If you had just a single day to experience Thailand, Khorat, the original and still most commonly used name for Thailand's largest province, would be a great place to spend it. Most visitors are here to jump into the jungle at Khao Yai, Thailand's oldest national park and newest Unesco World Heritage site. Its large size and easy access make it one of the best wildlife-watching sites in Thailand.
While Khao Yai is the soaring pinnacle of the province's tourist industry, silk and stone are solid cornerstones. Fashionistas should hit the shops in Pak Thong Chai, home of the region's silk-weaving industry, while history aficionados can soak up an evocative glimpse of the Angkor era's heyday at the restored ruins at Phimai.
Khorat city offers little as a destination, but with a solid selection of hotels and restaurants, it makes a good base for your Isan sojourn.