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Mukdahan

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Isaan : Mukdahan
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Mukdahan (มุกดาหาร) is a city in Isaan.

Understand[edit]

Mukdahan is the 73rd province of Thailand. Its history dates from the late Ayutthaya period, over 200 years ago. At first, on the left side of the Mekong River, there was a large community called Ban Luang Phon Sin located by Phrathat Ing Hang, presently in Savannakhet Province of Lao PDR. The community was ruled by Chao Chan Suriyawong. His son was Chao Kinnari. He later built a new town at the mouth of Huai Muk on the right bank of the Mekong River in 1767. The town was completed in 1770 and named "Mukdahan" (moonstone or pearl) according to a propitious sign occurring to him while the town was under construction. That is why the locals call the town "Mueang Muk".

During the reign of King Taksin the Great, Chao Kinnari was promoted as Phraya Chanthon Si Surat Upparacha Manthaturat to be the first ruler of Mukdahan in 1778.

At first, Mukdahan was part of 'Monthon Udon' or Udon Circle. In 1907, the Circle was dissolved to become a province and Mukdahan was then an Amphoe of Nakhon Phanom province. It was promoted as Mukdahan province in 1982 as the country’s 73rd province and the 17th province of Isaan.

Actually, Mukdahan is a significant gateway to Indochinese countries. The local people of Mukdahan actually have had a long relationship with the people in Savannakhet Province of Laos, although they are separated by the Mekong River. Mukdahan is home to 8 ethnic minorities; namely, Thai Isaan, Phu Thai, Thai Kha, Kraso, Thai Kaloeng, Thai Yo, Thai Saek, and Thai Kula. It has abundant natural beauty. Mukdahan covers a total area of 4,339.830 sq km.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

Mukdahan is 642 km from Bangkok. Take the route Bangkok - Saraburi - Nakhon Ratchasima - Amphoe Ban Phai - Maha Sarakham - Amphoe Phon Thong - Roi Et - Amphoe Khamcha-i - Mukdahan.

Another route is Bangkok - Saraburi - Nakhon Ratchasima on Hwy 2. Then turn right onto Hwy 207 at Ban Wat and go Amphoe Prathai - Amphoe Phutthaisong - Amphoe Phayakkhaphum Phisai - Amphoe Kaset Wisai - Amphoe Suwannaphum, then use Hwy 2169 via Amphoe Sai Mun - Amphoe Kut Chum - Amphoe Loeng Nok Tha, and Hwy 212 via Amphoe Nikhom Kham Soi to Mukdahan.

By bus[edit]

The Transport Co., Ltd. operates daily bus services from the Bangkok Bus Terminal (Chatuchak or Mo Chit 2), Tel. 0 2936 2852-66. There are also local buses connecting Mukdahan with other Northeastern provinces like Khon Kaen, Ubon Ratchathani via Amnat Charoen, Nakhon Phanom via That Phanom, Sakon Nakhon, Udon Thani, and Maha Sarakham. For more details, please contact the Mukdahan Bus Terminal at Tel. 0 4261 1421, 0 4261 1478, 0 4261 3025-9 or [1].

A minibus from Nakhon Phanom will cost 80 baht.

The terminal itself is on the main highway a couple of Km outside the main part of town. There are plenty of tuk-tuks however.

By train[edit]

Trains leave Bangkok Railway Station or Hua Lamphong for Ubon Ratchathani daily. From there, Mukdahan is 167 km by bus. For more information, call the State Railway of Thailand at Tel. 1690, 0 2223 7010, 0 2223 7020 or visit [2].

By plane[edit]

Thai Airways International does not operate any direct flight to Mukdahan. Passengers can fly to Nakhon Phanom or Ubon Ratchathani, then take a bus to Mukdahan. For more information, call THAI at Tel. 1566, 0 2280 0060, 0 2628 2000 or visit [3].

Get around[edit]

Use tuk-tuks. Yellow songthaew do a circuit around the town, including a stop at the bus terminal (10 baht).

See[edit][add listing]

Do[edit][add listing]

Definitely visit the morning market for breakfast behind the Esso station opposite Mukdahan Hospital.

Haw Kaew Watthanatham: This tower which you can see from the river looks out over the city and the river providing a panoramic view of Mukdahan and a nice peek across the Mekong. Great information on local tourist attractions and some good displays of local ethnic groups as well as local history. One of the most charming of its kind in Isaan.

Considerable forest surrounds the nearby city so there are a number of natural attractions

Buy[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

Drink[edit][add listing]

The café Good Mook* is an oasis of Western retro design among everything Asian. Here you can have espresso-based coffee drinks and cookies, read design magazines or use Wi-Fi. They also have custom t-shirts and photos that look very nice for sale.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

There is plenty of accommodation spread throughout the city at various prices. Some better budget alternatives to nearby Nakhon Phanom.

  • Hotel Submukda Phoom Place, 33/777 Chaiyangkui Rd (as you exit the bus terminal the way you came in, go at 45 degrees to the left and right in the corner is the hotel entrance.), +66 42 630 333. Hotel is quite new and modern, has 4 floors, with a lift. Hot water, TV, bar fridge, air-con in the rooms. Free coffee in the lobby, as well as free use of the Internet terminals. There is a restaurant in the bus station, and you can get boiled rice soup with pork for breakfast, for 35 baht. 450 baht.  edit
  • Huanum Hotel, 36 Samutsadarak Road (in the centre of town, one street back and parallel with the river.), +66 42 611 137. checkout: 12:00. Room with fan and no bathroom 200-250 baht, with air-con and bathroom 350 baht (Feb 2014). Clean. Free Wi-Fi. Ground floor coffee shop 180-350 baht.  edit

Get out[edit]

  • Savannakhet in Laos Roughly 4 km north of each city's centre, the Second Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge connects Mukdahan with the Lao city of Savannakhet on the opposite side of the Mekong River. There is a regular bus connection between the cities. A one-way ticket costs ~100 baht. While there is no formal bus stop at either end of the bridge, passengers need to disembark for the border formalities on both sides. In practice it's possible to buy a ticket and board the bus on the border if you've arrived there by other means.

There is a car park on the Mukdahan side of the bridge. One night costs 100 baht. With the correct paperwork it's also possible to drive your car over to Laos. There are no pedestrian lanes on the bridge.

Visa-on-arrival is available at the border post for those nationalities that require one (see the article on Laos for more details). Additionally, the Lao border officials charge an "entry fee" (40-170 baht), "exit fee" (40 baht) and after 16:00, an "overtime fee" (40 baht) for stamping one's passport.


  • Nakhon Phanom (neighboring province to the north). 14-passenger air-con vans leave from the bus station every 30 minutes in the morning and every 40 minutes after lunch. Service commences at 5:30 am and stops at 5:30 pm. 80 baht. The vans do not have special areas for baggage, so if you have a lot of luggage, you'll need to consider a full-size bus to Nakhon Phanom. [Bus details accurate 04 May 2013]



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