Nakhon Ratchasima, using Songthaew’s in and around Korat
For the newcomer, using Songthaew’s can seems quite daunting as nearly all the destinations
are written in Thai ( on the front and side of the vehicle ) and you need to know
that the Songthaew you are getting on has not just stopped at the place where you
want to go. For example, you might be waiting outside the front of The Mall wanting
to go to the zoo. Along comes a Songthaew with Korat Zoo written on the side. You
understandably jump on the back of the vehicle, however, in that situation, the Songthaew
is coming from the zoo and is heading into the centre of the city.
Most songthaws go back the way they came, so it is usually pretty straightforward
getting back to where you departed from: just cross the road and get one going back
the other way.
For the benefit of the traveller, it seems unnecessary to describe every route (you're
unlikely to go day-tripping to the Suranaree Industrial Zone - incidentally, it's
a number 5, white with luminous orange stripe if you do need to go there!) but there
are a few routes which will be of use to the visitor. To save on complication, all
routes described are based on someone catching a Songthaew from Ratchadamnoen Road/in
front of Yamo (unless stated otherwise).
Number 1. To get to the main train station, catch a number one heading west on Suranaree
Road (just off Ratchadamnoen/rear of Mae Kim Heng market). Catch one outside the
station to bring you into the city.
Catch one on the corner of Chumphon and Chomphon Roads ( behind the Chomphon gate
) to take you all the way down Chomphon to Wat Boon Night Bazaar. Get off just as
it turns left in front of the Iyara hotel. It also passes Night Bazaar 1 halfway
Number 2 ( or Number 11 ). These go to the old bus station.
Number 4. Catch one of these from the Thanon Chira train station to the city centre
/ Yamo area.
Number 6. Usually white with a red and yellow stripe, number sixes are the most common
songthaws in the city. They vary in their ultimate destination but all stop at The
Mall and Lotus.
Number 7. Very important for the traveller. Number sevens go to the main bus station
(bok kor sor mai). They also stop opposite Big C before they reach the bus station.
Number 15. Catch one of these new purple and white songthaws at the main bus station
to get to the city centre (Yamo area). Wait near the main exit of the bus station
for one. They also go to the main bus station from the city centre; the same goes
for the Number 10 ( white with red and yellow stripe ).
Number 4129. These call at The Mall and Lotus on the same route as a number 6 but
they go all the way to the zoo. The number is only displayed in small characters
on the sides of the vehicle but they are all white with a yellow and blue stripe
along the sides. Most now says Korat Zoo in English on the bodywork