Hua Hin general information
Hua Hin is not as internationally recognized as some beach resort destinations like Pattaya, Phuket and Koh Samui. Hua Hin is still regarded by some as a lesser known beach holiday destination when people consider taking their holidays in, or making a life-changing permanent move to, Thailand. However, that is already changing, and on a grand scale.
The Royal beach resort destination of Hua Hin is growing. And, it is growing fast. With new infrastructure and social amenities being constructed all over the town and on its outskirts, such as for example, new roads, bridges, water supplies, new dams, floating markets, restaurants, bars, clubs, shopping malls and hospitals, Hua Hin is fast becoming a noteworthy destination in its own right. There are more than enough amenities, attractions and sports here for all types of tourists and expatriates, too.
Hua Hin, a town within the province of Prachuab Khiri Khan, is located approximately 180 kilometres south of Bangkok. It is located on the western side of the Gulf of Thailand. You can fly direct to Hua Hin from Bangkok in around 35 minutes from Suvarnabhumi International Airport, Bangkok. Otherwise, you can jump on a taxi and arrive in Hua Hin from Bangkok in around 2 hours and 20 minutes. The town is not too spread out so it is very pleasant to walk around it enjoying all the services it has to offer.
If you are in no rush at all, and fancy a trip that is Thai-style with beautiful views of the countryside and around 4 hours long, you can even jump on the Thai single track train. Expect to see the odd chicken or goat! Or, if you are travelling light, you can jump on the minivan at Victory Monument located in the centre of Bangkok, which costs only 180 Thai Baht. With a population of around 90,000 people, Hua Hin has an excellent mixture of Thai and foreign nationals – some of whom are on holiday and some of whom are expatriates. Hua Hin is friendly, safe, easy to navigate and very attractive with plenty of trees, flowers and plants throughout the town, on its streets and on its road systems.
The climate in Hua Hin is tropical. It is usually humid with very pleasant temperatures and not too much rain. Although, when it rains here, it is truly spectacular. The cool season begins around November and ends around February time. The weather during these times is very pleasant and at night the temperature will typically drop to around 18 degrees centigrade. From around March to April onwards the weather gets hotter with the monsoon rains arriving anywhere around June time. The rain will come, usually in short spells, in either the mornings or afternoons, right up until the beginning of November. The rain, when it comes, is usually extremely heavy – everything gets saturated within minutes. Then, within minutes, the sun dries out everything just as quickly.
Inoculations against tropical diseases like malaria are not required for this part of Thailand. Mosquitoes are present but they do not pose a major problem and basic creams from chemists are a more than adequate defense against them. It is probably advisable to keep covered up with loose fitting clothing when going on nights out in the town or for walks along the beach. In fact, Hua Hin does not really suffer from tropical diseases. The town is very clean and well cared for. If, you were to have a small accident or get sick, there are some excellent medical facilities. The Bangkok Hospital, San Paulo Hospital, Hua Hin Hospital and Polyclinic all have excellent services and English-speaking doctors and nurses.
Hua Hin is well known for its beaches and its connections with the King of Thailand’s summer palace. However, it is also famous for other attractions too. Khao neow ma-muang – otherwise known as mango and sticky rice, is allegedly the best in Thailand. There is a small street stall located directly opposite the Hilton Hotel on the main walking street. Hua Hin is also famous for its 2 national parks: Khao Sam Roi Yot – meaning 300 mountain peaks and Pala-U national park. Khao Sam Roi Yot is located 45 minutes’ drive south of Hua Hin. Pala-U is located about 1 hour’s drive West of Hua Hin, and is right on the border with Burma.
The main part of Hua Hin’s town centre is often missed by tourists who tend to gravitate to the area east of the main Bangkok to Phuket road where all the restaurants, bars and beaches are. If you travel across the main road to the West you can find some great Thai markets including a covered ‘wet’ market. The wet market is quite amazing and the products on offer there are incredibly diverse – from exotic fruits and vegetables to live fish, nipping crabs and hopping frogs!
Hua Hin is quite different from destinations like Phuket, Koh Samui, Chiang Mai and Pattaya. It is relaxed and still retains a sense of community. Thai people from Bangkok love to visit Hua Hin because of its charm. It is one of the lesser known resorts regarding foreigners. If you want to visit a Thai resort that makes you feel like you are really in tropical Thailand, Hua Hin is recommended.