Any Thais or foreigners who have visited Satun province and appreciated the pristine beauty of the unspoiled beaches and sea and its various islands will no doubt yearn to go back again.
They, too, may pray and hope that these God-given natural resources will not fall victim to the greed and shortsightedness of Bangkok-based economic planners and follow the ruinous examples of Pattaya, Phuket and Samui.
It is easily understandable why the normally peaceful residents of this Muslim-dominated province are up in arms in protest against development projects such as the Pak Bara deep-sea port, land bridge and heavy industries which are to be introduced into their province by the decision-makers in Bangkok.
They have seen what has happened to people living in close vicinity to the Laem Chabang deep-sea port and the Map Ta Put industrial estate. The pollution and toxic emissions from industries there have gradually ruined their health and that of their children.
As such, they have every right to feel concerned and to voice their opposition to the Pak Bara deep-sea port which is just the start.
More development projects such as a petrochemical plant will follow as a huge tract of land has been targeted as the potential site for an industrial zone.
Dramatising their strong opposition to the Pak Bara deep-sea port, a group of environmentally conscious Satun residents on Tuesday began a 220-kilometre, seven-day march from their hometown to Chana district of Songkhla where another deep-sea port is to be built.
The Satun protesters are following in the same footsteps as Sasin Chalermlarp of the Seub Nakhasathien Foundation who recently completed a long march to protest against the Mae Wong dam project in Nakhon Sawan.
The two ports will be linked by a dual-track rail system known as a land bridge for the transport of goods from the western coast to the eastern coast and vice versa.
Undoubtedly, there are those in Satun who support the port project, among them Satun MP Tanee Jaisamut, the provincial chamber of commerce and local administrative bodies.
They, however, said they are opposed to heavy industries being located in the province _ and there, they have a point.
What is the point of having a deep-sea port for a small agriculture-based southern province where the major earners are rubber and tourism?
The port itself will be rendered redundant and eventually abandoned unless there are support industries which will churn out cargo for all the freighters that call there.
The local shipping industry is not enthusiastic about the Pak Bara deep-sea port project either, claiming it is not economically feasible to transport goods from the western to the eastern coast. This involves unloading cargo from ships onto trains for transport to the other deep-sea port in Chana district where the cargo is to be unloaded onto ships for transport to Bangkok.
Satun province, which has remained surprisingly peaceful for many years while its three neighbouring provinces of Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat are mired in almost daily shootings and bombings, should be left as it is and promoted as a tourism haven. The money planned for the port and industrial projects should be shifted instead to education, social and economic projects which are environmentally and ecologically friendly.