Phetchaburi is a place where visitors can enjoy both cultural and natural sites at the same time. The province has been described as the place where the golden era of Ayutthaya still lives on, and this is amply demonstrated in the magnificent architecture of palaces and temples. A trip to Phetchaburi takes you back in time to a period of prosperity and cultural development, when Thailand still was called Siam.
Your tour starts with hotel pickup in Hua hin or Cha-Am for the 50-minute drive to the Phetchaburi province, whose capital town bears the same name. Your guide will explain the importance of Phetchaburi's sites, which are a reminder of what once was one of the most important places in Siam, designated as a royal retreat.
Begin your experience with a visit to the hillside residence of King Mongkut (King Rama IV), called Khao Wang, part of Phra Nakhon Khiri Historical Park. This iconic building can be seen on the approach to Phetchaburi, a town with a history dating back to the 11th century. The architectural design of the palace buildings is a unique mix of neoclassical, Thai, and Chinese styles. In the 19th century, it became a royal retreat of King Rama IV, starting a trend of summer retreats that has been been continued by his royal successors. You have the opportunity to explore the palace and enjoy the fine vista of the town, its river, and the surrounding rice fields. To the west, the mountainous border of Myanmar is visible, even when the clouds blur the contours of the peaks.
Next, visit Tham Khao luang cave, which lies on the outskirts of town and is home to more than 170 Buddha images, some of which were placed there by King Rama IV. Around midday, they are illuminated by a natural shaft of light that floods the cave.Lastly, stop at the Khmer-influenced temple of Wat Prasrit Mahathat, a royal temple that dates back to the 12th century and is situated along the western river banks of the Phetchaburi River. The magnificence of its architecture is something that simply cannot be missed. After a short stroll through the temple complex, head to your hotel in Hua Hin or Cha-Am to end your tour.