Phu Wiang, Thailand

In addition to the historic buildings from the Khmer period and the 5,000-year-old pottery shards of Ban Chiang, Isaan (Northeast Thailand) is home to even more history. Even further back in time, because it concerns dinosaur remains. Phu Wiang National Park has dinosaur bones and footprints. However, the dinosaurs are more of an excuse to walk through Thai nature.

  • Background
  • Dinosaur Museum
  • Phu Wiang National Park
  • Accessibility

 

Background

In 1976, uranium miners discovered dinosaur bones and paleontologists were alerted. They excavated the skeleton of a 15-meter-long herbivore that was named Phuwiangosaurus Sirindhornea after the location and the name of the Thai princess Sirindhorn. Over time, more bones were discovered, as well as 68 paw prints.

Dinosaur Museum

The first stop on the route is the free museum. It has five different parts. The first hall tells the history of the earth, ideal to refresh your memory about tectonic plates and the theory of evolution. Next to the walkway to the second floor, human evolution is explained. On the second floor. In addition, there is also a small hall with life-size dinosaur models based on fossils found in the area. Both small dinosaurs as large as a cat and the predecessor of T-rex are displayed in an (imitation) natural environment. The museum is open from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.

Phu Wiang National Park

A few kilometers further than the museum is the entrance to the national park. As a foreigner you have to pay the hefty price of 400 baht per person that is standard for all national parks. Thais only pay 40 baht, but this is often only indicated in Thai numbers. Anyone who has a few words of Thai at their disposal can still try to negotiate, but don’t push on.
After the entrance you come to the parking lot where there is also a restaurant. During low season this is the only opportunity to buy food and drinks, so stock up here if you haven’t brought enough. The park headquarters also offers some basic explanations for those who missed the museum and hands out a brochure with the Dinosaur Trail” walking route along four excavations.
It is best to walk the route clockwise. Along the way you will pass covered excavations where you will see fossils. The explanation is sometimes absent. Towards the end of the route you will come to a second parking lot and a helicopter landing site. Your driver can wait for you here or at the restaurant