Sala Kaew Ku / Wat Pho Chai / Tha Sadet Market / Nong Khai Aquarium / Issan Rum Distillery
Options to include Nong Khai Night Cruise
Even after a decade of living in the North East of Thailand, a day trip to Nong Khai is still our favorite day out.
Sitting on the boarder between Thailand and Laos, Nong Khai is a sleepy trading town that has maintained an old worldly charm that makes you feel instantly transported back in time.
Normally the tour starts with a 40-45 minute drive through some of the regions most picturesque scenery up to Nong Khai.
On arrival we start our day at Sala Kaew Ku: a stunning Budhhist Statue Park with the tallest rising over 25m. A visit to this mystical, magical park will live long in the memory and in the spirit. For many visitors, it has become their favourite place in the world such is its mysticism.
Next we head into Nong Khai town stopping at Wat Pho Chai. Known for its highly revered Buddha image and unusually modern wall murals, Wat Pho Chai is Nong Khai town’s largest and most important temple as well as high in importance for all Thai due to its rich history and links to multiple miracles.
A short five minute walk then brings us up to Ta Sadet Market and the river front onto the Mekong. Ta Sadet offers both abundance in local food and multiple shopping opportunities. Do stop for photos at the Post Office as well as the Naga Statue outside the entrance. If you would like a coffee, there is a superb Vietnamese Coffee shop inside the market. Prices are low but do still haggle!
For lunch we recommend a walk onto one of the pontoons sitting on the Mekong. Not luxuious, but you will get great local food at low, low prices and with a view for free!
This tour does allow time for free ambling. Nong Khai is a town with multiple little discoveries around any corner within the market itself, along the river front or just walking down the streets.
We then start to head back going first via the exception Nong Khai Aquarium. This is not the London Aquarium by any means but still highly impressive none the less with good information and unique local species from the Mekong that are not found in other aquariums. Particularity enjoyable for kids and anyone slightly interested in the underwater world.
The last stop is the next door Issan Rum Distillery. A small independent Distillery set up by a French Man and his Thai wife that makes exceptional award winning rum! You can learn all about how rum is made; enjoy a sample on their terrace overlooking the pond and even buy a bottle to take home!
After that it is a lovely evening drive into the sunset back through the Thai countryside before a traditional Thai dinner cooked to your specifications back at Nakara.
One add on is to extend your tour and take a sunset cruise on the Mekong River whilst enjoying dinner in Nong Khai or a late dinner back at Nakara Villa.
8:30 Depart Nakara Villa
9:15 Sala Kaew Ku (Wat Khaek)
10:00 Drive to What Po Chai
11:00 Walk to Ta Sadet Market (5 minutes)
*Potential to stop for Vietnamese Coffee
12:30 Lunch on or overlooking MeKong
13:30 Explore Nong Khai River Front / Streets / Markets
14:30 Drive to Nong Khai Aquarium
15:45 Drive to Issan Rum Distillery
16:45 Leave for Nakara Villa
17:30 Arrive at Nakara Villa
18:30 Traditional Thai Dinner
This tour is fully inclusive with the exception of lunch and rum at the distillery. This includes:
Registered tour guide
Air conditioned SUV or Mini Van including all petrol costs
Entry prices to all parks and exhibits
Bottled water in the van
Traditional Thai Dinner (soup, 2-3 dishes, rice, fresh fruit, soft drinks)