Kamphaeng Phet is an old town of historical significance but many of us are apparently oblivious to its treasures and simply pass this town on the way to somewhere else. It’s high time we focused on this hidden gem located in Thailand’s lower north some 360 kilometers from Bangkok. It is home to a UNESCO World Heritage Site and many beautiful natural attractions, after all.
Although we have to delay our trips due to Covid-19 and the closures of many tourist attractions, you can save this program for future reference when all these places are ready to open their doors once again.
Kamphaeng Phet – 2 Days 1 Nights
- Explore Kamphaeng Phet Historical Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Pay respect to the golden Chedi of Wat Phra Borommathat Nakhon Chum
- Savor local food at Nakhon Chum Old Town Market
- Enjoy a relaxing time at Phra Ruang Hot Spring
- Swim in the pool of Khlong Lan Waterfall
- Bask in the cool breeze at Chong Yen Viewpoint, Mae Wong National Park
- Stop by Talad Mor, Kluai Khai banana market
Before starting, drop by the information center to learn about the historical and archeological backgrounds of Kamphaeng Phet ancient town.
The ruins of the city walls show the town’s trapezoid shape located along the Ping River. The ancient fortifications are made of laterite rocks, which used to be found in abundance in the area.
Some of the ruins inside the city wall:
Wat Phra Kaeo
That the temple is located within the wall signifies its importance in a similar fashion to Wat Mahathat in Sukhothai and Wat Phra Si San Phet in Ayutthaya. The most stunning feature of Wat Phra Kaeo is the three stucco Buddha Images made from laterite. You can also see other ruins such as various types of chedi and a vihara that are enclosed in the laterite wall.
Wat Phra That
Next to Wat Phra Kaeo is Wat Phra That, which features a massive bell-shaped chedi surrounded by a cloister.
ruins in the forest area, outside the city wall.
Wat Phra Non, the temple of the reclining Buddha
Although we can no longer see the reclining Buddha Image at this temple, we can still admire other ruins such as the vihara that once housed the statue. Especially impressive are the huge pillars supporting the vihara, which were carved out of a single laterite slab.
Wat Phra Si Ariyabot or the temple of standing Buddha Image
The must-see feature of this temple is a Buddha image about 6 foot high standing against the wall of a laterite brick mondop, an open tower. The other three sides of the tower once also housed Buddha images in the walking, seated and reclining postures. The surviving statue is missing its left arm but is still magnificent.
Wat Chang Rob
The temple sits atop a small hill and it’s not too hard to imagine the grandeur of its bell-shaped chedi in those days. You can still see the massive square base that is decorated with 68 ruins of elephant statutes on all sides.
There are many ruins in the historical park. Start early if you want to cover more. The park is very peaceful and usually devoid of large tour groups. Don’t be surprised if all you have for company are the ruins and the trees!!
Admission for foreigners is 100 baht per person and an additional fee of 50 baht a car will be charged for a personal car (bicycle 10 baht, motorcycle 20 baht). Bicycle rental is 30 baht per hour
Kamphaeng Phet Historical Park
- Tambon Nong Pling, Amphoe Mueang, Kamphaeng Phet
- Open daily from 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
- 0 5561 6228-9 TAT Sukhothai
- 0 5585 4736-7 Kamphaeng Phet Historical Park
Wat Phra Borommathat Nakhon Chum
This is Kamphaeng Phet’s premier temple. Its towering golden chedi bears a resemblance to the famous Shwedagon Pagoda of Yangon and enshrines 9 Buddha’s relics. The original Chedi was constructed by King Lithai of Sukhothai in 1357 and later renovated in the Burmese style during the reign of King Rama V by a prominent timber trader from Burma. Locals believe that paying respect to the chedi is tantamount to personally paying respect to Lord Buddha himself.
- 📌Tambon Nakhon Chum, Amphoe Mueang, Kamphaeng Phet
- 📞 08 1785 3826
Nakhon Chum Old Town Market
We highly recommend the market if you are passionate about food. This nigh market starts from about 5:00 p.m. and runs until late in the evening on the first Friday, Saturday and Sunday of every month. Expect to enjoy a variety of local specialties from popular vendors in town as well as stage performances.
The food of Nakhon Chum reflects its status as a melting pot of people from different cultures who came for trade, especially logging, to this town, formerly a prosperous commercial center.
Credit : Nakhon Chum Old Town Market
Stroll around the old town and immerse yourself in the remains of its glorious past.
A stroll in the old community of Nakhon Chum will give you a chance to experience a glimpse of history that pops up among the shophouses and to interact with the local people.
This dilapidated structure was once the grandest house in Nakhon Chum. It belonged to Pha Po, a wealthy log trader during the reign of King Rama V. He was originally from Burma and is known as the devout Buddhist who renovated Phra Borommathat Nakhon Chum Chedi. A classic Thai novel set in Kamphaeng Phet was said to be inspired by his fame with a main character named after him.
- Tambon Nakhon Chum, Amphoe Mueang, Kamphaeng Phet
Day 2 Phra Ruang Hot Spring
Make sure to visit this hot spring for a relaxing bathe before heading out to the waterfall in Khlong Lan district. Its water temperature is about 40-65 degree Celsius and the hot spring was originally located in a rice field.
It has been developed into a small health resort where visitors can enjoy a mineral bath and foot soak together with other facilities such as water bikes, accommodation, a campsite and Thai massage. Visit the hot spring during the cool season for the very best experience!
- 📌 Tambon Lan Dokmai, Amphoe Mueang, Kamphaeng Phet
Credit : Phra Ruang Hot Spring
Khlong Lan Waterfall
This picturesque waterfall is easily accessible. Spanning two districts of Kamphaeng Phet, it is located in Khlong Lan National Park, about 60 kilometers from Kamphaeng Phet town, and also the source of many of the province’s major rivers.
From the park’s office, you can stroll about 300 meters on a well-maintained walkway to reach the waterfall.
There are many pools of water and you can swim up close to the falls. Please always be careful and follow the regulations of the park. If you want to stay overnight near the waterfall, simple bungalows, a camp site and a convenience shop and restaurant are available.
- Admission for foreigners is 200 baht per person.
Khlong Lan National Park,
- Tambon Khlong Lan Pattana, Amphoe Khlong Lan, Kamphaeng Phet
- Open daily from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
- 0 5576 6022-3, 08 8407 9915
Chong Yen Viewpoint, Mae Wong National Park
Mae Wong National Park is about 25 kilometers from Khlong Lan Waterfall and 70 kilometers from Kamphaeng Phet town. Chong Yen is a viewpoint and campsite, about 28 kilometers from the national park’s office.
Local visitors are attracted by Chong Yen’s average temperature of about 20 degrees Celsius and usually prefer to camp out in the area. The park provides a camp site and simple bungalows but make sure you bring your own camping gear and trash bags. Many other viewpoints are also nearby.
Admission for foreigners is 200 baht with an additional 30 baht for a car or 20 baht for a motorcycle.
- Mae Wong National Park Tambon Pang Ta Wai, Amphoe Pang Sila Thong, Kamphaeng Phet
- 09 0457 9291 Tourist Information Center
Kluai Khai banana
Kluai Khai is among Thailand’s most popular bananas and Kamphaeng Phet is the country’s top source of Kluai Khai. There are endless by products of Kluai Khai that you can take back as souvenirs from the province. Shop at a famous roadside market dedicated to Kluai Khai called Talad Mor Kluai Khai on the way back.
- Talad Mor Kluai Khai Banana Market