Yasothon is a mainly agricultural Northeastern Province. There is not a lot of outdoor adventure travel, but there are some nice local cultural features, especially the famous Rocket Festival held every May.
Bun Bang Fai- The famous rocket festival of Yasothon province, Thailand
Rocket Festivals (known as Bun Bang Fai) are indigenous to the Isan region and take place throughout North East Thailand, prior to the start of the rainy season, during May and June, with the exact date specific depending on each village. Traditionally the festivities will last for 2-3 days. The largest, noisiest and at times the most bizarre festival is without doubt that of Yasothon, with the bedlam kicking off annually on the second Friday of May.
This ancient festival is thought to have originated from neighbouring country Lao and Cambodia, and is believed to predate Buddhism; the festival is also widely believed to be a variant of fertility rites and an offering to the spirits, in particular to “Phaya Thaen”, the god of rain and Phosop the goddess of rice, to ask for both the much needed rain and a bountiful harvest.
Visit Phaya Thaen Public Park at Yasothon, Thailand- Home of the biggest toad in the world
Phaya Thaen Park : located on the road named Chaeng Sanit. According to the beliefs of the often drought-stricken Northeastern (Isan) region, this park is called Phaya Thaen because it is named after Phaya Thaen rain god. This park has always been chosen as the venue for the annual Rainy May Festival. Some of Yasothon's other major festivals, such as the traditional Songkran Festival, are also held there.
The park is surrounded by a winding stream and comprises a beautiful garden, outdoor stage, playground and health park. Fairs and festivals are also held here, including the previously mentioned Annual Rocket Festival, the annual boat race, and the water festival (Songkran).
Visit That Kong Khao Noi
Yasothon is best known for the giant toad museum. But when you have finished educating yourself, you could venture down to That Kong Khao Noi (ธาตุก่องข้าวน้อย), an old pagoda with some interesting history.
The concrete pagoda is in the middle of a small garden area with other stone and brick pillars to the side. In front of the stupa, there is a tiny house that holds a small Buddha image.
All around the pagoda, you will see many different small models, such as chickens and cows. These are offerings that people bring when asking for forgiveness.
Farther towards the carpark area, there is a statue of the farmer who built the structure.
Visit Wat Maha That
In the province of Yasothon, apart from learning about amphibians and folklores at Phraya Khan Khak (toad museum), there are a few temples scattered around. The most revered one is probably Wat Maha That (วัดมหาธาตุ), a stylish temple in the town center.
The Chedi – The most iconic building at Wat Maha That is a beautiful white and gold Chedi called Phra Wat Anon (พระธาตุอานนท์). This was originally built in the 18th century with Laotian style architecture. This stupa contains some relics of Ananda, one of the disciples of Buddha. Ananda is a very respected figure within Buddhism so many Thais will visit here to pay their respects.
Beautiful paintings – In the wiharn building, sits a Buddha statue meditating in the ‘Calling The Earth to Witness’ pose, resting on a platform. What we found interesting though, were the colorful, detailed paintings all around the room. It looked as though they were being restored and we even managed to capture someone in the midst of their creativity.
Scripture hall – The other building of interest here is the wooden scripture hall that sits in the middle of a pond. It holds various Buddhist scriptures written onto dried leaves. It rests on stone pillars above the water to prevent any terminates from eating their way through.