Highlights of Ratchaburi Province

Damnoen Saduak Floating Market (ตลาดน้ำดำเนินสะดวก) 
Damnoen Saduak District – GPS: 13.519787 99.959180
Time/distance from Bangkok: 1 hour 31 minutes/94.8 km
Open daily | Free admission | Boat rental available

HIGHLIGHT: This is the floating market where the majority of foreign tourists are taken on tours. As a consequence it is a tourist trap. But, if you go early, then there are still plenty of photo opportunities. I brought my sister and her family here and they enjoyed it. However, we left here at about 9am when it was starting to get crowded.

The Blooms Orchid Park (เดอะบลูมส์)
Bang Phae District – GPS: 13.646323 99.904026
Time/distance from Bangkok: 1 hour 15 minutes/85.8 km
Open daily | 250B for foreigners / 80B for Thais

HIGHLIGHT: A nicely laid out orchid garden with plenty of photo opportunities. You can also visit the nursery. A bit quiet during the week but more activities at the weekend. I felt the foreigner’s price was a little steep for what was on offer.

Ratchaburi National Museum (พิพิธภัณฑ์สถานแห่งชาติราชบุรี)
Amphoe Mueang District – GPS: 13.541282 99.817697
Time/distance from Bangkok: 1 hour 23 minutes/98.0 km
Open Wed-Sun, 9am-4pm | 100B for foreigners / 20B for Thais

HIGHLIGHT: There are plenty of photo opportunities in the grounds. The old building used to be the provincial hall. In the garden there are a number of life-sized art objects. Inside, the bilingual exhibits give you a clear background to the history and culture of the province.

Wat Kongkaram (วัดคงคาราม)
Photharam District – GPS: 13.715269 99.850269
Time/distance from Bangkok: 1 hour 22 minutes/82.7 km
Open daily | Free admission

HIGHLIGHT: The walls of the ordination hall, which was built in the 18th Century, are covered with murals depicting the life of Buddhas as well as scenes from the Jataka tales.

Wat Khanon (วัดขนอน)
Photharam District – GPS: 13.726588 99.844085
Time/distance from Bangkok: 1 hour 19 minutes/84.3 km
Shadow puppet shows Sat at 10am & Sun at 11am | Free admission

HIGHLIGHT: If you visit the temple at the weekend, you can see the shadow puppet shows for free. This is performed by students from Wat Khanon School. Sometimes shows might be cancelled if they are performing elsewhere, so best to call the temple in advance to check on 03-223-3386.

Khao Bin Cave (ถ้ำเขาบิน)
Amphoe Mueang District – GPS: 13.592961 99.667232
Time/distance from Bangkok: 1 hour 44 minutes/188.7 km
Open daily from 8am-5pm | 20 Baht

HIGHLIGHT: The deepest cave is 300 meters from the entrance. In total there are eight chambers, each with beautiful stalagmites and stalactites.

Khao Ngu Stone Park (อุทยานหินเขางู)
Amphoe Mueang District – GPS: 13.569083 99.775531
Time/distance from Bangkok: 1 hour 29 minutes/103.3 km
Open daily | Free admission

HIGHLIGHT: People used to come to this park for the caves which held a number of Buddha images, including a large Walking Buddha. Now the new highlight is the walkway across the lake and between the towering sandstone cliffs. You can also rent paddle boats.

Ratchaburi Street Art (ราชบุรี สตรีทอาร์ท)

Highlight: Over the last few years, Ratchaburi has been promoting itself as a center for artists. One of the recent projects was street art. Just wander around town and you will see many different examples. This one is near the national museum.

Wat Mahathat (วัดมหาธาตุ)
Amphoe Mueang District – GPS: 13.546858 99.815444
Open daily | Free admission

HIGHLIGHT: Wat Mahathat is the most revered and probably the oldest temple in Ratchaburi. It dates back to the 10th Century. The 24 meter high stupa is of particular interest as it has influences from the Dvaravati, Lop Buri, and Ayutthaya periods.

Tao Hong Tai ceramics factory (เถ้าฮงไถ่)
Amphoe Mueang District – GPS: 13.544398 99.804383
Open daily, 8am-5pm | Free admission

HIGHLIGHT: It is basically a ceramics factory, but they’ve done a nice arrangement in the garden with colourful ceramics of all shapes and sizes. It is also possible to tour the factory or buy some ceramics to take home. The garden has a small coffee shop.

Sacred Heart Church (วัดพระคริสตพระหฤทัย)
Wat Phleng District – GPS: 13.457940 99.887291
Open daily | Free admission

HIGHLIGHT: The original church building was made of wood. The present building dates back one hundred year and is still a place of worship for Thai-Chinese Roman Catholics. If you are lucky to be able to go inside, you will see that the interior is decorated in Western Gothic style. There are also some beautiful imported glass-stained windows.