Udonthani - Thailand's Jewel In The Northeast

By Pauline Go
Udonthani was founded in 1296 by King Mengrai. It became the capital of Lannathai Kingdom, and once the kingdom started to decline, the importance of Udonthani also started to diminish. The city was often occupied either by the invading Burmese troops or the Thais from Ayutthaya. King Taksin captured Udonthani from the Burmese in 1774 and ever since it has been a part of Thailand. Today, Udonthani is the second most important city in Thailand after Bangkok. Udonthani is 560 kilometers from Bangkok.

When to Go to Udonthani
If you are planning a visit to Udonthani, the best time is between November and March. During this time the weather is cool and temperatures are from 75°F to 89°F. During April and May, it is extremely hot and visitors usually avoid those months. You can also plan a visit to Udonthani during June, July and August. There is no doubt that during those months the weather is hot but it is bearable and prices in hotels and restaurants are lower than in peak tourist season.

Places to Visit in Udonthani
Udonthani has over 300 Buddhist temples to choose from. Doi Suthep is the most popular out of these. It was built in 1383 and gives an excellent view of the city. The other temples worth visiting are Chiang Man, which is the oldest temple in Udonthani, Phra Sila, which is popular for its marble Buddha, and Phra Satang Man for its crystal Buddha.

Besides temples, you can spend time with your family at the Udonthani Zoo, Doi Inthanon National Park, Dao Cave, the Night Bazaar, Sirikit Botanical Gardens and Phrathat Doi Suthep. Udonthani is also popular for its nightlife. If you are a cooking or dancing enthusiast, you can take a Thai cooking or Thai dancing course at the local bars and cafes.

Just 47 kilometers east of Udonthani is Thailand's premier Bronze Age excavation at Ban Chiang, which is a world renowned archaeological site.

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