Would-be horticulturalists need to head to Wang Nam Khiao for this colourful garden extravaganza
For flower and plant lovers, the annual cool season is a wonderful time to be in Thailand. In the North and Northeast, fields of flowers bloom in vibrant colour and local festivals of a ‘green nature’ dot the events calendar. The Flora Park Festival 2017 in Wang Nam Khiao district of Nakhon Ratchasima province is one such festival, which opened on 1 November and is now in full swing.
Flora Park Festival 2017 runs until 28 February, 2018 and is open daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is 150 Baht for adults, 50 Baht for children and seniors, and free for small kids.
On show at the festival are over 100,000 flowers of numerous plant and tree species, with five themed zones for visitors to explore:
Zone 1: Auspicious plants such as Pink cassia and Cassia fistula and winter plants like geranium, salvia, gazania, zinnia, petunia and begonia; a rose zone and rose garden; an orchid section; a flowering plant section; and plants for sale.
Zone 2: Over 400 auspicious plants and a green grass area covering 1,500 square metres, and located next to the Flora Park’s flower seeding nursery learning centre for sustainable agricultural development.
Zone 3: An observation tower for taking in views of the festival and the surrounding area of Wang Nam Khiao.
Zone 4: A 90-metre long bamboo tunnel used for growing gourd plants, like the Snake Gourd, which covers the tunnel on top and along the sides. Inside the tunnel New Guinea bean is being grown, while the rack is covered in Chinese rose.
Zone 5: A vertical garden-inspired display of colourful petunia, begonia and coleus, with beautiful rose fences adding to what is a delightful floral spectacle.
During the Flora Park Festival 2017 there is also a farmer’s market selling organic vegetables and a local market to visit. And there are the highlight attractions of Nakhon Ratchasima province itself, which is known affectionately as the ‘Switzerland of Isan’ (the Northeast) due to its cooler climate, mountains like the famous Khao Yai, numerous waterfalls, fruit orchards and seasonal foggy weather.