KHAO YAI ITINERARY – Things to Do for Your Escapade

This is the first time I actually planned out a road-trip in Thailand all by myself so I am excited to share with all of you guys what I have found! Detailed below are segmented by the attractions (Free VS Pay-to-Enter) instead of a step-by-step itinerary because I personally feel that it gives you more flexibility to pick out things to do and slot them in during your trip. Plus, the best part about travelling is also stumbling into new places and discoveries, RIGHT?

ATTRACTIONS

FREE TO ENTER

Khao Yai Art Museum

Inside the Exhibition Hall

If your idea of an escape includes indulging in pensive silence, contemplating on the abstract cultural realities of life, look no further! Khao Yai Art Museum will warmly welcome you into their land of smiles through their collection of works by some of Thailand’s top modern artists.

It was an interesting visit, many indoor (3 rooms, Art Space A B C) and outdoor art and sculptures on display. There is also a museum cafe on the upper level which is air conditioned and a nice place to chill. Not many people visiting so it is a great space to break away from the crowd and just relax. Plus, there is no entrance fee!

Cafe in the Art Museum

Located very near to our hotel U Khao Yai, the museum is at the end of a dirt road which requires a little navigation (just refer to Google maps!). We drove in through the back lane and were relieved to see someone hand-signaling us to park on the premise itself (there was no sign for any car park elsewhere).

Price: Free!
Address: Ban Tha Chang Soi 6, Moo 16, Mu Si, Aumpher Pak-Chong, Nakorn Ratchasima, Thailand 30130
Contact: 0 4475 6060 6 Mobile: 08 1440 0202
Email: khaoyai.artspace@gmail.com
Opening Hours: Daily from 9am to 5.30pm

Ban Tha Chang Spring

Ban Tha Chang Spring

I stumbled on this while I was searching for things to do and got intrigued to visit this crystal clear water – and maybe take a dip! Was also expecting to maybe walk a bit of trail, but it is actually just a very small area with a little spring where locals picnic and enjoy a midday dip. The crystal clear aquamarine colored water is really gorgeous to marvel at, especially since it is tucked away in lush greenery. There is also a man-made “waterfall” that you can get a back massage at, haha! However, not much to do, unless you intend to have a picnic and a dip here. They have sort of a sitting area where you can place your stuff down and picnic under the shade. Many locals are playing in the water, and some couples are dating on the side. A nice quiet place to chill out, but other than that it is nothing phenomenal.

There is a small area which we think could be a parking space. We stopped the car in that space, by the side of the road and climbed in through the shrubs on a dirt pathway. It is a short walk in and you can immediately see the spring! There is a mini bridge (pictured above) and a small picnic area (with the steps) and many locals are enjoying their mid-day dip!

Price: Free!
Address: Tambon Mu Si, Amphoe Pak Chong, Chang Wat Nakhon Ratchasima 30130, Thailand
Ban Tha Chang Spring can be found off Ban Tha Chang Rd, along the way to Khao Yai Art Museum

Thanaratch Elephants

Our New Friend!

If getting up close and personal with these gentle giants is in your bucket list, you MUST stop by here! There are 3 elephants standing right next to Jungle House Khao Yai. It is very easy to spot and you will definitely drive past them as you explore the various attractions. There is a person sitting under the tree with a sign for photos. It costs 50 baht for a basket of bananas and you can also ask for help to take a shot! The basket of bananas was very full and we each took turns to feed 2 of the elephants – that brings your cost down to 25 baht per pax!

Price: Free to watch, 50 baht to feed and take photos
Address: Along Thanaratch Road (Next to Jungle House Khao Yai).

Strawberry Picking

How it looks from the side of the road!


This is a quaint little strawberry farm along the road which we decided to stop by just for fun. The owner is Japanese from Japan and came over to Thailand 6 years ago! Very modest and honest living on the farm, with amazing produce like strawberry jam, dried strawberries, fresh strawberries, strawberry smoothies and so on! There are also other commercial juices and ice cream, but just try the strawberries, they are good!

Although we came over when it is off season for the strawberries (the owner shared with us that February is the best month), and the strawberries were all rather small, it was also my first strawberry picking experience so I really enjoyed it! It was fun scouring for hidden strawberries – the big juicy ones tend to be in the middle of the bush! And best part is, THEY ARE SWEET despite being off season!

It costs 60 baht for strawberry picking of 100g, 70 baht for the strawberry soda. I tried the dried strawberry which was really yummy, but I bought home the strawberry jam (no samples) instead. You’ll enjoy yourself here if you allow yourself to be surprised by what you find!

Price: Free to look, 60 baht per 100g of strawberries
Address: Tambon Mu Si, Amphoe Pak Chong, Chang Wat Nakhon Ratchasima 30130, Thailand

ENTER WITH ENTRANCE FEE

Primo Piazza

Right at the Entrance is a Photo Opp!

There is a 200 baht entrance fee that includes a free animal feeding session (one bunch of feeding grass) and a 10% off at the cafe. This is rather reasonable with the picturesque setup that allows you plenty of photo opportunities! You’re transported into a whole new world – with cute adorable animals! The feeding of the animals was really fun, but other than that, there is nothing much to do. There is only one souvenir shop and a cafe (which we didn’t check out). The souvenir shop doesn’t really sell merchandise that specifically has their brand name on it, but more of a variety of stuff. If you have time to spare and you love animals, you’ll enjoy an hour at this place. Let the pictures do the talking!

Entrance to Primo Piazza

Price: 200 Baht (Adult), 100 Baht (Child) (includes animal feeding)
Address: 861 Moo 6, Thanarat Road, Tambol Nong Nam Daeng, Pak Chong District, Nakhon Ratchasima 30130
Contact: 044-099-900-5
Opening hours: Daily from 9am to 6pm

ATTRACTIONS + FOOD

PB Valley Khao Yai Winery

At the open space area from the restaurant


I came here because of the many reviews I heard about the vineyard with great views. When we arrived, the staff were all very welcoming and it made us feel immediately at home. Upon stepping in, we went direct for lunch because the weather was scorching outside (33°c) and were greeted with a beautiful overlooking view of the vineyard.

As shown in the pictures, there is ample parking space and lush greenery surrounding you as you drive in. We opted to sit in the air conditioned area so the lighting for photos is not as good. Nevertheless, we enjoyed our huge pork ribs and African chicken!

According to John, the ribs here would get a higher rating from him if the meat was tender enough to fall off the bones. However, I really loved the ribs with the red wine infused sauce because it was quite a unique taste for me (John says it tastes like chee cheong fun sauce LOL)! The mini grapes (in the pic) were also so juicy and delicious! The African chicken on the other hand is just so so, the chicken was a little dry inside, but the marination is awesome! The chilli sauce that comes with it is so spicy, it’s really good if you love spicy stuff! We did not take the vineyard tour so unable to comment on that, but overall, we enjoyed ourselves for lunch with a great view!

Some other farm animals are right outside too! There are swans and bunnies and fishes, and I believe you can feed the bunnies for a nominal amount too (but I forgot because we were rushing off)!

Vineyard and Wine Tasting Tour: 75 min Adult THB 350, Children under 20 years THB 300, Children under 4 years no charge – Rates are valid until October 31. 2019)
Address: 02/2 Moo 5, Mitraparp Road Payayen Pak Chong District, Nakhon Ratchasima, 30320
Contact: +66 81 733 8783
Opening hours: 8.30am to 4.30pm daily (Tours are conducted 6 times daily at 8.30am, 10am, 11.30am, 1pm, 2.30pm, and 4pm.)

Ban Mai Chay Nam Museum & Restaurant (by the river)

This is what you will see as you drive in. There isn’t an English name, so take note!

This is a place that you have to put on your map before coming to Khao Yai! It is not something you’ll pass by by driving – a little navigation is required to get here. However, once you find the place, it is paradise for those who enjoy little knick knacks featuring a blast from the past!

You can expect to see many collectibles, superheros, tingkats, aracde games, mini collectibles and many more photo ops! The is also a restaurant (I came here for lunch), and a resort (located beyond the suspension bridge of beauty!) here so you can walk around this place for a bit if you have some time to spare! We even played the games, but unfortunately there’s no prize for that, haha. Overall, the food is good, affordable (about 200 baht for main dishes) and portion is quite large. Would be a good option for leisure dates and photo taking and of course, loads of fun!

The suspension bridge leading to the resort!


Price: ~150 Baht onward per dish
Address: 21 Moo 11, in front of Ban Mai Chai Num Resort, Mittraphab Rd, Pak Chong, Nakhon Ratchasima 30130
Contact: 044312134, 044314236, 0816602826
Opening hours: 10am to 10pm

Midwinter Green

At the entrance!

By the time we came by, our tummies were too full! However, I’m so glad I made it a point to come here and enjoy the beautiful English castle setting because the entire compound is really so grand, majestic and phenomenal! The whole layout is very well planned, there is a restaurant, a barn area, a market and more (but we didn’t manage to walk around much because it was late)!

We ordered the carbonara and herbed chicken with tamarind sorbet as a dessert. As simple as it sounds, the quality of these simple dishes really bring out the standard of the chefs! How they make such simple fares taste so good, is really laudable! Also, they serve you a bread basket before your meal and it comes with an exceptionally milky tasting butter (I don’t usually eat butter, but this is really SO GOOD) and wonderful croissant! This place is just amazing and ideal for majestic events, or even a wedding!
Price: Mains from 300 Baht
Address: 88/88 Moo 10, Thanarach Road, Nong Nam Daeng, Pak Chong
Contact: +66 90 191 8842
Opening hours: 10am to 10pm

Pak Chong Night Market

Cute Auntie with the yummy fried chicken!

Pak Chong Night Market has not only a wide variety of food, but there are also some shops selling clothes and toys. The food is tasty, and we spent about 300 baht for 13 different kinds of small snacks. The typical range for snacks is 20 baht, to the more pricey 60 baht? I didn’t see anything over 100 baht.

The mango sticky rice was only 50 baht for a large serving! Also, there’s a stall selling bottled coconut water (with an option of no sugar) for only 25 baht! The no sugar option was already sweet enough for me, and I like it to be refreshing like that! Ice pops are 5 baht each, and very fun to eat!

Address: 2422 Tambon Pak Chong, Amphoe Pak Chong, Chang Wat Nakhon Ratchasima 30130, Thailand
Opening hours: 5pm onwards

Hope you enjoyed what I have shared with you! Click here to find out which is my new favourite hotel in Bangkok! <3

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