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Travel Guide > Asia > Thailand > Northeastern > Nakhon Phanom

Nakhon Phanom Travel Guide

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Nakhon Phanom is a city in Northern Isaan.

Nakhon Phanom is in the Northeastern region of Thailand, approximately 456 miles northeast of Bangkok and 235 miles southwest of Hanoi, Vietnam. It borders LAOS on the Khamoun Province or the Tha Khaek district. Nakhon Phanom was well known during the days of Vietnam war, serving the American Forces of the 56th Fighter Wing|56th Air Commando Wing, hosted by Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai Air Force Base. The mission of the American Forces were search and rescue and interdiction of the Ho Chi Minh Trails in Laos 30 miles to the east.

The city has a beautiful landscape, with the Mekong river running adjacent to the city, marking the current border between Thailand and Laos.

The population of Nakhon Phanom is a diverse mix of Thais, Thai-Vietnamese, Thai-Chinese, and perhaps a few Thai-Indians. The main languages spoken are Thai, Isaan, and Vietnamese, Isaan being the most popular of them. The primary culture is Lao, as Isaan was part of Laos until the late 19th century. Ho Chi Minh resided in a small village between the city center and the air base to the west during the late 1920s and early 1930s. A new museum has been constructed; his home is preserved and is open to the public, which draws many Vietnamese tourist.

Although a small town, Nakhon Phanom is famous for its centuries old temples and beautiful landscape. The city has a reserved and traditional Isaan culture. A traveller may well find the residents of the city very hospitable and kind. The surrounding villages have many tribal cultures unique to Isaan and Laos.

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