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Khao Yai National Park, the region’s first national park, was established in 1962 and is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Thailand. The park covers an area of 2,168 km², making it the nation’s third-largest national park which extends into Nakhon Ratchasima, Prachinburi, Saraburi and Nakhon Nayok provinces, right up to the Cambodian border. Nature lovers will be in a heavenly biodiverse world rich with flora and fauna in its grassland areas, highlighting the natural beauty of Thailand’s diverse landscapes when they take a Khao Yai trip on public holidays.
Haew Narok Waterfall
Haew Narok is the highest falls in Khao Yai National Park, and the park’s star attraction, cascading over three tiers with the final level gushing 80 metres below into a deep pool. At the height of the rainy season, the Haew Narok Waterfall is a truly breathtaking sight.
Haew Suwat Waterfall
The Haew Suwat Waterfall, still in Khao Yai, was made famous in the movie ‘The Beach’ where in one scene Leonardo DiCaprio’s character dived the waterfall from a cliff. If you want to follow in DiCaprio’s footsteps you must be willing to dive from a 20-metre drop.
Haew Pratoon Waterfall
Haew Pratoon is picturesque and cascades down 30 metres over a wide, jagged cliff hitting some huge boulders at the base of the falls. It is an 8 km trek from the Khao Yai park headquarters.
Wang Heaw Waterfall
Wang Heaw is a large-scale spectacular set of falls in Khao Yai, extending for 60-metres across with endless gushing water pouring over the edge. It takes two days trekking to reach these falls but the intensive journey is worth it.
Nang Rong falls
Nang Rong, also in Khao Yai, contains three tiers, with each tier featuring small pools for dipping and swimming. There is water all year round in these falls but visitors should practice caution when swimming during the rainy season when the falls is at their water peak and the rapids can be quite fierce.
Khao Luk Chang Bat Cave
At dusk, you will witness thousands of bats exiting the Khao Luk Chang bat cave, forming a dark ribbon ruffling in the sky like a dark long cloud, in a mesmerising spectacle as they head out in search of food. The cave can be found about 6 kilometres from the park entrance in the north of Khao Yai National Park.
One of the most popular things to do in Khao Yai National Park is a nighttime spotlight safari. This is one of the best easily accessible ways to see native animals in their natural habitat. Starting after dusk, visitors can jump in a jeep with spotlights in hand and be driven throughout the central parklands in search of wildlife. Common sightings include deer and porcupines with rarer sightings of civet cats and wild boars or even some wild roaming elephants. These tours can be booked at the visitor centre, the same place for information and other inquiries.
Khao Chiew Viewpoint (Pha Diew Dai Cliff)
1100 metres above sea level, this is one of the most impressive of Khao Yai National Park’s viewpoints and could easily be the ultimate Instagram backdrop for the average tourist. It can be reached via an easy 500m wooden boardwalk trail starting 14km from the visitors centre that winds through evergreen forests. Visitors will encounter sweeping views of rolling hills rich with green foliage and misty clouds. There are protruding cliff platforms that create the perfect stage for photos.
This area hosts an array of attractions for visitors to the region to explore such as Farm Chokchai, GranMonte Vineyard and PB Valley Winery, the Yellow Submarine Coffee Tank, Khao Yai Art Museum, The Bonanza Exotic Zoo, BigTae Flower Garden, Pak Chong Night Market, the temples of Wat Wachiralongkon Wararam Worawihan and Wat Khao Wan Chainawarat, and Namtok Dong Phayayen falls to name a few.
PB Valley Khao Yai Winery
Join a vineyard and wine tasting tour of the PB Valley Khao Yai Winery estate. The vineyard grows grape varieties such as Shiraz, Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chenin Blanc and Colombard. Visitors may sample some of the wine and also tour the orchards which produce dragonfruit and passionfruit.
Located in Pak Chong, Farm Chokchai is a famous agro-tourism destination because it is the largest dairy farm in Asia. Visitors to the farm can learn and participate in a range of daily farming activities like milking or ice cream making, tour the grounds on a tractor, feeding animals, watching working dog shows and dine in any one of the onsite restaurants.
Wang Takrai National Park
Dual streams converge at a scenic waterfall in a natural resort setting with recreation activities. Nature park with a waterfall & gardens This is one of the many streams that run out of Khao Yai National Park into Nakhon Nayok
Kang Sam Chan
The highlight of Kang Sam Chan is a three-level islet similar to stairs with a distance of 50 meters which is why it is called in Nakhon Nayok as Kang Sam Chan. Waterside locale for rafting & tubing
Khun Dan Prakarn Chon Dam
The purpose is to help relieve the frequent floods in the area of Nakhon Nayok River with an irrigation system. Visitors can go to the top of the dam by own vehicle or a shuttle bus trip or hiring a self-drive golf cart and enjoy the spectacular view
A little piece of Tuscany, Italy in Thailand. Situated in Pak Chong, Primo Piazza is an Italian-inspired countryside village-theme park, complete with a town fountain, where visitors can stroll quaint paved streets surrounded by terracotta buildings filled with cafes serving their own coffee, restaurants, souvenirs and of course Italian cuisine with fine wine. Travellers can feed sheep, donkeys, and Llamas at the nearby farm with stunning mountain views all around.
The Verona at Tub Lan is another Italian-themed complex around Khao Yai.
PALIO KHAO YAI
Khao Yai National Park was established in 1962, the first national park in the region and is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Thailand. It is also listed among the 10 most spectacular national parks in Southeast Asia. The park covers an area of 2,168 km², making it the nation’s third-largest park which extends into Nakhon Ratchasima, Prachinburi, Saraburi and Nakhon Nayok provinces, right up to the Cambodian border. Nature lovers will be in a heavenly biodiverse world rich with flora and fauna, highlighting the natural beauty of Thailand’s gorgeous surroundings and diverse landscapes.
Bird watchers will marvel at the more than 300 species of birds, along with 50+ species of reptiles including various types of snakes and lizards, and more than 70 species of mammals such as wild elephants, deer, wild boars, macaque and gibbon monkeys to name a few.
For trekking enthusiasts, there are seven official trails that must be accompanied by either a guide or a ranger with hiking times ranging from a few hours to a few days, reminiscent of the American Wild West experience. Two trails that the visitors are allowed to walk alone is an 800-metre long circular trail behind the visitor centre and the Thai-American Friendship Trail.
The park contains several waterfalls, actually, there are more than 40 waterfalls but here are a few of the highlights along with some other popular places to see in and around Khao Yai:
Some of the best outdoor activities include visiting the park’s numerous tourist attractions like the Khao Yai bat cave, going on a night safari, hiking, camping, swimming in waterfalls, and spotting wild animals. There are two campsites in the park, Laam Ta Khong Campsite and Pha Kluai Mai Campsite. Tents and accompanying gear are available for rent at each campsite, but only on arrival.
Families travelling will kids are among the many tourists who enjoy activities such as walking some easy nature trails, joining a night safari, and swimming in waterfalls.A must-go with family is the Jim Thompson Farm. A thousand-acre Isaan-style (Japanese) spread of flowers, farm animals, gardens, arts and crafts (even beer) with a market selling fresh organically-grown produce and fruits in several food stalls, selling authentic local dishes, like the Thai papaya salad. With a township to see and experience the traditional lifestyle, silkworm weaving, cultivation and dine on traditional Isaan food. Open only in December and January, there is an entrance fee of 200 baht per person, with a shuttle tram to take visitors around.One more of the park’s popular tourist attractions is the Nong Pak Chi Tower, one of the animal watchtowers that were put up to watch wild animals. It is open from 6 am to 6 pm.
It’s the nation’s third-largest park which extends into Nakhon Ratchasima, Prachinburi, Saraburi and Nakhon Nayok provinces. Nature lovers can enjoy hiking, native species and bird watching, visiting waterfalls, viewpoints and camping on its extensive camping ground. Considered to be still the best way to find and encounter Khao Yai’s flora and fauna is a guided tour.The entrance fee to sample Khao Yai’s natural treasures is 400 baht for adults and 20 baht for children. For those who want to have more than a day trip, the entrance tickets will be valid for 3 days.A must-see in Khao Yai is the Chocolate Factory, a laidback stop for pizza, chocolates, coffee and other comfort food. There are no entrance fees to go into this restaurant-cum-food gift shop.
From Bangkok, it takes approximately 3-4 hours by car, or you can take public transportation, like a bus or minivan from the Mo Chit Bus Station to Pak Chong district where the National Park is located. There is also a train from Hua Lampong Train Station in Central Bangkok to Amphoe Pak Chong, the closest station to the national park. Amphoe Pak Chong is the main point of entry as the rail lines and main road cross the Dong Phaya Yen Mountains into the region. The trip takes about 4-5 hours. Our THG travel specialists can make travel arrangements with tour operators to make your travel easier and more convenient.
The best time to visit Khao Yai is either in the post-rainy season or winter from November to February when everything will be green and waterfalls will be fully flowing.
Khao Yai World Heritage National Park is so vast that for most, one day is not enough. It is recommended to spend at least 2 or 3 days in and around the region to be able to more fully explore its natural wonders.
It can take approximately 3-4 hours to drive depending on where you are coming from in Bangkok and the traffic conditions.
In December, the weather is cool by Thailand standards with clear blue skies, sunny days and light breezes, temperatures averaging 21 degrees during the day and dropping to 10 degrees at night.
Yes, there is the Sarangburi sunflower field on the way to the national park which is only open from November to January when the field is in full bloom.
It takes approximately 2.5- 3 hours to drive from Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok to Khao Yai, with the road distance being 169 km.
It is not possible to enter the park on foot from the checkpoint. The visitor centre is around 14 km further in and other popular attractions are much further inside the park. The two most popular waterfalls, viewpoints and the visitor centre can be accessed by car or bike and reached without any need of a guide.
Tambon Mu Si is one area near Khao Yai for those who prefer more luxurious accommodations. A unique and interesting accommodation is the Baan Suan Noi (Hobbit House) inspired by the Lord of the Rings series. The location has been modelled into hobbit homes nestled in hills with tiny cute round doors as detailed as those shown in the movies.Tambon Pak Chong is known as the district that is the entrance to the park, thus, it boasts of several nice hotel accommodations. Another district close to the park with 4-star hotel accommodations is Amphoe Pak Thong Chai.Just on the outskirts of the park is another unique accommodation, the Lala Mukha Tented Resort, an eco-friendly resort with eco-safari tent accommodations and treehouses built in a fusion of African elements with the contemporary, for a back-to-nature experience and childhood camping reminiscences. Some tents have futons, on which kids would feel tempted to sleep in sleeping bags.Many or most of the hotels in the areas near Khao Yai have a swimming pool among their features.
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