Aranyaprathet Travel Guide

Photo of Aranyaprathet

Aranyaprathet Overview

Located along the rail line that once connected Bangkok Thailand to Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Aranyaprathet is the largest border town between the two countries. 200 kilometers (130 miles) east of the Thai capital, Bangkok, the town is the busiest border crossing in Thailand.

During the rule of Pol Pot between 1975 and 1979, tensions here ran high here, and border skirmishes were frequent. The entire border with Thailand was mined on the Cambodian side, and refugee camps were constructed here as Cambodian people fled the murderous regime.

Today the town is seen as a major transit point for commercial trade between Cambodia and Thailand. Though most travelers will only make a quick transit through the town to Poipet and on their way to more scenic places like Angkor Wat, Aranyaprathet is compact and friendly with convenient surface transportation links to Bangkok, Phnom Penh, and Siem Reap.

Things to do in Aranyaprathet

Gambling is officially illegal in Thailand. In the late 1990’s, as Cambodia became more politically stable, casinos were built along the border between the two countries to attract Thais eager to score duty free shop bargains as well as gamble. Casinos can be reached by passing over the Thai border and then taking a taxi. Most properties are built to resemble Las Vegas hotels.

Foreign residents of Bangkok not in possession of a work permit need to renew their visa every 30 days, and Aranyaprathet is the closest and most convenient place to do so. So popular is the trip that travel agencies in Bangkok specialize in visa bus services that offer out and return services from Bangkok every day of the week. The visa process if fairly simple, though it does take about eight hours to complete the return journey.
The large outdoor market in Aranyaprathet is full of products from both Cambodia and Thailand, with electronics, clothing and fresh foods on offer. After dark it turns into a thriving night market where stalls serve delicious Thai and Khmer food until well past midnight.The cement reservoir in the middle of Aranyaprathet is also a gathering spot for snack vendors.

The best nightlife options are the casinos, though they are pricey and aimed more at a Thai clientele.

Hotels in Aranyaprathet

Budget Hotels Aranyaprathet

Aran Garden Hotel - city center hotel with air conditioned rooms
Mid Range Hotels Aranyaprathet

Market Motel - 5 kilometers (3 miles from centralAranyaprathet)
Wang Prapa Resort - hotel with large gardens surrounding the property
Luxury Hotels Aranyaprathet
Aran Mermaid Hotel - multi storey hotel with pool and gym facilities

Aranyaprathet Weather

Aranyaprathet Travel Resources



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This page was last modified on 18 Mar 2011 by Matt