Ban Khiriwong

A slice of the rural life

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What we say: 4 stars

This charming village is nestled at the foot of the mountains by a rocky stream and is the departure point for the ascent of Khao Luang Mountain. The village is surrounded by fruit orchards and there are some pleasant hikes around the village and also some waterfalls within walking distance.

Khao Luang rises up from little over sea-level at Khiriwong to 1,835m, making it a spectacular sight. The peak is often covered in clouds. This was one of the last hideouts of the CPT guerrillas and it is hard to believe that only 15 years ago, this was the scene of fierce fighting. The Thai government forces pounded the CPT tunnel systems on the peak with fighter bombers, to no avail until the guerrillas finally gave up of there own accord following an amnesty offer.

It takes at least two days to hike to the peak and back and you will definitely need a guide. Prices for guides and porters are negotiable. Expect to pay a minimum of 300B per day for each service. English speaking guides are difficult to find. The hiking is fairly tough, but the scenery is stunning. Pack some warm clothing because it can get cool in the evenings.

A good place to try to organise a trek and an interesting spot to stay is at Mr Nui's house on the edge of the village by the river. Mr Nui has four basic bamboo huts for 120B per night and will provide breakfast and dinner if desired. Washing is done in the river. Mr Nui is a very friendly guy and organises Khiriwong's Nascent Ecotourism Project, but unfortunately he does not speak English. Fortunately, his son Art speaks English so there should be no problems communicating. Ask in the village for Mr Nui and someone will point out his house. His house is 1km out of the village and it can be reached by motorbike taxi. The TAT office in Nakhon Si Thammarat can help to sort things out with Mr. Nui if you want to spend the night.

More details
How to get there: A songthaew leaves Yao Rd (07:00 - 16:00) in Nakhon Si Thammarat. Take Route 4016 and at the 9km marker turn left onto Route 4015. Go past Amphoe Lan Saka and turn right at Ban Khiriwong. Continue straight for 9km until reaching the Ban Khiriwong Community Centre. Contact the centre at (075) 53 3113 for more information.
Last updated: 24th November, 2006

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  • One of my favorite spots in Thailand 5 stars

    19th October, 2013

    This place enchanted me. I stayed ina place with lovely little wooden bungalows that cost me 500 or 600 baht right on a river that comes down out of the foothills of Khao Luang National Park. The river has sandy beaches where you can swim or even get a tan. Absolutely fabulous restaurant with some of the best Thai food I've ever had. Day hikes into the mixed-orchard (polyculture) farms in the foothills of the national park. Although it is farmland, you won't feel like it's a plantation because the rule is that people who grow crops have to plant a variety of crops. So in one plot of land you can find jackfruit, durian, mango, tamarind, fig, and others. The result is that you feel like you're in a jungle. A waterfalls pours down the entire mixed-orchard area and you can swim in several places. Overnight treks to the summit of Khao Luang also can also be arranged out of Ban Khiriwong. There is also a community center here where you can buy fresh organic vegetables and other locally-grown/made products. The center sits in the shade of a large banyan tree on the property of the temple across the street, itself a beautiful crumbling old thing to see.

    As a repeat visitor to Thailand (I've been about 20 times) Ban Khiriwong is the kind of place I seek out -a little slice of genuine rural Thai life where few tourits ever venture. You'll end up staying longer than planned. I did.

    Ban Khiriwong reviewed by gregmccann1 (2)
    Written on 19th October, 2013, rated 5 out of 5. Visited here in July, 2012

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