Underrated pleasures of Udon Thani are surely its boating lakes, which are great places to take walks or enjoy water sports with friends. Udon Thani is Thailand’s largest city outside of the central provinces and boasts many activities for locals and visitors alike.
Here is the list of the underrated pleasures you may visit in Udon Thani.
1. Visit a boating lake
No city of reasonable size is complete without a boating lake. Udon Thani’s popular one is called Nong Prajak Park, and it does not disappoint. With three different kinds of boats to rent, it’s no wonder that the park sees upwards of 1 million visitors annually.
2. Indulge in healthy cuisine
Udon Thani is blessed with one particular restaurant chain, which serves nothing but healthy (sometimes called yin and yang) food. This kind of food is a mix of Thai traditional recipes and Chinese vegetarian dishes. The family-run Healthy Food Udon Thani has a store in the Central Plaza Shopping Mall No. 1.
3. Visit a Monastery
One of the less-known attractions in Udon Thani is Wat Tan Pa Phra That, located near Nong Prajak Park. The place offers interesting murals depicting Buddhist stories along with an ornate Wiharn and vihara, two ordination halls that are considered to be architectural masterpieces.
4. Try a signature dish at a local restaurant
Thai food in Thailand is so much more than green curry and pad thai. One of the best-known local restaurants in Udon Thani is Khanom Jeen Nam Ngeow, which specializes in traditional Isan dishes such as Kanom Jeen Nam Ngiaw (rice noodles with pork blood) and som tum (papaya salad).
5. Browse Udon Thani’s bookstores
Another less-known attraction in Udon Thani is its secondhand bookstores. One of the most popular stores in this category is Boomerang Books, which sells new and used books including rare finds at affordable prices. The store offers English, Thai, Chinese, and Japanese books and is across Central Plaza Shopping Mall No. 1.
6. Indulge in a relaxing foot massage
Among the underrated pleasures of Udon Thani, we cannot fail to mention its many wonderful opportunities for getting a foot massage. If you like your massages strong and even slightly painful, try Place 2 on Alley 223 in Central Plaza Shopping Mall No. 1. If a gentle, yet firm foot massage is more to your liking, try Spa 2 on Soi 2 in the same mall. There are many other spas and salons available throughout Udon Thani for pampering both men and women.
7. Watch a Muay Thai contest
Another one of the underrated pleasures of Udon Thani is watching a Muay Thai boxing match. The city is home to two stadiums that host regular events, one in Central Plaza Shopping Mall No. 1 and another in Nong Prajak Park.
8. Participate in an art class
If you like trying new things, visit Art & Painting Room by Art Cafe on Alley 223 in Central Plaza Shopping Mall No. 1 for a class in painting and drawing. You can sign up for either one or two hours of tuition and the teachers encourage students to try different types of artwork including charcoal, pencil, and oil paintings as well as sketching with pastels.
9. See a play or other show at Central Plaza
One of the most underrated things to do in Udon Thani is seeing a play, whether it’s an action movie, romantic comedy, or even a Thai cultural performance. The city boasts one theatre for these kinds of performances, and it’s right in the city center on Alley 223 in Central Plaza Shopping Mall No. 1.
10. Ride the train to Phibun Rak Road
Udon Thani is also home to a train station, which makes it possible for locals and visitors alike to travel by rail throughout the province of Udon Thani and even as far north as Sakhon Nakhon or northeast to Nong Khai. The train station is next to Central Plaza Shopping Mall No. 1, and Udon Thani Railway Station has daily departures for surrounding destinations.
These underrated activities of Udon Thani offer visitors and locals alike the opportunity to explore the city’s cultural heritage and natural beauty while relaxing with a foot massage or getting dressed up for a night at Central Plaza.