Introduction

Ubon Ratchathani Province covers a total area of 15,744.85 square kilometers, with Amnat Charoen Province to the north, the Banthat Mountain Range along the border of the Kingdom of Cambodia to the south, the Mekhong River and Lao People's Democratic Republic to the east, and Yathothon and Si Sa Ket Provinces to the west.

Ubon Ratchathani is divided into 19 Amphoes and 6 King Amphoes, namely: Amphoe Muang, Amphoe Warm Chamrap, Amphoe Det Udom, Amphoe Buntharik, Amphoe Na Chaluai, Amphoe Nam Yun, Amphoe Khong Chiam, Amphoe Phibun Mangsahan, Amphoe Si Muang Mai, Amphoe Trakan Phutphon, Amphoe Khemarat, Amphoe Muang Samsip, Amphoe Khuang Nai, Amphoe Kut Khaopun, Amphoe Pho Sai, Amphoe Tan Sum, Amphoe Samrong, Amphoe Sirindhom King Amphoe Don Mot Daeng, King Amphoe Thung Si Udom, King Amphoe Na Yia, King Amphoe No Tan, King Amphoe Lao Sua kok, and King Amphoe Sawang Wirawong.

The Kha and the Suai, two local tribes, had moved from Si Sattanakanahut to this area before the Rattanakosin Period. During the reign of King Rama I, the King thought of locating the people scattered around because of war into one area. Therefore, any leader who could gather the greatest number of people and establish a secure community would be promoted to the rank of Chao Muang or Chief. For this reason, in 1786, Thao Kham Phong, who had led a group of his people to settle in the Huai Chaeramae area on a plain on the bank of the Mun River, was promoted to the rank of Chief. Later, when he helped the Thai troops to attack Nakhon Champasak, he was promoted to the rank of Phra Pathum Worarat Suriyawong and became Chao Muang or Governor of Ban Chaeramae, which was upgraded to the status of a province called Ubon Ratchathani. Later, the city was moved to a new site at Dong U-Phung, which is the site of the present city with seven other towns as satellites.

During the reign of King Rama V, before the reform of the provincial administration which divided the kingdom into Monthon (circle), Changwat (province), and Amphoe (district), Ubon Ratchathani was annexed to Lao Kao town. Later in 1899, the name of the area was changed to the Northeastern Monthon with Ubon Ratchathani as its administrative center, and the name was changed again in 1900 to Monthon I-San.

Because of the Depression in 1915, the status of Monthon Ubon Ratchathani was reduced to only a province in Monthon Nakhon Ratchasima in 1933, the division of the kingdom into Monthon was abolished and the city has been known as Ubon Ratchathani from that time on.

How to get there
Transportation to Ubon Ratchathani is very convenient by car, train, and air.
By Car: Follow Highway 1 (Phahon Yothin Road) to Highway 2 (Friendship Highway). Then follow Highway 2 to Highway 24 (Chok Chai-Det Udom); turning onto this route and following it until the end. The total distance is 629 kilometres. On take Highway 2 to Nakhon Ratchasima and turn onto Highway 226 to Buri Ram - Surin - Si Sa Ket - Ubon Ratchathani.
By Bus: There are both air-conditioned and ordinary buses leaving from the Northeastern Bus Terminal (Talat Mo Chit) many times a day. For detailed information Tel. 272-5228 (Ordinary Bus) and 272-5299 (Air-conditioned Bus) - Ubon Ratchathani Bus Terminal Tel'. (045) 241831.
By Train: There are ordinary, rapid, and express trains from Bangkok 10 Ubon Ratchathani every day. For more information please contact:Tel. 223-7010,223-7020.
By Plane: Thai Airways International Ltd. has a daily flight for passengers and air parcels from Bangkok to Ubon Ratchathani. Detailed information can be requested from Thai Airways International Ltd., Lan Luang Rd., Bangkok, Tel. 280-0060, 628-2000 and Ubon Ratchathani Office, Tel. (045)313340-4.

As for local transportation, there are buses running from Muang District to other districts and to other nearby provinces in the Northeast and the North, such as Chiang Mai.

The distance from Amphoe Muang to other Amphoes is:

Amphoe Warin Chamrap 2 kms. 
Amphoe Muang Samsip 35 kms. 
Amphoe Khuang Nai 38 Kms. 
Amphoe Trakan Phutphon 45 kms. 
Amphoe Si Muang Mai 66 Kms. 
Amphoe Khemarat 106 Kms. 
Amphoe Pho Sai 95 Kms. 
Amphoe Nam Yun 101 Kms. 
Amphoe Na Chaluai 135 Kms. 
Amphoe Buntharik 87 Kms. 
Amphoe Phibun Mangsahan 45 Kms. 
Amphoe Khong Chiam 75 Kms. 
Amphoe Kut Khaopun 71 Kms. 
Amphoe Tan Sum 34 Kms. 
Amphoe Samrong 26 Kms. 
Amphoe Det Udom 45 Kms. 
King Amphoe Don Mot Daeng 35 Kms. 
King Amphoe Thung Si Udom 74 Kms. 
King Amphoe Na Tan 93 Kms. 
King Amphoe Sawang Wira Wong 20 Kms. 
King Amphoe Na Via 35 Kms. 
King Amphoe Lao Sua Kok 27 Kms.

Festivals
The Candle Festival is the largest religious ceremony in Ubon Ratchathani. It is celebrated yearly by the City on Asalha Bucha Day and Khao Phansa (Buddhist Lent) Day. The ceremony is held at Thung Si Muang and Chaturamuk Pavillion. 
There are two kinds of candle competitions; the sticker imprint candles and the carved ones. The procession, consisting of candle floats from the various temples, with a beautiful lady representing an angel for each candle, moves from the front of Wat Si Ubon Rattanaram along the road to Thung Si Muang. 
At night, there is entertainment to celebrate the Lent candles. The reflection of lights on the candles creates a picturesque effect during the festival.

Local Products
The local products of Ubon Ratchathani are Khit-designed pillows, Pha Khao Ma or loincloths, silk, fold up mats, Khit-designed cloth, basketry (such as winnowing baskets), sticky rice containers, fish baskets, and ordinary baskets. Tourists may buy them from souvenir shops around Khuan Thani Road near the Ratchathani Hotel, or from the market in town.
Ubon Ratchathani is also famous for local food prepared from freshwater fish, meat, Pla Sawai or Pla Tepho, sliced into long thin pieces, marinated in salt water with chopped pineapple, meat, and sealed in jars. This kind of specialty is called "Khem Mak Nat." It can be used to make various kinds of food; for example, it can be used as many kinds of dips. This product is sold all over Amphoe Muang.

Information provided by Tourism Authority of Thailand

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