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Monument of Rama IV at Khon Kaen University
|Amphoe||Muang Khon Kaen|
|• Type||City municipality|
|• Mayor||Peerapon Pattabapeeradech|
|• Total||46 km2 (18 sq mi)|
|• Density||2,500/km2 (6,400/sq mi)|
|Registered residents only|
|Time zone||Thailand (UTC+7)|
Khon Kaen (Thai: ขอนแก่น, pronounced [kʰɔ̌ːn kɛ̀n] or [kʰɔ̌n kɛ̀n]) is one of the four major cities of Isan, Thailand - also known as "Big 4 of Isan", the other of the "Big 4 of Isan" being Udon Thani, Sakon Nakhon, and Ubon Ratchathani. It is also the capital of Khon Kaen Province and the Khon Kaen District.
Geography and demography
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Khon Kaen is a regional center for education, financial institutions, government offices and transportation. The city is also an industrial center, especially for the region's silk trade, as well as an agricultural hub. Khon Kaen has played host to a number of regional conferences, such as the Asean Regional Forum and United Nations meetings. The Lao People's Democratic Republic maintains the office of Consulate-General on Phothisan Road.
Khon Kaen is one of the major cities in Thailand's National Economic and Social Plan, along with Chiang Mai, Songkhla, Nakhon Ratchasima, and Chonburi. It is the home of Rajamangala University and Khon Kaen University—the largest university in the northeast, with a student population of around 25,000.
Strategically important for the Isan region's infrastructure, Khon Kaen Airport was raised to international standards in 2005, with the opening of a new terminal. However, despite efforts to expand services, as of February, 2014, only two airlines (Thai Airways and Thai Air Asia) use the airport. Thai Airways operate four flights a day to Bangkok (BKK - Suvarnabhumi) with an Airbus, and Air Asia (Thai Air Asia) run a twice daily service to Bangkok (DMK - Don Muang).
The city is bisected by Mithraphap Road, also known as "Friendship Highway", or "Highway 2", the road linking Bangkok to the Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge. A modern, multi-lane by-pass enables through-traffic to avoid the city centre to the west, and connects to the airport and to the main roads to Kalasin and Mahasarakham in the east, and Udon Thani in the north.
The city can be easily navigated by driving along either of the two north-south main roads: Na Muang and Klang Muang, which are east and parallel to the Friendship Highway. In addition, there are two main east-west roads: Srichan Road and Prachasamosorn Road, leading east to the city of Kalasin, and west to the airport, as well as to other small villages.
Khon Kaen's climate is categorised as tropical savanna (Köppen climate classification Aw), with winters that are dry and very warm. Temperatures rise until April—a very hot month, with an average daily maximum of 36.4 °C (97.5 °F). The monsoon season runs from May until October, with heavy rain and somewhat cooler temperatures during the day although nights remain warm.
|Climate data for Khon Kaen (1981–2010)|
|Average high °C (°F)||30.8
|Average low °C (°F)||16.1
|Rainfall mm (inches)||4.0
|Avg. rainy days (≥ 1 mm)||1||2||4||7||14||15||16||18||18||10||2||1||108|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||279.0||248.6||251.1||252.0||238.7||180.0||182.9||164.3||171.0||232.5||255.0||266.6||2,721.7|
|Source: Thai Meteorological Department (Normal 1981-2010), (Avg. rainy days 1961-1990)|
Notable Buddhist temples are in Khon Kaen, while on the south side of the city and east of the Friendship highway, a diverse range of recreational areas and facilities exist at Lake Bueng Kaen Nakhon.
The Khon Kaen National Museum (พิพิธภัณฑสถานแห่งชาติ ขอนแก่น), was opened by His Majesty King Bhumiphol Adulyadej on 20 December 1972. The museum displays a diverse selection of antiques, precious art pieces, and archaeological finds from the region. The museum exhibits date back to the pre-historic period and include ancient relics and the skeleton of a "New Stone Age" man, with tools from that period. Most of the archaeological excavation was conducted at the Muang Fa Daet Song Yang site in Ban Chiang.
Thailand's 2014 EU Film Festival included Khon Kaen, together with Chiang Mai and Bangkok, as host locations. A selection of six films was shown in the city, including the Spanish film The Pelayos and the Polish film Walesa, Man of Hope.
- Staff Overview of Khon Kaen Poverty Environment Initiative (PIE) Thailand, Retrieved 27 August 2012
- Trade & Economic Relations
- "Khon Kaen National Museum". KhonKaen.com. KhonKaen.com. 1996–2014. Retrieved 24 May 2014.
- "Showtimes EU Film Festival 2014". SFX Cinemas. SFX Cinemas. 23 May 2014. Retrieved 24 May 2014.
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