Photo: The beautiful Songkhla National Museum.

Songkhla National Museum

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Built in an elegant Chinese style in 1878, the former palace that now houses Songkhla National Museum is the most impressive single piece of heritage architecture in a town with no shortage of it.

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With white mortar walls, bright-red doors and ceramic tiles on a sloping roof, the building housed Songkhla’s ruling family in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and was later used as city hall before opening as a museum in 1982. Wander into the courtyard for a vantage of the structure’s graceful symmetry before strolling on the open-sided balconies.

History lives at the Songkhla National Museum. Photo taken in or around Songkhla National Museum, Songkhla, Thailand by David Luekens.

History lives at the Songkhla National Museum. Photo: David Luekens

Though the exhibits pale in comparison to those at the Southern Thai Folklore Museum on Ko Yo, you will find portraits of Songkhla’s early leaders, old cannons and ancient Srivjaya- and Dvaravati-style religious images. Perhaps more interesting is a series of info boards explaining the long history of Singora / Songkhla, including its early Muslim rulers and their relations with traders from France, Portugal, Holland and Britain. Out the back you’ll find striking masks used in manora dance performances as part of an exhibit on local folk life.

Across Saiburi Road from the National Museum stands the Phathammarong Museum, a life-size replica of the house in which Songkhla’s most famous son, Prem Tinsulonanda, was raised. In a career spanning seven decades, Prem has served as military commander, prime minister, coup leader, privy councilor, regent and close advisor to the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

One of the striking masks on display. Photo taken in or around Songkhla National Museum, Songkhla, Thailand by David Luekens.

One of the striking masks on display. Photo: David Luekens

In this area you’ll also find the last remaining part of Songkhla’s old city wall, built of stone in the 18th century. From here you could join Thai tourists on the free Singora ... Travelfish members only (Around 200 more words) ... please log in to read the rest of this story.

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How to get there
The large National Museum complex is located just north of the Sapsin fresh market and west of the clock tower between Saiburi, Chana, Wichianchom and Rong Mueang roads. Open

Songkhla National Museum
Wed–Sun 09:00–15:00
Admission: 100 baht

Location map for Songkhla National Museum

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Popular attractions in Songkhla

A selection of some of our favourite sights and activities around Songkhla.

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A selection of some of our favourite places to stay in Songkhla.

What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Songkhla.
 Check prices, availability & reviews on Agoda
 Read up on where to eat on Songkhla.
 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Songkhla.
 Read up on how to get to Songkhla, or book your transport online with 12Go Asia.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Songkhla? Please read this.
 Buy a SIM card for Thailand—pick it up at the airport when you arrive.
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