Which of these towns would you consider the better place to relax for a few days? I know it's difficult comparing a beach town with a river town but just want a general impression of which you found more enjoyable.
I'm wondering why you have a choice between these two places since they are very far apart?
Nongkhai is ok, it's a pretty typical Thai medium-size town with a nice riverfront promenade and some decent restaurants and watering holes. Nothing particularly special about it except for the Mekong. Never been to Prachuap but the south of Thailand has beautiful scenery and beaches etc. so you can't really go wrong there!
Slight preference for Prachuap as it's a truly seaside town with few tourists and decent beaches just north and south (the town harbour itself is full of fishing boats and not swimmable). You can climb the staircase to a monkey temple with huge views of the coastline, just remember bananas for the nasty monkeys. You can also do a daytrip to Sam Roi Yod National Park which has great trail walks, views, and the famous sala cave.
Nong Khai can be pleasant if staying along the Mekong, but bring bug spray. Spent a few evenings sitting at Mutmee G.H. being eaten alive by the bastards. If you can find it the Pantawee Resort (not the Pantawee Hotel) is a good cheap quiet choice with a view of the Friendship Bridge.
I've not been to either in quite a few years, but Prachuap gets my vote, primarily for the food.
#6 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,800
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I'm a big fan of Prachuap. Went back this year after 2 years and I have to say while there is still few tourists compared to other places in Thailand it does seem to be on the rise. Seemed to be a fair few guesthouses along the sea front that perhaps I just didn't see last time, and definitely more places advertising western foods and such.
The night food market and fresh seafood there is fantastic. For relaxing there I'd head straight to Maggie's home stay. Absolutely love that place.
Both are good Nong Khai you can do excellent day trip travel Nakon phanom ,Tad phanom and mukdahan i have stayed at Nong khai hotel across from train station very nice owners but a little bit of walk getting back after a few changs,
Now pratchup is becoming more popular as a weekend hide away from bangkok many thais holiday/weekend break there so its a very friendly place food excellent try the kwaitew pla noodle soup with fish you will not be dissapointed with either -pratchup is easy to get to as is Nong khai -but NK either involves a fligh to Udon thani or the overnight train but from BKK Pratchup can be made by bus 4 hours -ish