For those visitors that like history, architecture and the life of Royal families will like to visit Phra Ram Ratchaniwet Palace in Phetchaburi city approximately 1 hour from Hua Hin. The Palace was built for Rama V & his family as a Rainy Season retreat in 1916. His other palace built by his Father King Mongkut, Phra Nakhon Khiri Palace in Phetchaburi tended to flood during the rainy season and therefore Phra Ram Ratchaniwet Palace was built. Unfortunately the Phra Ram Ratchaniwet Palace was only finished 6 years after Rama V‘s death. The Palace also goes by the name Ban Puen Palace.
What makes Phra Ram Ratchaniwet Palace an interesting visit is that it’s not built in Thai style but rather in a mix of Art nouveau and European Baroque style and is been said to be a copy of Palace built for German Kaiser Wilhelm. Rama V had travelled extensively to Europe and many buildings during his reign were built in European style influenced by his travels. The architect for the palace was one of the Royal Architect’s Karl Siegfried Döhring.
The Phra Ram Ratchaniwet Palace has been used as a Royal retreat, royal guest house for state visitors, town hall and school. Now it is a museum and parts of the grounds are used for the Boy’s Scouts and the Army.
Phra Ram Ratchaniwet Palace is now been surrounded by a Army base and although the original Palace land has now shrunk the 2 storey house still stands in a beautiful and stately gardens and the Palace looks like it was built a few years back. The two storey house Palace stands empty of furniture, but you can admire the design elements put in for the Royal family of Rama V. There are many interior designs to look at such as the ornate staircase and beautiful wall tiles. Each room has a plaque explaining the function of the room and a bit of the history in English.
You can get some beautiful pictures of the outside of Phra Ram Ratchaniwet Palace and the gardens, but you are not allowed to take pictures inside the palace. Do visit Phra Nakhon Khiri Palace too as it is not far away, and is different and more mystical in style. Rama V was a very interesting and scholarly King, who started the modernization of Thailand. It is recommended to read a bit on his Highness making the visit more interesting and informative.
- from 8:30 am to 4:40 pm
- 50 – 100 baht
- from Bangkok – 136 km (2 h 05 min)
- from Hua Hin – 64.5 km (57 min)