Cha-Am is a small resort town in Southern Thailand just 25 km north of Hua Hin. Cha-Am is one of favorite holiday and weekend destinations for Thais. This resort town can’t offer as developed tourist infrastructure as Hua Hin does but it’s a quieter and more laid back than its southern neighbor.
Attractions in Cha-Am
Cha-Am town itself has very limited tourist attractions as most of tourists here come just for its long and beautiful beach and peaceful atmosphere.
Cha-Am Beach is really long, wide and sandy so you won’t have a problem to find a place for laying your towel to enjoy the sun.
During the week the beach is usually very quiet but during weekends and public holidays it can get really busy as many locals flock here from Bangkok.
However, most of them choose to hide under umbrellas lined up by the beach under Casuarina trees.
Beach chairs are for rent and usually costs about 50 THB per person for few hours. You can get drinks and food from any vendors by the beach or convenience stores found on the other side of the beach road.
Water sports are quite popular in Cha-Am too as you can ride the banana boat or rent a jetski right on the beach. However, renting a jetski isn’t recommended unless you’re experienced as too many incidents happen.
Cha-Am Night Market
When the sun sets, vendors line up their stalls along the beach road in Cha-Am.
Don't expect the atmosphere here to be like in Hua Hin Night Market or Cicada Market as this market is more local. However, it's a really good place to get some reasonably priced seafood.
Other attractions in Cha-Am
Maruekatayawan Palace - the old Royal summer palace is a great example of Thai architecture as this nice raised-floor wooden palace has been beautifully restored (located about 8 km south of Cha-Am).
Cha-Am Forest Park – is a quiet and relaxing park in Cha-Am where locals like to go for a picnic or exercise surrounded by nature (open from 6:00 to 19:00).
More attractions can be found in Hua Hin that can be reached in 20 minutes: Hua Hin Attrractions.
Where to Stay in Cha-Am
Budget accommodation options are centered in the town of Cha-Am. However, most of the tourists prefer staying in one of the resorts out of town. There are plenty of great resorts to choose from around Cha-Am, as they are scattered on the coast all the way from Cha-Am to Hua Hin. For places to stay in Cha-Am check Hotels in Cha-Am on Booking.com or Hotels in Cha-Am on Agoda.com.
How to get to Cha-Am?
Cha-Am is located just about 200 km south of Bangkok and can be easily accessed from there by bus or by train.
Bus to Cha-Am
Most of the buses going to Hua Hin stop at Cha-Am so there are plenty of routes to choose from if you're planing to go to Cha-Am from Bangkok.
Buses to Hua Hin and Cha-Am from Bangkok Southern (Sai Tai Mai) Bus Terminal depart 3 times a day (11:30, 14:00 and 16:00) and it takes about 3 hours to get there, depending on the class of a bus and the traffic. The bus ticket to Cha-Am should cost about 150 THB.
There is also a bus service running to Hua Hin from Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport daily every 1.5 hours from 07:30 to 19:30. These buses also stop at Cha-Am when informed in advance. Airport bus ticket costs 269 THB. For current schedule, pricing and online bookings check Airport - Hua Hin bus website.
Minivans to Cha-Am (Hua Hin) are also available at all 3 main Bangkok’s bus stations. Vans depart from Sai Tai Mai Bus Terminal every 30 minutes from 05:00 to 22:00. At Ekkamai Bus Terminal minivans to Cha-Am are less frequent and leave every hour from 06:00 to 19:00. Minivans to Cha-Am also leave from Mochit New Van Terminal. Expect to pay about 180 THB for a ticket. It normally takes a bit less than 3 hours to get to Cha-Am from Sai Tai Mai and up to one hour longer when leaving from Ekkamai or Mochit.
Train to Cha-Am
Taking a train to Cha-Am from Bangkok is by far the cheapest way to get to Cha-Am from Thai capital.
Train ticket costs only 40 THB per person!
Trains to Cha-Am leave Bangkok’s Hua Lamphong Railway Station and Thonburi Railway Station 5 times a day. Trains should reach Cha-Am at 11:18, 13:10, 17:23, 19:42 and 22:07 according to this schedule at Cha-Am Railway Station.
However, trains are rarely coming on time in Thailand so be ready for delays.
For getting from Cha-Am Railway Station you can take a motorbike taxi or just walk as from there to the beach is just 2 km.
Weather in Cha-Am
Cha-Am has only two seasons - the wet and the dry. Between November and May the weather is mostly dry with little rain expected for much of this time.
Wet season in Cha-Am occurres between May and October. Despite being on the Gulf of Thailand coastline, Cha-Am experiences slightly different rain patterns than other east coast destinations with serious rainfall only occurring in September and October.
For the best time to visit Cha-Am check our weather ratings chart.
After visiting Cha-Am you are planning to continue your trip up north or down south? Check when is the best time to visit Thailand's other destinations and choose your next destination.