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Sitting on the banks of the Mekong, just across from Vientiane in Laos, Nong Khai has been a hit with travellers for years. Its popularity is about more than just its proximity to Vientiane and its bounty of banana pancakes, though. Seduced by its dreamy pink sunsets and sluggish pace of life, many visitors who mean to stay one night end up bedding down for many more.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Nong Khai is from November to February.

The months of March to June are very hot and humid, therefore travelling during this time can be not a good experience. July to October are the monsoon months and the rains can prevent you from sightseeing. Hence, November to February can be the best months for a good holiday.

Check the below table for the general idea of Nong Khai weather throughout the year.

Month Avg. High (°C) Avg. Mean (°C) Avg. Low (°C)
Jan 29.1 22.4 16.6
Feb 32.3 25.5 19.6
Mar 34.5 27.9 22.2
Apr 36.2 29.7 24.2
May 34.9 29.2 24.8
Jun 33.8 28.8 24.9
Jul 32.7 28.1 24.8
Aug 32.4 27.8 24.4
Sep 32.5 28 24.4
Oct 32.5 27.4 23.4
Nov 31.8 25.8 20.9
Dec 29.7 23.3 17.8

Nong Khai’s current weather and 7-day forecast


Nong Khai is quite a quiet town, but there’s enough to do to keep you busy for a few days.

1. Explore Sala Keoku

The first thing to do in Nong Khai is to make your way to Sala Keoku, a park that instantly captivates with its huge statues. Fantastic sculptures loom over all who enter and you can’t help but feel you’ve stepped into another dimension. You can spend hours here, exploring the more than 100 sculptures that hold sway. Keep an eye out for the Wheel of Life that’s a beautiful blend of contemporary and traditional styles.

Location: Wat That, Mueang Nong Khai District, Nong Khai 43000, Thailand

Entry fee: INR 20

Timings: 7am to 5pm

2. Walk the Thai–Lao Friendship Bridge

Spanning over 1,000 meters long, the Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge is the first international bridge over the Mekong River and connects Thailand to Laos. There are two other bridges, one connecting Mukdahan to Savannakhet and the other linking Nakhon Phanom to Khammouane. The Mekong bridge is free to enter and one of the things to do in Nong Khai is to walk the length or at least a ways.

Location: Soi 1-2 Ban Chommani, Tambon Mi Chai, Amphoe Mueang, Nong Khai

Entry fee: None

Timings: 6am to 10pm

3. Feel on top of the world at Wat Pha Tak Suea

There are few better ways to take in the beauty of a place than by making your way to the top. The same is true when in Sangkhom. One of the best things to do in Nong Khai is to head to Wat Pha Tak Suea skywalk that overlooks the iconic Mekong River with Laos beyond. It features a glass floor for an unobstructed view of what’s below and can hold as many as 20 people at a time. Be sure to carry a camera as the views are amazing.

The skywalk is right near Wat Pha Tak Suea temple so try to visit it as well. It was once a place for serious meditation but the commercialized skywalk has made it a hotspot for people eager to take in the stunning views.

Location: Pha Tang, Sangkhom District, Nong Khai 43160, Thailand

Entry fee: Free

Timings: 9.30 am to 4.30pm

4. Spend the Day at Than Thong Waterfall

It’s not the biggest or the most spectacular, but Than Thong Waterfall is a great place to spend the day when you want to get in a little nature. One of the things to do in Nong Khai is to pack a picnic, find a spot to sit and tuck into your meal with the sound of water all around you. Visiting in the wet season is the only way you can see the waterfall otherwise it trickles down. However, it’s also crowded during this time so if you want to avoid the throng, go during the drier months.

Location: Pha Tang, Sangkhom District, Nong Khai 43160, Thailand

Entry fee: NA

Timings: NA

5. Go to Than Thip Waterfall

Surrounded by dense jungle is Than Thip Waterfall, a beautiful three-tiered cascade that flows down a rock face and into a pool. The first tier soars 30 meters high while the second is much higher at 100 meters. You can get to this point via steps but the third 70-meter tier can only be appreciated from afar. If you love nature and being secluded amidst it, add this to your list of things to do in Nong Khai.

Location: Ban Muang, Sangkhom District, Nong Khai 43160, Thailand

Entry fee: Free

Timings: 8.30 am to 4.30pm

6. Shop at Tha Sadet Market

Head to the banks of the Mekong and you’ll find Tha Sadet Market, a great place to pick up gifts for dear ones back home and yourself. Shops sell Indochina and European products including clothing and kitchenware.

Location: Nai Mueang, Mueang Nong Khai District, Nong Khai 43000, Thailand

Entry fee: Free

Timings: 7am to 6.30pm

Budget options

Hop Inn Nong Khai 

Add: 889 Moo 3, Nai Mueang Sub District, Mueang, 43000 Nong Khai, Thailand

Offering rooms with free WiFi and a private balcony with city views, Hop Inn Nong Khai is a 15-minute walk from the Mekong River and Tha Sadet Market. Guests have access to a 24-hour front desk and a terrace.

The air-conditioned rooms have a desk, a refrigerator and a flat-screen TV with cable channels. Each room also has a private bathroom.

Mid-range options

Crystal Nongkhai Hotel 

Add: 456, Soi Don Poh1, Panangchonpratarn Rd., Muang, 43000 Nong Khai, Thailand

Located in Nong Khai, 2.5 km from Tha Sadet Market, Crystal Nongkhai Hotel provides accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a shared lounge and a terrace. The accommodation offers luggage storage space and free WiFi throughout the property.

The units in the hotel are equipped with a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. All units at Crystal Nongkhai Hotel include air conditioning and a desk.

Tanzeno Hotel Nongkhai 

Add: 200 Moo.3 Sadet Rd.,Tambon Meechai, Muang, Nongkhai, 43000 Nong Khai, Thailand

Situated in Nong Khai, 3.7 km from Tha Sadet Market, Tanzeno Hotel Nongkhai features accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, free bikes and a garden. The property provides city views, a terrace, a 24-hour front desk, and free WiFi is available.

The rooms are fitted with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with cable channels, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, a hairdryer and a desk. At the hotel rooms come with a wardrobe and a private bathroom.

Tanzeno Hotel Nongkhai offers a buffet or à la carte breakfast.

Park & Pool Resort 

Add: 163/1-3 Moo.3 Soi Dondaeng 3 Sadej Rd T.Meechai A.Muang, 43000 Nong Khai, Thailand 

Boasting a large outdoor pool, karaoke and massage services, Park & Pool Resort is located in Nong Khai. The classic French-style hotel offers free WiFi access in public areas and free private parking.

Each room comes equipped with air conditioning, satellite TV and a refrigerator. Featuring a shower, the private bathroom also comes with free toiletries and towels.

At Park & Pool Resort, guests will find a garden and many sun loungers by the pool. For dining, daily meals can be enjoyed at the on-site restaurant.

Deluxe options

Amanta Hotel Nongkhai 

Add: 999 Moo 1, Kaew Worawut Road, Tambon Nai Muang, Ampur Muang, Nongkhai, 43000 Nong Khai, Thailand

Situated in Nong Khai, 1.6 km from Tha Sadet Market, Amanta Hotel Nongkhai features accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a fitness centre and a bar. This 4-star hotel offers a kids' club and valet parking. The accommodation provides a 24-hour front desk, airport transfers, room service and free WiFi throughout the property.

All rooms are fitted with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with cable channels, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, a hairdryer and a desk. At the hotel the rooms have a wardrobe and a private bathroom.

Guests at Amanta Hotel Nongkhai can enjoy a continental or an Asian breakfast.

The accommodation offers a terrace.

Royal Nakhara Hotel and Convention Centre 

Add: 678 Saded Road, Muang, Nong Khai, 43000 Nong Khai, Thailand 

Royal Nakhara Hotel and Convention Centre is located in the heart of Nongkhai, 1 km from the Nongkhai Train Station and 2 km north of the famous Thai-Laos Bridge. It offers a restaurant, free parking on site and free Wi-Fi access.

Air-conditioned guest rooms are fitted with a work desk, a minibar and a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. The en suite bathroom comes with toiletries and a hairdryer.

The staff at the tour desk can assist with making travel arrangements. A massage service is available. Laundry and dry cleaning services are offered.

The on site restaurant serves Thai and international dishes.

Wixky hotel 

Add: 261 Moo 3, Pa Tung, Sung Khom, 43160 Nong Khai, Thailand

Located in Nong Khai, Wixky hotel provides a garden. Featuring room service, this property also welcomes guests with a restaurant, a water park and an outdoor pool. There is a terrace and guests can make use of free WiFi and free private parking.

All units in the hotel are equipped with a flat-screen TV. At Wixky hotel, every room is fitted with air conditioning and a private bathroom.

Guests at the accommodation can enjoy a buffet breakfast.

Mae Ut

This little place, serving just four items, including fried spring rolls, khâo gee·ab þahk mŏr (fresh noodles with pork), and a Vietnamese take on a pancake-pizza, is essentially grandma’s kitchen, and it's fascinating to watch the food being made to order on large banana leaves. No English sign, and English is limited, but the welcome is friendly.

Add: 637 Th Meechai

Hours: 9.30am-4pm

Price: mains 50-100B


Docked down below Mut Mee Garden Guesthouse, this floating restaurant specialises in Thai and Isan fish dishes, and though the prices are a bit high, the quality is good. There's a one-hour sunset cruise most nights (80B; at least 10 guests needed before the cruise will go ahead) around 5pm or 5.30pm; order food at least 30 minutes before departure.

Add: Th Rimkhong

Hours: 10am-9pm

Price: mains 50-480B

Darika Bakery

It's hard to categorise this place, run by a sweet old lady who makes standard Thai dishes and also many international favourites such as baked cakes and banana pancakes. Enjoy the homely atmosphere for breakfast or lunch, or just a coffee (instant, brewed or traditional Thai).

Add: Th Meechai

Hours: 5.30am-3pm

Price: mains 40-150B

Khao Soi

If you're missing the flavours of northern Thailand, this descriptively named hole-in-the-wall will satisfy your cravings. For the uninitiated, khao soi (curry noodle soup) is northern Thailand's most famous dish. Friendly owner.

Add: 949 Th Meechai

Hours: 8am-3pm

Price: mains 40-50B

Daeng Namnuang

This massive river restaurant has grown into a Nong Khai institution, and hordes of out-of-towners head home with car boots and carry-on bags stuffed with their năam neu·ang (DIY pork spring rolls).

Add: Th Rimkhong

Hours: 6am-8.30pm

Price: mains 70-270B

Dee Dee Pohchanah

How good is Dee Dee? Just look at the dinner-time crowds. But don't be put off by them: despite having a full house every night, this open-air place is a well-oiled machine and you won't be waiting long.

Add: 1155/9 Th Prajak

Hours: 11am-1am

Price: mains 50-150B

Saap Lah

For excellent gài yâhng (grilled chicken), sôm·đam (spicy green papaya salad) and other Isan foods, follow your nose to this no-frills, open-fronted restaurant.

Add: Th Meechai

Hours: 8.30am-7.30pm

Price: mains 25-150B

Hospital Food Court

Don't be put off by the name – it isn't 'hospital food'. Located across from the hospital, this food court whips up Thai standards at low prices. The food is delicious, there's plenty of choice and it's conveniently located near the most popular guesthouses in town.

Add: Th Meechai

Hours: 6am-3pm

Price: mains 40-80B


The first choice for many visitors to Sangkhom because of the good food and big views. It offers all the expected Thai and Isan dishes (the Mekong River fish lâhp is recommended) plus a page of pastas.

Add: Rte 211

Hours: 8am-9pm

Price: mains 40-250B


At this little restaurant both the menu and liquor list span the globe. Gyros, Wiener schnitzel, fish and chips, lasagne, smoked salmon and đôm yam gûng are some of the most popular options.

Add: Th Banthoengjit

Hours: 2pm-midnight

Price: mains 60-250B

Prajak Road Street Food

Nong Khai doesn't have a proper night market, but there's some evening street food action along several blocks of Th Prajak east of Th Hai Sok.

Add: Th Prajak

Hours: 4-10pm


This family-run Muslim restaurant, owned by a Pakistani man and his Thai wife, serves Indian and southern Thai food.

Add: Th Prajak

Hours: noon-9.30pm

Price: mains 40-250B

Get in

By plane

There’s no airport in Nongkhai. If you want to go by plane you can book the flight from DMK (Don Mueang International Airport), BKK (Suvarnabhumi Airport) or UTP (Utapao Pattaya-Rayong Airport) to UTH (Udon Thani International Airport). The nearest airport (on the Thai side) is in Udon Thani, 56 km away. There are minibuses which meet almost every flight which lands at Udorn and will bring you straight to Nong Khai. On landing at Udon Thani and entering the Arrivals Hall there is a bureau straight ahead of you were you you can by a ticket for the minivan service. The current price is 200 Baht per person. You are normally taken straight to the minivan which takes about 1 hour to reach Nong Khai. If you are staying in Nong Khai ask the driver who will bring you straight to your hotel.

Thai Airways and Bangkok Airways operate flights between Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi) and Udon Thani. AirAsia and Nok Air operate a service between Bangkok (Don Mueang) and Udon Thani. Flight time from Bangkok is approximately one hour.

On the plane : about 1 hour

On the public transport : about 1 hour

Contact us for the latest flight schedule and price. Or you can check via some online platform such as or

Here you can find some tips to book the cheapest flight

By train

Nongkhai Railway station is the terminus of the northeastern railway line from Bangkok (Hua Lamphong Railway Station) via Khon Kaen and Udon Thani/ The trip takes 10-12 hours and a first class sleeper ticket from Bangkok to Nong Khai or vice versa is currently about 1357 (upper) / 1557 (lower) baht, and a second class sleeper ticket (not bad for the price) is 898/998 baht as of September 2017. Sleepers often sell out at peak times so you may need to book in advance. Rates and schedules can be found at Thai State Railways.

Shuttle services now operate onward from Nong Khai to Tha Nalaeng, Laos (near Vientiane) four times a day, consistent with the arrivals and departures of the Bangkok trains. You can only buy tickets at Nong Khai station, and you need to pass through immigration as well. (If coming in on train #69 from Bangkok, there's a 90-minute window to do this.) Once the formalities are done, the trip itself across the Friendship Bridge only takes 15 minutes. Visa on arrival is now available on the Lao side.

By bus

There are departures to Udon Thani at least once per hour from the BKS station on Prajak Rd. The hour-long ride costs 20 baht in 3rd class (non-air con). 40 baht in 2nd class (air-con).

There are several departures daily from Bangkok (~9 hours) to Nong Khai at 600 baht provided by Budsarakham Tour [7]
From Khon Kaen (110 baht, class 2, with a stop at Udon Thani) and across the border direct from Vientiane (55 baht, 17,000 kip, two hours) via the Friendship Bridge.

A 1st class bus service connects Nong Khai directly with Suvarnabhumi Airport (the new BKK).

From Mo Chit 2 Bus Terminal Bangkok – Nongkhai About 7-8 hours

We recommend you check the latest bus schedule and price via

Get around

The only mode of public transport in the city is by tuk-tuk. Although the price has gone up recently due to the increased cost of fuel, they remain inexpensive at 40-90 baht/person to anywhere around the city centre. Recently, they have gone off the planet with prices, and wanted 100 baht from the bus station to anywhere within town.

Some tuk-tuk drivers will ask for much more than 40-100 baht/person, but you can generally bargain with them to reach a reasonable price. When bargaining, smile and be patient and polite (or just walk down the street until you see a roaming tuk-tuk, which will probably be cheaper - and walking a short distance is sometimes the only way to get a reasonable price when arriving at the Friendship Bridge from Laos).

A trip to or from the Friendship Bridge can cost over 70 baht for tourists if only one passenger is on board, although the normal price is 40-50 baht.


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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


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.


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.

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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.


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.


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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There's a magic about this charming yet confounding kingdom that casts a spell on visitors. In Cambodia, ancient and modern worlds collide to create an authentic adventure.
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It's a new era for this extraordinary and complex land, where the landscape is scattered with gilded pagodas and the traditional ways of Asia endure.
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