Kalasin

Kalasin is known across Thailand for its Pong Lang music and the famous Phrae Wa cloth. A principally agricultural region, Kalasin is also known for its sticky rice, manioc, and sugarcane. Other popular products include bamboo baskets and cloth bags.

Otherwise, visitors to Kalasin are typically most impressed by the archaeological treasures contained in the province, including the largest concentration of Jurassic era dinosaur fossils in northeastern Thailand, where archaeologists have excavated whole fossils of Sauropods that lived 120 million years ago.

 

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ISAN is the northeastern region of Thailand. It is located on the Korat Plateau, bordered by the Mekong River (along the border with Laos) to the north and east, by Cambodia to the southeast and the Prachinburi mountains south of Nakhon Ratchasima. To the west it is separated from Northern and Central Thailand by the Phetchabun mountain range.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, northeastern Thailand has been officially known as Isan, a term adopted from Sanskrit Ishan, meaning in a “north east direction.” The term "Isan" was derived from Isanapura, the capital of the Chenla kingdom. The Lao-speaking population of the region, who comprise the majority, distinguish themselves not only from the Lao of Laos but also from the central Thai by calling themselves Khon Isan or Thai Isan. The Khmer-speaking minority and Kuy (Suai), who live in the south of Isan, speak dialects and follow customs more similar to those of Cambodia than either the Thai people or the Lao people. Agriculture is the main economic activity. Production lags behind the rest of the country due to the socio-economic conditions and the exceptionally hot, dry climate. Isan remains Thailand's poorest region.

The main language is Isan, which is a dialect of the Lao language. Currently written with the Thai alphabet (instead of the slightly different Lao alphabet), Isan belongs to the Chiang Seng and Lao–Phutai language groups, which along with Thai are members of the Tai languages of the Tai–Kadai language family. Thai is also spoken by almost everyone. Khmer, the language of Cambodia, is widely spoken in areas along the Cambodian border: Buriram, Surin, and Sisaket. The people are aware of their Lao ethnic origin, but Isan has been incorporated into the modern Thai state. Several Thai prime ministers have come from the region. Prominent aspects of Isan culture of include Mor Lam, an indigenous type of folk music, Muay Thai boxing, cock fighting, and celebratory processions. Isan food, in which Sticky Rice (Khao niew) and chiles are prominent, is distinct from Thai cuisine. Sticky rice is a staple of Thai Northeastern cuisine, and it accompanies most meals.

 

 

ISAN MAP : Kalasin @ Thailand Loei Nong Khai Nakhon Phanom Udon Thani Sakon Nakhon Nong Bua Lam Phu Khon Kaen Chaiyaphum Kalasin Mukdahan Maha Sarakham Yasothon Amnat Charoen Nakhon Ratchasima Roi Et Buriram Surin Sri Sa Ket Ubon Ratchathani Bueng Kan

Kalasin

Kalasin is the Province of Fa Daet Song Yang Ancient City, Pong Lang Folk Music, Phu Thai Culture, Phrae Wa Silk, Pha Saweoi Phu Phan, the Lam Pao River, and Million-year-old Dinosaurs.

Kalasin is one of the most fertile provinces in the northeastern region and has a long history dating back to the prehistoric era. Kalasin contains the largest concentration of Jurassic era dinosaur fossils in northeastern Thailand, located in Phu Kum Khayo where archaeologists have excavated whole fossils of Sauropods. Another ancient site located near Kalasin is Fa Daet Song Yang. Excavations there have revealed several remnants and artifacts of monuments and temples that provide evidence of prehistoric inhabitation. According to archaeological evidence, the area was once inhabited by the Lawa tribe, whose Lavo civilization dates back about 1,600 years.

Modern Kalasin was established during the Ratanakosin period in 1793 when Thao Somphamit and his troops escaped from the left bank of the Mekong River and settled beside the Pao River, which was called ‘Ban Kaeng Samrong.’ Thao Somphamit then sent tribute to King Rama I the Great, founder of the Chakri Dynasty, who later promoted Ban Kaeng Samrong to city status and renamed it ‘Kalasin’ or ‘Mueang Nam Dam’ (black water town). The king also appointed Thao Somphamit as ‘Phraya Chaisunthon,’ first ruler of Kalasin.

 


Kalasin is known across Thailand for its Pong Lang music and the famous Phrae Wa cloth. A principally agricultural region, Kalasin is also known for its sticky rice, manioc, and sugarcane. Other popular products include bamboo baskets and cloth bags.

Otherwise, visitors to Kalasin are typically most impressed by the archaeological treasures contained in the province, including the largest concentration of Jurassic era dinosaur fossils in northeastern Thailand, where archaeologists have excavated whole fossils of Sauropods that lived 120 million years ago.

 

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TRAVEL TO KALASIN

Options in Kalasin, Thailand
As a province somewhat off the typical tourist route, Kalasin can only be reached directly via private car or public bus. However, it is possible to take a train or plane to nearby Khon Kaen and then a short bus to Kalasin. Once there, it may be easier to get around with your own car, but there are standard forms of local transport available for visitors: i.e. songtaew, motorbike taxi, and tuk tuk.

 

Getting to and from Kalasin

By Train:
There is no train service to Kalasin, so visitors must take the train from Bangkok to Khon Kaen and then catch a bus from Khon Kaen to Kalasin, a distance of 75 kilometers. The State Railway of Thailand has daily rapid train, express train, and air-conditioned sprinter train services to Khon Kaen. For more details, call SRT at Tel. 1690, or 0 2220 4334, 0 2220 4444, Khon Kaen Railway Station, Tel. 0 4322 1112, or visit www.railway.co.th.

By Car:
Kalasin is 519 kilometers from Bangkok by road. Take highway No.2 (Mittraphap Road) from Bangkok heading to Saraburi & Nakhon Ratchasima until you reach Amphoe Ban Phai of Khon Kaen province. Continue on Highways No. 23, 213 and 209 (Maha Sarakham - Kalasin).


By Bus:
The Transport Co., Ltd. provides air-conditioned and ordinary bus services daily from Bangkok’s Northeastern Bus Terminal (Mo Chit 2) to Kalasin. More details can be obtained at the Northeastern Bus Terminal (Mo Chit 2), Tel. 0 2936 2841-48, 0 2936 2852-66 or www.transport.co.th.


By Air:
There are no direct flights from Bangkok to Kalasin, but you can get a flight from Bangkok to Khon Kaen and then catch a bus to Kalasin, a distance of 75 kilometers.

 

Getting Around Kalasin
As in most rural Thai provinces there are typically songtaews that follow established routes around the provincial capital and between towns within the province. Songtaews, motorbike taxis, samlors (pedal powered three-wheeled cabs) and “skylabs”, a local form of tuk tuk, are usually available for private charter as well. There is an also public bus service to Kalasin town from other districts.

Glossary of Thai Terms
Amphoe : District
King Amphoe : Minor District
Ao : Bay
Ban : Village
Hat : Beach
Khoa : Mountain
Ko : Island
Laem : Cap
Maenam : River
Mueang : Town or City
Mu Ko : Group of Islands (Archipelago)
Namtok : Waterfall
Prang : Corn - shaed tower or sanctuary
Phu : Mountain
Tambon : Sub - districct
Tham : Cave
Ubosot or Bot : Ordination hall in a temple
Wihan : Image hall in atemple
Wat : Temple

 

Activities
Because of its rural setting Kalasin has limited activities for visitors to participate in other than visiting the natural and cultural attractions around the province.

Attractions
As an area of fascinating history and outstanding beauty, Kalasin has a number of intriguing tourist attractions:

Art, Culture & Heritage

Phraya Chaisunthon Monument (Chao Somphamit)
It is located in front of the Kalasin Post Office. The life-sized monument is made from bronze in a standing position with the right hand holding a teapot, and left hand holding a magic sword. The people of Kalasin donated the money to build this monument so to express their gratitude to the founder of the city.

Arts, Culture and Tourism Promotion Centre
This is an information centre in Thirawat Hospital and provides knowledge to those interested in local arts and culture of Kalasin. There are displays of the way of life of locals and people in the Northeast, as well as local products for sale.

Kalasin Museum
Located at the former city hall of Kalasin, the museum was established by Mr. Chairat Mapraneet, Governor of Kalasin province, with an aim to show the collections of good things in Kalasin. The museum features a lecture room, governor’s room, religious room, room to honour H.M. the Queen, room showcasing ways of life of the Phu Thai people, Wichit Phrae Wa room, handicraft room, room for demonstration of Phrae Wa silk, and sales of souvenirs. The museum is open every Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Tel. 0 4381 1695.

Sirindhorn Museum and Phu Kum Khao Dinosaur Excavation Site
Sirindhorn Museum and Phu Kum Khao Dinosaur Excavation Site This archaeological museum is situated in the foothills of Phu Kum Khao Mountain in Sahatsakhan District, approximately 28 kilometres from Kalasin Town.

The Palaeozoic Era was two hundred million years ago, long before humans existed. Dinosaurs once lived in this area and we find their fossils underneath the sandstone bedding-plane. Hence, the museum is a research centre as well as being the most complete and largest dinosaur museum in Southeat AsiaThe museum was named by Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn. A two-storey building, its interior is filled with mysterious walkways guiding visitors to travel back in time to the Palaeozoic Era. Walking through the tunnels, visitors reach various exhibition halls about Geology, the beginnings of the Earth and how it was formed, as well as the evolution of living creatures such as dinosaurs and humans.The museum’s outstanding exhibits include life-sized skeletons of the many significant dinosaur species discovered in this area, such as Phuwiangosaurus sirindhornae, Siamosaurus suteethorni and Siamotyrannus isanensis. In addition, also displayed in the museum, is the actual archaeological dig-site where fossils of six dinosaurs were unearthed from the same bedding-plane.The museum is open Tuesday-Sunday from 8:30-17:30. Admission is free until the official opening is announced. For further information, call 0 4387 1014, 0 4387 1613-4.To get there, take Highway 227 (Kalasin - Sahatsakhan) for 28 kilometres. Two kilometres before Sahatsakhan, you will come to an intersection. Turn right and continue for another kilometre.

Phutthasathan Phu Po
It is located in the compound of Wat In Prathan Phon, Tambon Phu Po, approximately 28 kilometres from Kalasin province. Travel along Highway No. 213 and then at approximately Km. 59, turn left to Ban Chot – Ban Na Chan – Na Khok Khwai for 16 kilometres. The site is where two ancient reclining Buddha images of the Dvaravati period carved on the cliff can be seen. They are the sacred images highly revered by the people of Kalasin and nearby provinces. The first image is at the foothill and the second one is on Phu Po. Apart from storing sacred Buddha images, Phu Po also features beautiful nature perfect for rest and relaxation. There is an annual ceremony to celebrate the reclining Buddha images in April every year.

Fa Daet Song Yang
This ancient town is a on Highway No. 214 (Kalasin-Roi Et). From Kalasin, drive for 13 kilometres to Kamalasai, then turn right and drive for 6 kilometres. The present location is Ban Sema, Tambon Nong Paen. There is evidence of a settlement in prehistoric times, the area flourishing during the Dvaravati period circa the 13th-15th Buddhist century. The layout of the town is like a heart-shaped stone that defines a temples boundary. There are two rows of moats. Ruins have been found inside and outside the town area. The most complete ruin is Phra That Yakhu, a brick pagoda. Sandstone temple markers with and without designs have been found here and are now housed in Wat Pho Chai Semaram in the village and in the Khon Kaen National Museum. In addition, amulets and tobacco pipes made of fired clay and bronze were unearthed here.

Mueang Fa Daet Song Yang
It is situated in Ban Sema, Tambon Nong Paeng. It is 19 kilometres from the city. Take Highway No. 214 (Kalasin – Roi Et) for 13 kilometres until reaching Kamalasai district, then turn right along Highway No. 2367 for 6 kilometres, turn right again for 400 metres to reach Fa Daet Song Yang. The town is sometimes called Fa Daet Sung Yang, or some people call it Mueang Sema due to its geographical look that resembles Sema - a boundary stone. It is an ancient town surrounded by earthen mounds with the length of about 5 kilometres. The moat sits in the middle of the two earthen mounds. From archaeological findings, it was found that the town had been inhabited since the pre-history period. During the 8th - 10th Century, or the Dvaravati period, the city became more developed. Evidence for its civilization are religious ruins in and around the city such as a large number of sandstone boundary markers with bas-reliefs depicting the Jataka stories and life of the Lord Buddha. Some of these have been kept at Wat Pho Chai Semaram in the city; and some of them remain in situ. Some of them are showcased at Khon Kaen National Museum. Aside from that, there are ancient ruins scattered in and around the city such as Phrathat Yakhu and groups of chedis at Non Wat Sung, Non Fa Yat and Non Fa Daet. On 27 September, 1936, the Fine Arts Department registered Fa Daet Song Yang as an ancient monument.

Phrathat Yakhu or Phrathat Yai is the largest chedi in Fa Daet Song Yang. It is an octagonal-shaped chedi, made of bricks. Evidence shows that it was constructed for three periods. The pedestal was in a redented square shape, with staircases at the four directions and decorated with stucco built during the Dvaravati period. The upper pedestal was in an octagonal shape, built on top of the original one and supporting an old chedi of the Ayutthaya period. The body and the top were created in the Rattanakosin period. Around the Phrathat, there are boundary stones with bas-reliefs depicting the life of the Lord Buddha. For this Phrathat, local people believe that it stores the bones of a respected senior monk. It can be noticed that when Mueang Chiang Som won the battle, they destroyed everything in Fa Daet Song Yang, except for Phrathat Yakhu. For this reason, the remains of the Phrathat are still in perfect condition. In the month of May every year, there will be the annual Rocket Festival, which is the ceremony to ask for rain to make the village live in peace.

 

Places of Worship

Wat Klang
It is located near Phraya Chaisunthon Monument. Wat Klang is a third-class royal temple. Within the temple’s compound, there is an Ubosot building, which was an extension from the old building. The Thai-style Ubosot is decorated with ‘Chofa’ (gable finial) and ‘Bai Raka’ (crockets). The wooden doors are carved telling the life of the Lord Buddha; while the windows tell the Jataka stories. There are stucco door guardians in the front and at the back. The Ubosot houses murals depicting the story of the Vessantara Jataka. Inside a pavilion or Sala near the Ubosot building is a black Buddha image, made from bronze with a lap of 20-inches wide. It is a beautiful Buddha image. The pedestal of the image bears an inscription in ancient Thai language stating that the image was built during the period of King Khu Na Kham. Phraya Chaisunthon took it to be the provincial image, which became highly revered by the local people. In any drought season, the local people would take the Buddha image in a procession to beg for rain.
Apart from the black Buddha image, Wat Klang also has a Buddha footprint, which is 20-inch wide and 80-inch long, made from laterite. It is believed to have been built during the Lawa period. Formerly, it was located on the bank of Lam Pao – the Pao River, near Kaeng Samrong. Later on, the bank of the river gradually collapsed, so the local people decided to relocate it to this temple.

Wat Si Bun Ruang
This temple is an old temple in the municipality. Some heart-shaped stones that marked the limits of a temple in Fa Daet Song Yang are kept here, the most beautiful being the one with an angel flying above a castle and a king and his family portrayed in the lower part. This is traditional northeastern art.

Wat Phutthanimit (Phu Khao)
It is located at Ban Na Si Nuan, about 7 kilometres from Sahatsakhan and 4 kilometres from Phu Sing. It houses a rock relief of an ancient reclining Buddha image leaning on his left side, which is about 2 metres long and 25 centimetres wide. The Buddha image is highly revered by the local people. According to legend, Moggallana, a chief disciple of the Lord Buddha created this image over 2,000 years ago. Every year in April, there will be a bathing ceremony to celebrate the Buddha image. Also, the temple has an open wooden Ubosot, of which the windows, doors and ceilings are beautifully carved in 3 dimensions depicting the life of the Lord Buddha and Jataka stories. There is also Wihan Sangkhanimit which houses rare Buddha images and amulets. The temple is open for interested visitors every day.

Reclining Buddha at Phu Khao
This Buddha Image is in Wat Phuttha Nimit, Ban Na Si Nuan, Tambon Non Sila, 39 kilometres from Kalasin on Highway No. 227. There is a 6-kilometre road on the left from the highway. This ancient reclining Buddha image was carved under a cliff. This image is unusual to other reclining images in that it is leaning on its left hand rather than on its right hand. It was built in 1692.

Phrathat Yakhu
Phrathat Yakhu or Phrathat Yai is the largest chedi in Fa Daet Song Yang. It is an octagonal-shaped chedi, made of bricks. Evidence shows that it was constructed for three periods. The pedestal was in a redented square shape, with staircases at the four directions and decorated with stucco built during the Dvaravati period. The upper pedestal was in an octagonal shape, built on top of the original one and supporting an old chedi of the Ayutthaya period. The body and the top were created in the Rattanakosin period. Around the Phrathat, there are boundary stones with bas-reliefs depicting the life of the Lord Buddha. For this Phrathat, local people believe that it stores the bones of a respected senior monk. It can be noticed that when Mueang Chiang Som won the battle, they destroyed everything in Fa Daet Song Yang, except for Phrathat Yakhu. For this reason, the remains of the Phrathat are still in perfect condition. In the month of May every year, there will be the annual Rocket Festival, which is the ceremony to ask for rain to make the village live in peace.

Wat Pho Chai Semaram or Wat Ban Kom is situated at Ban Sema, opposite the entrance to Fa Daet Song Yang. It is an old temple with a huge collection of old boundary stones of gigantic sizes, which are unique for the northeastern region. The boundary stones found in Fa Daet Song Yang are different from those discovered in other regions, as they were usually carved telling Jataka stories and the life of the Lord Buddha. There is one most beautiful boundary stone depicting the story when the Lord Buddha came back to Kapilavasdu. The boundary stone depicts King Suddhodhana (his father), Rahula (his son) and Yashodhara Pimpa (his wife) paying the greatest respect to the Lord Buddha, with Yashodhara Pimpa using her hair to clean the Buddha’s feet. As such, this boundary stone is called ‘Pimpa Philap’ (crying Pimpa). The original of this beautiful boundary marker is now located at the Khon Kaen National Museum.

 

Nature & Wildlife

Lam Pao Dam
This dam can be reached by taking Highway No. 209 (Kalasin - Maha Sarakham) for 10 kilometres, turn right and drive for 26 kilometres. This earth dam is 33 metres high from water level and is 7.8 kilometres long. The dam is built across the Pao and Huai Yang rivers, creating a double reservoir. It was built to alleviate floods, help agriculture and is also used for fish breeding. The beach along the lake is a popular rest spot for locals.

Laem Non Wiset
It is the land that stretches into Lam Pao Dam’s reservoir. It is located at Tambon Non Buri, about 6 kilometres from town and about 300 metres from Wat Sakkawan. Laem Non Wiset is a good sunset watching spot. There is also a ferry service to travel between Sahatsakhan and Nong Kung Si districts. The ferry can accommodate 4 – 10 six-wheel and four-wheel vehicles, each trip taking 15-20 minutes at the following service charges:
- motorcycle 40 baht
- 4-wheel car 60 baht
- 6-wheel car 90 baht
- van 70 baht

Lam Pao Wildlife Conservation Development and Promotion Stat
Lam Pao Wildlife Conservation Development and Promotion Station or Suan Sa-OnSuan Sa-on is located near Lam Pao Dam with a total area of 1,420 rai. It is quite an abundant deciduous dipterocarp forest. Inside is an open zoo in which there are indigenous wild animals including 130 bantengs, which are rare, and also other fauna like gibbons, monkeys, various kinds of domestic and migratory birds, along with nature trails. Suan Sa-on is open every day from 7:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., free of charge. Visitors who want to stay or do camping at the station have to ask for permission in advance by sending a letter to the Lam Pao Wildlife Conservation Development and Promotion Station at P.O. Box 120, Amphoe Mueang, Kalasin 46000; or Director of the Wildlife Conservation Office, National Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department. Tel. 0 2562 0760.
To get there: There are two routes to get there. Take the same route as going to Lam Pao Dam. From the dam, continue further along the crest for approximately 4 kilometres, or take the Kalasin – Sahatsakhan route (Highway No. 227) for 19 kilometres, then turn left and drive for 5 kilometres until reaching Suan Sa-on.

Namtok Kaeng Ka-am
This waterfall is 55 kilometres from Kalasin on the Kalasin-Sakon Nakhon route on Highway No. 213, 300 metres from the highway on the left. This is a small waterfall cascading down a long row of rocks and has a wide, open rock plateau suitable for relaxation.

Namtok Pha Nang Khoi
Namtok Pha Nang KhoiIt is located in Tambon Bo Kaeo. It is a huge waterfall, beautifully cascading down from the Phu Phan mountain range. It is surrounded with abundant thick forest. There is water all year round, even in the dry season. To get there: Take Highway No. 2291 from Khao Wong Intersection, then go onto Ro Pho Cho Road where there is a signboard showing the way to Pha Nang Khoi for 13 kilometres. (Some parts are unpaved road).

Namtok Tat Thong
It is located on the Khao Wong - Dong Luang – Mukdahan Road. It is a huge and beautiful waterfall with complex stone cliffs. It is most beautiful in the rainy season and is easily accessible by car. To get there: Take Highway No. 2291 until you reach Kut Pla Khao, then turn left into Highway 2287. The waterfall is at Km. 76 on the right.

Phu Phra Forest Park
Situated in Tambon Na Tan, Phu Phra Forest Park was formerly a part of the Dong Mun National Forest Reserve. It features an outstanding mountain located near the villages. The Phu Phra Forest is quite a thick forest, with wild animals and a beautiful stream and view. The plain on the backside of the mountain houses an ancient stone Buddha image. Some of the interesting tourist attractions in the forest park include: Pha Sawoei It is an expansive stone cliff, about 150-200 metres wide. It is a breathtaking sightseeing spot. Tham Siam Sap It is a cliff cave that looks like somebody had dug the cave with a spade or ‘Siam’. Tham Phra Rot It is a cave that occurred due to the separation of a stone cliff. Inside the cave, there is a walkway of about 2 metres wide and 30 metres long. In the past, there were monks staying and practicing dharma inside the cave. Pha Hin Yaek It is a separating cliff of 20 metres long and 6 metres deep. The leaning cliff is also a good sightseeing spot. Tham Phra It is a cave 30 metres in depth. The entrance is about 15 metres wide. There is a Buddha image that is highly revered by locals. Every year during the Songkran Festival, people would ascend to the cave to pour lustral water on the Buddha image to pay respect. To get there: From Tha Khantho, take Highway No. 2299 to Km. 16, or take an Udon Thani – Kalasin bus and get off at Wat Sawang Tham Koeng in front of the forest park.

Pha Sawoei
It is located on the Phu Phan mountain range in Ban Kaeng Ka-am, Tambon Pha Sawoei. It is 17 kilometres from Somdet district, and about 58 kilometres from Kalasin along the Somdet – Sakon Nakhon route on Highway No. 213, at Km. 101 – 102. Pha Sawoei was formerly called ‘Pha Rang Raeng’. In 1954, Their Majesties the King and the Queen visited the cliff and had lunch here, so the place’s name was changed to ‘Pha Sawoei’ (Sawoei is a royal term for eating). As it is located in the deep valley with a high cliff, the locals also called it ‘Heo Ham Hot’. It is a good sightseeing and relaxing spot for visitors.

Phu Sing
Phu Sing is 32 kilometres to the north of Kalasin on Highway No. 227. Visitors can either drive to the top or ascend the 104 steps. The hill is where Phra Phrom Phumi Palo is located. It is a large image in the Man Wichai (demon defeat) that is 10.5 metres wide and is clearly visible from below. The surrounding area is shady and offers a lovely panoramic view.

Reclining Buddha at Phu Khao
This Buddha Image is in Wat Phuttha Nimit, Ban Na Si Nuan, Tambon Non Sila, 39 kilometres from Kalasin on Highway No. 227. There is a 6-kilometre road on the left from the highway. This ancient reclining Buddha image was carved under a cliff. This image is unusual to other reclining images in that it is leaning on its left hand rather than on its right hand. It was built in 1692.

 

Suburban Living

Ban Phokhru Plueang Chairatsami
Located at 229/4, Kaset Sombun Road, Tambon Kalasin. Khru Plueang Chairatsami was declared a National Artist in 1986 in the field of folk music. He built a farmer’s hut to be used as a traditional music school. The hut also displays traditional musical instruments such as Phin (lute), Khaen (reed organ), So (bowed stringed instrument) and Pong Lang (northeastern style xylophone). It is also used as accommodation for students from other areas who come to study traditional music. Khru Plueang is considered the pride of the people of Kalasin and is the legend of Pong Lang of Kalasin, the northeastern-style music which has been continued by him for over two decades. He also created new styles of folk music such as Mak Kalong – a musical instrument made from a string of cow’s bells to make the musical sound. For details, call Tel. 0 4382 0366.

Ban Phon Phrae Wa Silk
This village is located 70 kilometres from Kalasin on Highway No. 227. It is famous for beautiful woven cloth. It is unique to the Phu Thai tribe whose ancestors migrated from the city of Thaeng in Vietnam. The cloth is made of Mat Mi silk and shows exemplary workmanship. It is divided into two patterns: Lai Lak (principal pattern) and Lai Thaep (stripe pattern). The colour of Phrae Wa silk is not only in red as it used to be, but there are many more colours that fit the market needs such as beige, pink, purple, blue and green. It can be considered that Phrae Wa silk is a rare handcrafted textile product in Thailand. H.M. Queen Sirikit has been supporting and promoting silk until it has become known locally and internationally.

Ban Khok Kong Phu-Thai Village
The Phu-Thai is an Isan tribe which has its own culture, language and now gives you the opportunity to visit the village and stay for a night or two in the houses of the villagers. Food is included (its traditional Lao food but with choice of more western one). You can watch the show that all the villagers participate in traditional monkey dancing by the children and Phu-Thai music and dances performed by the women of the village. The ways of weaving and crafting are also on display. Two minutes walk from villages centre is a forest park with waterfalls and streams.To Get There: Ban Khok Kong is 15 kilometres east of Kuchinarai district. The village can be reached by a bus from Khon Kaen or by contacting the village itself. Public Transport : 1. From Bangkok, travel by or train to Khon Kaen, then take the bus which runs to Mukdahan and tell the driver to stop at Ban Na Krai and then motorbike taxi to the village, or 2. From Bangkoks Mochit Bus Terminal, take the Bangkok-Mukdahan bus and go down at Ban Bua Khao, then take big pick-up (Song Thaeo in Thai) or motorbike taxi to the village.

Phu Thai Nong Hang Handicraft Centre
It is located in Ban Nong Hang, Tambon Nong Hang, approximately 10 kilometres from Kuchinarai district. Take Highway No. 2042 for about 2 kilometres, then turn left into the paved road and drive for another 6 kilometres. Local villagers of Nong Hang form a network to weave cotton, silk as well as bamboo woven in the textile’s ‘Khit’ pattern. Some of the beautiful basketry products include ‘Krato’ – a vegetable container, ‘Kratip’ – a sticky rice container, handbags and other containers.

 

Educational places

Phu Faek Forest Park (Dinosaur Footprints)
Located at Mu 6, Ban Nam Kham, Tambon Phu Laen Chang, with alternate mountainous and hilly topography covered with a deciduous dipterocarp forest featuring various kinds of flora such as Makha Mong (Afzelia xylocarpa), Teng (Shorea optusa), Rang (Shorea siamensis) and rosewood; and it is easy to spot some wild animals such as squirrels, tree shrews, civets and hares. In November 1996, two girls were having lunch there with their parents and they noticed strange footprints in the middle of a rock terrace of Huai Ngao Du, at Phu Faek foothill, Phu Phan mountain range. They later informed geologists who came to survey the site. There, they discovered seven footprints of meat-eating dinosaurs, assumed to live there around 140 million years ago. At present, there are only 4 footprints that can be seen clearly. To get there: From Mueang district, take Highway No. 213 to Somdet district. Upon reaching Somdet district, turn right into Highway 2042 leading to Kuchinarai for 20 kilometres until you reach Huai Phueng. Turn left toward Na Khu along Highway No. 2101 for 10 kilometres, then turn left into Phu Faek Forest Park for 4.7 kilometres.

How to get there:

By Car
From Mueang district, take Highway No. 213 to Somdet district. Upon reaching Somdet district, turn right into Highway 2042 leading to Kuchinarai for 20 kilometres until you reach Huai Phueng. Turn left toward Na Khu along Highway No. 2101 for 10 kilometres, then turn left into Phu Faek Forest Park for 4.7 kilometres.

 

 

 
 


 
 
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