Getting there & around
I wouldn’t recommend to try and visit without your own
transport. It’s unlikely you’ll reach the entrance gate
without having to charter a taxi or motorbike from the
nearest town which you might eventually have got to on
public transport. After that it’s just not feasible to think
you’ll ever reach HQ without private transport.
Getting to Phu Khieo is easy enough if you rent a car.
Coming from Nam Nao NP turn right on route 12 about
100 km short of Khon Kaen (turn left coming from Khon
Kaen) where Chulaphorn Dam is clearly signposted. It’s
another 40 km from this turnoff, just follow signs for the
Dam and Wildlife Sanctuary. From Bangkok head for
Chaiyaphum and continue on route 201 northwards until
you see signs for Chulaphorn Dam, shortly after Phu Khieo
village. Turn left off route 201 and follow the signs, it’s
approx. 50 km to go from here. Please note that it is not
allowed to visit the reserve on a motorbike.
See our tour reports.
Accommodation & food
Camping is possible at HQ, and at Mon Lake accompanied by a ranger if going for an overnight stay to try for White-winged
Duck. Bring your own tent and sleeping bag.
Bungalows (basic) are for rent at HQ but have to be arranged/booked up front. Contact Phu Khieo WS, phone
0843340043, but this will most probably only be useful if you speak some Thai. Alternatively call Chuleekorn Sighmasi
who speaks English and works on the Phu Khieo-EU project on site ; (0066)(0)833578130 or email email@example.com
Just to turn up at the entrance gate and ask if any bungalows are still available might work, wouldn’t want to bet on it
While it might be possible to arrange some food to be cooked for you at HQ, I’m pretty sure the restaurant normally only
serves the WS staff, researchers and (school) groups that have booked for food up front. Bring your own food and drinks.
Notes & info
- Entrance fee for the Wildlife Sanctuary is 200 Baht per person/foreigner. No entry after 4 pm.
- A visit can be productive at any time of year but best is November to May, the dry season.
- All walking is easy and on flat ground and lots of birding can be done from the roadsides with your car nearby.
- No reception for your mobile phone inside the reserve but there is at the entrance gate.
- Very few insects or other annoyances to note of. Use common sense if encountering wildlife but don’t let their presence
keep you from entering the forest, but stay on the trails/tracks please.
- Some read about the conservation of the area can be found in the article below.
- Phu Khieo is a productive area for birding and you may expect pretty high day lists, close to, but not entirely, 100
species are possible in a day.
- Thailand country info.
160 species, 01 near-endemics, 05 threatened species (Clements 6th edition)
This checklist is best viewed using Internet Explorer on a speedy connection.
This is one of the mammal richest areas of Thailand. The density of wildlife tracks a visitor can find in the area, especially
when compared with what can be seen in for example Khao Yai or Kaeng Krachan, is amazing.
An extensive 2001 survey found 19 Tigers (same study found just “three” in Khao Yai) living in the wildlife sanctuary.
Leopard, Clouded Leopard, Marbled Cat, Leopard Cat and Jungle Cat all occur.
More likely to be encountered by the casual visitor are Sambar and Red Muntjac, as well as Phayre’s Langur with Phu Khieo
possibly the only place left in SE Asia where it is still very common.
Other mammals which might be seen include White-handed Gibbon, Black Giant and Variable Squirrels. Evidence of Elephants
is commonly encountered and both Gaur and Dhole occur in good numbers.
Trip reports & articles
-A nice article about the sanctuary and the reintroduction of Hog Deer at Phu Khieo appeared in the Bangkok Post
newspaper on 28 September 2009. You may read it online at;
-A good trip report by Charles Davies ; http://www.surfbirds.com/trip_report.php?id=921
-Phu Khieo WS is listed as an important bird area in Thailand, see this article (old) with info on the reserve.