Many travelers - tourists and Thais alike like to visit the popular destinations in Thailand such as Chiang Mai/Chiang Rai/Pai in the north or the islands in the south. The region of Isaan in the North East, however, is often left out.
I also had never visited this area so when the Tourism Authority of Thailand announced that they were taking 6 lucky bloggers to Buriram in North East, I was very interested. Indeed I was one of the lucky ones.
So one must wonder what is there to do in Buriram other than rice fields and villages. I also thought the same at first but I was quite impressed with what I experienced on my trip as my expectations were more than surpassed.
After 4 amazing days in the province, these are my top 5 reasons to visit Buriram.
Khmer temples & ruins
The main and most prominent highlight of Buriram are the Khmer temples and ruins, namely Prasat Muang Tam and Phanom Rung Historical Park.
This is where Lord Shiva and Vishnu were worshiped. The ruins are restored but still have preserve their ancient look. They are very beautiful to look at and admire. The intricacy of the design is magnificent. Although not as grand as Ayutthaya or Angkor, the Khmer ruins of Buriram are still very much majestic.
Sports and action
If you love sports and extreme action, Buriram is a good choice for that. First we tried Go Kart at the Silachai Go Kart. It was a lot of fun as we raced down the track. It was my first time so I carefully drove, especially at the sharp turns. Fast but not too fast.
One of my friend crashed his Go Kart. TWICE. IN THE SAME PLACE. It was quite funny.
If I remember correctly, the ticket price is 250 Baht for four laps.
I-Mobile Stadium / Thunder Castle
This is the symbol of the city of Buriram and the future of tourism. The Thunder Castle is home to Buriram United Football club. The stadium can hold up to 32,000 fans. I'm not a soccer fan but I wondered on a full house how electrifying and exciting it would be over here.
Thanks to TAT we got to go inside the stadium and even check out the player's locker room.
Buriram United / Chang International Circuit
Probably the most fun and exciting thing on our trip was a visit to the car racing circuit. Truly it was an electric atmosphere as the cars sped down the tracks. The sound the cars made made my hair stand and gave me goosebumps!
Although there weren't many people on that day and the food vendors were not open, we felt a fraction of the buzz that this place could have on main events.
One day I would like to return on full capacity crowd and witness an electrifying event.
Everyone who loves Thai food must love Isaan/North-Eastern food. We don't know the names of the dishes but there are so many to like. I will just let the pictures tell the story.
We had a lot of food in Buriram and each dish was so delicious. I especially love spicy food. Even the mushroom salad like this was so good.
According to my friend, a few years ago there weren't many nice hotels in Buriram. That's not what I saw. Hospitality and accommodation is up and coming in this province.
We stayed at two beautiful boutique hotels/resorts. First was Hotel de l'amour
The second one we stayed at was Hotel Cresco.
The best thing at this hotel is their gym! They had everything you want - free weights, machines, medicine balls, monkey bar, Muay Thai gear and a lot more.
Play La Ploen
This is a 3-in-1 destination in Buriram. Play La Ploen is a boutique resort, a floral sanctuary garden and an adventure camp all wrapped in one.
The entry ticket to the garden and adventure zone is only 150 Baht while a stay at the hotel ranges between 2,500 - 3,500 Baht per night.
We were given a special tour of the resort and garden but unfortunately didn't have time to try out the adventure zone.
The garden or the greenhouse consists of 6 houses or showrooms where different types of flowers and plants are on exhibition. Each house has its own theme, for example house 1 is all about seasonal Thai plants.
House 2 is the prehistoric zone. House 3 shows all the colors of the nature. Here people can see a display of exotic, beautifully colored Bromeliads and Carnivorous plants. This exhibition is divided into ‘land’ and ‘water’ areas. And so on.
For more info on please visit: http://www.playlaploen.com/flora-en/.
Be sure to take this tour if you love plants and beautiful flowers.
We also got to do a cooking class where we made Som Tum and fish cakes. It was a really fun experience. Of course we got to eat after!
So would you visit Buriram? I'd love to go back especially for the sports and the food.