From Chantaburi Province

Famous for its abundance of tropical fruits and as a centre of gems, the eastern province of Chanthaburi is also blessed with rich, verdant forests with scenic waterfalls. The Chanthaburi River flows through the town which has been the home of ancient communities. Quiet fishing villages and peaceful beaches are not far from town. About 245 kilometres from Bangkok and covering an area of 6,338 square kilometres.

Chanthaburi is administratively divided into the following districts: Muang Chanthaburi, Tha Mai, Khlung, Laem Sing, Pong Nam Ron, Makham, Soi Dao, Na Yai Am, Kang Maeo and Khao Khitchakut sub-district.

Si Chan Road

Si Chan Road is the commercial area and centre of gem business. Even though actual gem-mining in the province is not as extensively as it used to be, Chanthaburi remains a major centre for gem dealings with stones from neighbouring countries and abroad being bought and sold. The Gems Market during the mornings of Friday, Saturday and Sunday attracts large crowd of gem dealers and visitors alike.

Wat Thong Thua

4 kilometres from town on Sukhumwit Highway, is the site of an ancient Bot which was built over a Khmer-style temple. It also has a large collection of ancient Khmer sculptures such as lintels, sandstone door columns carved in various designs and inscription stone. Nearby is the Muang Phaniat archaeological site with its remains of laterite base of a large Khmer religious sanctuary and moats marking the town limit to the south. The ancient town is believed to have been dated from the 12th-16th centuries B.E. (Buddhist Era).

Wat Phlup

Wat Phlup at Tambon Bang Kacha to the southwest of town was the site of an old community during the late Ayutthaya period. Special features are two ancient pagodas of different styles and an old Thai wooden pavilion.

Khai Noen Wong

The ancient site of Khai Noen Wong, also at Tambon Bang Kacha, was established as the town in circa 1834 during the reign of King Rama III. The town was moved from Ban Lum to this location because of its high grounds which were more suitable for defensive purposes against the invading Vietnamese. The laterite walls and bricks from the old town were also dismantled and moved to the new site. A serve drought during the reign of King Rama V forced its return to the original site at Ban Lum.

The old town at Khai Noen Wong was square-shaped with extensive laterite walls mounted with large cannons. Each side had its own ramparts and defensive moats. It was regarded as a powerful military camp of the time. The town’s principal temple was Wat Yothanimit.

Khao Laem Sing Forest Park

Using the Tha Mai-Bang Kachai route cars can easily access the Khao Laem Sing Forest Park, some 25 kilometres from Tha Mai. The route passes through Wat Khao Laem Sing right up to the park headquarters on a hill. Alternatively, visitors can charter a boat from Laem Sing beach to Ao Krathing Beach, just 400 metres away, and walk up to the park. Camping is allowed on application.

Khao Laem Sing is a small hill 172 metres above the sea. Located to the east of the mouth of the Chanthaburi River, it has a cape jutting into the sea which looks like a sprawling lion. There is an old fortification called Pom Phairi Phinat built during the reign of King Rama III.

Tham Khao Wang

Tham Khao Wong at Ban Khao Wongkot, Kaeng Hang Maeo district, is part of the Khao Chamao-Khao Wong National Park. About 40 kilometres before reaching Chanthaburi town on Highway No.3 at Km. 286 (Ban Kong Din) is a left turn to the park, 11 kilometres further on. Or take a turn at Km. 288 (Talat Na Yai Arm) instead. From the cave proceed on foot to see the caves themselves. Advice could be obtained from park officials.

Khao Wong is a group of limestone hills standing in circular cluster with cliffs and caves containing stalagmites and stalactites. There are passages connecting some of the chambers. The walking trails outside offer views of varied plantlife. For those intending to explore the caves, torches are advisable as there are no natural lights inside. The best time to go cave-exploring is between February and April, after which they tend to be flooded.

The Chamsom Crocodile Farm and Zoo

This zoo has a number of crocodiles of different species as well as other animals. The facility is surrounded by fruit orchards. To reach it, go on Sukhumvit Highway until Km. 324 (Khao Rai Ya intersection) then turn left and proceed on for a further 4 kilometres.

Open daily from 8.00 a.m.-6.00 p.m.
Elephant shows every Saturday and Sunday at 12.00 noon and 3.00 p.m.
Tel: (039) 324247.

Suan Sadetyat

Adjacent to Wat Khao Sukim is Suan Sadetyat, an extensive fruit plantation growing rambutan and durian in the main. During the fruit season of April-June, it is open to the public. Admission fee includes free fruit-tasting.

The Khao Khitchakut National Park

The Khao Khitchakut National Park has its headquarters at a site which can be reached by taking a turning at Km. 324 (Khao Rai Ya intersection) on Highway No. 3 and proceed on for a further 21 kilometres.

The park covers a rich, verdant forestland of some 58 square kilometres where many herbal plants are found. It is also rich in wildlife. An attraction is the Krathing waterfall with its nature trails cutting through all 13 levels of the fall. There are clear ponds where swimming is possible. Camping is allowed in the park. There are also accommodations for visitors who should make advance booking at the Forestry Department in Bangkok.

Admission Fee: Adult 200 Baht Child 100 Baht

For more information visit www.dnp.go.th

Nam Tok Krathing

The park covers a rich, verdant forestland of some 58 square kilometres where many herbal plants are found. It is also rich in wildlife. An attraction is the Krathing waterfall with its nature trails cutting through all 13 levels of the fall. There are clear ponds where swimming is possible. Camping is allowed in the park. There are also accommodations for visitors who should make advance booking at the Forestry Department in Bangkok.