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Hua Hin หัวหิน

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Hua Hin Railway StationHua Hin Railway Station
photo source
authorshipIan Gratton
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Hua Hin หัวหิน is a resort town in Prachuap Khiri Khan Province on the northern part of the Isthmus of Kra in Thailand. Located 200 km from Bangkok, it was first settled around 1834 by drought-stricken farmers looking for a new settlement. They called the place Samore Riang, meaning "row of rocks".

A significant development for Hua Hin came in the form of a railway connecting it to Bangkok, completed in 1911. The town has received royal patronage since the 19th century. It was here, at the village of Wakor, that King Mongkut along with dignitaries including Sir Harry Ord, the British Governor of the Straits Settlements, watched the solar eclipse on 18 August, 1868. (Unfortunately, in the expedition His Majesty and Crown Prince Chulalongkorn contracted malaria, and the king passed away six weeks later.)

360° Street View of Hua Hin

Street View shows Route 4 going through Hua Hin.

Rama VII (King Prajadhipok) built his summer palace, Klat Kangwon, in Hua Hin. Today the palace is the main residence of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, and is therefore not open to the public. Other members of the royal family maintain palaces in Hua Hin.

Hua Hin has a lovely tropical climate. Its position as a tourist destination began with the completion of the Railway Hotel by Prince Purachatra, who was director of the state railway. The hotel, now called the Hotel Sofitel Central, is a historical landmark of Hua Hin. The town has been developed with tourism activities and sea recreational sports. Apart from sunbathing, snorkeling and swimming, visitors can also enjoy golfing, caving, exploring its waterfalls and natural parks and enjoying fresh seafood.

Hua Hin, during King's 84th Birthday celebrationsHua Hin, during King's 84th Birthday celebrations
photo source
authorshipIan Gratton
photo licensing

Travel to Hua Hin

You can take a bus from Bangkok, leaving from the Sai Tai Mai Terminal, to Hua Hin. The journey takes 3.5 hours and costs ฿200. There is also a bus service direct from Suvarnabhumi airport to Hua Hin.

Alternatively, you can take a train to Hua Hin, but it can get rather slow. Expect to spend 5-6 hours on the train. The fare is just around ฿100.

Hua Hin BeachHua Hin Beach
photo source
authorshipIan Gratton
photo licensing

Travel within Hua Hin

Within Hua Hin, there are songthaews (passenger pick-up trucks), tuk-tuk (auto-rickshaws) and motorcycle taxis. A fee of ฿10 will take you to most places by songthaew. Always negotiate and agree on the price before climbing on board.

Khao Takiab, Hua HinKhao Takiab, Hua Hin
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Places of Interest in Hua Hin

  1. Hotel Sofitel Central: Historical hotel that put Hua Hin on the map as a tourist destination.
  2. Hua Hin Beach: The one and only beach in Hua Hin stretching for some 3 kilometers of fine white sand.
  3. Hua Hin Railway Station: Said to be the most beautiful railway station in Thailand, formerly a royal pavilion for Sanamchan Palace in Nakhon Pathom province.
  4. Khao Takiab: Hill whose name means "chopstick hill", due to the many chedis and shrines covering it.
  5. Klat Klangwon: The official residence of His Majesty the King. Not open to the public. The name of the palace actually means "far from worries".
  6. Ko Singto: "Lion Island", named for its shape, is a popular destination for diving and snorkeling.
  7. Sam Roi Yot National Park: National park about 60 km from Hua Hin, with limestone outcrops, mangrove swamp and beaches. Home to many species of birds.
  8. Wakor: Village where King Mongkut viewed the solar eclipse.
  9. Wat Khao Lad: Temple with a 20-meter-tall standing Buddha statue.

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