If Hua Hin in Thailand is not on your radar yet, these eight hot spots are sure to convince you to fall in love with this unique seaside destination. By Radhika Sikaria
This seaside summer palace of King Rama VI is set in a beautiful garden with century-old trees and 16 interlinked, teak buildings. Popularly known as the palace of love and hope, it is symbolic of the king’s care for Queen Indrasakdi Sachi during her pregnancy. The palace’s Tea Room offers seven varieties of tea, served with locally-made Thai and European desserts. Visitors are required to be dressed modestly, with shoulders and knees covered. Entrance fee ₹60; closed on Wednesday.
The thriving art commune was established in 1998 by artist Tawee Kesa Ngam and his wife. A watercolour painter, Ngam wanted to create a space where local artists could work on their craft alongside other artisans. It soon became a famous destination for visitors seeking unique artworks, or even their inner artist. In addition to buying art, you can also take up sketching and oil painting classes, and sign your kids up for craft workshops.
Distinct from the Hua Hin beach, this stretch of the shore offers easy road access and no private ownership of beachfront land. You can enjoy several water sports, including jet skiing, go horse-riding, or just relax on the deck chairs after a round of shopping from the local vendors. Try the northern end for a more tranquil spot.
This weekend-evening market attracts many visitors for its live performances, art exhibition, and handmade products. The market is divided into four venues: Art A La Mode, Cicada Art Factory, Amphitheatre, and Cicada Cuisine.
SEENSPACE HUA HIN
Thailand’s first shopping mall and eatery is right on the beach; this lifestyle outlet stresses on the concept of Eat, Lay, Play, Relax. You can enjoy shopping at the many multi-brand fashion stores, unwind at exclusive pool bars, or just take a stroll and enjoy the pleasant sea breeze.
ROYAL HUA HIN GOLF COURSE
Thailand’s first golf course was opened in 1924, less than a kilometre from the centre of town. This 18-hole, international-standard course is built on natural terrain and is set between some spectacular rocky hills, with excellent views of the Gulf of Thailand and the city centre from several of the holes. Upwards of ₹4,800 per person.
A historic landmark, it was built during the reign of King Rama VI, and played an integral role in connecting this pleasant, beachside settlement to Bangkok, and paving the way for it to become a favourite getaway for the Thai royal family. Today, the railway station and its Royal Waiting Room is reminiscent of the elegance of a bygone era—the bright, red- and yellow-coloured structures built along the lines of traditional Thai architecture. “If you come to Hua Hin, and don’t get a photograph at the iconic red signage at the Hua Hin Railway Station, it’s almost as if you weren’t here!” is the local belief.
The gorgeous winery is carved out of the Hua Hin Hills, its lush green expanses spread across 270 acres, and is home to several small animals that roam freely—rabbits, wild chicken, peacocks, bantams, monkeys, and turkeys. The area also has two vegetable plantations from where fresh produce are sourced for the kitchen at the Thai speciality restaurant, The Sala. With every dish on the menu, a wine recommendation is keyed in, so you are well taken care of.