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Yala (ยะลา) is a town in Deep Southern Thailand.


Yala is the southernmost province of Thailand, with an area of 4,521 square kilometres. It is the only landlocked province in the south. Yala is the border province with an interesting history, culture, and beautiful scenery. The province has a unique mixture of cultural heritage of several groups: Thai, Chinese, and Malay. The city centre has systematic town planning and is one of the educational centres of the south as well.

The word "Yala" was derived from the local word "yalo" meaning "fish net". Yala used to be a part of Pattani, a colony of the Sukhothai Kingdom. In B.E. 2310 when Ayutthaya fell to the Burmese, the southern colonies became independent. During the reign of King Rama I of the Rattanakosin Dynasty, the King sent his brother, Khrom Phra Ratchawangbowon Maha Surasihanat to take Pattani. In B.E. 2351, the King had Pattani separated into 7 smaller colonies, namely Mueang Pattani, Mueang Sai Buri, Mueang Nong Chik, Mueang Yaring, Mueang Ra Ngae, Mueang Raman, and Mueang Yala. Yala had changed its rulers many times before Monthon was abolished in B.E. 2476 and finally became one of the provinces of Thailand.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

Yala is 1,084 kilometres south of Bangkok by road. One can take Highway 4 (Thanon Phetkasem) from Bangkok to Prachuap Khiri Khan, and Chumphon, then onto Highway 41 through Thung Song, Phatthalung, Hat Yai, Pattani, and Yala.

By plane[edit]

There is no direct flight to Yala but Thai Airways International offers flights from Bangkok to Hat Yai. From Hat Yai one can either take the train, bus, taxi, or air-conditioned van to Yala. Please call Thai Airways at 1566, 0 2280 0060, 0 2628 2000 for more information.

By train[edit]

Yala is 1,055 kilometres from Bangkok by rail. The State Railway Authority of Thailand operates daily rapid and express train services from Bangkok to Yala. Trains leaves the Bangkok Railway Station at 0.25 p.m., 2.45 p.m. and 3.50 p.m. For more information please call Travelling Service Unit, Bangkok Railway Station at tel: 1690, 0 2223 7010 and 0 2223 7020 or visit

By bus[edit]

To/from Bangkok: Air-con buses by The Transport Co. Ltd (บริษัท ขนส่ง จำกัด (บขส.), bor-kor-sor) run between Bangkok southern bus terminal (สายใต้, sai-tai) and Yala bus terminal daily. The distance is ~1089km and normally takes 14 hours.

  • 24 seats VIP bus (พิเศษ, piset) costs 1215 baht, departs from Bangkok at 17:30. On the reverse, the departure is at 14:00.
  • 32 seats Class 1 B bus (ม1พ) costs 914 baht, departs from Bangkok at 19:00 and Yala at 15:30.
  • 40 seats Class 1 C bus (ม1ข) costs 783 baht, departs from Bangkok at 17:00 and Yala at 16:30.
  • 47 seats Class 2 bus (ม2) costs 609 baht, departs from Bangkok at 14:00 and 18:00, Yala at 12:30 and 14:30.

Air-conditioned bus services are run daily between Bangkok and Yala from the Southern Bus Terminal. Departure times from Bangkok are as follows:

  • VIP Bus – 5.30 p.m.
  • Standard 1 Bus – 10.30 a.m. and 5 p.m.

For further information please call the Southern Bus Terminal at tel: 0 2435 1119-200.

Thai Doen Rot Co.,Ltd (tel: 0 2435 7424) operates a daily bus service from Bangkok to Betong. The bus leaves the Southern Bus Terminal at 4 p.m.

To/from Sungai Kolok

Mini bus for 120 Baht or by train for 20 baht. The travel takes about 2 hours, be awarded that train may be slower. Minibusses depart to the left as you exit the train station. Minibusses also depart to Narathiwat from this same location for 100 Baht

To/from Betong

Mini van (air-con) for 120 Baht or shared Taxi for 130 Baht (April, 2014). The Mini van and Taxi takes about 2 hours, the Taxi is usually faster because it usually don't pick up people on the way. The mini van stops along the way to take travelers who arranged a stop with the company. The mini van is located about 120 meters north of the clock tower on Sukhayang Road (East side) in Beton, the share taxi is about 80 meters north of the clock tower on Sukhayang Road (West side) in Beton.

By boat[edit]

Get around[edit]

See[edit][add listing]

Do[edit][add listing]

Because of the recent bombings your cell phone's SIM card will be disabled on the way down here. You will still have data access. Go to Telewiz to register your SIM in Yala. (+66-(0)73-228-900-2) you'll need to show your passport and provide a fingerprint.

Buy[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

There are street stalls and small restaurants all over Yala. Like the rest of Thailand you are never far away from food. Yala is not used to westerners or tourists so just smile a lot and point at the food you want. Many people understand rudimentary english so say the kind of meat you want and go from there there.

Drink[edit][add listing]

There are a few watering holes, but keep in mind this is a majority Muslim area and you may offend someone with your drinking. Alcohol is available and drank in considerable quantities by the local non-Muslims, but getting inebriated and making a ruckus is not advisable. Prices here are very reasonable.

  • I Like Coffee, Near park view hotel, 081-5415500. Western style Thai-run and patronized coffee shop with free wifi and an English menu. A good place to get your bearings upon arrival in Yala. 35THB.  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Yala My House, +66-(0)73-213-147. This place looks worlds better than Chang Lee and it's cheaper. You can choose a 'kareoke' girl off of the wall when you come in for 200 baht, but that's standard around these parts. If you don't want one no problem. There's a 2 hour Thai massage accross the street for 240 THB and several discoteques and kareoke bars. All seem to be thinly veiled fronts for prostitution. 340 THB.  edit
  • Park View Hotel, 2-18 Jongrak 3 RD, +66-(0)73-217010. This place is bustling compared to My House or Chang Lee. The rooms are simple but tidier than the Chang Lee, although with a very loud air conditioning. You must pay a 350 THB deposit for the minibar when you check in; however, you receive all of it back when you check out if you've not used the minibar. Wireless internet access can be had in the lobby for free. They have a cafe and restaurant as well as a discotheque in the area. There does however also appear to be some prostitution in the area. Room rate can be negotiated to 450 THB. 520 THB.  edit
  • Yala Rama Hotel, 21 Sri Bumrung Rd., +66-(0)73-212-815. Rooms are nice and clean. Free WiFi in rooms. 350 THB deposit for mini bar. Very centrally located, just 150-200m from Railways Station: one block strait and to the left. Appears to be the most reputable hotel in town according to locals. 600-950 THB.  edit
  • Thepwimarn Hotel, Sri Bumrung Rd. just past Yala Rama Hotel, +66-(0)73-212-400. checkout: 11:00. Rooms are very simple, fan, bathroom inside. No WiFi. Hotel is closed from 22:00 till 6:00. 340THB - one bed 480THB - two beds.  edit
  • Jetwing Yala, Jetwing Yala, Palatupana, Yala, Kirinda, Sri Lanka, +94 114 709 400, [1]. Jetwing Yala is in close proximity to the national park and if you're a wildlife plan the ambiance here will be perfect for you. Rates vary from LKR20000 to LKR 25000  edit
  • Cinnamon Wild Yala, PO Box 01, Kirinda, Thissamaharama (From Colombo - 301KM), +94 472239449 (, fax: +94 472239450), [2]. checkin: 2pm; checkout: 12pm. Located very close to the Yala National Park and features chalets with private balconies, an outdoor pool and a restaurant. Starting from USD 134. (6.259499,81.404361) edit

Stay safe[edit]

In 2004, long-simmering resentment in the southern-most Muslim-majority provinces burst into violence in Narathiwat, Pattani and Yala provinces. Some rebel groups have threatened foreigners, and three foreigners were killed in bombings in Hat Yai (in neighbouring Songkhla Province) in September 2006, but while targets have included hotels, karaoke lounges and shopping malls, westerners have not been singled out for attacks. If you are polite, respectful and smile a lot you don't have much to worry about. Do not dress in overly revealing clothing. There are soldiers all over the town, but they are there to keep you safe and keep the peace.

Get out[edit]

Routes through Yala
BangkokHat Yai  N noframe S  Sungai Kolok

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