Phatthalung Tourist Attractions
The town of Phatthalung lies approximately 100 km (62 mi.) north of the Malaysian border amid scenery typical of southern Thailand. Its precincts are clearly defined by the southern foothills of the Tenasserim mountains, part of the backbone of the Malay peninsula. Phatthalung is separated from the Gulf of Thailand by a freshwater reservoir, with an area of some 1250 sq. km (483 sq. mi.), which increasingly silts up. Visitors here discover an impressive landscape of dense jungle and steep cliffs, with varied flora and fauna; a number of the temples are good examples of elaborate Thai architecture. Many of the people living in and around Phatthalung are Thai-Malay half-castes and Moslems.By car: from Nakhon Si Thammarat Highway 401 to Ron Phibun, then Highway 41 (about 120 km (75 mi.)). From Songkhla Highway 407 to Hat Yai, then 43/4 (140 km (87 mi)).By rail: on the Bangkok-Malaysia line.By bus: connections from Nakhon Si Thammarat, Hat Yai, Songkhla, Trang and Phuket.
Wat Khuha Suwan
One of Phatthalung's most beautiful temples, Wat Khuha Suwan (Highway 4018 northwards in the direction of Khuan Khanum), lies at the foot of a steep, conically shaped rock. The elaborately embellished tympanums and the decorations on the wiharn are noteworthy. Behind the wat a flight of steps leads to a grotto; numerous statues of reclining and seated Buddhas, some gold plated, can be found in the large hall of rocks, which is illuminated by daylight. A bodhi tree, with copper leaves, rises above them. The smaller grotto nearby was once inhabited by hermits, who left several Buddha statues here. From a chedi up on the cliffs there is a marvelous view across the mountains, the town and Thale-Luang Lake.
Thale Noi Bird Sanctuary
Thale Noi Bird Sanctuary is located 34 km (21 mi.) north-east of Phatthalung. More than 220 species of birds live here in a natural environment (reeds, swamp, flooded pastureland and jungle).
Wat Wang, a palace temple, is situated approximately 8 km (5 mi.) east of the town. The elegant chedi contains excellently maintained frescos dating from the late 18th c. (early Bangkok period).
Ban Lam Pam, Thailand
The fishing village of Ban Lam Pam lies about 7 km (4 mi.) east of Phattalung on the banks of Songkhla Lake, the northern part of which is called Thale Luang. A boat trip to Tham Malai Grotto (approximately fifteen minutes), which lies between two prominent cliffs on the Phatthalung plain, proves very beautiful. The cliffs are popularly called "mountain of the pierced heart" (the straight, towering cliff has a deep hole through it) and "mountain of the decapitated head"; according to legend they are two women turned to stone, who fought each other out of jealousy. There is a small shrine on the hill (entrance to the dripstone cave).
Thermal Springs, Khao Chai Son, Thailand
Thermal springs can be found at Khao Chai Son, a village some 20 km (13 mi.) north of Phatthalung.