Three Day Tour of Suphanburi Province

Over the weekend I went on a three day trip to Suphanburi province. The main reason for this trip was to visit the Don Chedi Memorial and Red Cross Fair. Every year they put on a big show to commemorate the victory of King Naresuan the Great in a traditional royal battle on elephant back. The follow photos were posted live during the trip.

Trip date: 19-21 January 2018

DAY ONE: Setting off on a 3-day road trip this morning to explore Suphanburi province, about 90 minutes northwest of Bangkok. No fixed plans or hotels booked. It’s the way I like it. Feel free to send suggestions. My map list here.

Drone photos of the giant seated Buddha at Wat Phai Rong Wua in Suphan Buri. It is 10 meters wide and 26 meters high. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/4xZeFWxaRuP2

Wat Phai Rong Wua (วัดไผ่โรงวัว) in Suphanburi has been described as a kind of Buddhist version of Disneyland without the rides. There are literally hundreds of Buddha images in all shapes & sizes and monuments pertaining to the Buddha’s life.

Wat Phai Rong Wua in Suphanburi also has an extensive Buddhist Hell Garden where you can see what will happen to you if you commit various sins such as adultery and drug addiction.

If Wat Phai Rong Wua in Suphanburi is the Buddhist version of Disneyland, then the nearby Wat Tha Chedi is Dream World. It was the replica of Big Ben and then the Merlion that caught my attention. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/uENgiVLs47C2

A giant rock Buddha in U Thong District of Suphanburi called Bhunyakiri Sri Suvarnabhumi. It seems to be carved out of the side of a cliff. It is 108 meters high and 88 meters wide. They expect it to be finished in April. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/Rst5gFBFNGr

Lifestyle and Spirit of Thai Farmers Learning Center in Suphanburi has been set up to educate the public about agriculture. It’s open daily and it’s free. Dead quiet during the week. Maybe better at the weekend. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/kERopXk5bEJ2

Drone photos of the giant dragon at the Dragon Descendants Museum in Suphanburi. The museum inside the giant dragon is 299 Baht for Thais and 499 Baht for foreigners. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/rDa7xCUWays

Tonight I’m staying at CPS Mansion opposite the giant dragon in Suphanburi. On Agoda it’s ฿582 a night and only two rooms available. Fortunately I decided to ask in reception and they said only ฿450 a night.

Duck noodle soup on the street in front of my hotel. 40 Baht. Free cold water.

DAY TWO: Good morning from Suphanburi, which is about 110km northwest of Bangkok. This is the start of my second day exploring the province. Tonight I will attend the festival at Don Chedi. I had “Johk” (โจ๊ก) for breakfast at the market in Suphanburi. A rice porridge with egg, only 25 Baht. I haven’t seen it that cheap for a long time. She could have charged me 35 Baht and I wouldn’t have known. Good to see there are still many honest food vendors.

The Thai Buffalo Conservation Village in Si Prachan District of Suphanburi shows the traditional life of farmers before the age of mechanization. There is also a Thai style village. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/4erRxEyhhA72

The Thai Buffalo Conservation Village in Suphanburi is 30 Baht for Thais & 150 Baht for foreigners. There is a show but you have to pay extra: 20B/100B. All the exhibition signs are in Thai. Maybe they should give foreigners a discount?

This afternoon I’m exploring Sam Chuk Market in Suphanburi, but first I’m on a boat tour upriver to a Thai traditional house that is often used in period dramas. The boat trip is 50B/person and you can catch it from the market.

Sam Chuk Market is an old market on the Tha Chin River in Suphanburi, about two hours north of Bangkok. Lots of good food. Worth exploring for an hour or so and maybe doing a boat trip too. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/np3QT9662C92

Bueng Chawak Aquarium in Suphanburi is worth a visit if you have kids. Entry is 30 Baht for the first two aquariums & crocodile show. However, the shark tunnel is an extra 150 Baht for Thais & 200 Baht for foreigners. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/518BAzsS3sL2

The Monument in Don Chedi is dedicated to King Naresuan the Great’s victory over Burmese forces over 500 years ago. There is a Temple Fair here every year commemorating that battle. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/vbDguAanpmG2

The two week long Don Chedi Memorial and Red Cross Fair in Suphanburi is from now until 1 February 2018. Lots of food so come hungry.

Highlight of the Don Chedi Fair is the light-and-sound show from 18 to 31 January (except 22-24 and 29 January), from 7pm. Ticket is 100 Baht.

DAY THREE: Good morning from Suphanburi. This is my third and last day exploring the province. One of the major tourist attractions in the city is the 123 meter high Banhan-Chaemsai Tower. From this you will get 360° panoramic views of the city. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/f3KQxrVWZD92

The 123 meter high Banharn-Jamsai Tower is worth a visit for the panoramic views of the city. Entrance to the park is 10B & then it’s 30B to go up the tower during the day & 40B in the evening. Open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am-7pm.

A quick stop at the TAT office in Suphanburi to pick up some leaflets to help plan my city tour. Helpful staff but they should really make an effort to sweep the front porch. Particularly as you have to take your shoes off. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/f8Vs3BE3nD12

King’s Naresuan the Great Monument in Suphanburi. What can I say other than that the guy obviously loved cockerels. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/E5muvfufran

Your first stop on a visit to Suphanburi should be the national museum. The bilingual exhibits nicely explain the history & culture of the local area. Open Wednesday-Sunday, 9am-4pm. Admission is 20B for Thais & 100B for foreigners. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/htfE4vTbt3K2

Wat Phra Non in Suphanburi is famous for the fish sanctuary but also the unusual Reclining Buddha. Most can be seen on their side, but in this one the Buddha is on his back. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/ssvT6HnnVMP2

Wat Khae in Suphanburi is an ancient temple mentioned in a book called “Khun Chang-Khun Phaen”. The temple is famous for a 1,000 year old tamarind tree which is 9.5 meters in circumference. There’s also a replica of Khun Phaen’s house. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/oHxFs8uhwL32

Something that I didn’t expect to see at Wat Khae in Suphanburi was the this monk riding on the back of a giant wasp.

Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat is one of the oldest temples in Suphanburi dating back more than 600 years. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/imujNESsQJ62

Wat Palelai in Suphanburi is a Royal Temple dating back hundreds of years. It has an unusual and large 23 meter high Buddha image seated with its feet on the floor in a Western style. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/8GUVA7ZCiF92

Also at Wat Palelai in Suphanburi is a reconstruction of Khun Chang’s house from Thai literature and paintings of scenes from the book. Many of these depict contemporary life in Siam many years ago.

The city pillar shrine in Suphanburi now has a small Chinese village around it. Even the 7-Eleven gets into the act by decorating Chinese style. In the small village you can buy food as well as gifts. Map: https://goo.gl/maps/Y6NgBqEyDTQ2

That’s a wrap on my 3-day trip to Suphanburi province. I hope you’ve enjoyed the pictures. I’m driving home now. The journey back to Bangkok should take about an hour and a half.

4 comments

  1. Steve Kruger says:

    Many thanks Richard for this amazing travel blog entry. I will be in Thailand in two weeks time for a six week stay. We are from Australia. There are some great ideas in here to add to our itinerary. Thanks again.

  2. Kathy says:

    Thank you for this post! My friend really wanted to see elephant in costume so we might try to make it out there before leaving Thailand. Personally I prefer to see elephants in their more natural environment and GREATLY enjoyed visiting with them at the Maeklang Conservation Center in Chaing Ma (that was an absolutely awesome!) Hopefully these elephants used in the show at least are well treated.

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