Nakhon Pathom Pagoda

This impressive pagoda is 120 mt high and it has a 234 mt long circumference at the base. It is one of the largest (for sure the highest) in the world and it is the holiest buddhist monuments in Thailand.

The original building is more than 2000 years old and it dates back to the Dvaravati Buddhist period. In the 19th century the original bowl shaped pagoda has been covered by the actual huge orange tiled chedi.

The Phra Pathom Chedi is centrally located in Nakhon Pathom and it's impossible to miss it. Around the Chedi complex there is a lot of space, with some parks, in order to let the crowds of pilgrims easily reach the Pagoda. In the evening there are often some thai art performances in this area, especially during festivals.

By Bus
BKS public buses (lines 83 and 997) leave from Bangkok's Southern Bus Terminal. The trip costs 40 baht in first class and takes about an hour in good traffic. Buses go every 10 minutes from 04:10 until 21:30.

There are also 2nd class buses to Kanchanaburi every 15-30 minutes.

By Train
Trains from Bangkok's Thonburi Train Station to Kanchanaburi/Nam Tok stop at Nakhon Pathom along the way.


Food stall near the Chedi

The Night Market [in the area of Pagoda or Chedi (aka ONG-PRA)] is located on the west side of the pagoda. There are many food hawkers or food stalls where you can enjoy a variety of food. It's a cheap and clean open air food court, open 18:00-23:00. Don't forget to drop in at Flying Ice Cream - you'll be fascinated by how ice cream flies. You can also sample what is reputadly the best Khao Lam (sticky rice and coconut milk cooked in bamboo) in all of Thailand.

* There is a restaurant with no English sign on Thanon Ratchadamnoen, a few minutes walk towards Sanam Chan from the Chedi. Transliterated the name is roughly Ratchaphreuk. If heading towards Sanam Chan it is on the left, and is recognisable by it's plastic table and chairs in a comfortable beer garden. Sometimes the place has karaoke. The food is good traditional Thai, but you will be tested on your knowledge of Thai cuisine as there is no English menu.

* Any Order (Raan A-haan Taam Sung), Rajdamnern Rd (towards Sanamchan Palace from Chedi, at the far corner of the first block on the right, opposite side of 7-11, if you face towards Sanamchan). Clean and cheap. They provide English Menu with their signature dishes. Open daily until midnight to 1AM.

* Yuer Mai, Rajdamnern Rd (around 5 mins on the left hand side, opposite side of Catholic Church). Nice and simple Thai dishes, air-conditioning.

All the hotels in Nakhon Pathom are like hotels in most other provincial capitals - designed for Thais, and straight out of the 1970s. At the Nakhon Inn, for example, they haven't changed their brochure since the early 1980s, and the photos of the rooms still match exactly to the rooms you'll stay in. That said, they are comfortable and prices are very reasonable.

    * Mitsampant Hotel, 2/11 Rachadamnern Road, Nakhon Pathom, 73000 (above the Mitsampant electric appliance store, right next to the chedi on the West side and across Shell gas station); tel. +66-34252010. Nice and clean, very friendly owners who speak fluent English. Rooms from 200 baht a night. A handout of local map in English is available for free for all tourists.

    * Mitpaisal Hotel, 120/30 Prayapan Road, Nakhon Pathom, 73000. tel. +66-34242422. Six-storey hotel located close to the air-con bus station to Bangkok and the fruit market, less than a quarter mile to the north from the chedi. Better than Mitsampant and Nakhon Inn, but the price is still very affordable. The room and bathroom are very clean. A handout of the local map in English is available for free with very helpful insight of area of attractions including very descriptive of transportation to other popular provinces.

    * Nakhon Inn, 55 Rajivithi Road, Nakhon Pathom, 73000. tel. +66 (0) 34 251 152. Large hotel in a small cul-de-sac off the road which the Bangkok Buses travel down. Very close to the Chedi, and a 15 minute walk to Sanam Chan. An internet cafe is located in a shop outside. Opt for a room which overlooks the Chedi, as the rooms on the other side sits directly above a school - you'll be woken at the crack of dawn by the screaming chorus of Thai kids being dropped off by their parents. Rooms have clean bathrooms and beds, a fridge, there is a hotel restaurant and the building has a lift. The reception staff have limited English. Rooms from 300 baht a night.

    * Whale Hotel, Rajivithi Road, Nakhon Pathom, 73000. This large hotel also has an attached restaurant and nightclub. It is the best situated hotel to visit Silpakorn University and Sanam Chan Palace grounds, however it is a bit far from the Chedi. It is also the priciest hotel in town.