Sightseeing Hua Hin (From Hua Hin. Duration about 8 hours):
Wat Khao Lad temple: Sitting on top of Khao Takiab mountain, also known as monkey mountain or Chopstick hill is Wat Khao Lad temple. It is also known as the monkey temple, because of the many monkeys that live there. Walking your way up the stairs will give you some very rewarding views of Hua Hin, North of Khao Takiab. On a clear day, you can see the beach stretching away as far as Cha-Am.
A short walk on the same mountain you will find a beautiful Chinese temple as well. The temple contains a large number of pagodas and statues all wonderfully decorated in blue, red and gold colors, this includes the remarkable statue of Guanyin, the Chinese Goddess with the thousand arms.
Khao Tao, Sai Noi beach is one of the smallest, secluded and most beautiful beaches in the area. It sits at the foot of Khao Tao hill and lies about 10 kilometers south of Hua Hin. Although small, less than 1km long, the beach is generally quiet, except on weekends and public holidays.
Khao Tao, Sai Noi beach is fringed with pine trees and usually proves more peaceful than Hua Hin beach. It is sheltered from both sides by small headlands and has sandy beaches that shelve more quickly making it a super place for swimming in the sea.
Hua Hin Railway Station has been considered to be the most beautiful station in Thailand. Built during the reign of King Rama VI, Hua Hin’s railway station and adjacent royal waiting room are undeniably attractive. The brightly painted wooden buildings that are Thai in concept and design somehow manage to have a ‘Victorian’ feel to them.
If you’re looking for some spectacular views of Hua Hin, you need search no further than Khao Hin Lek Fai (Flintstone Hill). It is situated about 3km west of the town centre.
There are several lookout spots, some are easier than others to find and walk to. It is a popular location with locals, especially at sundown which is arguably the best time to go for fabulous sunsets. Try all the lookouts as they offer views in different directions, you can see South to Khao Takiab and beyond and North towards Cha-am.
Hua Hin Zoo is a local zoo located a few kilometers West of Hua Hin just off the Pala U road. The zoo houses more than 100 animal species.
The Wat Huay Mongkol Temple complex, located some 15 kilometers West of Hua Hin, is famous for its enormous statue of one of Thailand’s most famous monks, named Luang Phor Thuad. The statue, which is about 12 meters tall and 10 meters wide, is set on a large mound. The image can be seen from far away reaching higher than the trees. You can climb up the wide stairways to the giant statue.
This place is very popular with Thai people from all over the country, who come here to pay respect to Luang Phor Thuad and to ask for things as favours, good luck, health, fortune and happiness.
On each side of the giant statue, there is a huge wooden elephant. Local people walk in circles under the belly of the elephants wishing for good luck. The complex also holds a Buddhist temple, a statue of King Taksin the Great on horseback and shops where Buddhist amulets can be bought.
Not just a themed open-air mall, Plearn Wan feels more like a living museum where you can experience a slice of life in 1950s Hua Hin. Plern Wan’s two-storey courtyard-style building, an architectural statement in itself, houses a community of period-style shops selling everything from liquor, inexpensive plastic-and-tin toys, snacks as well as a beauty salon, photo studio, outdoor cinema screen and a 20-room guesthouse or ‘Piman Plern Wan.
From the main street, Plern Wan’s curious looking entrance – a giant structure fashioned from reclaimed wooden planks – is hard to miss. Stepping through the small opening (compared to the wooden structure) is like stepping into a time machine – suddenly, you find yourself surrounded by all things vintage. When it’s crowded, usually at night, the festive atmosphere resembles that of a well-organised temple fair from decades ago.
Toyota Camry (sedan, 4 passengers max) — 3,000 THB;
Toyota Innova (compact MPV, 6 passengers max) — 3,500 THB;
Toyota Fortuner (SUV, 6 passengers max) — 3,500 THB;
Toyota Commuter (minibus, 10 passengers max) — 4,000 THB.