Thai wooden temple architecture on the lotus pond at wat Thung Si Muang in Ubon Ratchathani province, Thailand

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Ubon Ratchathani

Few cities in Isan reward aimless wandering as richly as Ubon Ratchathani (อุบลราชธานี). Survive the usual knot of choked access roads, and the 'Royal City of the Lotus' will reveal an altogether more attractive face. Racked up against Mae Nam Mun, Thailand's second-longest river, the historic heart of the city, south of Th Kheuan Thani, has a sluggish character rarely found in the region's big conurbations. And throughout the city there are many interesting temples beckoning culture-loving travelers.

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