It was a 3 day weekend coming up and the possibilities were endless. We wondered if we should head to the beach? or maybe try something more wild and green this time.
Finally , my curiosity to stay in a hotel with horses took over and it was finalized. We were going to spend the weekend among farm animals and drive around the gorgeous countryside of Khao Yai.
If you want to punish yourself, please take a big bus to Pak Chong from Mo Chit bus station. Well, we didn’t know it would be torture so we did and it was a long and tiring journey with multiple stops for more than 4 hours.
Having learned our lesson we took a minivan on our return journey and that was a much better experience than the bus. The minivan costs 160 baht per person and you may have to wait an hour for it to arrive. However, if you have a valid driving licence my recommendation would be to hire a car in Bangkok and drive yourself or get a driver to Khao Yai. It would take you half the time and also give you a much needed mode of transport there. There is no public transport near the farms and hotels and having a ride really makes the trip amazing. The roads are beautiful with hills, meadows and strawberry fields on the side.
You can hire a self drive car or motorbike from:
Thaweeyon Thaweekit opposite the Pak Chong bus station: Contact – +66 824922429 , +66 929269645
Korat Car Rental (Jimmy the owner speaks english) – +66 818773198
Where to Stay
There are so many themed hotels and resorts in Khao Yai, that can range from Italian countryside landscapes, castles, vineyards, farms and even Hobbit Shire of New Zealand. Make sure you book hotels well in advance as everything gets fully booked on holidays. We chose a Spanish style Bed n Breakfast for our first foray into Khao Yai.
Mira Sierra :
It felt like walking into the courtyard of a Spanish countryside home. With a stable for the horses facing a large riding pen, a raised terrace for the cafe and a courtyard with a fountain and pond. It’s so beautiful and simple in its design and the fresh air and crisp atmosphere instantly gave us a sense of calm.
Mirasierra is home to three large Andalusian horses, Amero, Ibero and Nietto. They are mild and friendly and my daughter was totally in love with them by the end of the weekend. You can go horse riding through the property or take a carriage ride if that suits you too.
The BnB is run by a very helpful and wonderful lady, Pooh. She even helped us book a rental car when we landed in Pak Chong. Khao Yai is a perfect place to relax and enjoy a good book, do some sketching, or writing and for families to unwind and have fun together.
Things to Do
If you’re tired of relaxing or enjoying a spa at your hotel, there is plenty to see and do around here. Though I have to say everything requires a drive so having a vehicle is highly recommended to enjoy the surroundings.
Farm Mor Por
This is quite a large farm filled with plenty of animals. For 500 THB kids can have the whole experience of collecting fresh eggs, riding a horse through the woods, feeding the animals and baby lambs and even learning how to groom and wash a horse before finally painting a little clay souvenir to take home with them. We liked this farm in particular as it is quite organised and we were interested in seeing the many different horse breeds from all over the world that they have here.
Khao Yai National Park
The main attraction in this area is definitely the national park. Once you pay the entry fee of 400 THB for adults and 250 THB for children, you are free to drive around and enjoy the beautiful forest at your leisure.
Look out for large deer, plenty of monkeys and the occasional elephant too. There are a few easy hiking trails and nature walks that will lead you to pretty waterfalls and rope bridges. There is a big visitor center with restaurants, washrooms and a nice picnic spot inside the national park. Don’t miss the Nong Phak Chi observation tower.
And the best part.. the cafes
The foodie that I am, I was so worried about finding good options for food in Khao Yai. Luckily, Pak Chong and Khao Yai too have a great variety of restaurants and cafes. We were unable to visit all the unique ones this time but these are the ones I would recommend.
The Witches Brew – Located on the main road it is easy to find and definitely a great choice for Italian food. Everyone is given a witches hat and we loved that they are so kid friendly.
Please Dont Tell Cafe – This scenic beauty is located at Monlada resort. Great drinks and a fabulous spaghetti with green curry pasta. Boasting a spectacular view and gorgeous photo spots, your Instagram feed will thank you.
The Mew – This cafe is artistic, chic yet cozy. The Thai curry with roti was delicious, as was their rose latte. They have a lovely organic herb store and a little garden you can relax in.
Midwinter Green – Bring a lot of beautiful outfits and head over to this castle for a meal and tons of pictures. It’s stunningly beautiful in a medieval castle sort of way. Brilliant ambiance and perfect if you want to do a wedding photo shoot, maternity, baby or just take awesome pictures of yourselves.
We know we’ll be back to Khao Yai, to explore more of this idyllic landscape and fresh air soon enough. I’m hoping to check out Ban Tha Chang waterfall, Bunny coffee, Toscana Valley, and the Saraburi sunflower fields on our next road trip.