Hua Hin District

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Hua Hin
หัวหิน
Amphoe
View of Hua Hin
View of Hua Hin
Amphoe location in Prachuap Khiri Khan Province
Amphoe location in Prachuap Khiri Khan Province
Coordinates: 12°34′7″N 99°57′28″E / 12.56861°N 99.95778°E / 12.56861; 99.95778Coordinates: 12°34′7″N 99°57′28″E / 12.56861°N 99.95778°E / 12.56861; 99.95778
Country  Thailand
Province Prachuap Khiri Khan
Area
 • Total 838.9 km2 (323.9 sq mi)
Population (2006)
 • Total 85,099
 • Density 101.44/km2 (262.7/sq mi)
Time zone THA (UTC+7)
Postal code 77110
Geocode 7707
For the island in French Polynesia, see Huahine.

Hua Hin (Thai: หัวหิน, IPA: [hǔə hǐn]) is a beach resort town in Thailand, in the northern part of the Malay Peninsula, some 200 km south of Bangkok. It has a population of 84,883 in an area of 911 km², and is one of eight districts (amphoe) of Prachuap Khiri Khan Province. Hua Hin is closely associated with the Thai royalty. Merely 25 kilometres apart, Hua Hin in Prachuap Khiri Khan Province enjoys a wealth of satellite attractions; prominent among them are national parks and historical cities.

History[edit]

Hua Hin Beach on a cloudy morning

In 1834, before the name Hua Hin was coined, some agricultural areas of Phetchaburi Province were hit by severe drought. A group of farmers moved southward until they found a small village that had bright white sands and a row of rocks along the beach. They settled here and gave it the name Samore Riang (Thai สมอเรียง; RTGS: Samo Riang), which means rows of rocks.

In 1921 the director of the state railway, Prince Purachatra, built the Railway Hotel close to the beach. King Prajadhipok (Rama VII) liked the place so much that he built a summer palace there. The palace was named Klai Kang Won ("Far from Worries"). From 2004 until 2006 it had been the full-time residence of Bhumibol Adulyadej (after which chronic poor health forced him to return to Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, where the medical facilities and doctors he needs are closer at hand). The king returned to Hua Hin on 2 August 2013.[1] His Royal Highness Prince Krom Phra Naresworarit was the first member of the royal family to build a group of palaces at Ban Laem Hin, called Sukaves, and he gave the beach next to his palace the name Hua Hin.

In 1932 Hua Hin was part of Pran Buri district. In 1949 Hua Hin was promoted to be a separate district of Prachuap Khiri Khan. After the building of Thailand's southern railway connected the district with Bangkok along with various destinations en route, Hua Hin became the first and most popular beach resort in the country.

Climate[edit]

Hua Hin has a tropical savanna climate (Köppen climate classification Aw). Temperatures remain very warm to hot throughout the year, with only small variations. The year begins with the dry season (December-April), before the monsoon arrives in May. Rains ease somewhat from June to August before the heaviest rains begin in September and continue through November.


Climate data for Hua Hin (1981–2010)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 29.9
(85.8)
31.3
(88.3)
32.4
(90.3)
33.6
(92.5)
33.6
(92.5)
33.4
(92.1)
33.1
(91.6)
33.0
(91.4)
32.4
(90.3)
31.0
(87.8)
30.3
(86.5)
29.5
(85.1)
31.96
(89.52)
Average low °C (°F) 22.2
(72)
23.3
(73.9)
24.6
(76.3)
25.8
(78.4)
26.0
(78.8)
25.9
(78.6)
25.5
(77.9)
25.5
(77.9)
25.0
(77)
24.6
(76.3)
24.0
(75.2)
22.5
(72.5)
24.58
(76.23)
Rainfall mm (inches) 11.8
(0.465)
15.3
(0.602)
53.9
(2.122)
46.4
(1.827)
108.9
(4.287)
78.9
(3.106)
93.0
(3.661)
71.2
(2.803)
120.4
(4.74)
246.2
(9.693)
101.2
(3.984)
7.9
(0.311)
955.1
(37.601)
Avg. rainy days (≥ 1 mm) 2 2 2 4 13 15 17 18 17 17 9 2 118
 % humidity 71 73 73 73 74 73 73 73 77 80 74 67 73.4
Source: Thai Meteorological Department (Normal 1981-2010),(Avg. rainy days 1961-1990)

Hua Hin Town[edit]

Hua Hin Town is on the coast of Hua Hin District. With an area around 86.36 km², the town has 50,169 inhabitants. It is a popular beach resort getaway for Bangkok residents. The Railway Hotel, now the Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hua Hin, is a famous old building which was used as The Hotel Phnom Phen in The Killing Fields (film).

Location[edit]

The district to the north is Cha Am. The district to the south is Amphoe Pran Buri.

Administration[edit]

Hua Hin district is located in Prachuap Khiri Khan Province and consists of 2 sub-districts; Hua Hin and Nong Khae. At the top of Hua Hin administration is the Lord Mayor of Hua Hin Jira Pongpaibul. He is supported by three Vice Mayors Khun Artikhun Bootying, Khun Suwit Liennloongrueng and Dr. Roongroch Srilueng-Swasdi. President of Hua Hin Assembly is Khun Pathom Pudam and Vice President of Hua Hin Assembly is Khun Prapa Nortes.

Boundary[edit]

Hua Hin is a district of Prachuap Khiri Khan province surrounded by:

  • Northern part: connects to Cha-am district, Petchburi Province.
  • Eastern part: Gulf of Thailand
  • Western part: Burma
  • Southern part: Pranburi, Prachuap Khiri Khan Province.
Hua Hin Railway Station

Transportation[edit]

Roads Hua Hin is linked by highway to Petchburi and the rest of Prachuap Khiri Khan Province. Both central Bangkok and Suvarmabhumi airport are just over 2 hours drive, depending on traffic.

Rail systems Hua Hin is part of the southern rail route originating in Bangkok. Trains run through to the south of the country and link directly with Malaysia.

Bus There are buses from Bangkok going directly to Hua Hin and others which pass through while on the way to other destinations further south.

Songthaew (public passenger pick-up vehicle) This kind of transport is the most preferred mode of getting around the town and surrounding areas. Hua Hin also has an abundance of tuk-tuks and motorcycle taxis.

Air Hua Hin airport (HHQ) currently serves Kuala Lumpur-Subang Airport via Berjaya Air.

Tourism[edit]

Thailand’s royal family and especially former kings were the first to set this location on the map as the original seashore destination in Thailand. The 6 km long beach itself is pretty and the sea is relatively clean. Besides just sunbathing snorkeling and swimming, it is the place supporting attractions and activities such as golf, spas, caves, peaks, waterfalls, shops, seafood and nearby national parks.

Attractions[edit]

Hua Hin Beach (ชายหาดหัวหิน) Hua Hin Beach extends some six kilometres southwards from a rocky headland until Kao Takiap, a southern headland where a Buddhist temple clings to the cliffs.

Hua Hin Railway Station (สถานีรถไฟหัวหิน) This is Thailand's most beautiful train station. The wooden building used to be a royal pavilion in Sanamchan Palace, Nakhon PathomPprovince. It was rebuilt at Hua Hin in 1968.

Nightly Street Market (ตลาดโต้รุ่งหัวหิน) a popular shopping market allowing people the opportunity for shopping, native-style seafood cooked on the spot and to witness local people’s lifestyle.

Takiap Hill (เขาตะเกียบ) This hill, 4 kilometres from Hua Hin town, supports Buddhist temples and offers a commanding view of the resort, particularly early in the morning.

Hin Lek Fai Hill (เขาหินเหล็กไฟ) Situated 3 kilometres west of Hua Hin district, Khao Hin Lek Fai or Flint Mountain is 162 metres high. On the mountaintop, there is a public park and scenic spots from where the scenery of Hua Hin and its surrounding area is visible.

Tao Hill (เขาเต่า) 13 kilometres south of Hua Hin, there is a 1- kilometre branch road on the left which leads to the spot with two beaches called Hat Sai Noi and Hat Sai Yai. Khao Tao is a traditional fishing village that also boasts spectacular temples.

Pa La-u Waterfall (น้ำตกป่าละอู) This 11-tier scenic waterfall, some 60 kilometres west of Hua Hin, is located within a yearlong verdant forest where various kinds of birds and butterflies are found, especially in the morning.

The statue of Luang Pu Thuat at Wat Huay Mongkol

Spirit Houses of Brassiere Beach in the Khao Sam Roi Yot area[2] where, according to Thai folklore, the spirit houses were built to appease the spirit of a fisherman’s daughter who was once torn to pieces and her breasts fell into the sea. She was killed because she was desired by too many men. Until this day, the locals still hang brassieres to the spirit houses praying for good luck.[3]

Wat Huay Mongkol was home to the immensely popular monk Luang Pu Thuat was famed for his ‘miracles’. Commissioned by the Queen of Thailand, Wat Huay Mongkol houses the largest statue of Luang Phor Thuat in Thailand in a park-like setting.

Suan Son Pradiphat Beach 8 km south of Hua Hin, is a peaceful location which is owned by the Army Welfare Office.

Plearnwan (เพลินวาน) is a theme city under a nostalgic concept - Eco Vintage Village located at the opposite side of the royal residence of Klai Klangwan (Royal Palace, Huahin). The place is packed with classic Thai food and snack stalls such as Ga-Lor-Jee which taste like Japanese Moji, Kee-noo, Tang-Tem, etc.

Butterfly Garden (สวนผีเสื้อ) Opposite Klai Kangwon Palace, this is the first butterfly and herbal garden in Hua Hin. Surrounded by diverse local plants from all over Thailand, it features varied species of butterflies, birds, orchids, flowers and herbal plants.

Activities[edit]

Kiteboarders at Hua Hin beach

Popular activities in Hua Hin include: fishing, sea cruises to Sam Roi Yod Nat'l Park, eco-cruising, kite-boarding, fitness, martial arts, elephant camping, Thai massage, spa, cooking courses, trekking, walking, cycling, diving, snorkeling, arts, water sports, pony-riding and golf.

Golf in particular is becoming especially popular, with Hua Hin increasingly being recognized as one of Thailand's premier golfing destinations. The town hosted its first Asian tour event in 2009 at the new Black Mountain course, while other first class courses in easy reach include Majestic Creek, Royal Hua Hin, Banyan, Palm Hills, Lake View and Springfield. There are several driving ranges.

Some foreign tourists go to Hua Hin and learn something like Thai cooking or Thai boxing.

Hua Hin has very good kite boarding conditions with shallow and warm water. There is a northerly east wind from October until January with wind ranging between 15 to 25 knots. From February until May Hua Hin has a southerly Thermal wind that brings 15 to 20 knots in the afternoon. There are good conditions for kite surfing in both of these seasons.[4]

Siam Pearl cruise ship to Sam Roi Yod Nat'l Park

Several boat trips are available in Hua Hin-Pranburi area such as touring the river and watching birds or cruising the Gulf of Thailand with a Teak Wood boat for swimming, fishing and feeding monkeys at Sam Roi Yod Nat'l Park e.g. Siam Pearl Hua Hin offers daily tours including transportation from and back to the hotel.

Shopping[edit]

Hua Hin is a popular place for shopping. The Cicada Market, a charming market place nestled under big, old trees offers contemporary art handicrafts. The Khommaphat shop Hua Hin Thai Silk Village present hand-woven printed cotton, silk fabric silk weaving, embroidery and basket making. This little town also offers a wide range of taylors and jewellery stores, which sell gemstones, sapphires and rubies. However, what makes Hua Hin a popular place are the small vendor shops, which have been in place for many generations and are still run by the whole family. There is also a large shopping mall called Market Village, which offers a variety of different brand shops and soon will have spaces available for small market stands.

Local Products[edit]

Hua Hin’s most famous local product is Khommaphat printed cotton which can be made into shirts, handkerchiefs, wraps, even elephants or fish, as well as decorative pieces such as pillows, bags and fans. Other local products include hand-woven cotton and a traditional Hua Hin-style duster.

Hua Hin Market Village

Nightlife[edit]

Most foreign-oriented nightlife is centred on Soi Bintabaht and Soi Selakam, where many typical beer bars are found. There are also the usual discothèques, karaoke bars, live music venues, and hotel bars. The pace of nightlife is much slower than in the larger tourist-oriented towns of Pattaya and Patong, while the proximity to the royal palace means that there are no go-go bars.

Local culture[edit]

Lifestyle[edit]

Hua Hin is a predominantly Thai-Chinese area where most of the locals are engaged in some kind of business.

Events and festivals[edit]

Hua Hin has three established events. They are:

Thailand’s International Kite Festival is during March, April and May and features stunt kites, big kites, little kites, high tech kites, traditional Thai kites, and displays of international kites. This festival is held only every other year.

Hua Hin Jazz Festival June is the time of the year when 'jazz on the beach' happens at the annual Hua Hin Jazz Festival. The popular event attracts world class jazz musicians from Thailand and all over the world.

Hua Hin Vintage Car Rally Hoteliers, the Vintage Car Club of Thailand, and the Tourism Authority of Thailand annually sponsor a parade of vintage and classic cars starting at the Sofitel Central in Bangkok and ending at the Sofitel Central Hua Hin Resort. The cars, with drivers and passengers decked out in 1920s attire, make the 225 km promenade in December of each year. The festivities culminate with a 1920s party at the Sofitel, which appropriately is a Victorian-style structure built in the 1920s.

"International Cricket Sixes" Held at the Dusit Hotel, the dates change each year, but the event coincides with the Thai holiday of Songkran and the Christian Easter holiday.

In 2012 the Hua Hin Film Festival was launched.[5][6]

Medical health care[edit]

Hua Hin has a lot of medical centres but the main medical facilities provided are at:

  • San Paulo Hospital
  • Hua Hin Hospital
  • Hua Hin International Polyclinic
  • Hua Hin Red Cross
  • Bangkok International Hospital
  • Dr. Pairat Eye Clinic

Retirement[edit]

There are about 3,000 retirees living in Hua Hin making it one of the more popular destinations for retirement in Thailand. This is probably[original research?] due to the climate, natural surroundings and inexpensive cost of living.

Education[edit]

Hua Hin and Cha-Am play host to a number of tertiary education institutions and universities such as Silapakorn (Arts) University, Suan Dusit Rajabhat (Hospitality) University, and the Petchaburi Technology and Agricultural University.[7] Webster University, the only international American accredited University in Thailand also has its main campus fringing these towns.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej leaves hospital. UK: BBC News. 2 August 2013. .
  2. ^ Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park - Activities
  3. ^ 'Brassiere Beach'
  4. ^ weather hua hin
  5. ^ Mackey, Michael. "HuaHin Film Festival Launches". The Hollywood Reporter (Los Angeles). Retrieved 2011-01-29. 
  6. ^ "The 1st Hua Hin International Film Festival proved to be a huge success as producers, actors, directors, financiers, and studios came together from around the world to gather in the resort town of Hua Hin.". Retrieved 2011-02-04. 
  7. ^ Webster University Thailand

External links[edit]