GET TO KNOW UDON THANI
Regional Transport and Commercial Hub connecting to Laos
and surrounded by many attractions
Udon Thani is a big city in the northeast Thailand with one of the largest expat populations in Thailand and important regional hub and commercial center. It is surrounded by many attractions and bordered byLoas (able to have a day trip to Loas by car) and the provinces of Nong Khai to the north, Sakon Nakhon to the east, Kalasin Province to the southeast, Khon Kaen to the south, and Loei and Nong Bua Lam Phu Province to the west.
Udon Thani has been creating a multi-culturally diverse base which lasts until today. Udon is home to one of the world’s earliest bronze-age civilizations, at Ban Chiang. Archaeological evidence – earthenware pottery and bronze fragments – unearthed here suggest that the prehistoric settlements existed between 2100 BC and 200 AD. Other ancient structures and artifacts are also found inside Phu Phra Baht Historical Park. Here, rising amidst a vast sandstone mountain are peculiar rock formations, as well as dinosaur foot prints, cave paintings and Buddhist structures.
The urban centre, Udon City, is home to a large concentration of expats. Udon’s dining and nightlife scene is, therefore, culturally diverse and offers good choices.
The Red Lotus Sea is about 45 km. south east from the Udon Thani ring road, at Lake Nong Han on the banks of Ban Diam, in the Kumphawadpi Reserve.
Travel to Udon Thani
Udon is approximately 560 kilometers from Bangkok in distance. An important gateway to Laos as well as Thailand’s northeast, Udon is easily reached by air, rail and car.
- Thai Airways has several daily flights connecting Bangkok Suvarnabhumi airport with Udon Thani. More information at www.thaiairways.com
- Bangkok Airways has several daily flights connecting Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport with Udon Thani. More information at www.bangkokair.com
- Nok Air offers three daily flights from Bangkok Don Mueang International Airport to Udon Thani. More information at www.nokair.com
- Air Asia operate daily flights from Bangkok Don Mueang International Airport to Udon Thani. More information at www.airasia.com
Trains depart from Bangkok's Hua Lamphong Railway Station, in the city centre, to Udon Thani every day. The 8.20 p.m. Nong Khai Express from Bangkok (No 69) arrives in Udon Thani at about 6.30 a.m. on the next day. The 'Rapid' trains leave Bangkok on the Nong Khai line at 8.20 am, 6.30 p.m. and 8.45 p.m., with departures from Udon Thani to Bangkok at 6.47a.m., 6.40 p.m. and 7.20 p.m.
There are also sleeper cars available for the overnight trains. Call 1690, 022 237 010-20 for more information.
From Bangkok, join Highway No. 1 to Saraburi, then Highway No. 2 to Udon Thani via Nakhon Ratchasima and Khon Kaen Provinces. The distance is 564 kilometers.
Buses for Udon depart from Bangkok's Northern Bus Terminal (the Mochit 2 Bus Terminal) throughout the day from 5.00 am to 11.00 pm. You can contact Transport Co. Ltd. on Tel: 0-2936-2852-66 for more information.
There are buses running between Udon Thani and other provinces such as Loei, Nong Khai, Sakon Nakhon, Khon Kaen, Ubon Ratchathani, and Nakhon Phanom. The buses leave Udon Thani Bus Terminal every 40 minutes.
There are over 30 things to do in Udon Thani, as well as many the nightlife scenes. Besides being a major transport hub in the northeast, Udon is also home to the well-known archaeological sites.
The city of Udon Thani has several sights that are interesting, although few are spectacular. Nong Prajak Park is well worth visiting in the early morning, or evening to take a stroll away from the hot sun of the day. You can also find lots of restaurants, food stalls and massages that are available in the surrounding streets. For the more spiritual 'must see' attractions, The Udon Thani Wat Photisomphonand Wat Pa Phu Kon are highly recommeended. To discover a little about the short history of Udon Thani, the Udon Thani Museum is a good a place as any to find out something about the early life and some of the development since those days.
- Wat Pa Phu Kon
If you are something of a horse racing fan, perhaps an afternoon out at Udon Thani Racecourse is in order. Ten Pin Bowling is on offer at the Central Plaza complex in the heart of Udon Thani, a fairly recent addition to the city.
- Central Plaza Udon Thani is a shopping mall, located on Prajaksilapakom Road, Muang District, Udon Thani, on a 28,000-square-meter land plot with many top international and local shops and multipurpose hall of 3,000 square meters.
There is a reasonable variation of attractions which are popular with both local and international tourists. Many of the Udon Thani attractions are to the west of the city including temples (wats) where you can simply wander around enjoying the view.
Phu Phra Bat Historical Park and Butta Bat Bua Bok are some of the most important attractions in the Province, they are certainly the most fascinating. Phu Foi Lom, and are very rewarding locations too, with some great landscapes to enjoy. Wat Baan Waeng is perhaps the most entertaining temple in the region, and the Erawan Cave in the west of the region are a 'must see' place, as you go in to the cave and explore to your hearts content.
- Phu Phra Baht Historical Park is a historical park in Ban Phue District, Udon Thani Province, Thailand. The park's distinguishing feature is its unusual rock formations around which religious shrines have been constructed. Some formations also feature prehistoric rock paintings.
(Cr. https://en.wikipedia.org, http://www.loupiote.com)
- Phu Foi Lom Eco Park (also known as Phu Phoilom) is predominantly a park where you can find some rare plants and a diverse ecological system with some nice landscape views.
(Cr. maneerut2330.blogspot.com, https://pantip.com/topic/34654253)
(Cr. http://www.thailandtriptour.com, http://www.udonthaniattractions.com)
Sala Kaew Ku in Nong Khai is probably the most visited sightseeing attraction in the Udon Thani region, being historical, spiritual and totally fascinating all in one. Nong Khai, as a town also has its charms, and of course the covered market is another 'must do' item on anyone's agenda while visiting the Udon Thani Province, and Nong Khai in particular. About 100 m. or so from Sala Kaew Ku is the more recently opened Nong Khai Crocodile Farm. Another animal related attraction is the Nong Khai Aquarium, just to the south west of the town. While visiting the Nong Khai area, you might want to consider heading east to see the highly impressive Wat Phu Tok, a place where a little physical exertion is required to get the very best out of this particular attraction.
- Sala Kaew Ku s a park featuring giant fantastic concrete sculptures inspired by Buddhism. It is located near Nong Khai, Thailand in immediate proximity of the Thai-Lao border and the Mekong river.
- Wat Phu Tok is arguably the best tourist attraction in the region. It is in Bueng Kan Province to the north east of Udon Thani, and it really is stunning.
If you have never seen 6 million bats leaving their cave for the evening, then Phu Pha Ya Cave, near Leoi in the west of the region is a great place to head for. The event may only be visible for about 30 minutes, depending on what time the bats decide to fly out.
- Nong Khai Aquarium (Sirindhorn Aquarium)
Udon Thani Performing Arts
- Serng is a joyful Isan (Northeastern) folk dance generally performing at traditional festivals and welcome parties in Udon Thani
(Cr. https://sawlanla.files.wordpress.com, http://www.daradaily.com)
Udon Thani Restaurants
Udon has plenty of restaurants, and the choice ranges from northeastern Thai fare to a diverse range of international cuisine. Many are garden-restaurant style.
- Rabeang Pachanee on Ban Non Roadis one of the most well-known Thai restaurants in Udon Thani where you can have delicious Thai recipesfrom various parts of the country.
- VT Naem Neaugon Posri Road is a restaurant where you can have tasty Vietnamese dishes especially well-known pork sausages or ‘Naem Neaung’.
- Buengmaihomon Mittraphap Road is a restaurant with beautiful scenery of a garden and a lake where families and business groups can have a wonder time. This restaurant serves tasty local and international dishes, live music and karaoke rooms.
- Suantip on Udon Thani - Nong Khai Road is a restaurant serving tasty local dishes, Chinese and Europe Dishes.
- Somtum Je Kai is a popularrestaurant serving Isan Dishes (Northeastern Food) where you can experience one of the best papaya salad (Somtum) in Thailand
- Good Everything on Pho Niyom Road is a boutique restaurant where offers set lunches, pastas, steaks and homemade cakes with fresh coffee and juices.
- Beyond Cafe on the opposite side of Rabeang Pachanee Restaurant on Ban Non Road is a coffee and bakery shop where you can relax and enjoy nice coffee, tea, smoothies, bakeries and a beautiful shop decoration.
Udon Thani Shopping
Like other provincial towns in Thailand, Udon Thani has its own specialty handicrafts and snacks worth checking out. It’s particularly known for hand-woven silk, ‘khit’ (raised, diamond-shaped pattern brocade) textile, pottery and Vietnamese sausage ‘Naem Neaug’.
- Na Kha village is where to buy silk and ‘khit’ garments. You can watch the craftswomen at work and see all the different ‘khit’ patterns being created.
- CentralPlaza Udon Thani is a shopping mall, located on Prajaksilapakom Road, Muang District, Udon Thani, on a 28,000-square-meter land plot with many top international and local shops and multipurpose hall of 3,000 square meters.
- UD Town is home to over 13,000 square meters of a shopping center with more than 90 flagship stores and 2,000 square meters of Tesco Lotus Supermarket. In addition, there are 10,000 square meters of UD Bazaar, a new lifestyle market of Udon Thani with more than 200 retailers. There are also more than 15,000 square meters of green area and a car parking. UD Hall is also developed into an exhibition hall of 1,700 square meters that can serve exhibitions, or promotional and marketing events.
- Udonthani Walking Streetwhere you can buy hand-made souvenirs, ornaments, delicious local food and many more. It opens between 18:00-22:00 hrs. every Friday to Saturday at the font of the City Hall.
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