While Nakhon Si Thammarat is less known among foreign tourists, it is home to numerous spectacular attractions comparable to many other places in its region. We have prepared an ultimate guide on must-visit spots in Nakhon Si Thammarat for you to know a little more about this lovely Southern city.
Let’s check out these 5 can’t miss attractions: Kopi Coffee Cafe, Suchart Subsin’s Shadow Puppet House, Kiriwong Village, Khao Thong Viewpoint, and Khanom Beach.
Kopi Coffee Cafe
What could be better than starting your trip with a yummy breakfast at Kopi Coffee Cafe? Established in 1942, Kopi Coffee Cafe, aka Kopi 1942, has been a locals’ favorite breakfast place. However, you may also come here for lunch and dinner.
Decorated in a colonial style, it serves old-style coffee, traditional tea, dim sum, and Thai-Chinese food. A light tea set will be given to all customers as soon as they are seated.
The must-order savory dishes here are Broiled Pork Rib on Rice and Bak Kut Teh, a peppery herbal soup. You have a choice between pork rib and chicken for the soup.
Bak Kut Teh (Cr. teerapat.com)
You should also try their Patongo, or deep-fried dough sticks dipped in condensed milk or pandan custard. As they are freshly made, they remain crispy outside and soft inside.
Patongo (Cr. teerapat.com)
Since you are at the coffee cafe, you can’t miss drinking their signature Kopi, a traditional coffee with milk. For non-coffee menus, iced cocoa, iced Thai milk tea, and orange juice are highly recommended.
Drinks At Kopi 1942 (Cr. wongnai.com)
Opening Hours: Daily, 6.30 AM – 4 PM
Location (first branch): Pak Nakhon Rd, Pak Nakhon
Suchart Subsin’s Shadow Puppet House
The Shadow Puppet House is one of the most significant cultural attractions in Nakhon Si Thammarat. It showcases the art of nang talung, traditional shadow puppetry from southern Thailand.
At this place, you can visit Nang Talung Museum featuring numerous shadow local and international puppet displays with brief descriptions in English. They are from all regions of Thailand and other countries such as India, Indonesia, and Turkey. You can also find musical instruments used in nang talung performances.
Nang Talung Museum (Cr. cbtthailand.dasta.or.th)
Moreover, there is a demonstration of how shadow puppets are made, from cutting the cowhide leather, carving the pattern, to filling in colors. This is indeed a rare and precious opportunity!
Another main highlight is Nang Talung Theatre, where you can watch shadow puppetry shows performed by locals. The play usually contains great takeaways for viewers to think about.
Nang talung (shadow puppetry show)
(Cr. thai.tourismthailand.org )
If you want to purchase some exquisite handmade shadow puppets as souvenirs, don’t miss visiting their gift shop!
Ticket fee: Free Admission
Opening Hours: Daily, 9 AM – 4 PM
Surrounded by mountains and nature, Kiriwong Village is known for the best ozone area in Thailand and breathtaking views. This must-visit attraction has a wide variety of fun activities for you to do as well.
Staying at a homestay in the village is one of the most popular activities here. Not only will you get to fully immerse in nature, but you also get to experience the local lifestyle. You would not want to skip the meal prepared by the host as all dishes are delicious authentic local food!
Famous landmarks in the village for some instagrammable photos are Kiriwong rope bridge and Ban Kiriwong bridge.
Ban Kiriwong bridge (Cr. prwowwow.com)
Other can’t-miss activities are cycling around the village, playing in Nan Hin Tha Ha river, chilling at the cafe, and visiting the morning market.
Apart from handcrafted jewelry and batik clothes, other must-buy souvenirs at Kiriwong Village are mangosteen-related products like herbal skincare and chewy mangosteen paste. Did you know that one of the tastiest mangosteens in Thailand is grown in this small village?
Chewy mangosteen paste (Cr. keewong99.blogspot.com)
Khao Thong Viewpoint
Another landmark of Nakhon Si Thammarat is Khao Thong Viewpoint. One of the famous photo spots here is at the large sign saying The Best Ozone In Thailand.
Take some time to walk around, watch the impressive natural scenery and breathe in fresh and pure air! You can also check out the beautiful waterfall below.
The final must-visit destination is Khanom Beach, home to more than 50 pink dolphins! It is the only place in Thailand where you can spot pink dolphins or humpback dolphins.
To visit them, you will need to take a long-tailed boat at Laem Prathap. The best time for a visit is before 8 AM when they are out looking for food. You should avoid days with a high chance of rain too.
Khanom beach is also renowned for crystal clear seawater and colorful coral reefs. Thus, it is a perfect place for scuba diving, snorkeling, and swimming as well!
Besides the 5 must-visit attractions mentioned above, there are many more interesting attractions in Nakhon Si Thammarat waiting for you to explore. Who knows? This Southern city may become your new favorite place in Thailand!