Kui Buri National Park

Hat Wanakon National Parkicon Kui Buri National Park is about 30 kilometres off Highway 4 (Phetkasem Road). To go there, get off the highway at KM 295 where a huge billboard points the direction to the park, and turn into local road No. 3217 and drive there. Kui Buri National Park covers an area of 969 square kilometres or 605,625 rai, and straddles Kaeng Krachan National Park to its north and Tanao Si mountain range, which forms a natural border between Burma and Thailand, to the west.

Thirty per cent of Kui Buri's forest cover is formed by deciduous trees, 40% is dry evergreen forest and the rest topical rain forest. The forest is also the origin of Kui Buri River which has spawned at least four waterfalls in the park.

The park provides camping sites and nightly accommodation. You can also rent tents and camping gear there. The service centre for watching wildlife is about 30 minutes away from park headquarters. Contact the park office for a ride (850 baht per trip for a group of 10) and a pick-up truck will collect you at the office. Service hours are 3pm to 6pm. Before visitors can see the wild elephants, the park rangers of Kui Buri National Park will first survey some areas where the giant animals are often found before giving the pickup driver the go-ahead to bring them.

The park opens daily from 8am to 6pm. The entrance fees is 20 baht for Thai children, 40 baht for Thai adults, 100 baht for foreign children, and 200 baht for adult foreigners. Those driving there are levied a 30-baht fee for their vehicle.

The main attraction of Kuri Buri National Park are wild animals. Apart from elephants, there are gaurs, tigers, banteng, black bear, deers, serow, barking deer, Malayan tapir, marbled cat and many types of birds. The latest count revealed there are some 230 elephants grouped in 50 families. The estimated population size of elephants in Thailand is between 2,500-3,200. Gaur count in the park is estimated at 100. Number of camera traps are set to take pictures of wild animals which is normally difficult to spot.

More information can be obtained directly from the Kui Buri National Park on 032-646-292.

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