge in wave height is not only restricted to Prachuap Khiri Khan but has also churned up trouble at Cha-am Beach in Phetchaburi. A kilometer long stretch of this beachfront has experienced considerable damage, dealing a gut punch to the local tourism industry. Waves towering at 3-4 meters high have trespassed where families once unwound and giggled as their little ones built sandcastles. Moreover, this water invasion has brought along unwanted guests – large quantities of marine waste that now lie scattered across the shoreline.
The message from the authorities is clear – swimming is off-limits for the next 3-4 days. Tourists have been dutifully advised to keep out of the danger zone that the beach has unfortunately turned into. It not just the holiday-goers who are thwarted by this natural phenomenon. Even the sturdy local fishing boats that usually brave the seas have bowed down to nature’s fury, choosing to anchor ashore than to navigate the turbulent waves.