The province of Surin is 450 km from Bangkok and 200 km from Korat, the gateway to Issan. The Mun River borders to the North and the Dongrek Mountain Chain to the South on the border with Cambodia. The town of Surin is generally a quiet town and is said to represent an intersection of the major cultures of the surrounding areas resulting in an interesting set of languages and customs.

Things to do in Surin

The major attraction of Surin and it’s surrounding countryside, are a group of ruins of Kkmer origin built during the 11th and 12th century of the Angkor empire,. These include ruins such as Prasat Srikhonphum with its five Pagodas,the tallest of which reaches 32 m. Ta Muan on the Cambodian border and Sikhorapum are worth a visit.

Other than the ruins the only other major attraction is the Surin annual elephant round up. This roundup occurs in late November and provides otherwise dull town with a carnival atmosphere. Just on the outskirts of the Surin town a great number of the elephants are kept in top shape for this festival, but to see Surin’s elephants other than during the festival head about 40 km north of Surin to BanTha Klang. Before heading to this area however, check the elephants are actually there as their presence is highly seasonable.

Surin National Museum gives a history of the Lao, Suay and Khmer cultures and traditions with exhibitions

Getting to Surin

There are many buses leaving Bangkok’s Northern bus terminal between 6 AM and 11 PM daily heading to Surin. During the elephant Roundup there are many special buses to Surin organised by a hotels and tour companies. You can reach of Surin by train but during the elephant Roundup seats must be built at least two weeks in advance the train journey takes approximately 6 1/2 to 7 hours depending on which train you have chosen.

Surin Map