How to Travel to Khon Kaen from Bangkok

Tipped to be one of the most breathtaking cities in Isan, Khon Kaen is a popular tourist hotspot for the masses. Revered as a cultural epicentre, this historic corner of Thailand is a must-explore highlight for tourists. Those who are hoping to head to the capital of the Khon Kaen after a brief stint in Bangkok have a variety of transport options at their disposal. Depending on the convenience and the budget available, here are some of the best ways to reach Khon Kaen from the Thai capital.

1. Fly from Bangkok to Khon Kaen

As the most efficient means of reaching Khon Kaen for those based in the Thai capital, flying to the area is also the most comfortable way to travel to the region. This option, however, is also the most costly of all the means of transport available as flights to the area are not as cheap as train rides or bus transfers. The two carriers which offer regular transfers to Khon Kaen by air are Thai Airways, the national airline and the budget airline, Air Asia. Those who wish to catch the flight to Khon Kaen from Bangkok will depart from the Don Muang Airport with the duration of the flight being 50 minutes. The flights land at Khon Kaen Airport which is located to the west of the city centre. Budget travellers who wish to fly to Khon Kaen can make use of offers and promotional rates offered by Air Asia at choice seasons in the year but it is not always a guarantee. Upon arrival visitors can hop on a tuk tuk to reach downtown Khon Kaen or have the three-wheeler drop them off at the AVANI Khon Kaen Hotel & Convention Centre or whichever of the countless accommodation providers or hotel in Khon Kaen they reserved.

2. Railway Station in Khon Kaen

Tourists who prefer to take the train from Bangkok to Khon Kaen must reach the last stop on the MRT line named the Hua Lamphong station in order to get to the railway station of the same name. Four trains services depart from the Hua Lamphong Railway Station to Khon Kaen every day. This includes the 8.20am morning express train; the 6.35pm express train and the 8pm express train while a rapid train also sets out from the Hua Lamphong Railway Station at 8.45pm on a regular basis. The train journey from Bangkok to Khon Kaen takes between seven to eight hours to complete. The cheapest tickets are for the 3rd class and 2nd class which cost less than 180 baht. The first class cabin charges in excess of 360 baht while sleeper facilities are also available in the night trains and will cost extra.

Rawipad C.KKU from Khon Kaen, Thailand, Khon Kaen Train Station (25735534090), CC BY-SA 2.0

3. Bus Options

Travellers who wish to take the bus to Khon Kaen from Bangkok, on the other hand, must take the MRT to the Kamphaeng Phet Station and travel to the Mo Chit Northern Bus Terminal on a motor bike taxi or metered taxi. The latter will cost more but may be a better option for those travelling in groups. Buses to Khon Kaen are available at regular intervals and visitors can hop on the morning bus to reach their destination by evening time. The bus journey also takes at least 7–8 hours as the buses travel 700km to reach Khon Kaen. Regular, non-A/C buses cost the least while air-conditioned buses as well as the more luxurious VIP buses cost more.

Tourists can not only pre-reserve their bus tickets but also select the seat in advance through which is most efficient bus ticket booking website in the country.

Nutjaru, Hino 510, CC BY-SA 3.0

4. Travelling from Khon Kaen Onwards

Tourists who wish to spend a few days in Khon Kaen and move on to neighbouring provinces the likes of Korat and Udon Thani can employ the minivan services offered by both cities. Simply head to the area of the Central Plaza and hop on the minivans available nearly every thirty minutes. It takes two hours to reach Udon Thani from Khon Kaen while Korat is a four hour drive away.