Nakhon Ratchasima Province (Khorat)

Map of Thailand highlighting Nakhon Ratchasima Province


The city of various Khmer ruins and the famous statue of Khun Ying Mo named Nakhon Ratchasima or commonly as "Korat" is situated on a plateau, about 260 kilometers northest of Bangkok. The city itself serves as the Gateway to the Northeastern Region.
Nakhon Ratchasima, often shortened to Korat or Khorat, is one of the north-eastern provinces (changwat) of Thailand. Neighboring provinces are (clockwise, from north) Chaiyaphum, Khon Kaen, Buriram, Sa Kaeo, Prachinburi, Nakhon Nayok, Saraburi, Lopburi.
The capital of the province is The City of Nakhon Ratchasima located in Mueang Nakhon Ratchasima District, also called Korat or Khorat.
Monument of Thao Suranari or Khun Ying Mo is situated in front of the old gate of "Pratu Chumpon" on the west side of the city. This monument was erected in 1934 to commemorate the heroic deed of Khun Ying Mo, wife of the Deputy Governor of Khorat during the reign of King Rama III, who managed to save the city from the invasion of the Laotian army led by Prince Anuwong of Vientiane. Every year from March 23 to April 3, there is a cerebration to honour this statue which draws thousands of people from town and neighbouring provinces.
In 1825 Chao Anuwongse of Loas aimed to free Vientiane from subordination to Bangkok. Upon hearing the wrong news, that there would be a war between Thailand and England. Chao Anuwongse took a chance to rebel against King Rama III; he moved his troops to take over Nakhon Ratchasima. The Deputy Governor of Nakhon Ratchasima and his brave wife named Mo, persuaded people to get together and fight with the Loas troops. They could kill thousands of Vientiane soldiers and helped Thai troops to drive Loas back to Vientiane. King Rama III rewarded Lady Mo by giving the noble title as Tao Suranari

Wat Phra Narai Maharat on Prachak Road houses and image of Narayana (Hindu God) made of sandstone. This statue is considered the major sacred object of the city. The City Pillar is also enshrined in this temple.

Maha Viravong National Museum, opposite the city hall, exhibits various arts objects and artifacts donated to Somdet Maha Viravong such as sand stone Buddha images of Khmer and Ayutthaya periods, bronze Buddha images, different sizes ceramics and wood carvings from ancient monasteries. Open everday except Mondays and Tuesdays from 9.00 - 16.00 hrs.

Ban Prasat Archaeological Site is 42 kilometers away from Nakhon Ratchasima along the Nakhon Ratchasima - Khon Kaen route. Skeletons, ornaments, and artifacts and potteries were discovered here. It is presumed that this area has continuously been inhabited during the past 3,000 years up to present.

Prasat Hin Phimai is the largest sandstone sanctuary in Thailand almost situated in the center of Phimai Ancient city which carries a rectangular shape of 665 meters wide and 1,030 meters long. The Sanctuary has been magnificiently restored and renovated ruins and has been preserved as a National Historical Park.
The principal sanctuary is a tower (Phrasat) surrounded by four porches with an ante-chamber leading into each porch. On the terraces of the pyramidal roof, which is supported by Garudas, guardian figures, are interspersed with Nagas.
Of special interest is a carved stone door-lintel depicting a divine figure, dressed in an elephant skin worn upside down, who dances on a pair of prostrate figures, on either side of this figure are rows of seated Buddha images dressed in royal attire, while below them are rows of dancing celestial figures.
Also on the way to Phimai is the Phimai National Museum housing valuable historical objects and archaeological remains found in the region.
Other Khmer ruins within Nakhon Ratchasima include Prasat Hin Phanom Wan located about 20 kilometers from town, Prasat Hin Nang Ram Wan located about 80 kilometers northeast of Khorat in Amphoe Prathai, Prang Ban Ku and Prang Sida, all of which are similar to Phimai ruins but somewhat smaller.

Khao Yai National Park

    Khao Yai National Park at km. 165.5 on Highway No.2 covers an area of 2,168 in four provinces: Nakhon Ratchasima, Nakhon Nayok, Saraburi, and Phachin Buri. The Park comprises various mountains, two important rivers of Lam Takhong and Nakhon Nayok, with many rare species of fauna and flora and over 20 waterfalls. Accommodations near the national park are available.

Kao Yai National Park
Evergreen Forest Hill at Kao Yai National Park, Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand.

The performance of historic drama during the Phimai Festival




The province is located on the western end of the Khorat Plateau, separated from the Chao Phraya river valley by the Phetchabun and Dong Phaya Yen mountain ranges. Two national parks are in the province - the Khao Yai in the west and the Thab Lan in the south.

Nakhon Ratchasima, or "Khorat," is a large province on the northeastern plateau and acts as a gateway to other provinces in the Northeast. It is 259 kilometres from Bangkok and has an area of around 20,494 square kilometres, making it the biggest province in Thailand. The province is rich in Khmer culture and has a long history.


Climate data for Nakhon Ratchasima
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high ?C (?F) 30.9
Average low ?C (?F) 17.9
Precipitation mm (inches) 5.9
Source: World Weather Information Service [1]


The area around Korat was already an important center in the times of the Khmer empire in the 11th century, as can be seen by the temple ruins in the Phimai historical park. The new walled- city with moat, Nakhon Ratchasima, was built in the seventeenth century by order of the Ayutthaya King, Narai, as the easternmost 'command post', guarding the Kingdom's border, and supervise its Lao and Cambodian 'vassals'. It took over this duty during the Bangkok Period, and became the stronghold against the Lao incursion in the nineteenth century, although it was first seized. Even from the creation of Siam as a 'nation' at the end of nineteenth century, Nakhon Ratchasima continued to be the most important political and economic center in the northeastern region. In the late nineteenth century, the railroad first arrived and Korat became the junction of two main rail lines in the Northeastern, Isan, region. In 1933 it was the stronghold of the royalist troops, leading the abortive attempt, known as Boworadej Revolt, rebelling against new democratic government in Bangkok. In the seventies, the city was again the site of US bases operating in the Vietnam War.


Provincial seal

A monument of Thao Suranaree or Khun Ying MO (17711852) situated in front of the old gate of "Prau Chumpon". The Great Heroine of Korat ; Thao Suranaree, wife of the Deputy Governor of Korat during the reign of King Rama III. In 1826s Khun Ying Mo, managed to save the city from the invasion of the Laotian army led by Prince Anouvong of Vientiane. King Rama III conferred the title of Thao Suranaree on Khun Ying Mo, as well as conferring additional titles honouring her bravery.

Provincial Tree

Plants sathorn.jpg Sa-Thorn (Millettia leucantha Kurz)

Provincial Motto

  • Land of brave women, Fine Silk material, Khorat Rice noodle, Phimai historical park, and Dan Kwian Ceramics.
  • Administrative divisions

    Map of Amphoe

    The province is subdivided into 32 districts (amphoe). The districts are further subdivided into 263 subdistricts (tambon) and 3743 villages (muban).

    1. Mueang Nakhon Ratchasima
    2. Khon Buri
    3. Soeng Sang
    4. Khong
    5. Ban Lueam
    6. Chakkarat
    7. Chok Chai
    8. Dan Khun Thot
    9. Non Thai
    10. Non Sung
    11. Kham Sakaesaeng
    12. Bua Yai
    13. Prathai
    14. Pak Thong Chai
    15. Phimai
    16. Huai Thalaeng
    17. Chum Phuang
    18. Sung Noen
    19. Kham Thale So
    20. Sikhio
    21. Pak Chong
    22. Nong Bun Mak
    23. Kaeng Sanam Nang
    24. Non Daeng
    25. Wang Nam Khiao
    26. Thepharak
    27. Mueang Yang
    28. Phra Thong Kham
    29. Lam Thamenchai
    30. Bua Lai
    31. Sida
    32. Chaloem Phra Kiat
    Districts General Information
    class Name Area
    Distance to
    Provincial Hall
    Establish Subdistrict
    Male Female Total
    Mueang Nakhon Ratchasima
    755.596 0 1895 25 243 212,627 221,211 433,838
    Dan Khun Thot
    1,428.14 84 1908 16 220 62,571 63,347 125,918
    Bua Yai
    305.028 101 1886 10 121 41,855 42,278 84,133
    Pak Thong Chai
    1,374.32 34 1910 16 213 56,716 58,950 115,666
    896.871 60 1900 12 208 64,421 66,024 130,445
    1,247.07 45 1955 12 169 60,898 61,163 122,061
    Pak Chong
    1,825.17 85 1955 12 217 91,146 91,685 182,831
    Khon Buri
    1,816.85 58 1939 12 152 46,086 47,167 93,253
    501.672 40 1953 8 108 34,441 34,643 69,084
    Chok Chai
    503.917 30 1905 10 126 37,297 39,223 76,520
    Non Sung
    676.981 37 1897 16 195 62,639 65,374 128,013
    600.648 97 1961 13 148 38,622 38,761 77,282
    Sung Noen
    782.853 36 1901 11 125 38,429 40,181 78,610
    Huai Thalaeng
    495.175 65 1961 10 120 37,443 37,131 74,574
    Chum Phuang
    540.567 98 1959 9 130 40,918 41,038 82,161
    Soeng Sang
    1,200.24 88 1976 6 84 33,733 33,302 67,032
    454.737 79 1938 10 155 40,052 41,076 81,128
    Non Thai
    541.994 28 1900 10 131 36,126 37,592 73,718
    Kham Sakaesaeng
    297.769 50 1968 7 72 21,423 21,753 43,176
    Kaeng Sanam Nang
    107.258 130 1986 5 56 18,782 19,054 37,836
    Wang Nam Khiao
    1,130.00 70 1992 5 83 20,416 20,503 40,910
    Ban Lueam
    218.875 85 1976 4 39 10,620 10,732 21,351
    Nong Bunmak
    590.448 52 1983 9 104 29,424 29,316 58,740
    357.465 90 1995 4 58 12,002 11,451 23,453
    Phra Thong Kham
    359.522 45 1996 5 74 21,260 21,680 42,940
    162.825 85 1997 5 50 12,087 12,133 24,220
    Bua Lai
    106.893 103 1997 4 45 12,374 12,450 24,824
    Non Daeng
    193.407 30 1989 5 65 12,597 12,984 25,581
    Kham Thale So
    203.605 22 1966 5 46 14,091 14,021 28,112
    Mueang Yang
    255.522 110 1995 4 44 14,321 14,038 28,359
    Lam Thamenchai
    308.457 120 1996 4 59 16,114 15,953 32,067
    Chaloem Phra Kiat
    254.093 18 1996 5 61 16,966 17,411 34,377


    Roads Highway 2 (Mittraphap Road) is the main route that connects 9 districts in Nakhon Ratchasima including Muang district. This route also connects Nakhon Ratchasima to Saraburi and Khon Kaen provinces. As, Highway No. 24 links Si Khio district from the Highway 2 to Pak Thongcha, Chok Chai and Nong Bunnak districts and to Burirum province.

    Rail systems The railway system in Nakhon Ratchasima is on both north-eastern routes from Bangkoks Hua Lampong central terminal. Nakhon Ratchasima has 8 main railway stations.

    Bus service Mini-bus and bus routes operate in the city and nearby areas. There are non air-conditioned buses from the provincial town which go to every district. As for travel to nearby provinces, there are both air and non air-conditioned ones.

    Songthaew (public passenger pick-up vehicle) Songthaew or public passenger pick-up vehicle is the most popular mode of public transportation in all the town districts. These run on fixed routes.

    Taxi Taxis are plentiful, clean, safe, and inexpensive in Korat. They can be found at taxi stands in the city areas or hailed on the streets. There are also certain taxis that can be requested by phone, however, the fare is slightly higher than regular taxis. An increasing number of taxi drivers nowadays speak some English which may prove extremely useful for first-time visitors. The fare system is based on both distance and time. Fares begin at 30 Bath for the first 2 kilometers.

    Motorbike-taxi The motorbike taxis are found mainly in the town areas and are used mainly for short distances.

    Airport Nakhon Ratchasima has one airport but as of June 2007, it no longer services any flights. The nearest airport is in Buriram and has flights to and from Bangkok.


    Nakhon Ratchasima or Khorat, is Thailands largest province and the Gateway to Isaan (Gateway to the North-East). It also has beautiful National Parks, with many forests, mountains, waterfalls, and reservoirs. Furthermore, it is well known for a variety of quality handicrafts that visitors can choose from. Regarding tourism, locals Thais make up the majority. Most foreigners who visit the north-east view Khorat as just a stepping stone and pass right through without taking the opportunity to tour this province with its interesting and diverse history, architecture and natural beauty.

    A large rariety of Dan Kwian's ceramics

      Dan Kwian situated on Highway No.24, about 14 kilometers from the city of Nakhon Ratchasima is a village noted for the unique pottery widely used for interior and outdoor decoration. The clay at Dan Kwian has a specially marvellous quality of tough, ductile texture and the color of rust which are beyond comparison and the quantity is fantastic. Such clay cannot be found anywhere else but Dan Kwian and when added with proper heating process and attractive design, the earthwares are irresistable.

    Lam Phra Phloeng Dam is situated in Amphoe Pak Thong Chai on a side road some 28 kilometers from the main highway. From the Dam, boats can also be hired to go another 23 kilometers up the reservoir to Pak Thong Chai waterfall or Khlong Ki waterfall. Here is another spot for retreat and relaxation.

  • Festival and Celebrations Manual in Nakhon Ratchasima.
    November 13-15, 1998
    At Prasat Hin Phimai, Nakhon Ratchasima (Khorat)
    Featuring a light & sound presentation at Prasat Hin Phimai, local art and cultural performances, cooking and folk-song competitions, local products sales and exhibitions and traditional long-boat races.

    Click here to view Nakhon Phanom Province map bigger.

    : Hotel & Resorts in Nakhon Ratchasima Province (Khorat)
    : Hotel & Resorts in Thailand

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