Bung Boraphet is the largest freshwater swamp in Thailand. It has an area of around 212 square kilometers. It covers parts of Amphoe Muang, Amphoe Tha Tako and Amphoe Chum Saeng. In the past Bung Boraphet was called the northern sea or Chom Bung as there was an abundance of aquatic animals and plants. According to surveys, there are still some 148 species of animals and 44 species of plants here. Rare animals include white-eyed river-martin and tiger perch.
During November to March a large number of waterfowls migrate here. Some parts of the swamp have been declared the Bung Boraphet Non-Hunting Area under the care of the Wildlife Conservation Division. Bung Boraphet is also a fish breeding ground where the Department of Fisheries has set up the Bung Boraphet Fishery Development Station.
Bueng Boraphet Aquarium Commemorating the King’s 80th Birthday
Situated in the area of Bueng Boraphet, located in Tambon Kwae Yai, Amphoe Mueang, Nakhon Sawan, the Bueng Boraphet Aquarium is fertile with abundant aquatic plantlife, and is home to rare birds and fishes. After relaxing with the breathtaking scenery of Bueng Boraphet, as well as its ecotourism activities such as boat rowing and bird watching, visitors can enjoy the aquarium’s displays.
At 37 m in width and 49 m in length, the aquarium was built in the shape of a boat, specifically a ‘Rua Krachaeng’, also called a ‘Rua Iamchun’, which were formerly used to transport goods in Chao Phraya River. The aquarium’s interior consists of a 24-m long main tank exhibiting more than 100 kinds of freshwater tropical fishes. Besides, there are more than 30 fish tanks exhibiting rare and beautiful fish. Visitors, especially children, will be amazed by a close look at Archer Fish and Siamese Tiger Fish. Other tanks display marine fish. Moreover, the Aquarium has Leopard Sharks and Sea Urchins in the Touch Pool.
The aquarium’s facilities include restaurants and souvenir shops. It is open from 10am – 5pm weekdays, and 9.30am – 6pm weekends and public holidays. It is closed on Wednesday. Admission is 30 baht for adults and 20 baht for children. For further information, contact the department of tourism promotion and development, Provincial Administration Organization, tel. 0 5627 4251-5.
Getting There: Bung Boraphet can be reached by many ways.
From the Nakhon Sawan Municipal Pier Market, go north along Nan River for about 6 kilometers to the mouth of Bung Boraphet that is called Khlong Nong Duk. Go under the train bridge into the swamp.
Bung Boraphet Fishery Development Station Take the Nakhon Sawan-Chum Saeng route (Highway No. 225) for about 9 kilometers, then turn right for 2 kilometers to Bung Boraphet Fishery Development Station. Inside is a crocodile breeding pond and a freshwater aquarium. There are boats that you can charter on tours in the area at 400 baht per hour. The capacity is 15 persons per boat
Bung Boraphet Non-Hunting Area or Waterfowls Park Take the Nakhon Sawan-Tha Tako route (Highway No. 3001) for about 20 kilometers and turn left for 4 kilometers to the park. The park has an exhibition in the form of a nature study center, a garden and accommodation. For more details, please contact the Bung Boraphet Non-Hunting Area or the Bung Boraphet Wildlife Conservation Promotion and Development Station, tel. (056) 227874. In addition, there are long-tail boats to take visitors around Bung Boraphet at 200 per boat.