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Nakhon Ratchasima

Nakhon Ratchasima, 295 km northeast of Bangkok, is the gateway to I-San. 56 km to the northeast of the provincial capital lies the town of Phimai, site of a 12th century prasat hin temple, one of the loveliest examples of classical Khmer architecture found outside Cambodia. The complex occupies land within boundary walls measuring 250 x 280 m and was sufficiently important to have been connected by road with Angkor. The extensive, 12th century temple complex has been restored to enable full appreciation of its original grandeur and the architectural achievement it presents. Just 15 km north of Nakhon Ratchasima is the smaller Khmer temple ruin of Prasat Phanom Wan. Architectural interest here is complemented by a tranquil setting and an evocative atmosphere resulting from the fact that the temple is still used as a place of Buddhist worship.


Northwest of Ubon Ratchathani, Yasothon is the site for the annual "Bang Fai" (skyrocket) Festival. Held in May, it is a two-day event with a grand parade of the first and the firing of giant home-made rockets on the second. The celebration is an entreaty to the sky god for plentiful rains and is marked by a carnival atmosphere of much ribald revelry.

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