To many people, Surin means just one thing – elephants. But while the province’s annual elephant round-up is certainly the most popular event in the local calendar, the region has so much more to offer. There are amazing Khmer ruins, national parks and bustling markets to explore. And, with CNN having voted Isan as one of the world’s must-see destinations for 2017, there’s no better time to discover Surin.
The following galleries are to complement the feature story titled: Surin, the city of silver and silk
Gallery 1: The Phraya Surin Phakdi Si Narong Changwang monument in Surin town was built to honour the city’s first ruler. The 2.2 metre statue of Phraya Surin is holding a curved pike showing his mastery over the local elephants, which are also represented in life-size statues by the adjacent city moat.
Gallery 2: Ban Ta Khlang Elephant village is home to the Kui community where elephants have been raised and domesticated for hundreds of years. Now tourists can come here and enjoy feeding the mighty animals and learn about how they were once trained for use in war and forestry.
Gallery 3: Prasat Sikhoraphum between Surin and Sisaket is a Khemer temple that dates from the 12th Century when it was built by King Suryavaram for Hindu worship. The sandstone and brick towers are built on a laterite base and there are depictions of Shiva, Ganesh and Vishnu carved on the main tower.
Gallery 4: Another Khmer temple worth visiting in Surin is Prasat Ta Muen Thom near the Cambodian border. Built in the 13th century, this peaceful sanctuary is thought to have been a rest stop for travellers taking the ancient road from Phimai to Angkor.
Gallery 5: With its greenery and shaded pathways, Phanom Sawai Forest Park offers a pleasant place to walk and look out over the surrounding scenery of Isan. There are three peaks to climb and some amazing Buddhist statues as well as an intricate image of the Lord Buddha’s footprint.
Gallery 6: Wat Burapharam is Surin town’s most important temple and contains a statue of Luang Phor Phra Chee, a Buddha image believed to protect the city. Don’t miss the stunning murals narrating the life of Buddha which can be found in the main Ubosot or prayer hall.
Gallery 7: The impressive City Pillar Shrine in Surin is found on the Lak Mueang Road and was built in 1968 to house the Chao Pho Lak Muang or spirit of the city. The charming building incorporates Khmer features, reflecting the distinctive culture and heritage of Surin.
Gallery 8: Spicy Isan snack and treats for sweet-toothed shoppers can be enjoyed in the Surin Night market where locals come to get their evening dinner and to socialise. Open from 5 – 11 pm every day the market is worth stopping by and gives visitors a chance to sample a little Isan life.
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