Demonstration at the Elephant Festival in Surin

Surin: Elephants, Silk and Farangs

Because it’s a comfortable and inexpensive small city with decent night life, good restaurants, beautiful girls and beer, Surin is the city of choice of hundreds of expats.

The elephant city

Surin is the capital of the Surin province in northeastern Thailand in the region commonly known as Isan. It is famous for annual Elephant Round-up and certainly Surin is one of the cities in Thailand with more elephants per squared meter, and frequently one can see many of them walking down the streets of the city towards some restaurant, where tourists, usually after pay the handler (Mahout) 20 baht, can feed the elephants a bunch of bananas.

Surin town is surrounded by villages that produce a variety of Handicrafts: silk, necklaces, silver, furniture etc to sell them at local shops and markets or in Bangkok for a higher price.

Many people in Surin speak both Thai and Cambodian languages, also many of them are descendants of Cambodians. Since Surin is located near the Cambodian border this could be another reason for foreigners with multiple entry visa to choose Surin because they can leave Thailand and re-enter Thailand easily.

Major points of interest in Surin are the following:

City Pillar Shrine – The shrine is the sacred icon, the tutelary deity of the city and the province.

The Monument of Phaya Surin Phakdi Si Narong Changwang (Pum) – It is a statue of Surin’s founder and first mayor, Phaya Surin.

Wat Burapharam – It’s a ancient Buddhist temple. The temple was built by Surin’s first mayor Phaya Surin Phakdi Si Narong Changwang. The Wat houses a Buddha image of Luang Pho Phra Chi.

Surin National Museum – The Surin National Museum was established in 1974. The Museum covers natural science, history-archaeology, local history, ethnology, and local heritage.

Lower Isan Art and Crafts Centre – The centre displays art and culture exhibits of Lower Isan.

Huai Saneng – Huai Saneng is a reservoir under the irrigation project situated 5 kilometers from Surin.

Phanom Sawai Forest Park – The park has a hill with three peaks. Yot Khao Chai, or the Man Peak, is where Wat Phanom Sawai is located. Yot Khao Ying, or the Lady Peak, houses a medium-size Buddha image. Yot Khao Kok, houses an octagon pavilion.

Thasawang Silk Village – Thasawang Silk Village is located around 10 kilometers from Surin town. It holds a traditional Thai style silk small factory and a few shops to sell the finished silk and silk products.

There are few Khmer temples in Surin province such as Prasat Ta Meuan, Prasat Sikhoraphum, Prasat Hin Phluang and Prasat Phumpon.

-Thailand News (TN)

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