🌳 In the green embrace of Chaiyaphum 🌳

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As the rainy season in most parts of the country is drawing to a close, it’s time to plan a fun trip to experience firsthand the cool season somewhere off the beaten track.

Chaiyaphum, a province in the Upper Northeast of Isan, attracts our interest for its lush greenery and easy access from Bangkok. For this 2-day- and-1-night programme, we’ll visit its 3 districts that boast many unspoiled attractions. Come along with us!

  • Getting there 🚗
    • There is no airport in Chaiyaphum, but you can fly to Khon Kaen and then take a 2-hour bus ride from Khon Kaen Bus Terminal 3.
  • To reach the bus terminal, take the city bus from the airport or the following taxi service:
    • Khon Kaen Taxi Tel 043 465 777
    • Khon Kaen Airport Taxi Centre Tel: 094 386 8555
  • To travel by bus from Bangkok, contact:
    • Air Chaiyaphum Tel. 02 936 0039, 044 811 556,
    • Air Mueang Loei Tel. 095 336 6225, 089 626 2448


  • 📍 Day 1
    • – Pay respect to Phra Maha That Chedi Siri Chaiyaphum at Wat Arun Thammasathan.
    • – Visit Chaiyaphum’s biggest source of “Khit” handwoven fabrics – Ban Noen Salao Community.
    • – Camp out at Phu Khiao Wildlife Sanctuary (Thung Kramang).
  • 📍 Day 2
    • Stay on for animal sightings at Phu Khiao Wildlife Sanctuary.
    • Enjoy coffee and pastries at the Japanese-inspired Paipresso Café.

📍Day 1

Wat Arun Thammasathan 🙏

A stop at Wat Arun Thammasathan is very convenient, as it is on the way to many other attractions of Chaiyaphum.

The temple is home to Phrathat Chaiyaphum Chedi, which was built on a small hill overlooking a vast landscape. Its pleasant location and exquisite structure are worthy of a visit. The temple’s architectural style is a combination of the Lanna and Lan Xang traditional art.

The Phrathat Chedi houses the Buddha’s relic. Inside, you will also see the interior murals depicting the Buddha’s life chronicles and local way of life. The throne where the relic is enshrined is very elaborate. 😮

Another striking feature of the temple is the pink pavilion called Ho Phra Bang Chaiyaphum, which is finely decorated with stained glass telling the stories of Isan heritage. Completed in 2020, the pavilion was built to house the Phra Bang Chaiyaphum statue, which is now being cast.

Photo credit : พระธาตุชัยภูมิ

A statue of Chaiyaphum’s first governor, Phraya Pakdichumphol (Paya Lae), also stands in the temple’s grounds in addition to the original one in town.

The retreat at Wat Arun Thammasathan was an initiative of the 13th abbot of Wat Arun (The Temple of Dawn) in Bangkok.

Normally you can contact the temple in advance for its retreat programme, but due to the Covid 19 situation, all activities beside temple visits are suspended.

“Khit” handwoven cloth of Ban Noen Salao 🧶

Ban Noen Salao is the largest supplier of Khit handwoven cloth in Chaiyaphum. It’s a must-visit destination for people who value traditional handwoven fabrics that have been made for generations.

Fabric from Noen Salao is made and dyed with natural materials, and can be tailored to meet the market’s preference. Their signature pattern is called Nak Hot, which is inspired by the province’s tradition of the mass “Nak Hot” parade, part of the ceremony for the ordination of a Buddhist monk.

Photo credit : Sukhumcraft

You will find that Khit fabrics can be made into a variety of items; such as, tablecloths, pillows, bags, and scarves.

Phu Khiao Wildlife Sanctuary – Thung Kramang 🦌

The Sanctuary is the focus of this green trip to Chaiyaphum, as camping out here allows you to fully immerse yourself in the pristine nature. The cool season makes for a pleasant and memorable experience.

Covering 1,800 square kilometres of the forested area in 3 districts of Chaiyaphum, the Sanctuary is one of the best wildlife spots in Thailand. The animals are allowed to live and roam freely in their natural habitat under the protection of rangers. Trails are provided for those who want to closely study the nature.

Please contact the Sanctuary at least 7 days in advance before visiting. The Sanctuary enforces many regulations to protect the animals.

‼ Currently open for visits only for day trips.

The sky above Phu Khiao is perfect to watch and observe those twinkling stars. Prepare your gear if you are a serious stargazer. ⭐

📍 Day 2

Sighting hog deer is the highlight for visitors to Phu Khiao Wildlife Sanctuary. The animals are known to be relatively tame and trusting of people, giving us a chance to watch them at close range. Please don’t feed wild animals.

Thung Kramang is a vast grass field where visitors can easily spot animals; such as, hog deer and brow-antlered deer. From the Sanctuary’s office, it is about 30 minutes to drive to the field, but please do so cautiously as many animals, especially elephants, could be around. 🐘

🦚 The fertile forest of the Sanctuary harbours several animals, including elephants and many species of fowl.

Photo credit : Narong Suwanarong

Witnessing the leaves changing their colour is another good reason to visit the Sanctuary at this time of year. Though we don’t have the beauty of autumn in the country, this is as close as it gets. 🍂🍁

Admission: 200 Baht

🚗 Vehicle fee: car 30 Baht, motorcycle 20 Baht, and bicycle 10 Baht

  • 📌 Only a mobile phone signal from certain operators is available.
  • 📌 A co-op restaurant is operated.
  • 📌 Contact the Sanctuary at least 7 days in advance to book its bungalows and camping grounds (An official letter of request is needed).
  • 📌 No tents or equipment are available for rent.
  • 📌 Electricity is available only between 6:00-9:00 p.m. (camping grounds).
  • 📌 Please keep the area clean if you cook or are in possession of food supplies.
  • 📌 Please check for updates again before your travel date.

Paipresso CAFE パー イプ レッ ソ カ フェ ☕

This Japanese-style café belongs to Thai owners who were inspired by their travels in Japan.

Photo Credit : パー イプ レッ ソ カ フェ Paipresso CAFE

🥐☕ Hot and cold beverages, pastries, and cakes are on the menu. In the morning, visit the Café for a cup of hot coffee and freshly baked pastry. The pleasant weather and surrounding garden will make your day.

Photo Credit : パー イプ レッ ソ カ フェ Paipresso CAFE

Roasted coffee beans are also available for sale.

Photo Credit : パー イプ レッ ソ カ フェ Paipresso CAFE

Photo Credit : パー イプ レッ ソ カ フェ Paipresso CAFE

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