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Cheap and cheerful, Cha-am is a popular beach getaway for working-class families and Bangkok students. On weekends and public holidays, neon-painted buses (called chìng·chàp tua), their sound systems pumping, deliver groups of holidaymakers. It's a very Thai-style beach party, with eating and drinking marathons held around umbrella-shaded beach chairs and tables. The shallow sea is better for strolling and sunbathing than swimming. Entertainment is provided by the banana boats that zip back and forth.
Phetkasem Hwy runs through Cha-am’s busy town centre, which is about 1km away from the beach via Th Narathip. This is where you’ll find banks, the fresh market, the train station and most bus stops. There are plenty of ATMs and a few extended-hours exchange booths along Th Ruamjit.

Best time to visit

In Cha-am, you can relax all year round. But is the high season and low season.

The cool season (high season) is from November to February. This is the best time for vacation in Cha-am, Thailand. Rain at this time is almost there, the weather is moderately cool by local standards, i.e. not too hot.

The hot season (moderate season) lasts from March to may. At this time, too, you can relax and sunbathe in Cha, the only drawback of this period was at times unbearable heat.

The rainy season (low season) lasts from June to October. In the rainy season rainfall, but this, by and large, does not interfere with the rest, because the rains are short and the sky is almost always clear. The maximum rainfall is in October.

Which is good, at this time, prices for tours and accommodation in hotels can be reduced.

Check the below table for the general idea of Cha-am weather throughout the year.

Month Avg. High (°C) Avg. Mean (°C) Avg. Low (°C)
Jan 29.6 26.7 22.4
Feb 31.2 28.1 23.7
Mar 32.4 29.3 24.8
Apr 33.5 30.5 25.9
May 34 30.6 26.3
Jun 33.7 30.2 26.1
Jul 33.3 29.6 25.7
Aug 33.2 29.6 25.7
Sep 32.5 29.1 25.2
Oct 31.4 28.5 24.8
Nov 30.9 28.3 24.5
Dec 30.2 27.3 23.2

Cha-am’s current weather and 7-day forecast

CHA-AM WEATHER

This picturesque coastal town has managed to retain an essence of serenity one can only imagine derives from its fishing town origins. There are plenty of attractions to keep you occupied when in Cha-Am. From the long stretch of relatively undisturbed beach to the colourful temples to royal palaces – there is always a route of discovery worth taking here. With a surrounding landscape consisting of national parks, mountains, caves and waterfalls, the natural beauty of the area is complemented by an impressive list of religious and historic sights. 

Cha-Am Forest Park

This is by no means up to the National Park standards but if you fancy a relaxed day amid some pretty scenery then Cha-Am forest park is definitely a worthwhile choice. Situated on Phetkasem Road, it is easily reached by taking the Narathip junction when coming from the direction of the beach.

The 665,600sqm park is part of Don Masang National Reserved Forest and sits on a lowland area covered in casuarina trees, cacti and a wide range of tropical plants. Crisscrossing the park, a large, freeform lake is home to several species of water fowl. If you are lucky, you might be able to spot a few peacocks, monkeys and palm civets.

Khao Nang Phanthurat Forest Park

This is a delightful playground for nature explorers. It covers an area featuring cave-ridden limestone hills and forested greenery. Inside the park, the 3km nature trail passes through a scenic landscape filled with natural rock formations, bird habitats and an array of flora and fauna.

Getting to the forest park is an adventure in itself as the road is rough and relatively unpaved. From Phetkasem Road, at the 197km post, take a small local road that leads to Wat Pa Sutthikun and continue for 1km. On the way, you will see a series of limestone quarries leading up to the mountains.

Maruekathaiyawan Palace

Like many buildings in Hua Hin, this Thai-Victorian style summer seaside palace was constructed in the early 1920s during the reign of King Rama VI. It was designed by an Italian architect and built with golden teak from the demolished Hat Chao Samran Palace, with lots of verandas, latticework and high ceilings to keep the structure cool during summer.

Puek-Tian

Situated 18 km north of Cha-Am this small beach resort town is famous for its statues in the sea depicting characters from one of Thailand’s most famous poets, Sunthon Phu. The much loved and revered poet created a piece of work Phra Aphai Mani which is 30,000 lines long! From humble beginnings he was educated at a temple and went on to write in a more simplistic style that was easily understood by the masses. This spot is very popular with Thai families who come here to appreciate the serene surroundings, the picnicking and to have fun in the sun. 

Santorini Park Cha-Am

Santorini Park brings a slice of the picture-perfect Greek island to Cha-Am. It’s got all the details right, from classic whitewashed buildings, colourfully painted windows, down to stone-paved paths and domed towers. An impressive lineup of shops, restaurants and an amusement park promise good times for everyone. This photogenic outdoor entertainment outlet occupies an expansive area just before the main highway reaches Cha-Am Beach. It’s quite an unusual sight, given the whitewash theme and architectural style that sets it apart from its surroundings. Cliff-top views of the ocean and a sweeping beachfront are the two missing elements that would otherwise make this place closer to the real thing.

Statue of King Naresuan and Neranchararam temple

During the Ayutthaya period, King Naresuan the Great reined from 1590 to 1605 using Cha-Am as a meeting place before going to war with the Burmese in 1593. Situated in a little park that overlooks the sea, his statue is surrounded by cocks, the reason for this being that he was a cock-fighting enthusiast. A few metres further along from the statue on the left-hand side of the road is Neranchararam Temple. Here you can have a look at the six-armed Buddha image with each hand covering a sensory organ signifying the cutting off, or denying of the senses. 

The Venezia Hua Hin

The Venezia is the newest theme shopping and attraction village in Hua Hin, following the growing popularity and undeniable success of other similar weekend destinations in Thailand. Palio in Kao Yai was probably one of the triggers for such epidemic frenzy for pretty villages, followed by the beautiful Santorini Park in Hua Hin and the now famous

Asiatique in Bangkok.

The concept of a shopping village is simple: instead of building a boring shopping plaza with rows of anonymous shops, pick a photogenic world destination or a fun theme, add plenty of romantic photo opportunities, plus a couple of attractions and entertainment venues, and there you have it: weekenders will flock to your village every weekend to play the romantic photographer and incidentally eat, shop, play and ultimately fulfill the real purpose of such a theme park: spend money.

Wat Cha-Am

Situated in west Cha-Am, this wat is also home to a cave with a Buddha image inside. Built during the Ayutthaya period it is a pretty old and impressive structure. To find it just follow the road from the beachfront towards Narathip Road and turn right at the lights then follow the flyover over the railway. Alternatively, any taxi driver you ask will know where to take you.

Hotels in Cha-am here mostly come packaged as resorts, with seafront locations, freeform pools, good restaurants, and all kinds of facilities and services dedicated entirely to pampering you. Some are the perfect romantic retreats for couples; others pack in features that make them ideal for families. You can find luxury and boutique-style resorts here, but there are also a number of places that are affordable.

Hotel de la Paix Cha-Am Beach

This beachfront sanctuary showcases a sophisticated edge and a large, reflective pool that’s become its signature architectural feature. The design intelligently fuses indoor and outdoor spaces to create a sense of harmony with surrounding nature as well as capturing dramatic sea views at every turn. Facilities are world class, with an atmospheric chilled out pool and Red Bar, ocean-view pool, thermal mineral pool, a library, alfresco Mediterranean-inspired restaurant, souvenir boutique and fitness centre. The Hotel Cha-Am is more than a design resort but a lifestyle to be savoured and enjoyed while on holiday.

Springfield Village Golf and Spa

With golf, tennis, fitness and cooking classes, a world-class spa and two refreshing onsite swimming pools, there’s little reason to venture outside the grounds of this resort. The 97 Rooms, Suites, and Cottages are fitted out with luxurious Thai-style décor and are refreshingly modern. The international-standard golf course (Springfield Royal Country Club) was designed by Jack Nicklaus and features a pro shop and golf school. The spa offers traditional Thai massage and a range of reinvigorating treatments.

Veranda Resort and Spa

Overlooking a picturesque stretch of Cha Am Beach, Veranda offers 13 Pool Villa Suites and 84 rooms decked out in a tropical contemporary style. The Veranda Sky Pool Villas come with an outdoor Jacuzzi, a rooftop infinity pool, or a plunge pool with an en-suite spa treatment room, all overlooking the ocean. For recreation, there’s a large sea-facing infinity pool, sundeck with comfortable sun loungers, a spa with luxurious treatments, Kid’s Club, fitness room and internet room. Apart from the main open-air restaurant and lobby bar, the beachfront bar is ideal for lounging and enjoying the ocean sunset.

YaiYa Hua Hin

This intimate boutique resort set right on a tranquil stretch of Hua Hin Beach is cherished for its service excellence and warm, personalised atmosphere. It offers 11 Pool Villas (110-375sqm) and 23 Deluxe rooms (65sqm), all with a fully decked out balcony or terrace. Blending the indoors and outdoors, the design fuses crisp, contemporary lines with a delicate touch of handmade Asian crafts, with lots of open spaces for relaxation and capturing the cool sea breezes.

Aree Restaurant

Serving both Thai and European food, the reason however, for dining at this restaurant would be for the tasty list of Indian delights on offer. A range of curries simmered to perfect can be accompanied by a chilled beer. Starters and side dishes include what you might expect from a westernized Indian –onion bajis, samosas and roti. 

Opening Hours: 10:00-23:00

Address: Soi Cattareya

Tel: +66 (0) 84-0096350

Cuisine: Indian

Baan E-San

How can you tell whether or not you are getting the real taste of Isan cuisine? Ask any of its die-heart fans and the answer is probably the fermented fish paste (yes, the stinky, nose-pinching plaa raa). Baan Isan is one such place that won’t disappoint the true gourmands of northeastern Thai cuisine. Besides whipping up one of the best plaa raa in town, Baan Isan serves up a range of tasty Isan dishes, from som-tam plaa raa to salt-grilled snake head fish. Seating is provided under individually set thatched-roof huts in the garden and in the air-conditioned room. From 18:30 until close, enjoy live folk songs with your meal.

Opening Hours: 10:00 – 22:00 (kitchen closed at 21:00)

Location: Opposite Rama VI military training camp

Tel: + 66 (0) 32 406 099

Cuisine: Northeastern Thai

Price Range: Budget

Baan Thai

Situated just ten metres from the beach on an elevated terrace all diners can expect sea views with their meal. Owned by a Norwegian and Thai family, Baan Thai doubles as a guesthouse and are open to tailoring dishes to fit the needs of guests. The menu is predominantly Thai cuisine such as phad thai, tom yum goong, curries and of course seafood. The drinks menu features a varied selection of wines and beers, some from Norway. Baan Thai is one of the few restaurants in Cha-Am that is listed in the Lonely Planet so it is usually quite busy.

Opening Hours: 07:00-23:00

Address: 222/16-16 Roomjit Road

Tel: +66 (0) 32-470596

Cuisine: Thai

Beach Society at Sofitel So Hua Hin

Beach Society combines ocean views with a modern menu of signature international dishes. The menu combines international dishes with the freshest Thai ingredients. This is certainly more on the side of western comfort food than haute cuisine, but when you are just a few metres from the lapping shore of Cha-Am it fits perfectly. The squid with polenta, mushroom and sundried tomato is a must try, as is the rich choco-lava cake for dessert.

Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:00

Location: 115 Moo 7 Tambol Bangkao, Cha-Am

Tel: +66 (0)32 709 555

Cuisine: International

Cha Inn @ Cha Am

One of the more contemporary places in the area, the Cha Inn beams lasers off its walls which really brightens the place up and makes it almost impossible not to stop and look in when walking past. Along with a handful of other places on this street it is catering to Cha-Am’s broader market. As it continues to grow as a holiday destination the number of internationally owned restaurants inevitably increases. Incidentally, the menu features classic European dishes including pizzas and pastas and Thai dishes. 

Opening Hours: 10:00-23:00

Address: 274/34 Roomjit Road, Cha-Am

Tel: +66 (0) 32-471879

Cuisine: Thai and European

Clouds Loft

The handiwork of one of Thailand’s leading architects, Duangrit Bunnag, the Alila Hotel’s signature restaurant is an exercise in world-class dining. It is situated poolside, on an elevated terrace which not only brings with it a cooling breeze but enables diners to get a better appreciation of the surrounding nature. The menu combines a mixture of the finest local and international cuisine. This is the sort of restaurant where you should take your time, it has real Zen-like qualities enhanced by the secluded location, and you feel at one with nature while still being in extremely sophisticated surroundings. Clouds is a pretty unique restaurant that won’t fail to impress.

Opening Hours: 17:30-23:00

Address: Alila Cha-Am Resort, 115 Moo 7, Tambol Bangkao Amphur Cha-Am

Tel: +66 (0)32-709555

Cuisine: Thai and international

Som Tam Luang Prabang

One of the area’s more recently opened restaurants and something of a novelty, it serves Laotian food which differs to Thai slightly, although you should still expect to the see laap, som tam and fish-based dishes. At the time of writing the restaurant was very busy with locals who came for the live music and tasty, cheap food. The setting is simple but nonetheless clean and comfortable.

Opening Hours: 16:00-23:00

Address: Narathip Road (Opposite the Banpleng Pub)

Cuisine: Laotian

InAzia

This is as upscale as it gets in Cha-Am, the Sheraton’s signature and award-winning restaurant is adorned in an Indo-Chinese style and is both warm while demonstrating a contemporary edge. The cuisine is primarily Pan-Asian, carrying accents of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Thai and Vietnamese fare, all prepared using quality ingredients and spices before being artfully presented.

Opening Hours: 18:30-23:00

Address: Sheraton Hua Hin Resort, 1573 Petchkasem Road, Cha-am

Tel: + 66 (0) 32-708000

Cuisine: Pan Asian

Nancy’s Bistro

This is a cool place to head to for reasonably priced food as it is comfortable and clean. The owner also has an art shop on the opposite side of the street so once you have finished eating check out the funky crafts store. The menu features western favourites, including burgers and sandwiches with the usual garnishing of fries and salads, spaghetti, pasta and of course fish-based dishes. There are also some Thai classics of which the green curry is very good.

Opening Hours: 10:30-24:00

Address: 274/18 Roomjit Road

Tel: + 66 (0) 89-8360081

Cuisine: Thai

O-Zone

This lively joint attracts a regular crowd eager to enjoy the live music while feasting on great seafood with a cooling ocean breeze to make the experience all the more comfortable. This place has a real holiday vibe to it, especially with the wooden decking floor and the Beach Road location; you can see why it is so popular with Cha- Am residents and visitors. 

Opening Hours: 17:00-23:00

Address: 241/119 Roomjit Road, Cha-Am

Tel: +66 (0) 81 9811833

Cuisine: Thai

Poom Restaurant

Usually the number of Thai people eating in restaurant is a good indicator of how good the food is. In the case of Poom, this is a weekend haunt for many locals and visiting Thais which would indicate that the food is very good indeed. Although, slightly pricier than similar establishments, the portions are massive, and the long tables provide ample space to order a fair bit from the lengthy menu.

Opening Hours: 12:00-23:00

Address: 274/1 Roomjit Road, Cha-Am

Tel: +66 (0) 32-471036

Cuisine: Thai

Rangyen

This lovely patio-style restaurant serves up Thai favourites under the stars.Well hidden at the far end of the Beach Road Rangyen is tucked in a private-house-style setting. An intimate eatery, the restaurant is situated in a courtyard surrounded by trees and flowers. The menu is predominantly Thai and very reasonably priced. This place has privacy down to the ground.

Opening Hours: 17:00-23:00

Address: 259/40 Roomjit Road, Cha-Am

Tel: +66 (0) 32 - 471267

Cuisine: Thai

The Medi

The most chic of all the restaurants down on the Beach Road, The Medi in Tara Mantra is the place to head for westernized delights such as homemade pizza, BBQ and steaks. The Medi restaurant offers poolside dining amid palm trees and sea views. This is as chic as it gets in Cha-Am town and with wicker tables and chairs and an intimately lit ambience you will pay extra ultimately for a more sophisticated experience. Having said that, the food is excellent and the staff incredibly accommodating.

Opening Hours: 17:30-23:00

Address: Tara Mantra Hotel, 225/99Roomjit Road

Tel: +66 (0) 32-433999

Cuisine: International

Hua Hin is the nearest town with good transportation connections. From Hua Hin to Cha-am you can take a taxi or songthaew. There's also a little orange bus that plies Phet Kasem Road from Phetchaburi to Hua Hin and stops in Cha-am, but it doesn't run frequently.

Cha-am Station (also known as Ban Cha-am Station) is the most convenient train station and gets four trains a day in each direction. As of February 2020, northbound trains are scheduled at 01:39, 04:54, 06:40, 12:12, and 14:32; and southbound trains are scheduled at 11:18, 13:10, 17:23, 19:42, and 22:07. A ticket from Cha-am to Thonburi is 38 baht as of 2020.

These tickets are only sold within 30 minutes of departure. Nearby on the street leading to the station are a few inexpensive restaurants – you can get lunch for 30 or 40 baht while waiting for your train.

Hua Hin train station gets more service.

Buses from Bangkok to Hua Hin may be able to stop in Cha-am if you ask.

Contact us for more information 

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Thailand BLOG ARTICLES

As some of you may have seen in the news, Thailand is gearing up for a ‘soft reopening’ to vaccinated travellers a month from now on July 1.

It is official, sort of. After months of kicking sand around debating if it will really happen, the Centre for Economic Situation Administration (CESA) has officially approved the Phuket Sandbox plan, an important step forward. The announcement, made late this afternoon, June, 4th, appears to answer the often-posed question if the sandbox plan would ever happen after the much more intense and deadly third wave of Covid-19 swept through Thailand.
Then, the island will be opening Phuket International Airport to foreign travellers as proposed by the Tourism Authority of Thailand.

The trial will be the first of its kind in the country, and if successful, may be rolled out across other parts of Thailand. The Thailand Authority of Tourism (TAT) has already earmarked Krabi, Pattaya, Bangkok, Buriram, Cha-am, Koh Samui, Phang-nga and Hua Hin as possible destinations to try out the scheme.

Each model will be slightly different, depending on geography, and international visitors will still have to get a visa in advance and fill out some paperwork (see details below). Nevertheless, this will come as promising news to those travellers desperate to visit Thailand!

If the Phuket Sandbox Scheme goes ahead, from June to September 2021, Thailand is expecting to receive up to 129,000 international visitors – will you be one of them? In this article, we’ll attempt to answer all of the questions you might have about the Phuket Sandbox and more!

Disclaimer – Information regarding the Phuket Sandbox Program is changing literally every day and is dependent on the COVID-19 situation across Thailand. While we update this article regularly to the best of our ability, we cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions.

Learn more about our travel guide for Phuket island here

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Also known as the Nine Emperor Gods Festival or the Kin Jay Festival, the Phuket Vegetarian Festival is an annual event celebrated primarily by the Chinese community in Thailand and throughout Southeast Asia.

Running for nine days, the vegetarian festival in Phuket is considered by many to be the most extreme and bizarre of festivals in Thailand. The Phuket Vegetarian Festival could be Thailand's answer to the Tamil festival of Thaipusam celebrated in neighboring Malaysia. Devotees not only adopt a special diet for the holiday, a select few participants prove their devotion by practicing self-mutilation.

Some of the feats performed include piercing cheeks with swords, walking on nails or hot coals, and climbing ladders made of knife blades! Most participants miraculously heal up without needing stitches or medical care.

WARNING! The content and the images are not recommended for the faint of heart! Consider before continuing.

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Buddhist Lent Day (Thailand Wan Khao Phansa, Laos Boun Khao Phansa) is the start of the three-month period during the rainy season when monks are required to remain in a particular place such as a monastery or temple grounds. Here, they will meditate, pray, study, and teach other young monks. In the past, monks were not even allowed to leave the temple, but today, most monks just refrain from traveling during this period. You will still see them out during the day.

It is said that monks started remaining immobile in a temple during this time because they wanted to avoid killing insects and harming farmland. Apparently, traveling monks were crossing through fields, thus destroying the crops of villagers and farmers. After catching wind of this, Buddha decided that in order to avoid damaging crops, hurting insects, or harming themselves during the rainy season, monks should remain in their temples during these three months.

Tired of reading, listen to our podcast below:

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The Hmong New Year celebration is a cultural tradition that takes place annually in select areas where large Hmong communities exist and in a modified form where smaller communities come together. During the New Year's celebration, Hmong dress in traditional clothing and enjoy Hmong traditional foods, dance, music, bull fights, and other forms of entertainment. Hmong New Year celebrations have Hmong ethnic traditions and culture and may also serve to educate those who have an interest in Hmong tradition. Hmong New Year celebrations frequently occur in November and December (traditionally at the end of the harvest season when all work is done), serving as a Thanksgiving holiday for the Hmong people.

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Thailand never fails to amaze its thousands of visitors with the most vibrant festivals that are sure to delight them by offering glimpses into the heritage and traditions of the country. Each month offers an exciting opportunity to be a part of these festivals. From kids to adults and old-aged people, locals have the time of their lives during these festivities. Considered to be one of the best ways to relish a memorable time in what is already known as an incredible country, these festivals in Thailand are the most popular ones to be a part of.

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Magha Puja (also written as Makha Bucha Day) is the third most important Buddhist festival, celebrated on the full moon day of the third lunar month in Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Sri Lanka and on the full moon day of Tabaung in Myanmar. It celebrates a gathering that was held between the Buddha and 1,250 of his first disciples, which, according to tradition, preceded the custom of periodic recitation of discipline by monks.

On the day, Buddhists celebrate the creation of an ideal and exemplary community, which is why it is sometimes called Saṅgha Day, the Saṅgha referring to the Buddhist community, and for some Buddhist schools this is specifically the monastic community. In Thailand, the Pāli term Māgha-pūraṇamī is also used for the celebration, meaning 'to honor on the full moon of the third lunar month'.

Finally, some authors referred to the day as the Buddhist All Saints Day. 

In pre-modern times, Magha Puja has been celebrated by some Southeast Asian communities. But it became widely popular in the modern period, when it was instituted in Thailand by King Rama IV in the mid-19th century. From Thailand, it spread to other South and Southeast Asian countries. Presently, it is a public holiday in some of these countries.

It is an occasion when Buddhists go to the temple to perform merit-making activities, such as alms giving, meditation and listening to teachings. It has been proposed in Thailand as a more spiritual alternative to the celebration of Valentine's Day.

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