Si Racha, (Siracha, Sri Racha or Sriracha), Chonburi Province. Si Racha district is about one hour's drive from Bangkok. Si Racha's port and nearby Laem Chabang, the largest port in the country serving the eastern seaboard industrial provinces. Pattaya is 30 km south. 10 km north of Si Racha is Bang Saen, a seaside resort popular with locals. Chonburi Province is one of the more industrialised provinces of Thailand, although most of the province is hilly, agricultural plantations.
Many Japanese and Korean expat workers live in the area and work on the nearby industrial estates. The town itself has a newly redone waterfront, but doesn't have much in terms of sandy beaches.
Most buses between Bangkok and Pattaya that run along Sukhumvit Rd stop at Robinson's or at Tukcom. A modern eight lane motorway has been built connecting the eastern seaboard with Bangkok, as well as to U-Tapao International Airport. It is the only airport in southeast Thailand to have direct flights, bypassing Bangkok. Older Sukhumvit Road road goes through downtown Si Ratcha to Chonburi and Pattaya, but is often congested.
- 1 [dead link] Khao Kheow Open Zoo, 235 Moo 7, Bang Phra (Road 4036 west from Hwy 7), ☏ . 08:00-18.00, night safari 19:00. The zoo is a blend of forests, wild animals, aviary, and responsible animal management. Sponsored by HM Queen Sirikit, the zoo has grown in size, scope and importance. More than 300 species and 8,000 animals populate the 5,000 rai sanctuary. Six of the newer residents of the zoo are rare white tigers from the Memphis Zoo in the US. Khao Kheow is described as a "wildlife bank" as many animals are on the endangered species list. The zoo is known for success in breeding some of these endangered animals. One such project is breeding the rare clouded leopard. Other endangered mammals at the zoo include the Asian wild dog, Malayan tapir, and tiger. Rare Asian bird species draw bird watchers from around the world. The walk-though aviary is Asia's second largest with over 80 species. Endangered bird species at the zoo include the black necked stork and white crested laughing thrush. The zoo features a daily 'penguin parade' show and a night safari into the African Savanna and Cats Complex zones. 150-300 baht, night safari 200-400 baht.
- 2 Sriracha Tiger Zoo, 341 Moo 3, Nongkham, ☏ . Si Racha Tiger Zoo has up to 400 Bengal tigers as well as other animals on show. 350 baht.
- Ancestral Spirits Ceremony Festival. April. This festival is based on an old custom of the people from Chonburi. It is held every year between 19-21 Apr on Ko Loy Sri Racha. Activities include a parade, traditional folk costume, spirit ceremonies, demonstrations, and lots of local delicacies.
The town has a Robinson's department store and a cinema.
Si Racha is famous in Thailand for its seafood, served with a fiery chili sauce known as nam prik si racha (น้ำพริกศรีราชา Si Racha spicy sauce).
- Jay Nong's (Bang Phra Subdistrict, Si Racha District, Chonburi Province). But if you want to eat seafood prepared home-style, nicely cooked and very inexpensive, go to Jay Nong’s Restaurant, which is beside the road. Each dish is cooked to order. It is roughly across the road from the pier fishermen use to land the catch from their boats. Order the food at the shack-like shop and then cross over to sit at the tree-shaded stone tables and chairs near the pier. Only a few dishes are available, and they include pla het khone dipped in batter and fried, the same fish prepared as a pad cha, fried with fresh basil, chillies and garlic, or as a tom yam and khao pad pu (crab fried rice). Superb gaeng pa pla het khone (het khone fish prepared tom yam or spicy curry style) and pla het khone dipped in batter and fried.
There are a few guest houses for 400 baht/night on the stinky waterfront.
- 1 The City Hotel, 6/126 Sukhumvit Rd, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Has very clean rooms. Swimming pool, two restaurants, shuttle bus to take you on selected stops in the city. 2,825-10,005 baht.
- 2 Citadines Grand Central Sri Racha, 99/9 Thetsaban 1 Road, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. The property has studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments. Offers housekeeping, Wi-Fi, an electric safe, a LCD television and steam iron and board for each apartment.
- 3 Cityview Residence, 107/2 Surasak Sanguan Road, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 12:00, check-out: 12:00. 890-1890 baht.
- 4 Seaview Hotel, 50-54 Jerm Jom Pol Road, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Check-in: 12:00, check-out: 12:00. 890-1890 baht.