Chaiyaphum is a province in the centre of Thailand. It is well known in tourism terms because it has beautiful flower fields. Chaiyaphum was founded over 2 centuries ago during the early Rattanakosin period by a group of Vientiane people led by Nai Lae.
Chaiyaphum is 342 kilometres away from Bangkok and has an area of 12,778 square kilometres. It consists of the following districts : Muang Chaiyaphum, Khon Sawan, Kaeng Khro, Ban Thaen, Phu Khiao, Kaset Sombun, Khon San, Nong Bua Daeng, Ban Khwao, Chaturat, Bamnet Narong, Thep Sathit, Nong Bua Rawe, Phakdi Chumphon, Noen Sanga and Sap Yai.
Geography of Chaiyaphum
Chaiyaphum province is cut into two halves by the Phetchabun mountain range, with the highest elevation in the province at 1222 m. The east of the province belongs to the Khorat Plateau.
Four national parks are located in the province. The Tat Thon National Park is in north-west of the province, featuring some scenic waterfalls and dry dipterocarp forests. The biggest attraction of the Sai Thong National Park in the west of the province is the Sai Thong waterfall, but also some fields of the Siam Tulip. Similar fields can be found in the Pa Hin Ngam National Park in the south-west, scheduled to be gazetted in the future. This park has its name from the strangely shaped rock formations found there (beautiful rock forest). Phu Laenkha National Park covers another 200 km² of forested hills northwest of Chaiyaphum city.
History of Chaiyaphum
The history of Chaiyaphum dates back to the Khmer Empire in the 12th century, when it was a small city on the route from Angkor to Prasat Singh (Kanchanaburi province). The Prang Ku still remains from this time. In 1817, the area was settled again by a group of Laotians led by Nai Lae, official from Viantiane Kingdom. At first they settled in Baan Nam Khun Nong E Chan (Nakhon Ratchasima province), but soon moved to the current site of Chaiyaphum, then called Baan Luang. When the Lao King Anouvong of Viantiane declared war on Siam, the local ruler Jao Phraya Lae changed allegiance and supported the Siamese troops. In 1826 he was killed by Laotian troops, before these were defeated and all of Laos became part of Siam. Jao Phraya Lae was renamed by the Thais to Phraya Phakdi Chumpon and is still a local hero.
Photos from Chaiyaphum
Siam Tulip Field
Phraya Lae Monument in front of Chaiyaphum City Hall