Khao Yai is a small town in Nakhon Ratchasima province. It’s located only two hours northeast of Bangkok. This isn’t the place that you think of when you think of Thailand, but the locals adore it, and we have to admit that we fell in love with Khao Yai and know you will too. Here are the 13 unique things to do in Khao Yai, Thailand:
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Things to do in Khao Yai, Thailand
1. Khao Yai National Park
The small town of Khao Yai is known for the Khao Yai National Park which has been recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2005. Khao Yai National Park isn’t only the first established national park in Thailand; it’s also the third-largest national park. This national park extends over four provinces in the country. These provinces are Nakhon Ratchasima, Prachinburi, Saraburi, and Nakhon Nayok.
You can do wildlife spotting, such as elephants, birds, and reptiles. The elephants are, however, difficult to find but not impossible. You can also stop at the two waterfalls and enjoy the ethereal cave. This park also has some amazing hiking trails for those who love hiking.
Entrance fee for foreigners: adults = 400 Baht and children = 200 Baht.
Entrance fee for Thai citizens: adult = 40 Baht and children = 20 Baht.
Download the Khao Yai National Park Map here
❥Also Read: 11 Things to do in Bangkok
2. Palio Village is also known as Tuscan Village (Temporarily closed)
This small village is a unique shopping village in Khao Yai. All of the Tuscan buildings and decorative plazas transport you to the beautiful streets of a rural village in Italy.
You can spend a few hours here just enjoying delicious food and shopping around. There are some hotels in Palio Village where you can stay. The village, however, closes at 19:00 so be sure to explore during the day.
3. Primo Piazza Khao Yai, Thailand
You don’t have to fly to Italy to experience a beautiful Italian village, just come to Primo Piazza in Khao Yai Thailand. You can easily forget that you are in Thailand while roaming around the Primo Piazza.
Some activities here include feeding sheep, alpacas and donkeys. Primo Piazza has beautiful cafes and restaurants on-site to help you unwind. This is ideal for a family or romantic getaway.
Entrance fee for Foreigners: Adults = 200 Baht and Children = 100 Baht. Entrance fee for Thai citizens: Adult = 100 Baht and Children = 50 Baht.
4. Khao Yai GranMonte Winery
GranMonte Winery is one of two wineries in Khao Yai. There is a restaurant that overlooks the beautiful grape vineyards.
You can also do a 1.5 hours long guided tour. During the tour, they explained the viticulture techniques, the climate, the soil and the different grape varieties. You will see the winemaking operations, advanced winemaking equipment, fermentation tanks, barrel room with oak barrels, and bottling machines. The tour ends by visiting the GranMonte Shop and wine tasting that’s rounded off with cheese and crackers.
Tour prices: Adults = 450 Baht, Under 20 years = 350 Baht, Under 5 years= Free. (The drinking age limit in Thailand is 20 years old, people under the age of 20 will receive a complimentary bottle of grape juice instead of wine tasting.)
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5. The Chocolate Factory in Khao Yai
The Chocolate Factory is the perfect place to treat yourself to some delicious sweet snacks or desserts. It’s a chocolate shop, where you can buy some beautiful chocolate delights or some of their desserts to take home or enjoy at the restaurant upstairs.
The restaurant also has delicious Thai food and some unique desserts that you can’t find in the shop. It can get very busy because people come from near and far for delicious and unique chocolaty snacks. Visit to see how they make their chocolate delights.
6. The Birder’s Lodge Farmers Market
The Birders Farmers Market isn’t big, but it’s a trendy market in town. As you arrive, there will be a big beautiful barn right in front of you. Inside this barn is the farmer’s market. You can pick between fresh Thai fruits and vegetables, handmade clothes and crafts, Thai snacks and even some wine and flowers.
When you are done shopping you can visit the small cafe and enjoy a meal or just one of their unique sodas or lattes.
7. Khao Yai The Mango House Farm
If you suddenly have a craving for mango while in Khao Yai, the Mango House Farm is where you have to be.
It’s a little bit hidden but it’s kind of what makes it special. Its remote location makes for a peaceful and calm atmosphere. Downstairs you can buy some delicious mangos and other mango products.
Upstairs is a beautiful seating area that overlooks about 8,000 mango trees.
We highly recommend that you try the mango sticky rice and mango ice cream. It’s very affordable compared to other places in Thailand.
8. Rai Maneesorn Sunflower Field
One of the most magical sights in Khao Yai is this beautiful collection of sunflowers. These beautiful sunflower fields bloom from December to January, after that they are harvested for their seeds and oil.
❥Also Read: 5 Things to do in Hua Hin Thailand
9. Windmill Khao Yai Thiang Viewpoint
This viewpoint is located about 30 minutes outside of the main town of Khao Yai. This is a hidden gem that the locals like to keep just for themselves. You will struggle to find it on Google Maps, follow this link to get to the Khao Yai windmills without struggle.
You will be able to see an amazing view of Khao Yai Town, the mountains and the lake. There are also some wind turbines around. The best way to enjoy this view is by foot or on a bicycle. You can rent a bicycle for 40 baht.
10. The Witches Brew Restaurant
Pick your poison at the delicious Witches Brew Restaurant. The whole restaurant is themed with spooky witches and witchy things. The restaurant is an Italian and Thai-infused restaurant. This includes lasagna, pizza, BBQ ribs, einsteins and some other traditional Thai dishes.
11. My Ozone (Castle Hotel)
Have you ever dreamed of living in a castle? Well dream no more, here you can live your ‘royal life’ in a beautiful castle.
My Ozone is a European-style castle-like hotel with a touch of the countryside with beautiful lawns for romantic strolls. This accommodation offers an on-site golf course and a breathtaking swimming pool perfect for spending days lounging by the pool.
12. Tayama Farm Khao Yai Resort
Tayama Farm Resort is inspired by the Tayama Station in Morioka City, Japan. This is one of the most unique Resorts in Khao Yai. Surrounded by only mountains you can’t help but feel relaxed while staying here.
You have a choice between staying in a train cart, bamboo house, glamping tent or Japanese-style room. There is a restaurant, gym and swimming facilities. You can spend hours here just enjoying the fresh air and exploring.
13. Baan Suan Noi Resort (Hobbit House)
You can live your Hollywood fantasy here at Baan Suan Noi Resort. Most famous for their hobbit-style houses but they have castles and even their own little Santorini. You can spend hours here dressing up as your favourite characters while recreating some of your favourite movie scenes.
PS. Kids love this location but you will even find adults snapping a pic or 10 all dressed up.
Let us know in the comments below which one of these 13 Unique things to do in Khao Yai you are most excited to do or see one day. We always love to hear from you and we hope that you enjoyed this guide.
Getting Around Khao Yai.
With all the beautiful things Khao Yai has to offer, there is only one problem, there is no public transport. The best way to get around Khao Yai is by renting a car or getting a private driver to take you around the town. Pre-book a private tour from Bangkok to Khao Yai.
How to Get to Khao Yai?
Khao Yai is visited by many from all over Thailand, thus there are a wide variety of routes you can take. This article will cover how to get to Khai Yai from Bangkok. If you don’t want to take your own transport there are 3 different ways to get to Khao Yai from Bangkok. The closest to Khao Yai you will get without your own vehicle is Pak Chong District which is about 43km from the National Park.
1. Bus from Bangkok to Pak Chong
From Mo Chit Bus Station in Bangkok, many buses go to Pak Chong every half an hour for around 180 Baht. Before you book the ticket make sure that the bus stops at Pak Chong and does not go all the way to Nakhon Ratchasima.
2. Train from Bangkok to Pak Chong
Taking the train from Bangkok to Pak Chong is one of the slowest and most expensive ways to travel to Khao Yai. It is however an amazing experience. The train leaves Hua Lamphong Train Station in Bangkok and will take around 4 to 5 hours to Pak Chong. For the train schedule click here
3. Minivans from Bangkok to Pak Chong
You can take a minivan from Mo Chit Station to Pak Chong. It will take around 3 hours to get there and cost around 260 Baht
Now that you are in Pak Chong how do you get to Khao Yai? So the best option is to rent a car or motorbike/scooter in Pak Chong and travel to Khao Yai (about 1 hour from Pak Chong). You can also rent a private taxi for the day that can take you to where you want to go.
Where to Stay in Khao Yai?
Khao Yai is a beautiful destination to visit. There are many excellent hotels, resorts and hostels here but Here are the top 3 hotels recommended by us:
- Mont Blanc Base Camp Khao Yai– This is a resort hotel located right by the Northern entrance of Khao Yai National Park. This resort has a wide variety of rooms and beautiful modern tents. It’s Rated 8/10 on booking.com
- Rak Na Khao Yai– A 3-star hotel located about 15 minutes from Khao Yai National Park. It has a beautiful design and is surrounded by fields and mountains. It’s Rated 8.1/10 on booking.com.
- Avarin Resort– A 3-star resort located in Pak Chong district about 40 minutes away from Khao Yai National Park. This is the perfect place to stay if you are travelling to Khao Yai by bus or minivan. Rated 8.7/10 on booking.com
Is Khao Yai Worth Visiting?
In our opinion, Khao Yai is worth visiting if you live in Thailand or have visited Thailand many times before and you are looking for something different to do. Since Khao Yai is so close to Bangkok it’s a great escape from the hustle and bustle of the big city.
Daytrips to Khao Yai are very popular but if you have the time we would recommend spending a night or two to take full advantage of everything the town has to offer.