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Khon Kaen is the Heart of Isan | Smile Thailand Ep.21

Khon Kaen is a province located in the northeastern region of Thailand, also known as Isan. The province covers an area of approximately 10,886 square kilometers and is home to a population of over 1.7 million people. Khon Kaen is well known for its rich cultural heritage, beautiful natural scenery, and warm hospitality.

Khon Kaen is the Heart of Isan | Smile Thailand Ep.21

There are several ways to travel to Khon Kaen province in Thailand. The most common ways to get to Khon Kaen are:

  1. By plane: The city has its own airport, Khon Kaen Airport, which serves both domestic and international flights. You can fly directly to Khon Kaen from Bangkok or other major cities in Thailand, or connect via Bangkok from international destinations.

  2. By train: The State Railway of Thailand operates daily trains from Bangkok to Khon Kaen. The journey takes around 8-10 hours, depending on the type of train and the time of day. For more info about train schedule, please visit

  3. By bus: There are regular bus services from Bangkok and other major cities in Thailand to Khon Kaen. The journey takes around 7-8 hours, depending on traffic. For more info about bus schedule, please visit

  4. By car: If you prefer to drive, you can rent a car in Bangkok or other major cities and drive to Khon Kaen. The journey takes around 6-7 hours, depending on traffic.

Once you arrive in Khon Kaen, you can get around by tuk-tuk, taxi, or rented motorbike. It's also possible to join guided tours or hire a private driver to explore the province and its attractions. There are several car rental companies that operate at Khon Kaen Airport such as Avis, Budget, Hertz or Thai-Rent-A-Car which you compare prices on their website and select to pick up and return the car directly at the airport.

Khon Kaen is the Heart of Isan | Smile Thailand Ep.21

Khon Kaen is known for its delicious and unique Thai Snack Online choices that are popular among both locals and visitors such as Kai Yang, also known as, a grilled chicken dish that is marinated in a mixture of spices and served with sticky rice and som tam (papaya salad). So be sure to explore the local markets and street food stalls to discover more.

Here are some of the most popular attractions to visit in Khon Kaen:

1. Phra Mahathat Kaen Nakhon <view location:>

This is a beautiful Buddhist temple located in the heart of Khon Kaen city. It features a large, golden Buddha statue and intricate Thai architecture. The temple is known for its striking architecture and serene atmosphere, and it's a popular attraction for both locals and visitors.

  • Entrance fee: There is no entrance fee to visit Wat Nong Waeng. However, donations are always appreciated to help support the maintenance and upkeep of the temple.

  • Opening hours: The temple is open daily from early morning until evening. The exact opening and closing times may vary depending on the day and time of year, but generally, you can expect the temple to be open from around 6:00am to 6:00pm.

When visiting Wat Nong Waeng, be sure to dress modestly and respectfully, as it is a religious site. This means covering your shoulders and knees, and avoiding revealing clothing. You should also remove your shoes before entering the temple buildings, as is customary in Thai culture.

2. Kaen Nakhon Lake <view location:>

This is a large man-made lake in the center of Khon Kaen city. You can enjoy a variety of activities, such as jogging, cycling, or simply strolling around the lake. There are also several attractions around the lake, including a large fountain, a statue of Khon Kaen's founder, and a cultural center that hosts various events and exhibitions. One of the most popular activities at Kaen Nakhon Lake is taking a boat ride. You can rent a paddle boat, a rowboat, or a motorized boat and explore the lake at your own pace. There are also several restaurants and cafes around the lake where you can enjoy a meal or a drink while taking in the scenic views.

  • Entrance fee: There is no entrance fee to visit Kaen Nakhon Lake. However, there may be fees associated with certain activities, such as boat rentals or bike rentals.

  • Opening hours: The lake is open 24 hours a day, so you can visit at any time. However, certain facilities and attractions around the lake, such as the bike rental shops or restaurants, may have specific opening hours.

3. Khon Kaen National Museum <view location:>

Inside the museum, you can explore a variety of exhibits, including displays of prehistoric artifacts, pottery, ancient tools, and traditional clothing. There are also exhibits about the history of the region, including the rise and fall of various kingdoms and empires that once ruled over the area. One of the most interesting exhibits in the museum is the display of skeletons of prehistoric creatures that once roamed the region, including the Phuwiangosaurus sirindhornae, a dinosaur species that was discovered in the nearby Phu Wiang National Park.

  • Entrance fee: The entrance fee for Khon Kaen National Museum is 100 baht for foreigners and 30 baht for Thai citizens. Children under the age of 12 can enter for free.

  • Opening hours: The museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 9:00am to 4:00pm. The museum is closed on Mondays and on certain public holidays.

4. Ton Tann Market <view location:>

A very popular night market located in the city of Khon Kaen in northeastern Thailand. A must-visit destination known as a great place to sample a variety of local dishes and snacks, including grilled meats, noodles, and fresh fruit. There are also plenty of vendors selling souvenirs, clothing, and other items. One of the highlights of Ton Tann Market is the live entertainment that takes place throughout the evening. You can enjoy traditional Thai music and dance performances, as well as more modern music and street performers.

  • Entrance fee: There is no entrance fee to visit Ton Tann Market. However, you will need to pay for any food, drinks, or products that you purchase at the market.

  • Opening hours: The market is open daily from around 5:00pm to 11:00pm. However, the exact opening and closing times may vary depending on the day and time of year.

5. Phu Wiang National Park <view location:>

This park is located about 60 kilometers from Khon Kaen city and features stunning natural landscapes, including mountains, waterfalls, and forests. It's a great place for hiking, camping, and wildlife watching It is a large protected area of around 380 square kilometers and is known for its stunning natural beauty and unique geological formations.

  • Entrance fee: The entrance fee for Phu Wiang National Park is 200 baht for foreigners and 40 baht for Thai citizens. Children under the age of 15 can enter for free.

  • Opening hours: The park is open daily from 8:00am to 4:30pm.

One of the most interesting features of Phu Wiang National Park is its unique geological formations, which include a series of towering sandstone pillars known as the Phu Wiang Dinosaur Footprints. These formations were formed around 140 million years ago and are believed to have been left by various species of dinosaurs that once roamed the region. Visitors to the park can explore a variety of hiking trails and scenic viewpoints, and there are also several campsites and picnic areas available for those who wish to stay overnight.

6. The Khon Kaen Zoo <view location:>

This zoo is a home to variety of animals, including tigers, lions, bears, giraffes, zebras, and many more. Visitors to the Khon Kaen Zoo can explore the various exhibits and animal enclosures on foot or by tram. The zoo is divided into several zones, including the African Savannah, the Amazon River, and the Jurassic Zone. Each zone features a different collection of animals and habitats, allowing visitors to experience a wide range of ecosystems and wildlife.

  • Entrance fee: The entrance fee for the Khon Kaen Zoo is 150 baht (approximately $4.50 USD) for adults and 75 baht (approximately $2.25 USD) for children.

  • Opening hours: The zoo is open daily from 8:00am to 6:00pm.

In addition to the animal exhibits, the Khon Kaen Zoo also offers a variety of activities and attractions, including a bird show, a sea lion show, and an elephant feeding area. Visitors can also take a ride on the zoo's cable car for a unique perspective on the park and its surroundings.

#Bonus Tumkratoei Sagate <view location:>

Highly recommended northeastern Thai restaurant. Large and many tables with beautiful decoration. Shady and good vibe both inside and outdoor zone. The foods were delicious with friendly price. Clean restroom with a lot of parking lot in front of the restaurant. Certified as Michelin star guide restaurant:

Overall, Khon Kaen is a fascinating and beautiful province with a rich history and culture. Whether you're interested in exploring the natural wonders of the region, learning about its traditional crafts and cuisine, or simply soaking up the warm hospitality of its people, Khon Kaen is definitely worth a visit.

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