No Disappointment at Na Haeo District ...Let's travel to Loei Province - Phu Pa Poh Hill and Huai Krathing Reservoir. Have you ever been?
Hello friends and fellows who adore travelling... Today, I have another review...this time is a comfortably easy domestic trip.
Loei province... have you ever been?
At least it may sound familiar to you. Familiar tourist attractions are Phu Kradueng, Phu Ruea, Chiang Khan and the most famous Phi Ta Khon ghost festival.
A question for this trip is what else is interesting in Loei...I like to go where other don't.
I can tell it is still interesting and travelling to "Loei" this time is to please those independent who doesn't rely on other...
A small simple corner but very pretty has spot for taking photo and space for being on your own.
You will start to fall in love with Loei province.... come and follow me.
This is a perfect 3 day 2 night trip...
Departure by Nok Air flight from Bangkok to Udon Thani province...
We rent a car with Thai Rent A Car. The branch in Loei hasn't opened yet.
Thus, I must take it from here...
It's best to rent a car when travel in Loei because each location is quite far away.
And it's easy to stop and capture a beautiful scene...
All flights with a smile ... Nok Air is always lovely, friendly and smooth flight.
Now you can check-in through smartphone application, very convenient.
Download and try, it is not difficult....
Nok Air's routes now covers almost the entire country ... the competition among airlines.
Benefit falls to passengers like us...
It takes about an hour till easily arrive to Undo Thani in an early morning.
Go straight to take a car rental. Staff is ready to welcome us in the morning.
Relatively good roads, some roads are being constructed.... long straight drive.
Drive with caution and care... seatbelt throughout the tour.
My plan is
The 1st day at Na Haeo district
The 2nd day at Phu Pa Poh; Loei's version of Mount Fuji
The 3rd day at Huai Krathing Reservoir
These can be done in 2 days but with my sense of travelling is often slow to linger across the pretty comers, stop and take photos.
So you can take my idea to support your trips.
If you have not been here, Chiang Khan is to add on the second day.
Then you can come back to downtown Loei the following day.
Or if it is winter, you may add one more day to stay over at Phu Ruea.
And make it to 5 day 4 night trip, is also not bad...
Viewpoint on the way...
When we cross Mueang Loei district and enter to Phu Ruea, it starts with a plateau.
A various mountain ranges overlooking the beautiful greenery, it looks so fresh.
Na Haeo District ... No disappointment.
A district that I always want to visit since long, I saw its pictures in a travel book several years ago.
I recommend visiting Na Haeo when paddy fields are green and good-looking same period as I do.
It is prettier because most of the lands in this district are agricultural land.
Mostly paddy fields ... they are so pretty and freshly green from rainy season to winter.
Where is Na Haeo?
It is beyond Dan Sai district ... a small village in the central valley where life is still traditional.
Slow life ... no stores, taverns and bars making lousy noise...
Old people walking, carrying Tiffin carriers along the fields to give food offerings to a Buddhist monk.
Students cycling to school ... the locals known the whole village...
Fully-fledged of smiles and friendly relations...
What to look for in
Inhale the smell of natural soil to fill the lungs. Lol.
This district is very peaceful...
There are 3 must visit places.
These are Wat Saeng Pha (Wat Si Pho Chai), Wat Pho Chai, Phra That Din Thaen,
Phu Hua Hom, Phu Suan Sai National Park.
From the city of Loei, it takes about two hours to drive at 100 km on average.
The journey beyond Dan Sai district is slightly uphill across to Na Haeo district.
Must drive with caution and care.
From the main road, we find
Wat Pho Chai first....
It is prior to Na Haeo district. Be careful when drive down from uphill.
Here, the ancient temple over four hundred years is very interesting....
There are antique paintings around the temple ... beautiful and classic too.
On arrival, you will meet with an uncle who acts as a lay ministry.
Likes a tour guide who conducts sightseeing around the temple.
He said that he is here every day. If you come to Wat Pho Chai, he will come to greet and begins to tell the history of the temple right after you step out of the car...
This is a monastery at this temple; it is built so lovely thus photos are taken.
Drive further till Na Haeo district.
And the next ten kilometers is Baan Sang Pha, another highlight of a visit here.
The site of Wat Saeng Pha or Wat Pho Chai...
This is an old temple at the age of about four hundred years as well.
Seems to be the same era when Loei was built...
It began with Laos who crossed the border and located here by hearsay.
The highlight event here is the traditional procession of flower during Songkran Festival.
Check out the videos from two years before that I find on YouTube.
Temple style is influenced by the design of temple in Luang Prabang, Laos.
The immigrants bring in arts and culture from different areas.
The highlight scene is big beautiful green paddy fields.
Having the backdrop as Wat Pho Chai.
Here is always beautiful, you can choose to come either in the morning or evening.
In October, paddy fields will turn to a beautiful yellow gold colour while in winter gives another beautiful scenic view with fog and rice paddy.
There are not many choices of accommodation in Na Haeo...
Most people do outdoor-camping in the winter at Phu Hua Hom, Phu Suan Sai National Park...
For those who look for a resort
I choose here at Tatsanee Resort, room with fan or air conditioner at about 400-600 per night.
The room is pretty fine. It is a five star accommodation in the district Hahaha.
For stranger and unfamiliar face like me.
I must say it is a very warm welcome from the locals.
They smile and greet me all the time and ask where I come from, where to stay. It is very warm touch...
A visit to this small village, it is better to park a car and walk around.
Soak up the atmosphere, life is slow, do you see?
Near to Wat Saeng Pha is the location of Phra That Din Thaen or Din Thaen Stupa.
Phra That Din Thaen is considered rare.
It was made entirely from soil that was assembled by people ever since dozens of years.
Till it forms to a high and large mound like this...
By hearsay, back to hundreds of years ago when the villagers respect sprite,
A pilgrim traveled to the village and has taught the locals that three practices must be held to avoid the catastrophe.
1. Abstain from breaking moral precept
2. Abstain from killing living beings
3. Abstain from superstition
Then built Phra That Din Thaen together with the villagers on day of the full moon in 1603.
The faith of the villagers is not diminished.
Nowadays, the locals still come to make merit by filling up soil.
The weather is cooler if come during the end of rainy season or winter. Another spot to recommend is
The sea of mist at Phi Hua Hom viewpoint, Phu Suan Sai National Park.
It is approximately 10 kilometres to drive from Baan Saeng Pha. Unfortunately, it is so sunny when I am here.
No rain and no fog.
It is recommended to come in the morning during winter.
I think it will be so beautiful.
Another night to chill out if you like peace and quiet ... not crowded.
Walking slowly to soak up fresh air into the lungs. Visiting Na Haeo is surely no disappointment.
Another remark is that the village is very small...
There are not many choices of restaurants, only a few like 2 or 3 of them.
And there is Moo Kra Ta (Thai BBQ Skillet); it can also fills up your stomach.
(Bob Moo Kra Ta, the same branch as Dan Sai district)
I am told and recommended by the locals...
During the morning a grilled chicken street shop can also fulfils your hunger hahaha.
Baan Saeng Pha, view from the top....
The wide greenery of paddy fields
Then back to the city of Loei...
On the way back, we pass through Dan Sai district and Phu Ruea ... the same route.
Before returning to the city, we make a stop to worship a holy object.
Phra That Si Song Rak.
It is a brick pagoda with a quadrate base.
A width of approximately 8 meters. Height of about 32 meters. No monks in the temple.
Then enter to the city of Loei.
And I stay at Crystal Box.
It is a boutique hotel that teenagers like us can mostly rely on...
Brand new accommodation, new bedding, soft bed and not expensive.
Approximately 700 Baht a night.
Other than that, there is also a coffee cafe with a good atmosphere.
Check out the style of container hotel room.
I can feel that it is built with good will though it is more difficult to maintain compared to another regular hotel room.
The hotel is located on the same way to Phu Ruea next to traffic light intersections. Approximately one kilometre prior to downtown...
Talking about food in Lei ...
For those staying in town and want to find something to eat...
I have thoroughly explored and herewith its fine selection as a guideline to follow.
But the taste depends on each individual tongue hahaha.
A restaurant that can fulfils you in the morning, serving yummy "Tom Lueat Mu"(a pork blood soup that's prepared with pork, liver and pork blood as primary ingredients), and tasty "Khai Krata" (pan-fried eggs with Chinese sausages and Vietnamese bologna)
It is quite well known restaurant thus there are lots of people. It is closed around noon, doesn't operate that long. Very independent....
It is inherited from the former Makan Tailor.
Nowadays its name shortens to just Makan and restaurant is main business over forty years.
Khao Piak Pak Mha ...
A famous "Khao Piak" (rice noodle soup) restaurant is a must to prove your visit in Loei.
Do not tell anyone that you are in Loei without eating here.
A highlight is the loud voice of the elder owner haha. Come to let him yell at.
Customers sit modestly and quietly.
There are choices of rice noodle or vermicelli. It is very crowded during lunch.
However it gives you the feeling of chaos like seeing the show of elder man manages his restaurant.
Came to see that.... can't tell the location hahaha of course by turning into the town at hospital intersection and drive straight forward. It is somewhere around the roundabout. You may ask local, surely find it.
Father Heng's Noddle...
This restaurant is open from early morning till late evening. It serves a variety of noodles in 3 colors.
Jade noodles, carrot noodle and yellow noodle.
A homemade dumpling is yummy. In addition to that, there is rice with roasted duck and crispy roasted pork belly.
But I want you to emphasise on noodles.
The locals also recommend a few more restaurants.
There are Rotroet restaurant, Khai Krata and Khanom Bueng Mueng Loei (Loei's crispy pancake) in the market.
But I don't have enough time to try all.
There is also a new chill out restaurant on the main road with similar style to Bangkok.
There are more and more, I leave them with you to try and take a risk hahaha.
Another spot light that I like to recommend if you have time is "Phu Pa Poh".
Phu Pa Poh has another hill called "Phu Hor", which the peak was cutoff.
With a similar look to Mount Fuji, it is widely called as Fuji Muang Loei.
Around 50 km. from the city ... I do not remember how far exactly.
Take about an hour with easy driving.
Starting to see Phu Hor when come to nearby.
(Actually, it can be seen after leaving the downtown a while)
I suggest that if there is enough time, stop from time to time to take photos...
We can go up to the viewpoint to view Phu Hor from the top...
By taking a mini-tractor with the locals allow you to stop by scenic spots for taking photos.
This spot, I happen to see when I get lost haha.
A farm hut is a place for farmers who work at foothill to take a break during lunchtime.
The atmosphere is so cool and relaxing.
Sit down, let the time runs slowly, and listen to cicada singing around.
This is so-called the reality of slow life.
Check out the views of Phu Pa Poh from My Sweet Bear.
One of the team members who explores Loei with me
Bring a bear through the famous 3 mountains of Lei province. Many beautiful photos are in the following link.
If there is time left .... well, where to go? hahaha...
If you do not want to go very far, think of bamboo rafts in the evening at Huai Krathing…
"Huai Krathing Reservoir" or called. "Nam Man Ton Bon Reservoir".
It is located in the area of the Harirak national park .
The area is surrounded by reservoir, rich forests and mountains.
Drive from the city not more than 20 km....
Its main activity is bamboo rafting...
There are small and large bamboo rafts. A small raft fits 3-4 people comfortably.
You have the option of requesting a push back time or let it floats in the middle of the water.
We can order drinks and food here.
Food is not very expensive. You can spend as long time as you want on the raft.
Just have a phone number of pusher to call at anytime when you wish to be pushed back.
Here at Huai Krathing is considered as a chill out place for Loei's people as it is not far.
You can see many small and large rafts float from noon during weekend.
Those who are good at swimming are allowed to jumbo in.
A life jacket is provided; always stick to it ... safety first when travelling.
Approximately 300 Bath for hiring the raft, and 600 Baht for far floating.
Well, it's better to go in group and share expenses. Not expensive at all and super chill.
Just a short moment, time passes very quickly.
3 days and 2 nights in Loei province in different aspects that many have not seen yet....
I hope it helps in opening new perspectives of travelling in Loei.
This coming winter if you don't know where to go, come and find the hidden charms of "Loei".
Let's travel together!