A busy market town and transport hub, Pua might not at first glance seem a tempting tourist destination in its own right but it does make for a very convenient base for exploring the northern Nan region thanks to its central location, good range of accommodation and food and handy transport links.
Geographically, it’s smack bang in the centre of the province’s north, with Doi Phuka and Bo Kluea directly east; Chaloem Prakhiat and the border crossing at Huay Kon to the north, Route 1082 taking you over the mountains west to Phayao and an interesting 50 kilometre or so drive south to Nan passing Nong Bua with its ancient temple and picturesque Tham Pha Tup Forest Park. A day drive from Nan stopping at points of interest on Route 101, an overnight in Pua and a return via the waterfalls of Santisuk district makes for a great two-day trip. Or, equally, Pua is a convenient stop on our suggested three-day Nan motorbike loop. The beauty is, with aforementioned good transport links, most of these neighbouring sites are straightforward by public transport too.
Pua is actually older than Nan city, with Tai Lue migrants from the north founding their original settlement here, though no remains that we could locate exist today. The small but busy town is set in a wide, fertile valley affording splendid views east towards the hills of Doi Phuka. Hardly picturesque, the town is popular with Thai visitors, although foreign ones are rare, and as we mentioned it does have the best tourist infrastructure in the area.
Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Pua or check hotel reviews on Agoda and Booking . Want to know what to do once you're there? Check out our listings of things to do in and around Pua. If you're still figuring out how to get there, you need to read up on how to get to Pua, or book your transport online with 12Go Asia.
By Mark Ord.
Last updated on 29th January, 2016.
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