Must-see attractions in Northeastern Thailand

  • Top Choice
    Prasat Phanom Rung

    Prasat Phanom Rung has a knock-you-dead location. Crowning the summit of a spent volcano, this sanctuary sits 200m above the paddy fields below. To the…

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    Phimai Historical Park

    Prasat Phimai is one of the most impressive Khmer ruins in Thailand, both in its grand scale and its intricate details. Though built as a Mahayana…

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    Khao Yai National Park

    Cool and lush, Khao Yai National Park is an easy escape into the primordial jungle. The 2168-sq-km park, part of a Unesco World Heritage site, spans five…

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    Prasat Muang Tam

    In the little village of Khok Meuang, the restored Khmer temple of Prasat Muang Tam is an ideal bolt-on to any visit to Phanom Rung, which is only 8km to…

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    Wat Phu Thok

    With its network of rickety staircases and walkways built in, on and around a giant sandstone outcrop, Wat Phu Thok is one of the region’s wonders. The…

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    Red Lotus Sea

    You'll see pictures of the Red Lotus Sea (really, it's a pink water-lily lake) all over Udon as it's now one of Isan's top attractions, but few Westerners…

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    Sala Kaew Ku

    One of Thailand’s most enigmatic attractions, Sala Kaew Ku can't fail to impress. Built over 20 years by Luang Pu Boun Leua Sourirat, a mystic who died in…

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    Wat Pa Non Sawan

    Wat Pa Non Sawan is home to hundreds of colourful sculptures ranging from merely peculiar to ‘what the…?!’ Whether it’s the immense dragons, waving…

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    Wat Lan Khuat

    Officially it’s Wat Pa Maha Chedi Kaeo, but these days nearly everyone calls it Wat Lan Khuat, the ‘Million Bottle Temple’. In 1982 the abbot dreamt…

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    Wat Phra That Phanom

    This temple is a potent and beautiful place – even if you're feeling templed out, you'll likely be impressed. At its hub is a stupa (tâht), more…

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    Pha Taem National Park

    One of our favourite national parks in Thailand, Pha Taem is named after and centred on a large cliff above the Mekong River. The cliff's ancient rock…

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    Suan Sawan

    A more adventurous destination than the famous Suan Hin Pha Ngam, the walking path through 'Heavenly Garden' requires a little climbing over rocks and…

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    Pha Taem

    These ancient rock paintings, which are at least 1000 years old but probably much older, sit on a cliff face down below the visitors centre. A fantastic,…

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    Wat Nong Wang

    Down at the south end of the lake, Phra Mahathat Kaen Nakhon, the gorgeous nine-storey stupa at the heart of this important temple, makes this Khon Kaen's…

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    Nam Nao National Park

    Unheralded Nam Nao National Park is one of Thailand's most wildlife-rich parks, although its remote location means it never gets busy. Good visibility and…

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    Phu Phrabat Historical Park

    Steeped in mythical intrigue and peppered with bizarre rock formations, Phu Phrabat Historical Park is one of the region’s highlights. The formations are…

  • Top Choice
    Chansoma

    You may find the village of Ban Tha Sawang, 8km west of Surin along Rte 4026, a fascinating stop, even if you're not particularly turned on by weaving…

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    Walking Street Market

    In the spirit of Chiang Mai's weekend street markets (but not touristy like them), hundreds of vendors take over Th Na Sunratchakan. Many of them sell…

  • Top Choice
    Nam Tok Haew Narok

    Nam Tok Haew Narok ('Hell Gorge Waterfall') is in the far south of Khao Yai National Park, 23km from the visitors centre. Its three levels combine to form…

  • Wat Pha Tak Sua

    The forest wát peering down on the town lies just 2km away as the crow flies, but it's 19km to drive. Once a very serious meditation temple, it's now…