If you are looking for seaside fun with your family or friends, then Hua Hin is the perfect destination for you! Only a few hours’ drive from Bangkok, Hua Hin is usually full of Bangkokians spending their weekend vacations. As a result, the attractions in Hua Hin are a great fit for travelers and locals. The city is the perfect getaway for those looking for delicious food, night markets, quiet beaches, and to be close to some of Thailand’s best national parks. If this charming seaside town sounds like your type of place, then check out our list of cool things to do in Hua Hin, Thailand!
This guide to Hua Hin has three sections: best attractions in Hua Hin, best places to stay in Hua Hin, and how to travel to Hua Hin from Bangkok or any other destination in the country. Be ready to discover the best beaches in Hua Hin, what to do, and top hotels for all types of travelers.
Unmissable attractions in Hua Hin, Thailand
1. Shop your night away at Hua Hin Night Market
If you want to soak in the local atmosphere, then Hua Hin Night Market should be one of the first places on your checklist. Located between Petchkasem Road and the railway line, Hua Hin Night Market comes alive after 6.30 p.m. Numerous handicrafts, CDs, DVDs, and of course, cheap, tasty food are all sold along the streets. Seafood stalls are popular in Hua Hin Night Market. Just imagine the mouthwatering grilled seafood smell floating through the market! We recommend you to try other tasty local street bites such as mini pancakes and mango sticky rice as desserts.
Hin Night Market opening hours: 5:00 pm to 1:00 am.
2. Shop for art at Cicada Market
If you are looking for an artistic and unique attraction in Hua Hin, Cicada Market Hua Hin is probably the most popular spot to visit. Cicada Market is all about art, handmade crafts, original paintings, sculptures, and good vibes. Unlike any other night market here, Cicada Market is different due to its open-air market concept. Here, you’ll also find an art gallery, beer garden, and live music.
Open only on weekend evenings; Cicada Market Hua Hin has four areas: Art a la Mode, Art Indoor, Art of Act, and Art of Eat. For a relaxing evening in Hua Hin with good vibes by the sea, Cicada Market is your best bet!
Cicada Market Hua Hin opening hours: 4:00 pm to 11:00 pm.
3. Go back in time at Plearn Wan
Unlike Cicada Market, Plearn Wan feels more like a museum where you can experience a “blast from the past” to 1950s Hua Hin. Plearn Wan’s two-story courtyard-style building is a community mall with many period-style shops selling everything from liquor, inexpensive toys, and snacks. Talking about food, they are local and traditional there. Some of them are a mixture of old and new. One of them is “Tong Muan Sod”, a Thai-style sweetened pancake roll topped with sesame seeds. There’s also an old-fashioned ice-cream parlor with a checkered floor interior selling heavenly thick milkshakes, and traditional mango with sticky rice.
More than just a mall, you will find a beauty salon, photo studio, outdoor cinema screen, and a 20-room guesthouse called “Piman Plearn Wan” (check the rooms here).
Plearn Wan opening hours: 10:00 am to 10:00 pm (Mon-Thurs), 10:00 am to midnight (Fri), 09:00 am to midnight (Sat), 09:00 am to 10:00 pm (Sun).
4. Appreciate Hua Hin Railway Station’s beauty
For those who appreciate a little bit of architecture, we recommend visiting Hua Hin Railway Station. Hua Hin Railway Station is one of the oldest and the most historic train stations in Thailand. Hua Hin’s popularity grew in the 1920s when the railway line from Bangkok was constructed, and when the late King Rama VI built the Klai Kangwon Palace as his summer resort.
Originally built in 1910, the railway is one of Hua Hin’s most iconic structures. The red wooden exterior is a charming mix of Victorian and Thai-style architecture, which is common in buildings from the same era. One of the highlights of the railway station is the Royal Waiting Room, which was made especially for the King when he was visiting Hua Hin back in the days. Hua Hin Railway Station has always been a popular spot for photo opportunities among both locals and foreigners.
Hua Hin Railway Station opening hours: 7:00 am to 11:00 pm.
5. Experience the royalty at Mrigadayavan Palace
Don’t miss this place if you’re into architecture, history, and gardens. Known as “The Palace of Love and Hope”, Mrigadayavan Palace is another must-visit attraction in Hua Hin. Mrigadayavan Palace is a summer palace built for King Rama VI in the early 1920s. It is another example of the “East meets West” architectural style of Thailand. The King designed the palace, with the help of an Italian architect. It uses 1,000 teakwood pillars for mechanical support and to avoid seawater intrusion, which makes it one of the longest teak buildings in the world.
Come here, and you will get a glimpse of the royal life. You can see how they lived in their summer palace, and it’s easy to imagine since not much has changed.
Mrigadayavan Palace opening hours: 8:00 am – 4:00 pm.
Recommendation: To understand more about Thailand’s culture and history is better to have a local expert with you. We have done many tours and day experiences with TakeMeTour and always had a great time.Check out TakeMeTour local tours in Hua Hin here and book your favorite one.
6. Check out Khao Takiab’s Mountain View
Khao Takiab translates as “Chopstick Mountain”. Sometimes, it’s also called “Monkey Mountain” since monkeys are one of its main inhabitants. Once you walk to the top of Khao Takiab Mountain, you will see a stunning panoramic view of the sea. Also, take a stroll along Khao Takiab Bay, where you can stop for lunch and admire the glittering sea. If you are looking for good food, then seafood is quite famous in the Khao Takiab area.
If you are looking for watersports activities in Hua Hin, this is the place to be. Jet-skiing, parasailing, banana boat rides, water-skiing, and kitesurfing are some of the fun things to do in Hua Hin.
7. Pay respect at Wat Huay Mongkol
Located on Khao Takiab Mountain, Wat Huay Mongkol was built to worship one of the most famous Thai monks named Luang Phor Thuad. Locals believe that he performed miracles, like turning saltwater into drinkable water and saving the crew on a boat journey. Thus, they believe that building a huge statue can help to protect them and their loved ones. Locals visit Wat Huay Mongkol to ask for good fortune, health, and happiness. Each side of the statue has a huge elephant. Locals believe that you need to walk under the belly of each elephant for good luck.
If you are looking for religious and cultural places to visit in Hua Hin, dress respectfully and visit Wat Huay Mongkol temple. Good luck and happiness are always welcome.
8. Tour around Hua Hin Vineyard
Hua Hin Vineyard or Monsoon Valley Vineyard is not nestled between the hills of Europe. It’s tucked behind a scenic mountain valley 45km west of Hua Hin. The vineyard is quite picturesque, meaning it provides a unique experience in Hua Hin for you, your family, friends, or loved ones. For an immersive visit, you can take a tour of Hua Hin Vineyard complete with wine tasting and a 3-course meal. You can even paint your wine bottle for those in the mood for some art! No doubt this is one of the coolest things to do in Hua Hin that you can’t miss.
Hua Hin Vineyard opening hours: 9:00 am to 6:30 pm.
9. Get in touch with nature at Kaeng Krachan National Park
Kaeng Krachan National Park is the largest national park in Thailand, and it can’t be explored all in one day. If that’s all you have, you may want to start at Pala-U Waterfall. About 1.5 hours’ drive from Hua Hin, the waterfall has 16 levels and is one of the highest in Thailand. Freshwater, deep pools, lush green forest, and thousands of butterflies are some of the best things to see in Hua Hin and you can only experience at Pala-U Waterfall. Animals such as gibbons and rare birds also inhabit the national park. So keep your eyes open if you love wildlife!
Going on a day tour to Kaeng Krachan National Park is the best and easiest way to explore the park. A local guide will take you to the best spots, organize all the transportation, and add local food tasting in between the places you’ll visit in Hua Hin.
Kaeng Krachan National Park opening hours: 6:00 am to 6:00 pm.
Don’t forget to buy your Travel Insurance!
10. Relax along Hua Hin Beach
Most people who travel to Hua Hin undoubtedly come for its beach. While other beach towns in Thailand are more geared towards nightlife, Hua Hin is a much more relaxing destination. Here, you can lie down on the beach and sunbathe for hours without much hassle.
One of the best beaches in Hua Hin is four kilometers long. While it might not be the largest or the whitest in Thailand, it’s great for swimming, especially for families. For those looking for action, some of the best things to do in Hua Hin beach are kitesurfing and banana boat rides. Deckchairs and umbrellas are available for rent for those who want to sit down and relax.
Our list of awesome attractions in Hua Hin comes to an end. With its proximity from Bangkok and some cool places to visit, Hua Hin can be a good destination for a day trip from busy Bangkok. Here you can find fun day trips from Bangkok to Hua Hin with transportation and attractions included.
Best places to stay in Hua Hin, Thailand
While staying in Hua Hin can be as amazing as all the things to do there, finding the hotel that is right for you can be tough. This laid-back destination, and a popular getaway for Bangkok residents, is filled with quality accommodation options, ranging from all sizes and prices. So let’s find out together some of the best places to stay in Hua Hin?
– Cape Nidhra Hotel
In a perfect beachside location, the sophisticated Cape Nidhra brings to the table all that a high-end traveler might look for an exceptional stay in Hua Hin. The rooms are elegant and enormous (some come with their own pool!) and fully equipped with modern amenities. The property, the staff, the food… everything is just impeccable and will most likely have you falling in love with this hotel – no wonder it’s a favorite among couples and one of the best hotels in Hua Hin, Thailand.
– Evason Hua Hin
A taste of luxury in an eco-friendly environment proving that, yes, you can have it all! Evason Hua Hin has 185 rooms, including 40 private pool villas. Besides its superior facilities with a focus on sustainability, the hotel offers a long list of activities, such as archery, golf, and windsurfing. It’s a family-friendly hotel in Hua Hin, whereas the young ones can get entertained in the kids club and even have sleepovers at night with professional supervision.
– Hub Hua Hin 57
Hub Hua Hin 57 is a great cheap hotel in Hua Hin. It has a convenient location, only a 5-minute walk from Hua Hin Beach and 200m from Hua Hin Night Market. Spotlessly clean rooms, very comfortable beds, and an attentive staff make Hub Hua Hin 57 an excellent option for budget accommodation in Hua Hin. Perfect for those who don’t want to spend much but sleep very well.
– The Moon Hostel Hua Hin
Strategically situated in the heart of Hua Hin town, this popular and affordable hostel grants easy access to several of its must-see attractions. The Moon Hostel features a terrace, a shared lounge, and a shared kitchen, plus free Wi-Fi throughout the property. They also have family rooms and selected rooms that have a kitchen with a microwave, a fridge, and a toaster. All rooms come with a seating area – and the certainty of a pleasant stay. If you are looking for good hostels in Hua Hin, you just found it.
And did you know you can rent apartments in Hua Hin via Airbnb? Curious? Sign up here and get a discount on your first booking!
How to get to Hua Hin and around
You already know what to do and where to stay in Hua Hin, so now it’s time to talk about transportation. Below you will find all the info you need to start buying your tickets, pack your bathing suits and travel to Hua Hin, Thailand!
Located South-southwest of Bangkok, Hua Hin is a 3-hour drive away, so it’s easier to reach than other Southern islands. The cheapest way of getting to Hua Hin is by train, which takes around 4 hours. The trains leave Bang Sue and Hua Lamphong railway stations in Bangkok from 8 AM until almost 11 PM. Going by train allows you to arrive at Hua Hin station that features the Royal Waiting Room. So when you get there you can see one of the famous tourist attractions in Hua Hin.
You can also take one of the daily buses to Hua Hin from Bangkok’s Southern Bus Terminal (Sai Tai Mai) or get a van – which will probably get there faster, but be aware of the limited luggage space. The vans usually seat 10 to 12 people, have air conditioning and departure from the Southern Terminal, as well as from Khao San Road, Ekkamai and Mo Chit.
Another possibility is renting a car and driving to Hua Hin. The road is straight forward and easy to navigate as most of the signs are in both Thai and English. You can use the car to explore Hua Hin and vicinities.
Nevertheless, the town is pretty easy to go around on foot, and the local transport is cheap and useful to visit the best beaches in Hua Hin, as well as for visiting points of interest, such as the Clock Tower and the Market Village.
Songthaews are another practical way to go around, and they are more affordable than tuk-tuks. Even more affordable (and let’s not forget, good for your health) is exploring the city by bicycle; you can rent them for the hour or the day. Motorbikes are available for renting too if you’re up to some adventure.
On that adventurous note, there’s also the motorbike taxi, in which drivers can be identified wearing colored vests. Trips should be as cheap as 40 baht, and if your driver is pushing the limits, kindly ask him to slow down. After all, there shouldn’t be any rush when you’re enjoying a holiday in Hua Hin.
Are you excited to visit Hua Hin? Or do you want to travel to other destinations in Thailand? Let us know in the comments down below!
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Jug Sriyananda is one of TakeMeTour‘s content writers and a Bangkokian through and through. His favorite things to do include sipping coffee at Bangkok Old Town, shopping at Chatuchak Weekend Market, and traveling to Thailand’s best beach towns. Check his Instagram and Facebook for more info.