Sitting very close to Malaysia and Singapore, Hat Yai has grown to embrace the identity of a borderless city filled with diverse cultures. The town is a well-known shopping destination, with a variety of merchandise from Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. Although the city is not as vibrant as Krabi or Phuket, Hat Yai has its own special charm. The town features different activities and attractions that will keep you entertained throughout your stay. Here’s our suggested itinerary for a nice visit to Hat Yai over the weekend.
Start your day at Kim Yong market
Only 2 minutes away from Centara Hotel Hat Yai, Kim Yong market is a good starting point for your day. Kim Yong is a huge authentic local market in the heart of the city, where you’ll find a lot of imported goods from Malaysia and Singapore.
From the first moment you step into this market, you will be mesmerised by the wide range of merchandise on display. Here you can buy just about anything, from fresh food, fruits, nuts, snacks, clothes to a lot of locally produced goodies. Also, in the mornings at Kim Yong market, you’ll find a lot of food stalls open, where you can enjoy a fine Hat Yai local-style breakfast.
Rest your mind at Ton Nga Chang Waterfall
Come and rest your mind at one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the southern part of Thailand. Only 40 minutes to the north of Hat Yai city, Ton Nga Chang’s 7 levels make for a wonderfully picturesque natural spectacle. The stream at its third level splits into two, making this section of the waterfall look like elephant tusks.
This natural area lets you have a fun and adventurous time that is hard to match elsewhere in Hat Yai. Plenty of activities are available for you to enjoy, such as walking in the jungle, climbing up the mountain, swimming in the calm and refreshing waterfall, and observing wildlife.
Moreover, the park has a beautiful picnic area available, giving you another chance to enjoy the beautiful scenery at your leisure. Here you can get some tasty food from the local vendors as well!
Visit the Hat Yai weekend floating market
Located in the northern part of Hat Yai city, Khlong Hae Floating Market is a canal-side area set up in a traditional Thai-style design. About 50 local vendors are moored along the walking path, selling a splendid variety of food and local goods. There is also an inland section with more stalls and stores, which sell food and souvenirs. However, make sure that you come on Saturday or Sunday because the market is open in Hat Yai on weekends only!
Enjoy the local vibe at Koh Yo
Travel further north from the city, and you will arrive at Koh Yo (Yo Island). This small island is located in the middle of Songkhla Lake, where it offers visitors spectacular natural views, along with plenty of traditional village houses to look at. This island makes a nice escape spot from the city, letting you experience a slower and more laid-back lifestyle.
Koh Yo is a peaceful home to local fishermen and weavers, meaning that you’ll have a chance to learn more about traditional fishing and hand-woven textiles on your visit. If you are into history, don’t forget to visit Thaksin Folklore Museum, where you can see authentic examples of traditional art and pottery.
Hat Yai on the weekend is just perfect for going out and having a good time. Although it is less popular with tourists than other locations in Thailand, Hat Yai is just as much fun. The city provides everything from good food and great shopping spots, to wonderfully serene natural beauty and fascinating places for genuine cultural experiences.