Having settled in your new home and already found your way around the city’s shops and facilities, you may wish to do some exploring of your surroundings. This section is in addition to the leisure time, activities and day trips elsewhere on this site. But, If you require more information you can ask your new friends or you can ask in our Forum.
There are many things on offer in the city, nearby or further afield to suit most people’s tastes. So, we will start touring Pattaya city’s attractions and others that are close enough to be considered part of the city.
The second part we will adventure in Pattaya’ surrounding areas, following the South Eastern Coast of Thailand, from Koh Si Chang, a small, island offshore Si Racha city in the north to Trat province near the border with Cambodia . From Si Racha in the north, we will travel towards the south east, passing Ban Amphur, Bang Saray, Sattahip , Rayong as far as Trat, straight to the pier to get a ferry towards Koh Chang , Kho Kood and Koh Maak.
Our proposal is simple. Imagine going along Highway 3, or Sukhumvit Road as it is better known, getting off to the right or left depending of which place we will be going , coming back to Sukhumvit Road each time to keep heading south, until the next destination.
Pattaya’s Attractions from North to South
aca va mapa marcando estos lugares
Starting at the north of the city, going along Sukhumvit Road and turning east or west at specific exits, very soon you will realize that Pattaya is much more than beaches, bars and golf courses…Enjoy the tour
When entering Pattaya city from the north, along Sukhumvit or as soon as you left behind Highway 36, you will see on your right, a huge pink and light blue building surrounded by beautiful gardens. Baan Sukhawadee or Eden House, is a mansion built in 2000 covering a huge area with a spectacular 400 meters sea front along the beach.
The complex was built in Romanesque architecture painted in pink and light blue. Each building is lavishly themed decorated and furnished especially the several rooms or halls where luxurious parties were held. European and Asian sculptures including standing Buddha image, King Taksin the Great, H.R.H. Prince Abhakorn, Krom Luang Chumporn Khet Udomsak and Goddess of Mercy could be seen not only inside the buildings , but also in beautifully landscaped gardens .
The mansion is owned by Dr. Panya Chotethevan,a well-known businessman in food industry in Thailand, so Baan Sukhawadee is also known as “Mr Chicken’s House”.
If you are interested in seeing something different, with an eclectic touch that make you wonder about Thai creativity, just go to visit Baan Sukhawadee. It is a special place to visit on overcast and showery days, when going to the beach is not an option.
Continuing south on Sukhumvit Rd, you will see the tall building of Bangkok Hospital Pattaya on your right. Just opposite it on your left is the Mini Siam complex known for its replicas of the most famous monuments, historical and cultural sites of Thailand and around the world. Walking through the park is like visiting different countries in a cheap way. you will recognise it due to the two giant guards, replica of the ones that you have seen in the Grand Palace in Bangkok.
So, you could visit Thai temples as the Temple of Emerald Buddha or Democracy Monument, then go to see a small version of The Tower Bridge of London, Paris’ Eiffel Tower later or just cross the Atlantic to admire New York’s Statue of Liberty or just give a visit to Sydney’s Opera House – in the same day. A fascinating, different experience. For further information, please, visit this website: www.minisiam.com/index_eng.html
Taking again Sukhumvit Rd south until the traffic lights at the junction with North Pattaya Rd, or Pattaya Nua. When lights allow, turn right, get into the city along Pattaya Nua Rd down to the end and take Naklua Road, right turn at the Dolphin roundabout.
Heading north along Naklua Rd, turn left on Naklua Soi 12 and after a while you will find The Sanctuary of Truth, on your right.
Sanctuary of Truth
Known as “wooden castle” or “ancient palace” among the locals, is a real wooden construction some 100 meters tall. As an example of ancient Thai creativity, it was built without the use of metal, or cement, except its base made from concrete.
According to the official website, its decoration with wooden sculptures is used as reflection of the Ancient Vision of Earth, Ancient Knowledge and Eastern Philosophy. The building consists of four halls and a central one, each which tells about Buddhist, Hindu, Chinese and Khmer teachings and philosophy.
There are fascinating wood carvings depicting the Hindu gods Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu, along with other divine incarnations, mythical beings and scenes from the Hindu epic Ramayana or Ramakien as it is known in Thailand.
One particular detail is that It is always under construction, meaning that as one section is completed, another has succumbed to the tropical conditions and must be replaced because none of the wood being used has been treated or chemically protected, nor nailed. A beautiful and humbling demonstration Thai artisans’ skills. If you are interested in further information, please, visit this website: www.sanctuaryoftruth.com/
Getting back, once again on Naklua Rd, keep going north until you see a decorated tree in the middle of the road. Time for parking your car.
Naklua Village and Chinese Temple
If one wish to know how Thai life was and still is, just go to Naklua Village, at the north of the city. The more you go north, the more you get away from the westernized parts of the city and into more traditional Thai communities, with their narrow streets, wooden shop-houses, a fresh food Market, temples, stilt houses along canals, which are worth a visit, especially in early morning when boats are coming back from the night fishing.
Going along Naklua Rd, you will know that you have arrived to Naklua fresh food market , because you will see the Bo tree located in the middle of the road, decorated with brightly colored fabrics. Walking through the narrow alleys of this market is just being soaked with exotic colours, flavours and smells, an enriching experience worth your time.
Fresh fish and other seafood are constantly being brought here by local fishermen, and all are displayed for anyone and everyone to purchase or just get the fish cooked at one of the BBQ stalls, sit and eat, in the nearby Lan Pho Park. Very rarely will you get a chance to eat seafood that is so fresh, and normally it will be fairly inexpensive.
Returning to the bo tree and following Naklua Road, always toward north, you will go into a Thai village of 30 years ago. Wooden town houses at both sides of the road, offering from cloth, fabric and traditional basketry.
Further north, you will get on a bridge over the canal from where old traditional stilt houses can be seen. From this point, crossing the road and coming back on the other side, while still enjoying the picturesque Thai life, take a turn left on a narrow soi which leads to the Chinese temple, very popular among Pattaya’s Thai – Chinese community, the center of Chinese New Year celebrations, and vegetarian Festival.
Back on Sukhumvit Road, head south again until the traffic lights where Siam Country Club Road joins Sukhumvit. Turn left, along Siam Country Club Rd until you see signs stating that The Million Years Stone Park and Pattaya Crocodile Farm is on your left.
The Million Years Stone Park and Pattaya Crocodile Farm
The park shows an assemblage of natural objects collected by Khun Suan, its owner, over 30 years since his youth with the objective to be handed down to future generations.These natural objects are valuable because of their rarity or oddity, such as Thai-style trimmed and trained trees that are more than 200 years old from the early Rattanakosin period, fossilized tree trunks that are aged millions of years, and colourful stratified rocks.
Different performances are held regularly, including daily shows of men fighting with adult crocodiles bare-handed, making the Park a famous tourist destination of Thailand, attracting thousands of visitors, both Thais and foreigners, every year. For more information, please, visit this website: www.thaistonepark.org
Back on Siam Country Club Road, head east, until you see signposts stating that Pattaya Elephant Village is on your right. You should turn at the traffic lights.
Pattaya Elephant Village
The elephant is Thailand’s national symbol having played an important role throughout Thai history and it is part of Thai culture serving as a beast of burden and weapon of war since early times, due to their size and strength, Pattaya Elephant Village is a sanctuary for former working elephants which through reasons of injury or ill health, could no longer be used as a part of the backbone of heavy work in the jungles of Thailand. Also, because of their diminishing habitat, it is no longer possible to return them to the wild.
This interesting place, ideal for taking your children during school holidays. is located few kilometers east of Pattaya city, nestled among cassava fields. Within its almost 20 hectares, visitors are offered a choice of trekking excursions designed to demonstrate Thai rural way of life as well as an demonstration of their former working skills.
For further information, please, visit this website: : www.elephant-village-pattaya.com/
Back at Siam Country Club Rd, keep going east until you see on your left Mabphrachan Lake, which is one of Pattaya’s major reservoirs of rain water, which in turn is the water supplied to Pattaya city. Keep going and you will see notice a sign for Horse Shoe Point and Three Kingdoms Park on your right.
The Three Kingdoms Park
The Three Kingdom Park, one of Pattaya’s hidden treasures, is part of Horse Shoe Point complex. One can find its entrance just next door to the access to Horse Shoe Point resort, many times overlooked for this reason.
But have in mind that it is an inspiring place to visit not only for the superb landscape and architecture of Thai-Chinese design, but also because of its philosophy, based on the 14th century Chinese novel “Romance of the Three Kingdoms”.
Once you cross the entrance, you soon will realize that the beautifully landscaped gardens are a fitting background for the array of Chinese -Thai style buildings, corridors and paths. The main features of the Park, are the three Chinese-style pagoda buildings – each one with different philosophies, teachings and meanings, the central Pagoda being the most important.
This Pagoda has four floors accessible to visitors, each with a different theme within the overall concept of the park, including Buddha relics on the fourth floor. On the same floor one can walk along a balcony and get the best views of the whole complex and beyond.
Outside of the buildings, following the paths you will find several warrior statues and fossilized trees. Another highlight of this park is a 240 mts long tiled mural which tells the story of The Three Kingdoms over 56 separate but joined story paintings. It is a delicate, amazing job, and each story has a descriptive plaque written in Thai and English,enabling you to try understanding the story and the philosophy behind it. You always could find more information visiting this website: www.3kingdomspark.com/
If only I’d known…
Although there are inscriptions along the images, it would be of a great help if, before going, you could read or know something about the Three Kingdoms story, an amazing Chinese epic, It would be worth trying.
Back on Sukhumvit Road, the next destination is Phratamnak Hill and Laem Bali Hai. You could get there turning right at the traffic lights at the intersection with North Pattaya Rd, going along it until getting Beach Road, then get south to Bali Hai pier.
Bali Hai Cape ( Laem Bali Hai)
For those who enjoy sunsets, lighthouses or both and , also, enjoy taking photos, do not think twice, Bali Hai Cape is the place to go. It is one of Pattaya’s nicest places for enjoying sunsets while having the whole view of Pattaya Bay.
Bali Hai Pier
Bali Hai Pier is located at the end of Walking Street near the southern point of Pattaya Bay. It is a hive of activity, with endless queues of day travellers scuba divers, fishing enthusiasts on their way to Koh Larn getting aboard ferries or private charter boat trips. The jetty stretches quite far out into the bay and is lined on either side with all kind of boats. The local government has built a huge parking building for those who wish to leave their cars when going to Koh Larn.
If only I’d known…
For those who need to take a baht bus from Bali Hai Pier, on your way back from Koh Larn, it is advisable to walk a little bit further from the pier, where the taxis or songtaews fares are more expensive. Just walk along Walking Street until Soi 16, turn right, enjoy the walk along that narrow but lively soi until getting Second Road. ,Once there, you could choose a baht bus going north or cross the road for going south. Easy, and cheaper..
You could find further information on these websites:
Your next destination is Pra Tamnak Hill. So, reach the Phra Tamnak police box located at the junction of Phra Tamnak Rd and Soi 1. Once onto Soi 1, looking toward the sea, on your right you will see three roads: the first leads to Royal Cliff Hotel, next to it, there is one that leads to the Panoramic View Point and the third is the way down from the top of Buddha Hill.
If only I’d known…
Please, have in in mind when going up the hill along the narrow road that at the top there is a fairly small carpark, so cars end up parking on the roadside making it narrower, so it is advisable to drive carefully.
You could find more information visiting this website: www.pattayaplaza.com/visiting/pattaya-view-point/
Phra Tamnak Hill
Khao Phra Tamnak, also known as Phra Bat or just Phra Tamnak Hill, due to the small temple on the top, is the hill located between Pattaya and Jomtien, known for having on of the best panoramic views of Pattaya bay and city, Jomtien and beyond.
But Khao Phra Tanmak is not only a hill with view Points, but also you will find the Naval Broadcasting Radio Station, Wat Phra Yai and Khao Phra Yai , locally known as the Big Buddha and Wang Sam Sien park.
Panoramic View Point and Naval Broadcasting Radio Station
Once on the top, the first thing to do is stand at the Panoramic View Point trying to absorb all the beauty of the curved Pattaya’ bay eithe early in the morning, during the the day, sunset or at night. Priceless.
In the same esplanade of the Panoramic view point, is situated a statue of HRH Prince Abhakara Kiartivongse, overlooking Pattaya’s Bay. It is very easy to find it, just follow the aroma and smoke of hundreds of incense sticks, lit candles, lotus flowers, among small figurines left as offerings by locals, while paying respects to the Prince’s monument.
Prince Abhakara Kiartiwongse, the 28th child of HM King Chulalongkorn (Rama V), was born in December 1880 and passed away in 1923 at the young age of 44. His familiar other names, Sadej Tia (“Royal Father”) or Doctor Phon or Prince of Chumphon, commands deep respect from Thai people, from navy officers to rural villagers.
He spent his early years studying naval warfare in England returning to Siam to serve in the Royal Siamese Navy and in this way, contributed significantly to the advancement and modernization of the Navy. In 1922 seeing that Sattahip Bay was a strategic place for the establishment of a Naval base he offered Royal land in Sattahip in order to build the present-day naval facilities. In honor of his contributions, the Prince was proclaimed “The Father of the Royal Thai Navy”.
For more information about Prince of Chumphon ‘s interesting life visiting this website: www.sarakadee.com/feature/2003/12/jumborn_en.htm
Next to the Panoramic View Point, you will find the Naval Broadcasting Radio Station (FM 104.75 Mhz) and several shops where souvenirs could be bought.
Leaving behind the Panoramic View Point and the Naval Broadcasting Radio Station, on the other side of the road- parking lot is Wat Khao Phra Bat, a non- active temple, which means that there are no monks living in it.
There aren’t many attractions in this small temple, with the exception of a 200 years old replica of the footprint of Buddha and beautiful statutes. Small, but picturesque, definitely worth visiting.
Wat Phra Yai and Kao Phra Yai ( Big Buddha)
The so-called “Big Buddha” is one of the iconic marks of Pattaya city and certainly deserves its name, being the biggest in the region. Positioned nearly 100 meters above sea level, this 18 meters high image watches over Pattaya Bay from its position on the top of Phra Tamnak Hill.
The staircase leading up to the Buddha and temple is really imposing, not only due to the number of stairs, but for the scaled bodies of the mythical serpent Naga running down along the entire handrails, ending at the foot of the stairs with its seven heads. It is the favorite spot of all visitors for taking pictures…and nowadays, “selfies”.
Once at the top, the first thing that you see is, surely enough, the Big Buddha image in the center of the temple complex. But it is not only the view of this impressive image that will strike you, but the reflective mood that you will feel thanks to ringing bells, burning incense, praying people, monks offering advice or just doing their religious duties.
Walking around, you will find a pavilion hall with beautifully painted mosaics on the walls and smaller Buddha images in traditional different postures or mudhras. Not only each posture represents different important moments in Buddha’s life, but are representative of each one of the seven days of the week.
If you are interested, you.could find more information visiting this website: www.bangkok.com/pattaya/attractions/wat-phra-yai-temple.
If only I’d known…
- When going to visit this temple, it will give an added value if you know on which day of the week you were born, and then, just find the respective image among the seven that represent the days of the week and their respective Buddha’s posture.
- It would be advisable, if you are interested in knowing the meanings of your day of birth according with the respective Buddha’s image’s posture, to go with a Thai guide or just do some research before going, because there is nothing written on the spot – in English at least.
- Not just a tourist attraction with impressive views over the area, the site is an active temple, so it is advisable to have this in mind at the time of choosing appropriate clothes.
Wang Sam Sien
On the way up the hill to see the Big Buddha you will pass Wang Sam Sien, a park where a number of figures from Chinese history and folklore are displayed. Close to the entrance of the garden is a white statue of Guan Yin, the Chinese Goddess of Mercy.
Although we have said this several times, we think that it would clarify a little bit whether we repeat it in this section. Guan Yin is an extremely popular Goddess in Chinese folk belief and is worshiped in Chinese communities throughout East and South East Asia being revered in the general Chinese and Thai population due to her unconditional love, compassion and mercy.
She is generally regarded by many as the protector of women and children. By this association she is also seen as a fertility goddess capable of granting children. So, you will see always people, especially women , paying respects to Guan Yin image.
In this area, you also will find a large metal bell, which was built to resemble the bell in the Royal Palace in Beijing, China ,and several figures and statues relating Chinese stories and legends, such as the Three Kingdoms Stories and a tale of how an ancient Chinese dynasty came to power.
Another interesting feature of this place is a wall with 24 beautiful paintings graphing the 24 stories of gratitude and a statue of the great Chinese philosopher Confucius who lived some 2,500 years ago. This tranquil, peaceful park is a nice place to relax and another opportunity for taking pictures.
You could find more information about this place, visiting this website: www.renown-travel.com/temples/big-buddha.html
If only I’d known…
Be aware that there are two entrances to get to the top of Khao Phra Tamnak: one leads to the Panoramic Viewpoint, the Naval Broadcasting Station, of HRH Prince of Chumphon, the father of the Royal Thai Navy and Wat Khao Phra Bat temple. The second , situated on the other side of Phra Tamnak Road from the police box station, leads to the “Big Buddha’ and the Chinese Park.
Back on Sukhunvit road, heading always south, after passing the traffic lights at the junction with Theprassit Road (where Outlet Mall and Tesco Lotus are), you will see on your right Underwater World on the other side of the road. Turn right at the first U turn, Underwater World is now, on your left side.
This themed park is very easy to recognize because is housed in a huge white structure similar to a large circus tent. It is believed to be one of the largest and most modern ocean aquarium in Southeast Asia. The aquarium, that houses more than 4,000 marine animals, has on exhibition more than 200 different species from the region as well as some rare creatures from overseas.
The highlight of the whole complex, is, beyond any doubt, a 100-meter long, 6.4-centimeter-thick acrylic pedestrian tunnel through an underwater environment filled with dozens of brilliantly colored marine species plying the fresh sea waters above and all around for the delight of children, and also for those who have left their childhood some years ago, especially during the live- feeding shows.
If only I’d known…
- There is a coffee shop where you can get refreshments after finishing the tour, or while you keep waiting for the children to decide that it was enough – which it is not an easy task.
- The tour has one direction, so you just keep walking through the different sections of this amazing complex, just to end in the souvenir shop. Here, you will find plenty of choices for getting a beautiful, cute gift for your children or relatives, friends – there are for all tastes, you won’t be disappointed.
Underwater World is definitely worth visiting, especially during rainy days or during schools holidays. It is a program for the whole family.
You could find more information, visiting these websites:
Going back to the other side of Sukhumvit, always heading south, after passing the traffic lights at the intersection with Chaiyapruek Road, go a little bit further and Pattaya Floating Market is on your left.
Pattaya Floating Market
This is another amazing and relatively new attraction that Pattaya has to offer. Correctly named as the “Four Regions Floating Market”, the sub-sections of this 100,000 sqm development represent the four major areas of Thailand, which are: North, Northeast, Central and South in the form of shops and stalls selling souvenirs, fruits, food, art, handicrafts, postcards and clothing.
Besides, the market also features other educational and entertaining attractions as the wood-carving museum, or the sunflower and agricultural demonstration fields. There is also a free daily show featuring four cultural performances.
Some of the vendors sell their wares from traditional boats and canoes on the canals that run through the complex. Along side these canals, the rest of the shops are wooden houses built in the different styles according to the four regions which are connected by covered walkways and bridges. Also, traditional boats ferry visitors around the market’s canals, which is a special way of touring this place.
The Four Regions Floating Market Pattaya gives an excellent opportunity to enjoy an unique experience without going through all the trouble of traveling to Bangkok’s surroundings where the original traditional floating markets are located and have been since the old times. Website: www.pattayafloatingmarket.com
If only I’d known…
- Pattaya Floating Market is one of the most visited spots in Pattaya, especially by numerous groups of tourists who spend the whole day there. So if you enjoy walking along these corridors , appreciate all those shops, so colorfully decorated and have a quiet time for choosing some gift, it is highly advisable to go early in the morning, when the crowds of tourists wouldn’t have arrived yet.
- Another advantage of going early is that you became ‘the first customer’ and that, in terms of bargaining, is a huge opportunity to get discount – remember this .
- A down side is the car park, which is located behind the market,when entering from Sukhumvit Rd, is really crowded at rush hours and not so easy to find either. The entrance is just past the Floating Market, next to the last shop there is a narrow road going into the complex. Here you should buy tickets to enter the car park and the complex. Be aware that from time to time there are different promotions as ‘Expat VIP card’ that you get showing by your Thai driving license.
- Having this in mind, It is advisable to check the official website before going, or be prepared to pay the full ticket, as a common tourist.
You could find more information visiting this website:
Back again on Sukhumvit Road, always heading south, after passing Ban Amphur a little, there’s a notice sign indicating that Wat Yansangwararam is on the left hand side.
After turning left, go ahead a few kilometers, there’s a kind of roundabout (that distributes traffic toward Wat Yansangwararam, Anek Kusala Sala , and Khao Chee Chan) keep going left and you then will be at the temple area.
Wat Yansangwararam is a impressive temple compound not only for its architectural styles but also for its vast parks dotted with lakes and rolling hills, which makes it the perfect place to spend a day seeing the quieter side of Pattaya.
The temple was built in 1976 to honor the Supreme Patriarch but later was admitted under the patronage of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) and is considered an outstanding example of a balanced combination of Thai and Chinese architecture with modern sculpture and décor.
The complex comprises an ‘Ubosot,’ or Ordination Hall, the heart of every temple in Thailand, a distinctive white ’Chedi’ that houses relics of the Lord Buddha and an impressive ‘Mondop’ which houses Buddha’s Footprints, sitting on top of a hill overlooking Wat Yansangwararam, which is worth the effort of climbing the more than two hundred steps.
A Mondop is a specific square or cruciform based building or shrine, sometimes , as it is in this case, with a spired roof within a Thai Buddhist temple complex. It is a ceremonial structural form that can be applied to different kind of buildings. It can houses relics, sacred scriptures or acts as a shrine. Unlike the mandapa of Khemer or Indian temple, which are part of a larger structure, the Thai mondop is a free- standing unit. As we already said, in Wat Yansangwararam the mondop is located on the top of a hill.
As you wander across its beautifully landscaped gardens, very soon you will realise that this is not a simple temple, but a huge complex where there are much more than the elements basic to any temple compound ,so, you will discover several buildings with other architectural influences, as pagodas in Hindu-Thai style, or pavilion halls which were designed in architecture styles from different nationalities.
It is so that around the reservoir, you will see pavilion halls built in Lanna-Thai , Central Thailand , Singapore-Chinese, Chinese -Thai , Indian, Japanese styles and also from Switzerland, making this place worth spending a day, starting early in the morning.
Wat Yansangwararam also draws in tourists and locals with its meditation classes, to such extent that it has even been dubbed as “Heaven on Earth” for those who enjoy practicing it. Classes are held daily and offer a range of different courses, suitable for everyone.
If only I’d known..
Wat Yansangwararam and Anek Kusala Sala or Viharna Sien Temple , are situated next to each other. So, have this in mind when planning a day out.
In the same way, Khao Chee Chan ( The Buddha mountain) and Silverlake vineyard aren’t so far. When coming back from Wat Yansangwararam and Anek Kusala Sala (or Viharna Sien Temple), going toward Sukhunvitroad you will see the round about, turn left, follow the road until find the one coming down from SukhunvitRoad that leads to Kaho Chee Chan, turn left again. You will see the Buddha mountain on your right, and further down the road, Silverlake vineyard where there is a lovely Italian restaurant where you will enjoy a delicious lunch.
You could find more information visiting this website:
Anek Kusala Sala – Viharna Sien Temple ( Chinese Angel Temple)
Viharna Sien means ‘Gods living place’ and Anek Kusala Sala, ‘Multipurpose Pavillion’. It was officially opened by His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) as a Royal project on December 1993 .The exhibitions and decorations housed within are designed to represent a harmonious blend of Thai and Chinese art and culture. It was founded by Sa-nga Kulkobkiat, a Thai national who grew up in China, the museum was intended as a friendship-building project between the two countries.
The Viharna Sien was built in elegant Chinese style, with many bronze sculptures located in the front esplanade, but the real attraction lies inside the building. This museum is one of the best places in Asia outside of China itself to see some priceless and rare Chinese artifacts and antiques. It contains more than 300 impressive pieces of Chinese artwork, mainly bronze and brass statues depicting historical figures as well as Buddhist, Confucian and Taoist deities.
There is a collection of fine Chinese pottery from several dynasties, as the Shang dynasty, making this exhibited pottery at least 3,000 years old, as well some items from the Ming Dynasty, statues of 18 Shaolin monks displaying martial arts from the 15th centuriy Shaolin Monastery in China.
A great number of precious antiques, paintings, statues and artwork are displayed here, some of which were a gift from the Chinese government, as it is the case of the world – wide famous terracotta warriors, horses and chariots from the tomb of Emperor Qin Shi, in Xian, as well as a golden throne. This is one of the very few places where X’ian’s terracotta warriors can be seen, especially outside of China.
Anek Kusala Sala, the Thai name for Viharna Sien, apart from being a museum, is a place were locals worship Chinese Gods, being Guan Yin, the Chinese Goddess of Mercy , the most popular among them.
As we know, Guan Yin is revered due to her unconditional love, compassion and mercy. She is generally regarded by many as the protector of women and children. By this association she is also seen as a fertility goddess capable of granting children. Therefore, when visiting Anek Kusala Sala we should be respectful because it is very common to find people, but especially women, worshiping the jade statue of Guan Yin, what makes this place an especial one.
Anek Kusala Sala or Viharna Sien Temple is really worth visiting, and more than once.
You could find further information about this place visiting this website: www.renown-travel.com/temples/viharn-sien.html
If only I’d known…
- Because this place is an active temple as well as museum, we have to have this in mind at time of choosing appropriate clothes.
- It is advisable to ask for a guided tour when buying tickets, that will help a little when touring the different sections of this incredible place.
- Due to the fact that there are so many artifacts displayed, it is nearly impossible to grasp the whole of it in only one visit, so have this in mind when planning day outs .
- Visiting this place is a great choice for rainy days, or during school holidays.
Khao Chee Chan ( The Buddha mountain)
Khao Chee Chan is considered the largest stone engraving of Buddha in the world. Etched with a laser into the side of what used to be a resource for the construction industry, the 109-meter-high image was then marked out in gold. It was completed in 1996 to mark the 50th anniversary of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) ’s accession to the throne and which since then , has become a popular attraction for local and expats alike.
Buddha Mountain has an interesting history that goes saying that during the Vietnam War, the Thai navy was permitted to mine the mountain for stone to be used at nearby U-Tapao Airfield which was by then, an American base. The stone was also used to build a road from Sattahip to Chachoengsao. After the war, mining continued on an illegal basis, until 1976, when His Majesty the late King Bhumibol put a stop to it.
The park surrounding the cliff is beautiful and serene with walkways and rest areas. Right in front of the cliff is a prayer area, surrounded by water gardens with lotus flowers. There is a pathway to a little temple on the top of the cliff, so if you are fit enough to climb over 150 m, you could get to the top and take the opportunity to enjoy the view of the surrounding area. Food, drink and elephant trekking is available across the road from the park.
Khao Chee Chan serves as the focal point to a number of other attractions in the immediate area, such as its reservoir and scenic beauty, commonly known as Silver Lake, and a little further, Anek Kusala Sala, (Viharna Sein) and Wat Yansangwararam which can be seen in the distance.
You could find more information,visiting this website:
If only I’d known...
- There is a road that connects the Buddha Mountain with Viharna Sein and Wat Yansangwararam : when going down from Sukhunvit Road, along the road toward the Buddha mountain, on your left side there is a road that goes north through a beautiful landscape of rolling hills, until joining the road coming down from Sukhumvit that leads to Wat Yansangwararam and Viharna Sein. So, it is a good idea to organize a visit to these three places in the same day.
- Also, there is a road which connects Khao Chee Chan with Nong Nooch Tropical Garden : when coming down from Sukhumvit Rd toward the Buddha Mountain, there’s a notice sign indicating that Nong Nooch Gardens are on the right hand side. Or if you have decided to visit Nong Nooch Gardens after visiting the Buddha Mountain, when going toward Sukhunvit, just turn left when seeing the sign.
Silver Lake Vineyard
Set against the natural beauty of the surrounding hills, under the protecting sight of Khao Chee Chan, Silver Lake vineyard presents itself as a good choice for a day out. From exploring the vineyard, strolling in the garden among gazebos surrounded by an impressive view, having lunch or enjoying a peaceful sunset while dining, there are plenty of ways to pass the time.
A Guided Tour of the vineyard and the Winery facilities, built in a picturesque Tuscan style, concludes with a Wine Tasting at the Cellar Door’s terrace. There, you can enjoy the Winery’s full range of new latitude wines alongside tapas with the beautiful natural surroundings and the adjacent lake as an excellent background.
The Villagio Community Mall sits charmingly at the vineyard’s entrance and offers a relaxed spot to start and end your visit and a good opportunity for shopping. You will find a full range of the vineyard products, including vine-fresh grapes, the homemade grape juices and jams, raisin and grape pastries and snacks, as well as souvenirs followed by a visit to the Café that offers a chance to cool off with a light snack, a fresh cup of coffee, or some homemade ice cream.
The Silverlake Wine and Grill Restaurant and Pizza Café is the vineyard’s lovely restaurant that offers both indoor and outdoor dining with panoramic views over the whole property, an especial spot for enjoying sunsets. Fine Italian and Thai cuisine is offered to compliment the vineyard’s wine.
This is a wonderful place, not so far from the city, worth having in mind at the time of planning a day outing, or just for enjoying a different sunset. Silver Lake website: www.silverlakevineyard.com
Back on Sukhumvit Road, not so far towards south, you will see a notice sign indicating that Nong Nooch Garden is on the left side. After turning left, just follow a beautifully landscaped road until you find Nong Nooch Tropical Garden entrance and car park.
Nong Nooch Tropical Garden
The Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden was officially opened in 1980 aiming to show Thai arts and cultures, plus an elephant show in the field surrounded by beautiful garden. This 2.4 sq kms complex offers the most remarkable flowers, displays and landscaped gardens in Thailand, if not in the world.
It has repeatedly won international awards for their designs, which include 17th-century-French-style gardens, a recreation of Stonehenge, creative topiary displays and gardens created exclusively with cacti, bonsais, tropical palms and over 670 native and hybrid species of orchids.
Besides offers an excellent elephant talent show and regular displays of classic Thai dancing, boxing and drumming delighting children and adults as well.
For touring the gardens one could choose going along the Sightseeing Bus tour, or strolling along the Sky Walk , an elevated – more than 3 kilometers long walking route from which one can look around with such perspective that gives another dimension to whole structure of the landscaped gardens.
Yet there are more options: if you like elephants, or never have ridden one, here is a golden opportunity. Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden provides elephants with mahouts to take visitors to see the beauty of these landscaped gardens along specified routes, another option could be renting bicycles.This is really worth going and an ideal option for a family day out. Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden’s website: www.nongnoochgarden.com
If only I’d known…
- As soon as you get the entrance area, you will have to buy the tickets. Remember showing your Thai Driving License, you will get a discount because you will pay as a local.
- If you plan to go to the Elephant Talent show, it would be advisable to know the time -tables, so you could start your visit with it, which will leave the rest of the day for enjoying all other attractions without worrying about getting late and miss part of show.
- If you go with children, you just won’t be able to avoid the ride on elephants which is fun, but it could be a little bit hard to endure a long tour, especially if you suffer from backache or have other back issues. So it is advisable to get a ticket for a short tour, that will be enough to know the feeling of being on the top of such amazing, lovely animals.
- If you are kind of “green fingers” you will love to visit the garden shop. It is at the end of the tour, so you won’t be wandering with your shopping on hands.. Have in mind that prices are really convenient, – many other gardens in the city buy from Nong Nooch Garden for reselling.
As we have said, this is only an introduction, it would be near to impossible to describe and tell all you can do in this city, in one time..and it would be an endless page. Pattaya is a city that you must live yourself. As we do. Every singe day is a new experience, a new challenge. Yet, we really hope that you had enjoyed reading this page, and that we had been of help. If you have some comment, please, lets know. In this way, we could keep linking Pattaya together.