Year-End Escapes: Discover Emerging Thai Destinations
Travellers looking to enjoy a quieter holiday away from the crowds or those keen to experience something new and undiscovered are in for a treat. Digital travel platform Agoda shares five emerging destinations in Thailand ideal for a year-end holiday
Nakhon Nayok, Ubon Ratchathani, Suphan Buri, Phetchabun and Trang.
Don't be fooled by their lesser-explored status, these cities have been growing in popularity in the past year as they pack a punch in terms of appeal and adventure. Among the five cities, Nakhon Nayok emerged as the top riser with 50% more searches for the destination Agoda in 2023 compared to 2022. Ubon Ratchathani (29%), Suphan Buri (24%), Phetchabun (23%), and Trang (20%) have also seen a notable increase in search interest compared to last year.
From distinct natural wonders nestled in the lush landscapes of the north to coastal treasures in the south, get ready to make this year-end trip one of a kind and create wonderful lasting memories.
Just a couple of hours' drive from Bangkok, Nakhon Nayok is a great option for those looking for a nearby getaway. Well known for its laid-back atmosphere and stunning landscapes, the area offers a range of attractions. Nature enthusiasts should not miss Khao Lon Adventure, featuring a wooden bridge traversing through vast areas of forests and distinctive rock formations. Adventure lovers can try rock climbing and abseiling, providing an instant adrenaline rush. From November to January, the landscape transforms into a golden expanse of grass, enhanced by breathtaking sunsets.
For those looking to appreciate natural beauty from a different perspective, Huai Prue Reservoir is worth a visit as it offers scenic views of richly green mountains at any time of day. The road that encircles the reservoir is great for cycling. Alternatively, visitors can immerse themselves in a peaceful atmosphere while making merit at Khao Durian Temple, where (almost) everything is pink.
As the second-largest city in the northeastern region of Thailand, Ubon Ratchathani has a wide array of attractions. One of the city’s recently built viewpoints is Sirindhorn Dam NatureSkywalk, featuring walkways that stretch over 400 meters and glass floors at the end of the intersections. Up on the skywalk, visitors have great views of the surrounding forests and the world's largest hydro-floating solar farm. For travellers who prefer to keep their feet closer to the ground, Hong Beach is a dune complex situated in the heart of the Mekong River that boasts steep inclines over 75 degrees. Accessible only by boat, the site is accompanied by a nearby field of marvellous shiny rocks in shades of dark bronze.
The Sirindhorn Wararam Temple will be a marvel for culture enthusiasts as it stands out both by day and at night. Situated on a high hill, the highlight of the temple has got to be its majestic wall art, picturing a tall mosaic pink shower tree, and floor art that glows brightly green due to fluorescent chemicals. Families with children can explore the Ubon Ratchathani Zoo, offering both entertainment and education about wild animals. The highlight of this zoo is the Jungle Park, where the zoo blends into the surrounding forest.
Just a hundred kilometres from bustling Bangkok, Suphan Buri offers a serene escape with a rich blend of natural beauty and historical charm. Explore the ‘Sam Chuk Old Market’ along the Tha Chin River, where vintage wooden shop houses showcase the local life of the Sam Chuk community.
For a tranquil year-end, do not miss the enchanting ‘Khao Wong Reservoir’, crafted through community collaboration. This nature-themed haven promises a rejuvenating experience surrounded by the pristine beauty of Suphan Buri. Do not miss the opportunity to unwind and connect with the authentic essence of this remarkable city.
Phetchabun, Thailand’s ninth-largest city, is home to many beautiful attractions. Among them is the Huai Tong Bridge, an impressive structure connecting the northern and northeastern regions of Thailand. With piers over 50 meters high, the curved bridge that cut through the valley creates a striking visual against the green backdrop of the surrounding forests. Another natural wonder in Phetchabun is the Sri Dit Waterfall, which is over 30 meters tall and provides consistent water flow all year round. The area around the waterfall is designated as a no-hunting zone and home to various rare species.
For young explorers, the Amazing Dinosaur Khao Kho offers an engaging adventure with dinosaur suits, a colourful glowing tunnel, a primaeval forest zone, an ancient Egyptian-themed area, a maze and more. History enthusiasts will find joy in exploring the Si Thep Historical Park, recently designated as a cultural heritage site by the UNESCO Heritage Committee. This historical park features notable structures such as Khao Klang Nok, Thailand's only pyramid-shaped hill, and Khao Klang Nai, a Buddhist stupa renowned for its Dvaravati-style relief and the small figurines surrounding the structure's foundation.
A coastal gem with a stunning 199-kilometre shoreline along the Andaman Sea, the province of Trang beckons travellers with its natural splendour, rich history and culinary excellence. Recently crowned the world's best beach by the World Beach Guide website, the white sandy beaches and crystal-clear waters of nearby island Ko Kradan epitomize the tropical dream that Trang generously offers. Back on the mainland, Trang city is enchanted with a rich historical tapestry: Chino-Portuguese architecture, century-old shrines, and charming churches.
Trang also offers unique delicacies such as Trang Grilled Pork and Mei Cai Kou Rou(steamed pork belly with preserved vegetables), both revered as the quintessential dishes representing the city.
Plan the perfect domestic getaway with Agoda, whether for a nature-filled escape or a fun countdown to 2024 adventure – it’s available on Agoda’s travel platform. Explore over 3.9M hotels, vacation homes and more, choose from over 130,000 flight routes and find exciting activities worldwide, all at great, affordable prices. Agoda is here to help everyone travel and see the world for less.