An Isan Attraction on the Huai Krathing Reservoir Lake in Loei, Thailand

Updated on June 15, 2018
Paul Kuehn profile image

Paul first visited Thailand in 1996 and has been retired in Siam since 2007. He has a beautiful and loving Thai wife and can speak Thai.

The author and his wife overlooking the Huai Krathing reservoir lake
The author and his wife overlooking the Huai Krathing reservoir lake | Source

On June 3, 2018, my Thai son-in-law helped us discover a fun attraction in the Loei Province of northeastern—or Isan—Thailand. Little did I know that we would be entering a mountain reservoir lake after ascending 5 kilometers of road 15 kilometers west of the city of Loei.

After parking our SUV and descending a small hill, I was pleasantly surprised to see a small lake surrounded by teak and bamboo forest. At the edge of the lake were numerous bamboo rafts made into floating pavilions. Some of these rafts were already on the lake.

In this article, I first give a brief introduction to the Huai Krathing Reservoir. Then, I describe our renting of a bamboo raft and activities on the lake. They included having an Isan-style lunch, swimming, and feeding ducks.

Where is the Huai Krathing Reservoir?

The Huai Krathing Reservoir, also known as Huai Nam Man, is situated near the small provincial town of Loei in northeastern Thailand (a.k.a. Isan). In getting to the reservoir, you drive to the west from Loei along the Loei-Phu Ruea Road (a.k.a. Highway 21) for 15 kilometers. After you see a blue sign in English saying "Long Phae," turn right and ascend a mountain road for 5 kilometers. At this point, you will see a dirt road leading to a parking area.

According to the Bangkok Post, the Huai Krathing Reservoir is located on 1,500 hectares of land and has a capacity of 26 million cubic meters of water. When I visited on June 3, 2018, the depth of the reservoir was one to two meters. This lake, which has fish, is surrounded by teak, a bamboo forest, and green mountains.

Map of northeastern Thailand  AKA Isan
Map of northeastern Thailand AKA Isan | Source

Arriving at Huai Krathing Reservoir

On Sunday morning June 3, 2018, at around 10:00 after a short 15-kilometer ride from the town of Loei, our family arrived at the Huai Krathing Reservoir in the mountains. Members of the family included my mother-in-law, daughters Pu and Aey, granddaughter Yuri, wife Suai, son-in-law Kaeo, and myself.

After finding a dirt parking area, we got out of our SUV and started to explore. The first thing that struck me from the top of a small hill was the picturesque beauty of a small lake surrounded by bamboo forest and mountains. I couldn't also help but notice numerous bamboo rafts made into floating pavilions docked along the shore.

Since the sky was only partly cloudy, we all decided to rent a floating pavilion and be towed to the middle of the lake for a few hours of pleasure. Five hundred baht (a little more than $15) would cover us for two or three hours. We also learned that restaurant dishes could be delivered to us on the lake in floating market style.

My first view of Huai Krathing
My first view of Huai Krathing | Source

Boarding Our Floating Pavilion and Being Towed to the Middle of the Lake

After paying for our rental of a bamboo raft, we quickly boarded our floating pavilion. The raft was about 15' by 8' and had room for up to 10 persons. There were mats and cushions spread out on the deck and I noticed five or six life jackets. Water, coke, and ice had previously been ordered and was awaiting us on the raft.

Within a few minutes of boarding, a long-tailed motorboat attached itself to our bamboo raft and pushed us very slowly out to the middle of the lake. In the distance, we could see a few other floating pavilions already on the lake and also beautiful green mountains behind a bamboo forest on the far side of the lake.

Getting Ready to Leave Shore
Getting Ready to Leave Shore | Source

Eating Lunch on a Floating Pavilion

The time was approaching 11:00 am, and most of us were hungry, having skipped breakfast after checking out of our motel in Chiang Khan 60 kilometers away. My oldest daughter wasted no time in phoning in our lunch order. Within 15-20 minutes, it was delivered to us on a long-tailed motorboat. The cuisine was Isan-style and included khao niao (sticky rice,) yaam talei (spicy seafood salad,) somtam (spicy papaya salad,) tomyaamgong (spicy shrimp soup,) grilled and fried fish, barbecued shrimp, grilled chicken, assorted stir-fried vegetables, steamed rice, water, beer, and coke.

There were no tables or chairs on the raft so we all ate in the Isan manner by sitting on the mats. Pu called in for seconds of rice and all of the dishes. The total cost of the lunch was about 1,000 Thai baht (approximately $30) for seven people.

Sitting and enjoying lunch
Sitting and enjoying lunch | Source
Our luncheon dishes
Our luncheon dishes | Source

Feeding Ducks and Ducklings

Toward the end of our lunch, a mother duck and her four to eight ducklings came swimming up to our bamboo raft. They obviously had been attracted by our food. After the duck and ducklings were next to the raft, my wife and granddaughter went out on the bamboo poles to feed them cabbage. Some of the ducklings were so hungry that they climbed up on the bamboo poles.

Feeding ducks next to our raft
Feeding ducks next to our raft | Source

Swimming

A few minutes later, my granddaughter and son-in-law decided that they would take a dip in the lake. Wearing life jackets, they both jumped in and had a great time swimming. The other members of the family, including myself, were not inclined to join Yuri and Kaeo.

Swimming in the lake
Swimming in the lake | Source

Encountering a Thunderstorm

Fun in the water ended suddenly when a thunderstorm blew across the lake. Before the rain hit, our floating pavilion was blown ashore up against another bamboo raft. Onshore, we noticed a herd of water buffalo that were grazing. At this point, Pu called the pilot of a long-tailed motorboat who came and towed us back to our starting point. Actually, two motorboats pulled us through the wind and a driving rainstorm.

Upon alighting from the raft, we quickly made our way through a light rain to our parked vehicle. It was an enjoyable two or three hours which I will always remember.

Huai Krating Reservoir water buffalo
Huai Krating Reservoir water buffalo | Source

Questions & Answers

    © 2018 Paul Richard Kuehn

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      • Paul Kuehn profile imageAUTHOR

        Paul Richard Kuehn 

        8 weeks ago from Udorn City, Thailand

        Please let me know when you come to Thailand again.

      • aesta1 profile image

        Mary Norton 

        8 weeks ago from Ontario, Canada

        That will be fantastic. I have always wanted to go there. We used to work in Cambodia and worked in Thailand before, too. We have decided to retire for good now but who knows we might be again in your corner of the world.

      • Paul Kuehn profile imageAUTHOR

        Paul Richard Kuehn 

        2 months ago from Udorn City, Thailand

        Thanks for your comments, Mary! I am pleased that you liked my article and pictures. When you are in Thailand the next time, please come up to Udon Thani in the northeast where I live and I will show you around.

      • aesta1 profile image

        Mary Norton 

        2 months ago from Ontario, Canada

        I have been to Thailand many times but never in the northeast. I have friends who came from there and would tell me about it. It is good to see these pictures.

      • Paul Kuehn profile imageAUTHOR

        Paul Richard Kuehn 

        4 months ago from Udorn City, Thailand

        Yes, Peggy, it was definitely something different from the norm. I am looking forward to finding more places like this in Thailand. Thanks for your comments!

      • Paul Kuehn profile imageAUTHOR

        Paul Richard Kuehn 

        4 months ago from Udorn City, Thailand

        Louise, you are more than welcome to visit us here in Thailand anytime. Thanks for commenting!

      • Peggy W profile image

        Peggy Woods 

        4 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Thanks for taking us along on your journey. Enjoyed viewing the video you made as well as seeing your photos. That sounds like a fun few hours and certainly something a bit different from the norm.

      • Coffeequeeen profile image

        Louise Powles 

        4 months ago from Norfolk, England

        It looks like you have a lovely time there, and it looks so beautiful. I'd love to visit here.

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, wanderwisdom.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://wanderwisdom.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)