10 Best Things to Do in Khao Yai National Park

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From theme parks for cowboys to vineyards tucked into the mountains to the endless green carpets of Khao Yai National Park, Khao Yai is an ideal place to escape from ordinary everyday life. Day-trippers can enjoy many sightseeing opportunities along the Saraburi-Pakchong Road, then return to the city at the end of the day without feeling too tired from the trip. To really appreciate the diversity and natural beauty of Khao Yai, a trip of one night or more is necessary and highly recommended. This can be combined with a stay inside the National Park, where you can explore its lush green landscape and picturesque waterfalls, or enjoy several encounters with the flora and fauna and rare tropical birds. Coming from the side of Wang Nam Kheo, nicknamed the "Switzerland of Isan", the endless orchards of fruits and vegetables as well as Khao Paeng Ma, one of the last places in Southeast Asia to have spotted gaurs Wild wanderers, are at the rendezvous. Best of all, you can walk the entire loop of Saraburi-Khao Yai-Wang Nam Kheo National Park and experience it all at once.

10 Best Things to Do in Khao Yai National Park

1. Village of Palio
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Palio is a quaint mall located 220 km northeast of Bangkok. The theme is a Tuscan village where visitors discover an unusual combination of clothing, gift shops, gourmet snacks and shows.

2. Khao Yai National Park
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Khao Yai National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is an oasis teeming with primitive fauna and flora. At the foot of the mountain, you can already feel the temperature drop and the refreshing odors of the wetland as you approach the main gate of the park, where the entrance fee is levied.

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3. GranMonte Estate
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At the foot of Khao Yai National Park, just before passing the main gate, is a small street that turns into a vast valley where the grapes are grown, harvested, crushed and processed into fine wine. In 1999, GranMonte Estate introduced some of Tuscany's sunny vineyards into the green hills of Khao Yai. Its main asset is the winery store and the VinCotto restaurant, which prepare delicious pastas, salads as well as hearty Italian dishes and dishes. . The best time to visit is October-February, and guided tours of the vineyard are only available on weekends. Location: Pakchong, at the foot of Khao Yai National Park How to get there: Take Highway 1 towards Saraburi-Pakchong, then after passing Muak Lek, make a U-turn at km. 136 and turn left on the Pansuk-Kudkla road.

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4. Jim Thompson's Silk Farm
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You may have seen or heard about the Jim Thompson silk brand and even visited the Jim Thompson House and Museum in Bangkok. If you've done a guided tour of the museum, you'll already be aware of its humble beginnings and how a man's vision has transformed the Thai silk industry. But few people know that Pak Thong Chai, the rural heart north of Wang Nam Kheo, is the throbbing heart of Jim Thompson's silk empire - the source of its superior silk. Discover how Thompson's 30 years of dedication has allowed this cottage industry to not disappear forever. Plan a visit in December or January to take a guided tour of the large silk farm, premium silkworm culture, picturesque orchards, botanical gardens, and the "village of the Isaan "- A collection of traditional Isaan houses and a living museum of Isaan culture.. Location: Pak Thong Chai, north of Wang Nam Kheo. How to get there: Head north on Hwy 304 (Prachinburi-Wang Nam Kheo route) to Pak Thong Chai, turn left on Hwy 2072 and continue for about 20 km.

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5. Khao Paeng Ma
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The reward that awaits you at the top of Khao Paeng Ma does not come easily. Patience and love for rugged adventure are basic requirements. This isolated mountain south of Khao Yai National Park is one of the few places in Thailand to see wild gaurs, but you may not be so lucky because the population is rather scarce. A day in Khao Paeng Ma involves a short and extremely bumpy four-wheel drive, an easy hike through the forest to the viewpoint with the watchtower, then it can take hours to see, if any , any movement in the valley below. The hiking trail is actually 1.8 km long, with nine scenic views, but you can just walk the first 200 meters to the gaur watchtower. The best time to spot them is just before sunset, ideally in May, and do not forget to bring good binoculars if you do not want to rent one at the park office. Location: Wang Nam Kheo How to get there: Take Highway 304 (Prachinburi-Wang Nam Kheo Road) from Bangkok, then turn left into Khao Paeng Ma Local Road, which also leads to Khao Yai National Park.

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6. Lam Phra Ploeng Reservoir
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This medium-sized reservoir is on the path from Wang Nam Kheo to Khao Paeng Ma and Khao Yai National Park. Facing one of the green crests of Khao Yai, and surrounded by a vast expanse of lush green fields, the reservoir offers a delightful break after long car trips. This is a wonderful recreation area where you can fish, bird watch or have lunch while watching. If the pace of the tank asks you, you can rent a long-tailed boat and go up the river to go to the Khun Jone and Khlong Ki waterfalls. Location: North of Wang Nam Kheo, on Khao Yai Road. How to get there: From Highway 304 (Prachinburi-Wang Nam Kheo Road), turn left onto the local Khao Paeng Ma Road towards Khao Yai National Park.

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7. PB Valley (Khao Yai Vineyard)
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If your idea of ​​visiting a vineyard is to immerse yourself in the entire wine experience, head straight for PB Valley, a pioneer of winemaking in the Khao Yai area since 1989. Explore countless wineries before arriving at the center. where you can sign up for a guided tour of the Khao Yai vineyard and winery, as well as a wine tasting session in the winery. If you prefer to avoid all the glamor - and save a few bahts too - go alone or go to the store and grab a few bottles. You will also find The Great Hornbill Grill restaurant, which serves Western and Thai dishes and offers stunning views of the vineyard. Location: Pakchong, at the foot of Khao Yai National Park How to get there: Take Highway 1 towards Saraburi-Pakchong, then after passing Muak Lek, make a U-turn at km. 136 and turn left into Pansuk-Kudkla Road.

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8. Tub Lan National Park
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Straddling the provinces of Prachinburi and Nakhon Ratchasima, Tub Lan is the first scenic step on the Wang Nam Kheo-Khao Yai road. This magnificent national park - the second largest in Thailand - is home to the country's most abundant fan-palm forests, several waterfalls and a wildlife sanctuary home to rare mammals such as the crown bangtang, serow, black bear, tigers and elephants. Try your luck at creative reforestation; Rather than planting trees with a shovel, you swing a golf club or use a slingshot to send the seeds into the unknown forest beyond. And if it's late in the afternoon, consider going to a scenic spot on the Keb Tawan cliff for some great sunsets. Location: Samakki Sub-district, south of Wang Nam Kheo. How to get there: In the direction of Bangkok, about 7 km from the Wang Nam Kheo District Office on Route 304 (Prachinburi-Wang Nam Kheo Road), you will see the park sign.

9. Village Farm Winery
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Nestled in the lush hills of Wang Nam Kheo, this European-style farm estate has been producing quality wines under the 'Ch√Ęteau Des Brumes' and 'Village Cellar' labels since 2002. Compared to the Thai-style orchards and farms of the region, the log cabins of the village farm, the cobbled courtyards and the vast underground wine cellar stand out clearly from the crowd. Come during the harvest season (November to February) to discover all the dynamics of winemaking. Alternatively, you will find a restaurant, a spa - with vinotherapy - accommodation, a wine shop and a vineyard demonstration to entertain you. Location: Wang Nam Khiao How to get there: Take Highway 304 (Prachinburi-Wang Nam Kheo route) from Bangkok. At km. 79, slow down and get ready to turn right at the farm sign.

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10. Wang Nam Kheo
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If you continue to Korat, this is the last green space you will see. Thais like to call Wang Nam Kheo "Isaan Switzerland" for its picturesque expanse of rolling mountains, lush wooded valleys and refreshing cool breezes all year round. In fact, the sensation is much closer to the green mountain ranges of Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai. In addition to its beautiful landscape, Wang Nam Kheo has an active agro-tourism industry. Almost all the vegetable farms and orchards in the region offer tasting tours of their products. From Wang Nam Kheo, you can continue to Khao Yai (80 km) on a scenic drive through Khao Paeng Ma, Lam Phra Ploeng Reservoir and other orchards. Location: 230 km northeast of Bangkok How to get there: Take Hwy 304 (Prachinburi-Wang Nam Kheo route) from Bangkok.

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