Thailand’s upscale beach resort of Hua Hin is located 200kms from Bangkok in a wide bay on the Gulf of Thailand. Its claim to fame is the SummerPalace belonging to the Thai royal family, which give a unique ambience to this Thai holiday resort. The resort is popular with Bangkok residents on weekend getaways as well as home to a large expat community. Its white-sand beach is its main attraction, running along the entire curve of the bay.
The town itself is clean, relatively quiet and boasts a good choice of hotels set mostly in its central district. The majority of accommodations are mid-range and inexpensive, but visitors looking for luxury should head for the spa resorts with their private beaches, villas and gourmet in-house restaurants.
For budget travellers looking for accommodation for a few nights, there are a small number of cosy inns and guesthouses. If you’re planning on staying for four weeks or more, houses, condos and villas can be rented short-term from local real estate agents.
Getting in is by train, long-distance bus or taxi from Bangkok’s international airport, with road travel taking around two to three hours and the train the slowest means of travel, at five to six hours from the capital. Hiring a car at the airport is the best option as it gives the freedom to explore the pretty countryside around the resort. Transportation in Hua Hin itself is by songthaew (shared taxi), motorcycle taxi, metered taxi and the ubiquitous tuk-tuks (motorised rickshaws).
Hua Hin’s climate sees little in the way of temperature variations over the year. Average highs range between 29 and 33°C, and nights are cool and pleasant due to the sea breezes. The wettest months are July through October, with an average of around 15 days with some rainfall, and October is the wettest month with approximately 200mm of rain.