Chachoengsao or Paet Rio is located on the east of Bangkok. Its fertility is due to Bang Pakong River. It is an important venue for agricultural products in the Central Region, with mango as the most popular fruit of the province. Moreover, it is the location of the sacred Phra Phutthasothon Buddha image.
Derived from Khmer, the name Chachoengsao means deep canal, while the name of Paet Rio (Paet means eight and Rio means stripes) has been believed to have come from the way dried fish (which are abundant in the area) were being pierced into eight stripes.
The history of Chachoengsao dated back since the Ayutthaya Period during the reign of King Phra Borom Tri Lokkanat. Most people live along the banks of Bang Pakong River and canals. Phra Phutthasothon or Luang Pho Sothon is the center of beliefs and faith. In the past, Chachoengsao was a small town, and was upgraded to a province in 1916.
Chachoengsao is 80 kilometers from Bangkok, with the area of 5,351 square kilometers. The local administration is divided into 10 Amphoe (district) and 1 King Amphoe (sub-district), namely: Amphoe Muang, Bang Khla, Bang Nam Prieo, Bang Pakong, Ban Pho, Phanom Sarakham, Sanam Chai Khet, Plaeng Yao, Ratchasan, Tha Takiap, and King Amphoe Khlong Khuean.
How To Get There Car
By car: From Bangkok, there are 3 routes to Chachoengsao:
Use highway No.304, via Min Buri, with the distance of 82 kilometers.
Use Bang Na Trat highway, turn left before reaching the bridge over Bang Pakong River to highway No.314. The total distance is 100 kilometers.
Use highway No.3, via Samut Prakarn and Bang Pakong, then turn left to highway No.314. The total distance is 106 kilometers.
By bus: There are buses leaving from 2 bus terminals: From Mor Chit 2 Bus Terminal (Tel: 0 2936 2852 66) First and second-class air-conditioned buses leave every 40 minutes during 06:00 17:00 hrs. The fare is 40 and 36 Baht, respectively.
Regular buses leave every 30 minutes during 05:40 19:00 hrs. The fare is 26 Baht. From Eastern Bus Terminal (at Ekkamai) (Tel: 0 2392 2391) First class air-conditioned buses leave every 40 minutes during 06:30 17:00 hrs. The fare is 59 Baht. Regular buses leave every 30 minutes during 05:40 19:00 hrs. The fare is 33 Baht.
By Train : The trains from Hua Lamphong Station to Chachoengsao leave every day, 9 trains/day, both regular and air-conditioned during 06:00 17:25 hrs. The fare is 40 Baht for air-conditioned and 13 Baht for regular one. For more details, contact 0 2223 7010, 0 2223 7020
Traveling to nearby
From Chachoengsao, visitors can travel to Chonburi, Sa Kaeo, Prachin Buri, and Nakhon Nayok. Moreover, buses from other provinces pass Chachoengsao. They are from Chaing Mai, Phrae, Uttaradit, Phitsanulok, Saraburi, Phayao, Chiang Rai, Lop Buri, Rayong, Khon Kaen, Udon Thani, Nong Khai, Surin, and Si Sa Ket.
Luang Pho Sothon Celebrating Festival
The festival is held three times a year.
1. Around April to celebrate the occasion of lifting Luang Pho Sothorn from the river. Open theatres are provided all through these three days and three nights.
2. Around November to commemorate the occasion of subsiding of smallpox in 1890. It was believed that due to the help of Luang Pho Sothon. Performed on the eve is the chanting of sermons whereby magical power is instilled in Luang Pho votive tablets. A procession of a Luang Pho Sothon reproduction is held both on land and the water. Red Cross Festival is held at the same time at Somdet Phra Srinagarindra Park.
3. Around February (Chinese New Year Festival). This lasts 5 days 5 nights. A large crowd of people from every direction come to the temple to pay respect to Luang Pho.
Mango Day Festival
Mango Day Festival is held around March April every year. This duration is the best crop of mango.
Chachoengsao is the venue for the most favorite fruit in Thailand which is mango. With the area of 86,000 Rae or 34,400 Acre, mangoes are grown mostly in Amphoe Bang Khla and Plaeng Yao. The most popular species are Raet, Khiao Sawoei, Chao Khun Thip, and Thongdam. The mango season is in March, which the mango Festival will be held annually.
Monument of King Taksin the Great
Monument of King Taksin the Great The monument has been built as a memorial site to commemorate King Taksin passing Chachoengsao after the fall of Ayutthaya in 1767 to restore Thailands independence. It is told that at this location was formerly a stupa built for his victory over the enemies. After that, it was demolished in 1931. And eventually the new shrine was constructed in 1988.
Wat Pho Bang Khla
This temple is 23 kilometers from Chachoengsao. Using highway No. 304 for 17 kilometers, then turn left to highway No.3121 for 6 kilometers, pass the Monument of King Taksin the Great, then turn left 500 meters. Also, another route is to travel by boat from Chachoengsao town at Tawan Ok Plaza pier, and land at the pier of the temple. There are many bats on trees during the day and fly out to search for food during the night. And even though fruits are their favorites, these bats never eat fruits grown by Bang Khla people.
Located on Suk Kasem Road, this site was built in the reign of King Rama III. During the reign of King Rama V, this fort was used to fight against the Chinese riots. At the front of the fortress, there is a public park suitable for viewing the scenery of the Bang Pakong River. Also, many old cannons can be seen along on the wall.
City Pillar Shrine
Located on Na Mueang Road, the shrine is featured by the Thai architectural style with 4-sided roofs and a tower (Prang) in the center. Inside, there are 2 city piles which were built in 1834 and 1895. In the same compound, there is Chao Pho Lak Mueang Shrine, which is highly respected. Operating hours are from 07:00 16:00 hrs.
Maenam Bang Pakong
Maenam Bang Pakong or Bang Pakong River is originated from Korat plateau, pass Prachin Buri, Amphoe Bang Nam Priao and Bang Khla of Chachoengsao, and exit Thai Bay at Amphoe Bang Pakong with the distance of 230 kilometers. The three hour trip of 25 kilometers starts from Chachoengsao town to view the local Thai nature along both banks. The route passes some interesting places such as Khrommakhun Maruphong Siriwats Residence, ancient fortress and walls, previous City Hall, old rafts, many Wats, and landed at Wat Pho Bang Khla to view the spectacular sights of the bats. Tourists can hire boat at the pier of Wat Sothon Wararam Worawihan or in town. The long-tailed boat can accommodate 8-10 people, and 40 people for a big boat. The hiring rate can be bargained due to number of passengers and distance.
Wat Chin Prachasamoson
Wat Chin Pracha Samoson (Wat Leng Hok Yi) is another Chinese temple of Wat Leng Noei Yi in Bangkok. It is on Supphakit Road, far from the City Hall about 1 kilometer. The interesting points in the temple are Chinese warrior sculptures and the ceremonial hall (viharn) with Chinese arts. It is also a popular site for Chinese religious ceremonies.
This temple is in the municipal area by the Bang Pakong River. Built in late Ayutthaya Period, with its original name of Wat Hong, it is the location of Phra Phutthasothon or Luang Pho Sothon, the important Buddha image in the attitude of meditation with a width of 1.65 meters and a height of 1.48 meters high. According to the legend, this Buddha image had been floated along the river, before being placed here at this temple. The original image was a beautiful Buddha image, but later on cement was placed on the image to prevent from burglary. Worshippers from all walks of life come to pay respect to this most reputed image by pasting gold leaves on the image.
Wat Uphai Phatikaram
The present chapel (ubosot) is a new, beautiful, and gigantic building which has replaced the old one. The chapel actually depicts the style of the applied Rattanakosin period. The weekdays operating hours are during 07:00-16:15 and 07:00-17:00 hrs for weekends. Moreover, there are many stalls for food and local souvenirs. Long-tailed boat service to and from the city market and the temple is also available.Wat Uphai Phatikaram (Wat Sam Po Kong) Situated on Suphakij Road, near Talad Mai, this temple was formerly a Chinese temple. However, it has now turned into a Vietnamese temple. It is also a location of the Chao Pho Sam Po Kong or Luang Pho To (Phra Trairattananayok). Every weekend, many Chinese tourists come to pay respect to the image.