Hat Yai is in the south of Thailand near the border of Malaysia, nearly 950 km from Bangkok.
Often Hat Yai is considered just a stopover on the way to the border, but there’s a lot more to see than anticipated if you’re interested in exploring one of Thailand’s less touristy places.
Here are 15 attractions to check out on your next trip to Hat Yai.
1/ Phra Maha Chedi Tripob Trimongkol
This is a beautiful stainless steel temple located on the hills.
If you have to choose when to go, visit at night when the temple lights up the skies.
Explore the inside and surroundings as you learn through various Buddha statues and photos on display.
2/ The Pirates Park Hatyai
A great little theme park especially for families with young kids.
Enjoy the various water activities like slides, obstacles and water guns.
With the humid weather in Hat Yai, everyday should be a good day to visit the Pirates Park.
3/ Songkhla Central Mosque
An impressive architectural landmark in Hat Yai, this is a great spot to take some quick photos.
It’s a functioning mosque and there are a few food stalls around if you want to enjoy a snack with Songkhla Central Mosque in the background.
4/ Greenway Night Market
A great place to go souvenir shopping or snatching some bargains.
It’s opened daily from 5 pm to 10 pm except Mondays.
Greenway Night Market is also well known for their authentic cuisines in their food court.
5/ Asean Trade Bazaar
Just a short walk away is the Asean Trade Bazaar, also opened from 5 pm to 10 pm daily except Mondays.
There are more souvenirs on offer as well as cheap clothes, toys and mobile accessories.
On the second floor there are food stall serving authentic Thai food.
6/ Big C Hatyai
A more modern shopping complex where you can buy everyday goods or enjoy a mini shopping spree at Thai prices.
Try to base your hotel close by so you have easy access to travel necessities if needed.
7/ Hat Yai Municipal Park
This is a beautiful spacious park where families can relax and enjoy a picnic.
A large Buddha statue overlooks the park and is also a peaceful area to explore.
You can catch a Cable Car to the top of the hills for panoramic views of Hat Yai.
8/ Wat Hat Yai Nai
An open air temple, Wat Hat Yai Nai has one of the largest Buddha statue in the world reclining under its roof.
Spend some time here praying along with other monks.
Some events are held throughout the year so it can get busy.
9/ Hat Yai Khlong Hae Floating Market
Experience the unique Hat Yai floating markets and see how hardworking Thai locals make their earnings.
Wooden boats are aligned on the river selling different Thai cuisines.
If you’re interested in buying something, the owner will pass a basket attached to a long bamboo stick to collect the money and deliver the goods to you.
There are also vendors nearby selling clothes.
10/ Santisuk Market
Santisuk Market is opened daily from 9am to 7pm and is conveniently located in the city centre.
You can find more interesting bargains and try local cuisines.
This market is more for local necessities and is a great market to learn about the Thai culture.
11/ Kim Yong Market
There are plenty of interesting fruits, drinks, souvenirs, clothes and jewellery on offer at Kim Yong Market.
Like with most markets, make sure you bargain with vendors as they will quote higher prices for travellers.
This is one of the more popular markets for tourists.
12/ Magic Eye 3D Museum
Enjoy a mind boggling afternoon at Magic Eye 3d Museum as you take photos of various artworks with you as the star.
Play your part in each piece of art and you’ll see it come to life on your camera.
This is a great place to spend 2-3 hours, taking snapshots of your family or even go on a romantic fun date with your partner.
13/ Central Festival Mall
One of the more modern shopping centers in Hat Yai, this mall is centrally located.
There are over 250 stores, an ice skating arena, family restaurants and 10 movie theatres including an IMAX.
This is a must visit if you love shopping.
14/ Namtok Ton Nga Chang
This waterfall is a bit out of town, but if you want a break from the noisy city, this is the place to cool down.
After a nominal fee of 200 baht, you’ll have access to explore the amazing natural views and dip your toes near the waterfall.
15/ Songkhla Zoo
This is a large open range zoo where you can feed some animals.
There are various shows throughout the day.
There is also a water park for kids to splash in and cool down on hot humid days in Hat Yai.
If you’d like to plan ahead, you can check other tours and activities that can be readily booked online.