Skyscraping Ho Kaeo Tower, Phu Pha Thoep and Kaeng Kabao, Eight Ethnic Minorities, Famous Sweet Tamarind, Large Ancient Kettledrum, Origin of Lam Phaya, Stunning View of the Mekong River, Gateway to Indochina.
The founding of Mukdahan dates to the late Ayutthaya period, over 200 years ago, when the site of the new town was selected at the mouth of Huai Muk on the bank of the Mekong River in 1767. The town was completed in 1770 and named “Mukdahan” (moonstone or pearl) according to a propitious sign that appeared while the town was under construction. Even today the locals call the town “Mueang Muk” or the pearl on the bank of the Mekong.
For most of its existence, Mukdahan has been a significant gateway to Indochinese countries. The local people of Mukdahan have had a long relationship with the people in Savannakhet province of neighboring Laos, with whom they share a 70 km long Mekong River border. Further, Mukdahan is home to 8 ethnic minorities; namely, Thai Isan, Phu Thai, Thai Kha, Kraso, Thai Kaloeng, Thai Yo, Thai Saek, and Thai Kula. The area also has abundant natural beauty. Mukdahan is also a famous province for producing high quality Mudmee silk.
Mukdahan, the pearl on the bank of the Mekong, has been an historical gateway to Indochinese countries, and the population of the province reflects this: 8 different ethnic minorities live in Mukdahan; namely, Thai Isan, Phu Thai, Thai Kha, Kraso, Thai Kaloeng, Thai Yo, Thai Saek, and Thai Kula. Mukdahan has abundant natural beauty and is also famed for its high quality Mudmee silk.
As a province somewhat off the typical tourist route, Mukdahan is best reached via private car or public bus. However, it is possible to take a train or plane to nearby Ubon Ratchathani an then a short bus to Mukdahan. Once there, it may be easier to get around with your own car, but there are standard forms of local transport available for visitors: i.e. songtaew, motorbike taxi, and tuk tuk.
Getting to and from Mukdahan
By Train: Trains leave Bangkok's Hua Lumphong Railway Station throughout the day for Ubon Ratchathani.
By Car: Mukdahan is 642 km from Bangkok. Driving to Mukdahan, motorists should follow a route from Bangkok through Saraburi, Nakhon Ratchasima, Amphoe Ban Phai, Maha Sarakham, Amphoe Phon Thong, Roi Et, and Amphoe Khamcha-I to Mukdahan.
Another route is from Bangkok to Saraburi and Nakhon Ratchasima on Highway 2 and then right onto Highway 207 at Ban Wat, through Amphoe Prathai, Amphoe Phutthaisong, Amphoe Phayakkhaphum Phisai, Amphoe Kaset Wisai, and Amphoe Suwannaphum, then along Highway 2169 via Amphoe Sai Mun, Amphoe Kut Chum, and Amphoe Loeng Nok Tha, and finally on Highway 212 via Amphoe Nikhom Kham Soi to Mukdahan.
By Bus: Air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned coaches regularly leave from Bangkok's Mo Chit 2 Northeastern Bus Terminal on Kamphaengphet 2 Road throughout the day. Telephone 936-2852-66, 537-8005 for more information.
By Air: Thai Airways operates daily flights to Nakon Phanom or Ubon Ratchathani from which visitors can get a bus to Mukdahan.
Getting Around Mukdahan
As in most rural Thai provinces there are typically songtaews that follow established routes around the provincial capital and between towns within the province. Songtaews, motorbike taxis, and some form of tuk tuk are usually available for private charter as well.