A guide to Northeast Thailand

Ban Chiang Archeological Site, photo by thomaswanhoff/Flickr

In one of the previous articles I presented you the best attractions of Northern Thailand. The following article will contain information about Northeast Thailand. This region is named Isan by Thais. It is a spectacular region, being divided into twenty provinces. The major provinces in terms of tourism are Udon Ratchathani, Nakhon Ratchasima, Udon Thani, Nakhon Phanom, Buriram, Sakon Nakhon and Surin. There are numerous tourist attractions within these provinces and not only. The highlights of the region are of archeological and historical importance. Making a holiday in Northeast Thailand is surely a great choice. Try to visit as many provinces as you can during your vacation.

Udon Thani

The most popular highlight of the province is the fantastic World Heritage Site, the archeological site of Ban Chiang. Since it was discovered in 1966, the site attracts dozens of visitors, being worldwide famous today. The red painted potteries at Ban Chiang are considered the world’s earliest Bronze Age artifacts. The amazing artifacts are very popular among tourists, some of which date back from 4400 BC to 3400 BC. Another fantastic attraction is the Phu Phra Bat Historical Park which is home to some breathtaking rock formations.

Ban Chiang Archeological Site, photo by thomaswanhoff/Flickr


Nakhon Phanom

The province of Nakhon Phanom is famous for being home to the ancient pagoda, the Phrathat Phanom. It houses a beautiful and popular Buddha relic. Nakhon Phanom is also well-known for the fantastic annual festival, the Illuminated Boat Procession. It occurs between the 23rd and 31st of October. If you hurry, you can attend it even this year.

Sakon Nakhon

The Phu Phan National Park and the Nong Han Lake are the most popular attractions of this province. There are also other natural attractions here, such as the Phu Pha Yon National Park or the Phu Pha Lek National Park. The cultural attractions of Sakon Nakhon include fantastic temples, Khmer ruins, museums, palaces, stupas, statues and so on.


With numerous gorgeous Khmer ruins, the province is a major tourist destination of Northeast Thailand. The largest Khmer temple of Thailand can also be found here. It is the Prasat Hin Phanom Rung. This outstanding temple can be found in the Phanom Rung Historical Park. The park is very popular among tourists and attracts dozens of visitors every year.

Temple at Phanom Rung Historical Park, photo by timparkinson/Flickr


Surin is also named the land of elephants. The province is well-known for another fantastic festival, the Elephant Roundup. The event is dedicated to the significance of these wonderful giant animals. The festival is a must for those who love the elephants.

Udon Ratchasani

Thailand’s easternmost province attracts visitors with its fantastic prehistoric paintings on the sandstone cliffs of Pha Mon and Pha Taem. Other highlights of Udon Ratchasani are the numerous temples and the beautiful waterfalls along the Mekong and Mun rivers.

Nakhon Ratchasima

Prasat Hin Phimai is the most famous attraction of the province. The fantastic Khmer temple can be found in the Phimai Historical Park. One of Thailand’s most significant Khmer temples attracts a large number of tourists every year.

Prasat Hin Phimai, photo by Arian Zwegers/Flickr


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