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Khao Yai or the paradise of species

As you will already have understood, Khao Yai park is the Noah's ark of Thailand. And as you need a bit of everything to make a world, Mother Nature judged that it was necessary to throw in a good handful of leeches! So get your gaiters on and don't panic, it feels strange but they are harmless!  

Where the paths cross

Animals big... and small!

Whatever is said, Khao Yai is the essential park! Not to be missed for any reason during your stay in Thailand!   

Besides the small animals which after all only want to have a bite to eat, you will discover an absolutely marvellous park in Khao Yai as well as the art of tourism amongst the middle class Thai people. But let's talk about the park. Khao Yai is above all a true sanctuary for mammals and birds. It has more than twenty species of big, strong animals such as elephants, gaurs (absolutely enormous black bulls), sambars (deer with really cute ears), dholes (wild dogs) as well as wild pigs and macaques which are all as cunning as each other! As for the gibbon, a monkey which you do not want to annoy, it is frankly an impressive animal. Though I didn't see any bears, I drank a Singha (a Thai beer) with a Belgian tourist who had come across one whilst walking. So you have all got the chance!  

Those who look upwards won't be disappointed! Get your best pair of binoculars and spy a unicorn hornbill, parrots and magpies! And pay attention to where you put your feet too, the Khao Yai park is full of snakes. Perhaps you'll come face to face with a king cobra between two superb butterflies and two millipedes!

Did you say green? 

But Khao Yai has luxurious vegetation and also a range of mountains. Those who love walking will have a field day. From a short two hour walk to get warmed up to a several day trek, you will find compensation for your efforts in the park. You will discover magnificent waterfalls, such as those in Haew Suwat, Haew Narok or even Pha Kluai Mai. You'll walk along streams and cross them Indiana Jones style from time to time; you'll flick away overly curious leeches. You'll stride across wild green prairies where, between two selfies, you'll glance over at the two peaks, Khao Khiaw and Khao Laem, which reach just over 1300 metres.

Discovering Thailand without covering Khao Yai - which is just four hours away from Bangkok - is depriving yourself of an unforgettable experience! Isan holds priceless treasures and this park, which is moreover the first one to have been created in Thailand, is a true jewel of nature. And there are even crocodiles! Amazing!

Sébastien Cuzol
16 contributions
Updated 10 November 2015
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