Guide to Nong Khai
We’ve stayed almost 4 months in Nong Khai. We love this little town and if/when we come back to Thailand we will make it our base in the region. What makes this town so unique? It’s pretty, clean, peaceful, is not touristy (you may find yourself saying “hey look, there’s a white tourist!”) yet it has just enough of an expat population to ensure a few of the basic comforts of home. Most importantly, it hasn’t lost its authentic small-town Thai feel.
This guide is meant to help short-term or slow travellers who intend on spending anything from a day to a few months in Nong Khai. I’ll cover how to get to here, accommodation, and food options (including our favorite restaurants). I’ll also tell you what you should see and do while in Nong Khai.
Related: Photos of Nong Khai, Thailand. You’ll see why we love this town…
Air – Most people get to Nong Khai by flying from Bangkok to Udon Thani. Nok Air, Air Asia, and Thai Lion Air fly from Bangkok’s Don Muang airport, while Thai and Bangkok Airways fly out of Suvarnabhumi (Bangkok’s international airport). All do the Bangkok–Udon Thani Route a couple of times a day. Flying time is 1 hour. We book all plane, train, bus and private transport using 12Go Asia. They’re the best booking site in Asia.
Once at the airport in Udon Thani, you can take a minibus to Nong Khai. Minibuses cost 200 Baht/person. For a taxi you will be quoted 900 Baht (note: We paid 600 Baht when we left Nong Khai by booking a driver through the guesthouse. So you may be able to get a better rate if you pre-arrange your taxi).
Train. Daily trains do the Bangkok-Nong Khai run. We know a few people who prefer this to taking the plane. They recommend getting a 1st class sleeper cabin (tip: bring warm clothing, they really pump up the AC).
Train with 1st class sleeper cabins leave Bangkok at 8 pm arriving in Nong Khai at 7:45 AM.
Train with 1st class sleeper cabins leave Nong Khai at 6:20 pm arriving in Bangkok at 6:00 AM.
Again, look at the 12Go Asia link that I have above for all transportation options.
Note: This post dates back to 2015 and prices listed below have most likely changed.
Guide to Nong Khai, Thailand – Accommodations
1. Pikul Apartment Hotel. This is where we stayed for 3 ½ months and is the preferred accommodation option in Nong Khai for slow travellers (and the only one we came across that offered monthly rates). The location is perfect, the building modern and attractive, the rooms large. There is a fridge in the room but no kitchen (as is the case for all Thai guesthouses that we’ve come across). Pikul is not in any way luxurious: the furniture is beat up and they could do a better job with the upkeep of the rooms.
Rate: 6500 Baht/month plus electricity (approx 1200bt/month) plus water (approx 120 bt/mo). Get everything in writing. If you are here for a month or two Pikul is the place to stay.
The guesthouses listed below offer accommodation charged on a nightly basis. We went to a few inquiring about monthly rates but had no luck. 400/Baht per night seems to be the going base rate with higher rates depending on amenities such as Air Conditioning and room size. Note that all rooms usually include a fridge but not a kitchen. You’ll notice that all the places I recommend are in Central Nong Khai – this is the place to stay if a short term visitor. Don’t make the mistake of staying outside the center.
2. Mut Mee guesthouse is an institution in town and the preferred spot for short stays. Their location is ideal, with a pretty garden and good restaurant (covered below) overlooking the river. It is the place to come for tourist information and services. You can arrange Visa runs to Vientiane here and even exchange Baht for USD. They also offer yoga classes, have a book store, as well as their own boat for nightly river cruises (covered below). Their website offers lots of good tourist information.
3. Siri Guesthouse is right around the corner from Mut Mee and is a quiet option for those wanting a reprieve from the more popular neighbor. Very clean with nice facilities and the people seem friendly.
4. There are a bunch of Guesthouses within very close proximity along Rim Khong Road. The first of these is the Rim Khong Guesthouse. Very nice building and we inquired about monthly rates (they said no and didn’t seem very friendly about it). A shame as the facilities look sparkling and the location is perfect.
5. A few steps down the street is the very popular Ruan Thai Guesthouse. Gets good reviews. Right next to Ruan Thai is Jing Joe Restaurant (covered later in the food section) which also rents out rooms.
6. There are a couple of guesthouses directly on the promenade and both look good. The first of these is the Baan Sabai Rim Khong Guesthouse. Very pretty spot and the balconies have views over the promenade and the Mekong.
7. Just a little further down the promenade is the Pan Guesthouse. Like the Baan Sabai Rim Kong, it is very clean. The only downside to these two guesthouses is that it can at times get loud along the promenade at night. Otherwise they are both great spots to enjoy the views, especially on Saturday when the night market is in full swing.
Guide to Nong Khai, Thailand – Eating
Those staying longer-term will want to pick up supplies at the big Tesco Lotus store. It is a 10 minute Tuk-tuk ride from the center (going rate is 60 baht). The other place we liked to pick up supplies was the German Bakery (covered below).
Most travellers will frequent the many restaurants in Central Nong Khai which are quite affordable compared to other places in Thailand. We would eat out for lunch every day and if I averaged it out the cost would add up to about 300 Baht for two main courses, a shared salad, and two beers (ie. 150 Baht, or about 4.50 USD each). I’m not talking about street food, I’m talking about some nice sit-down restaurants.
Here are some of our favorite restaurants:
1. Macky’s Riverside Restaurant opened up on the promenade during our stay and quickly became one of our favorites. Very good Thai and Western food and a fantastic location right on the promenade. If you go, start with a shrimp-cake or fish-cake salad. Really good. Our preferred main dishes were chicken (or tofu) with basil served with rice. The Masaman Curry is also very good. We loved the ambiance of this place, especially on Saturday nights when the activity of the market is right at the doorstep of the restaurant. If you go to Macky’s say hi to Bart and tell him we recommended the restaurant (Note: We received no compensation for this or any other review).
2. Jing-Joe Restaurant has the best pizza as well as, in our opinion, the best breakfast (the ‘Big Aussie’) in Nong Khai. They are also the only place we came across that does delivery. We had pizza delivered to our door at least once a week. Our favorite pizzas: the Jing Joe Special (with all the toppings), the Hawaii pizza, the Pad Kapow Gai (Thai inspired pizza. Really good). Nice place and good people.
3. German Bakery. We love Rudi at the German Bakery. It is located about a 5 minute walk out of the center behind the hospital. Here you can have authentic German sausages (with real German mustard) served on a bun. Rudi’s bread is the best in Nong Khai and the same can be said for his salami and cheese. We would come here once a week and stock up with sandwich-making stuff. He makes a fantastic breakfast and his pate is incredible. If I called Jing Joe’s breakfast the best in town then I would call Rudi’s breakfast the most refined. But the best, the very best thing, is Rudi’s apple pie. It’s the best apple pie we’ve ever had. If I had a restaurant in town I would get Rudi to supply me with apple pies. Many people come here just for a beer or coffee and a piece of pie.
4. Daeng Namnuang Vietnamese restaurant is the most popular restaurant in Nong Khai and one of the most popular in all of Thailand. It is famous. It is also the largest employer in town. People come from out of town in tour buses to eat here. A Thai princess comes to Daeng Namnuang once a month. Locals love this place.
The menu is incredibly simple and lists only about 12 different items. But the food is fresh and tasty. Westerners may be confused on how to eat it. Order the ‘salad’ bowl pictured on the menu’s top left corner, it should accompany everything you eat. The trick is to wrap the pieces of whatever you’re eating with the salad and to dip the ensemble into the dipping sauces served you. Use your hands, it’s what everyone does. Most people order a variety of dishes and just mix a whole bunch of stuff together. We would usually end up eating here once a week.
5. Brendan and Noi’s is an expat favorite and features good local as well as Western food. My only criticism is that the food and level of service can vary greatly. We ate here a few times and swore that the food was the best in Nong Khai. We came back a few other times and the food was bland. Tell them if you like your Thai food spicy because they tend to err on the side of prudence…
6. Mut Mee Guesthouse has a very good restaurant which has the lowest prices of any of the places I’ve listed. I’ve mentioned before that the location is idyllic with beautiful gardens and a prime spot on the river. It is also the most popular guesthouse in town (see above). A unique vibe.
7. Cake at Toey – for the best coffee in town. It’s around the corner from Pikul so we came here almost every day for an ice cappuccino. Their American brownies (you’ll see them for sale on the counter) are good. Very nice setting, like Starbucks at one-third the price. We’ll miss this place.
The above were our favorites and by no means a complete list of restaurants in Nong Khai. If anyone reading this has any recommendations feel free to write a comment below. We might try them out the next time in Nong Khai.
Guide to Nong Khai, Thailand – What to see and Do
1. Sala Keoku, the sculpture park about 15 minutes outside the center, is the highlight of the area. Worth a couple of visits. I did a detailed post here with a lot of photos of this amazing attraction.
2. Markets. I’ve previously detailed the Saturday Night Market as well as Tha Sadet market. If you’re only coming to Nong Khai for a few days plan it so that you are here over a weekend. We love the Saturday market.
Related: People, Markets and crazy thing on wheels in Nong Khai, Thailand
3. Wat Pho Chai is the main temple in Nong Khai and is worth a visit. It is a bit of a walk from the center (it took us about 30 minutes) and it is worth taking a tuk-tuk (60 Baht).
4. Walk the 2.3 km down the river to Phra That Chedi. You’ll get good views of the river, see some pretty temples, and get a feel for the town outside its center. Late afternoon is best. You’ll see photos along this route on this post.
5. Visit some of the colourful temples in central Nong Khai. Wat Sri Muang, Sala Jao Phu Ya(the Chinese temple listed on the map at the top), and Wat Tung Sawang are worth a visit.
6. Take a cruise on the river. Leaves at 5pm every day from Mut Mee, lasts an hour and costs 100 baht.
7. Visit the aquarium. We didn’t go but have been told it is worth a visit, especially if visiting with kids.
Reminder: Before getting into a tuk-tuk make sure to negotiate the price beforehand.
The top 3 above are ‘must do’s, along with just walking along the promenade and enjoying the views and peacefulness of the river. This was for us was the highlight of Nong Khai and the reason why we fell in love with the town.
We hope this helps. Feel free to give us your thoughts on Nong Khai.
Related: Bbqboy’s Ultimate Guide to the Best of Thailand
Related: Our new favorite town in Thailand? Why we love Prachuap Khiri Khan (in Photos)
Related: A Month in Chiang Mai: thoughts, experiences, and some tips and recommendations
Ps. If you find our blog helpful, please consider using our links to book your flights, hotels, tours, and car rentals. Have a look at our Travel Resources page.
If you haven’t subscribed yet and want to get our posts and newsletters sent to your email, just insert your email address below
Chiang Rai have you been? I went 15 years ago
Might go back
Was sleep before
Nope, haven’t been. Northern Thailand very scenic!
Im going to check out Khon Kaen and Udon. U go there?
I transited through Nong Khai on my way to Vientiane, and now you are making me wish I had spent some time there! Next time. 🙂
I caught the day train from Bangkok, 2nd class sit-up. It was fairly comfortable and the conductor kept everything spotless. (Including making some rowdy drunk and shoving guys move to third class, it was the first time I had seen any Thais behaving poorly. The elderly monk sitting at the front – when he looked at them his face said it all!) I recommend the train trip for anyone who can sit for long periods of time – fantastic scenery and you will not go hungry due to all the food sellers that jump on every half hour or so.
Thanks Wendy! Have had lots of interesting experiences on Thai trains 🙂 Great way to meet people
Four months in Nong Khai, eh. I speak Canadian, Hitchhiked through a tiny corner in the east, back in the 80’s, went hunting with the Indians, Hitchhiked the US east west and back. The good old days, caught a lot of trout in Colorado. Got a scare west 42nd Manhattan, in those days, very different, tough. That was 4 months of adventure.
Nong Khai has been my second home since 1996. The good old days, they had sing song outdoor halls, that was a lot of fun, There where three falang restaurants/bars, a German, a Scandinavian and one for English speaking folks.
There was no promenade, the river bank was used to grow vegetables, it was real beautiful. The Vietnamese restaurant, you mention, in those days they had two tables on a sidewalk, just behind their present location.
I guess some of us “old timers” are not great fans of the promenade. But we generally are not rude about it, we like outsiders and our little town needs all the business we can get in the shape of tourism. The young people move to Bangkok, to study and to work and I suppose to party. Nong Khai is a bit of an old peoples place, it always was.
In recent years attracting more and more elderly expats, It’s like Miami was, a little fishing a little golf, a little food and on a good day one would have a good shit.
I love the boardwalk in Brooklyn, I caught my first fish, three herring, I was four and my grandad smiled and was proud, my grandmother wanted to cook them for dinner, I didn’t like my grandmother, no one did, she was scary.
So you like the promenade in Nong Khai. Here is a tip, two roads behind you have Prajak road. You won’t believe, the amazing restaurants, and the morning market, fresh vegetables, live freshwater fish, farmed, but still, better than the frozen stuff from Tasco/Lotus. Eggs, so what, eggs are eggs, quail eggs, tiny little things, duck eggs huge ones. Fruit and vegetables, it’s like an impressionist painting, and the characters who work there, they smile, they laugh they probably curse, my Thai is not that good. It’s life. Evening marked at the end of town, a bit more up market. Some of you are thinking, what about all the flies in the meat section. Fly soup coming to a Hipster place near you, if you live in LA or SF. Waiter, where are the flies in my fly soup. I miss the old days.
Nong Khai is not a pretty town, but the people are as good as they come, when they are young they are pretty, handsome and charming, when they grow old they become beautiful. Please visit us in Nong Khai, visit the people, and try our local specialties, cup noodle, narh just kidding. Salt baked fish, minced pork salad (laab moo) and sticky rice, wash your hands, we eat with our fingers, Peking duck, another local favorite, go figure. Som tam, a vegan papaya salad, I think it is best when quite spicy, but go slow, you will feel the bern next day.
We love Canadians, we used to have a guy named Bob, he was kinda quiet, and always smiling, I’m not sure, I think he was mostly stoned. Someone heard a rumor he got shot, not in Nong Khai, but back in Canada, it wasn’t me I was in Canada in the 80’s this incident happened in the 2000’nds, and he lived in the mountains in the western Canada. We miss him, a very very nice person.
November first, Thailand officially opens up for tourists who are vaccinated and who come from certain countries. The people in Nong Khai are being vaccinated as I am writing, you will be safe, you will have fun, if you are 60 or older, if you are single, you know I cant write about that, but the odds are good, fortune cookie. One expat restaurant/bar has been refurbished and opened during the pandemic. The Meeting Place, it’s a wonderful garden on a soi between Prajak and Meechai, it’s now run by one of the most talented entrepreneurs in the Nong Khai restaurant/bar business.
And yes it is true, we have one Hobbit living in Nong Khai, we call him Rudi, and he is the brilliant German baker. No offense Rudi, you know we all love you, you keep that ring and live forever.
And finally in the 60’s trip was another word for Lsd, just in case you are tempted to follow the advise of tripadvisor, so so so may stars, don’t we all miss the good old days.
Very much appreciate all this Max! We were in Nong Khai in 2015 so I’m sure things have changed tons. But even more for someone like you who’s been there from the beginning.
Glad to know Rudi and his cakes still around!! Was one of our food highlights when we were there.
Take care and thanks for the update.
In November 2019, I ll be back in Nong Khai (spent some times there 10 years ago) Do you guys know if the fishing park is still up and running? I look forward to hearing from you.
Hmmm, I don’t know anything about the fishing park. I’ve tried to get some information on the internet but can’t find anything. Sorry…
Did you find a good gym here with weights?
Im thinking about staying one month next year.
That Pikul deal looks good.
Hi Tom, nice to hear from you again.
We found a gym but it was shit…too expensive and on the main road. Bart is a really nice guy we met and he might be able to help you: [email protected] . He does lots of sports and owns Macky’s Riverside Restaurant.
Pikul very basic and I’m not crazy about the owners. But I think it’s the only guesthouse for month long stays. If you write Bart you might want to ask him – it was almost 5 years ago we were there now so things may have changed.
I will be there soon! Hope i like it. If not Im suing you for bad info lol
After go CM
Hey, nice to hear from you Tom!
Hope you enjoy. Kind of miss Thailand right now…
This article has us very interested in visiting Nong Khai on our next trip to Thailand later in the year. Just a quick question regarding your stay for 4 months, how did you get on visa wise. I am assuming a couple of border runs to Laos?
We had our automatic 3 months when we entered (the rules have changed since) and then, yes, did a border run to Vientiane.
I love reading your take on the city. I have recently bought property there and am looking forward to settling there in the future (though I bought property, we don’t settle, nor do I plan to move soon). I find Nong Khai to be absolutely delightful! I can only dispute you on one account… the Vietnamese Restaurant. I found most of their offerings to be both bland and not remotely Vietnamese in nature; moreover, I ended up with food poisoning less than 24 hours later (I admit, I put that down to my food at the Udon airport I had that next morning; but my companion in Nong Khai, a local, said it was probably the Vietnamese restaurant because they leave some foods out – on purpose, the sour foods – for three days… she’s a lifer in Nong Khai, so I see little reason to dispute her). Other than that small nit-pick, I love almost everything about this city. Its smallness – resulting in a lack of taxis, Uber, Grab or buses – does make getting around a bit tricky (even the tuk tuks I found mainly just assembling at the biggest gathering points – the malls, the border crossing, etc.; so, you can’t just hang out at a random corner waiting to flag down a tuk tuk – well, you can, but you may be waiting a while). So, I guess that’s another knock… but that’s pretty trivial. Much of the city is walkable. And if you want to go further afield, getting a bike is no big deal. And if you’re long term, go in for a motorbike. Anyway, I don’t mean to go off on the few minor negatives. It’s an absolutely fabulous little city. Small and laid back, but just enough there to keep you busy and even a bit of a nightlife – small, yes, but if one is into that type of thing, you’re all set (no, you won’t get much in the way of heart-pounding club-style nightlife, but if you just want to hang out and have a few drink until pretty late hours… no problem, you can find it there). It’s a near-perfect balance of tranquility and activity. I love it there and look forward to settling into my new home there. I’ll be living right on the Mekong not far from the center.
Thank you for the comment Gary.
We’re back in Thailand right now and the only comparable town we’ve found to Nong Khai is Prachuap Khiri Khan just south of Hua Hin.
I personally could settle in either. The only thing I wish is that they’d be a bit more competition for longer term lodging (we stayed in Pikul which was ok – but seemed like the only option).
Enjoy life in Nong Khai and don’t be shy to update anything I may have above (this post was written back in 2015)
Another town I want to visit is Nakhon Phanom. Not sure how that compares to Nong Khai. Would allow access to the Kong Lor caves over the border.
Haven’t been to Nakhom Phanom…
Hi Frank….greetings from sunny Nong Khai! Back in 2015, I read your review on NK – it was also the first post I had come across from your blog site, so I thought I’d give you guys a bit of an update.
Been here 4 days now and I really like it….so much more my style than Chiang Mai. I don’t think the town has changed too much in the last couple years. When I was living in Vientiane, I whistled through NK usually on my way to UT airport or for a visa run. But after reading your post (and seeing the nice photos), I thought it might be worth checking out a bit more as a potential winter base.
And voila…… it now ranks as one of my top 3 spots in Thailand to hangout….BTW, the others are Prachuap Khiri Khan (which you should check out when you get back in SEA) and Penang. I never found the love for CM – too busy, touristy, polluted (blue sky for only 3 days out of the 21 days I was there…..this is Vancouver weather!), mostly lousy restaurants (“the Grill of India” and the street food were great though). For me, the only highlights from CM were Boy’s Blues Bar (fantastic live blues music, above Kalare) and all the great used book stores.
My best discovery in NK – the fabulous bike routes along the Mekong. Not sure how much of it was developed when you were last here (and they’re still extending them further). Over 2 days I managed to go 30km upstream and 26km downstream mostly on riverside promenade and occasionally along pretty pathways running through riverside villages, rice paddies, etc……very nice, magical. Funny thing is I never encountered any other farangs in my two days of biking these routes……maybe nobody knows about it?
Other than that, I doubt NK has changed very much……the promenade in front of town was much more subdued than I remember from previous visits. Most of the same restaurants are still around. The German Bakery was always reliable for good dark bread and espresso in the mornings (haven’t seen any of that apple cake yet). Mut Mee is OK – their thai food is boring and the staff there seem miserable. Macky’s also….despite a menu that devotes most pages to western breakfasts, sandwiches, burgers, spaghetti and pizzas (always a big red flag), I thought I’d try their gaeng phet gai + pad pak ruam mit…..terrible, no garlic, no basil, made with total indifference. This was pretty much the same experience in many CM restaurants including those with ridiculously high TA ratings.
Well I do notice some newish looking condos or service apmts around town, so NK might be a good destination to return to next year for a longer stretch.
Anyways, I’m off to Laos for the next month – looking forward to the much better food options in Vientiane…..enjoy your remaining weeks in Croatia.
Fantastic comment! I love when people give me updates on places and I’m really happy you love the town. Great!
They were frantically working on that promenade when we were there and I’m really impressed that you can ride that far in either direction. Wow! Very good to know, I would LOVE that. Nah, those ferangs too busy drinking beer on the main street…
German Bakery – is Rudi still there? Tell him we said hi (he might not remember us though). And if at Macky’s you might see Bart sitting in the back, please say hi as well, he’ll definitely remember us. Nice guy. Sorry to hear their food has slipped. Mut Mee. Ha! I had mentioned that it had a “unique vibe”. You just said what I was too polite to say the first time. Miserable from the owner on down…
Good to hear there are condos and service aparts coming up. Where are you staying?
Thanks so much D! Also never knew you had come to the blog by way of this post. Did you see the sculptures just outside town?
This is wonderful information. We are planning a trip for November. We have 8 days only for this area (sadly) and are were pondering if we should just stay in Nong Khai for the full time. Love the information on the cycling, right up our alley! Your information is most helpful. It looks like there are lots of day trip options go keep us entertained.
Thanks Holli. We didn’t do much exploring in the region, just Vientiane (which we found interesting). Nong Khai is a nice spot though and I’m sure you can fill 8 days. Hope you enjoy 🙂
Thanks so much for that. I am in Nong Khai now.
Great to hear! Let me know if you have any feedback or if anything has changed. Funny enough, Bart from Macky’s Riverside Kitchen wrote me today – if you ever go (and it’s our favorite restaurant) please say hi to Bart from us and tell him we sent you!
Paul and Carole
Thanks for putting Nong Khai on our radar, we are regular visitors to Thailand but not ventured that far north as yet. Great post, very informative, thanks for sharing!
Thanks for the comment. Its a lovely town and we hope you have the chance to see it 🙂
Nong Khai Silverback
Hello Frank: Thanks for your comprehensive review of central Nong Khai. Your map of the area is one of the best I’ve seen. For the short term traveler you have hit the nail on the head as life in central Nong Khai revolves around the Mekong River, the Promenade along the river, the Tha Sadet Market, and the Saturday Night Walking Street which is located on the Promenade. Because most of the guesthouses in Nong Khai are geared to the short term traveler, they do not have kitchens. Therefore, the ex-pats who enjoy cooking for themselves tend to rent a house or purchase a hotplate for cooking in a corner of their guesthouse room. While many of the ex-pats live outside of the central area they tend to gravitate toward the center of town for a cold drink or a good meal. As you know, I’ve lived at the Pikul Apartment Hotel for the past five years and it is home to me. I can walk or bicycle any place I need to go in Nong Khai. All of the restaurants you mentioned are open for business and doing well. If any of your readers have questions about Nong Khai, pass them along to me and I’ll do my best to provide an honest answer.
Thanks so much Bart for your input. One of the things we really miss about Nong Khai is your restaurant (Macky’s for those who don’t know). Loved sitting there on Saturday nights watching the action.
The one thing I think holding us back from spending more time in Nong Khai is the accommodation situation. Pikul is fine for short-term, especially as a single male. But as a couple we would have loved finding something a little more comfortable, with a small kitchen, in the center. As you said, expats mostly live just outside the center for the comfort. But that means needing wheels and since Lissette doesn’t ride a bike that doesn’t work…
But I have to say, especially today looking out the window in Romania where it is getting cold, that I have pangs about Nong Khai. Miss the food, the people, and the peaceful river views.
Useful article – and lovely photos. Great recommendations, as well!
Wow, such a comprehensive guide to Nong Khai you’ve written, and the pictures are beautiful! I’ve never heard of Nong Khai, and now I want to go there! People will truly appreciate reading this while they make their travel plans.
Thank you ever so much for the gorgeous post card! It’s a real gem, and will go very nicely into my collection.
Best wishes to both of you.
(sunny Vancouver day today.. 18c – my 2 pugs are happily sunning themselves out on the deck.)
Thank you for the comment Carol!
Wow, sounds gorgeous in Vancouver. One of my favorite cities and we may get there later this year. Congratulations on getting spring while my friends back east still in a deep freeze.
Always happy to send you a postcard 🙂
Thanks for the detailed comment, I agree that what you’ve written is perfect for the short stay visitor.
I wonder whether our paths may have crossed already as I live just off Rimkong Road at the Phra That Chedi end, more or less opposite the sunken temple. Jo Steak & Bar should definitely have been on your list, likewise Krua Ban Nat. I just reviewed it for Trip Advisor.
There are definitely places that would suit you for a longer stay a little out of the town centre complete with kitchen facilities. If/when you decide to visit let me know in advance and I’ll put out some feelers.
Best Regards Tony
Thanks Tony. We might have crossed paths, it’s a small town 🙂 Yes, I thought you may be down at that end, pretty spot that we enjoyed.
Thanks for the recommendations, appreciate as it may help readers of the blog.Always hard finding a good steak in Thailand!
Hey Frank, I pretty much agree with Guemlum. As I was reading your post, my thought was it’s great, you’ve covered the town centre in great detail but there are so many places absent from your comments that fall within the ambit of the city. My guess is that you were either walking or using samlaws which is why you were restricted in range/budget. A bicycle would probably be worthwhile to get further afield, especially if you are planning to visit in terms of months rather than days or weeks. When you do come back I hope we’ll be able to meet up and exchange information.
Appreciate your comment Tony and I checked out your site. And while I appreciate that there are places outside the town center for us the attraction of Nong Khai is the promenade and the sites in the center. The majority of people reading this blog will be short-term travellers passing through or those with a bit more time on their hands who decide that they’d like to stay in Nong Khai for a month or two. I would say this accounts for at least 95% of travellers who make it to Nong Khai. I can’t honestly recommend to those people that they stay anywhere than Central Nong Khai, more specifically around the promenade (too many people staying out near the Tesco Lotus where they’re seeing the ugliest part of town).
We did tons of walking and exploring while in Nong Khai. If/when we came back and decided to stay longer we would probably try to find an apartment along Rimkhong heading out to Phra That Chedi. We enjoyed walking this stretch and I could see us settling there as Expats with, as you say, our own wheels. Lots of nice restaurants and cafes (and I’m assuming this is the area that you and Guemlum are referring to). But honestly, I’m not going to recommend a short-term traveller to stay out there. This post was not geared towards Expat living in Nong Khai.
I would however be open to any Expat who wants to contribute an ‘Expat Guide to Nong Khai’. For example, we asked around about longer-term apartments, something a bit more upmarket than Pikul with a functioning kitchen. A few expats we met were nice enough to say they’d ask around but nothing concrete ever came out of it. We also went to a few Expat bars and restaurants. They didn’t make it on our favorite’s list however. My experience is that Expats love to complain about contributions such as mine but are awfully short on helpful advice (sorry Tony, this is not necessarily directed at you. Unlike your friendly comment I’ve received some really nasty comments from know-it-all Expats in the past). My challenge – if someone wants to contribute an “Expat Guide to Nong Khai” containing helpful advice I would be happy to publish it on this site. I would give credit and a link as I do with my Destination Guides written by others.
But again, the above post was geared towards the traveller passing through for a few days or considering a stay for up to a couple of months.
Thank you for your comment Tony. If/when we come back to Nong Khai I’ll definitely take you up on your offer.
Nice little post here. You have captured the basics for anyone travelling through Nongkhai, but I’m surprised that in the 4 months you were there, you haven’t captured or named any of the restaurants or accommodation or even the surrounding sites that make Nongkhai and the Nongkhai province what it is famous for. Having said that, great for those who have never visited Nongkhai.
Thank you, I guess. I don’t understand your comment – if you’ve read the above I’ve gone into detail on the restaurants and accommodations. And I may not have covered all of Nong Khai province but the focus was on Nong Khai proper. But feel free to add any recommendations that you think I may have missed…
I spent 2 minutes trying to pronounce the name of this place before giving up! 🙂
Nong Khai is pretty easy…just drop the ‘h’ which is silent. But a lot of Thai names almost impossible for me to remember (like the airport in Bangkok: Suvarnabhumi) and it’s compounded by the fact that many places are translated with 3 or 4 different spellings and resulting pronunciations…
Oh, my God, what a beautiful warm weather. I miss it.
We have to go to Vientiane for a visa and you’ve convinced us through your photos that we should visit Nong Khai. We’re planning to spend a few days there at the end of April and will follow your suggestion to do it over a weekend. Thanks for the helpful guide and all the great photos on previous posts!
Great! Comments like yours are why we blog 🙂
What a gorgeous place! I’ve not been to Thailand for a few years…I think it’s almost time to go back!
Very informative. More comprehensive than LP!!
Thank you Stephen. Hope it’s helpful to people who don’t know much about Nong Khai. I know before coming here I couldn’t find photos or good info anywhere. Between the guide and all the photos I think you can get a sense of what a pretty little town it is.