By IAN THOMSON
YAMBA businessman Barry Adams is turning heads on the Lower River with a colourful piece of Thailand's capital.
The canary yellow Bangkok taxi, or tuk tuk as they are known, officially begins its new life next week as a sight-seeing vehicle for tourists, with Mr Adams at the controls.
"I was in Bangkok just before Christmas and the tuk tuks really caught my eye," he said.
"So after outlaying about $12,000 and going through some import and registration dramas, I brought the taxi to Yamba and it really has been a big hit."
The two-stroke, threewheeled tuk tuk ? pronounced took took ? doesn't lack power. Mr Adams had a human load of around 300 kilograms in a recent test run and still managed to scale the daunting Coldstream Street hill at 30km/h.
Passengers are entertained by listening to Thai/English messages from a computerised audio system Mr Adams has specially installed.
The tuk tuk has joined the fleet of scooters and cycles Mr Adams hires out from his Yamba Trading Company. And it's the tip of the iceberg.
"They're now making fourstroke tuk tuks which are virtually pollution free," he said.
"I'm planning to bring a few of those to Yamba to expand the business. The idea is to put trailers on them so surfers can stow their boards while I take them for a look at the various breaks around the place."
Mr Adams believes the days of Yamba being a quiet fishing village are long gone, and said attractions like outdoor dining and the tuk tuks are the way to go.