Our next stop after Phimai was Nang Rong to get to Phanom Rung and other historical sites. There is no direct way from Phimai to Nang Rong, so you will have to take at least two buses.
We were informed that we could go from Phimai to Chum Phuang and change there for a bus to Nang Rong, so we tried that route…
Here is the bus journey from Phimai to Nang Rong.
Getting from Phimai to Nang Rong
Nang Rong is located to the south-east of Phimai and is approximately 100 km away if you drive directly to the city.
We could not find a direct bus from Phimai to Nang Rong. So we decided to go to Chum Phuang and change buses there to get to Nang Rong.
Bus from Phimai to Chum Phuang
The journey from Phimai to Chum Phuang is approximately 35 km.
Buses to Chum Phuang leave from a bus stop near Phimai Hotel. The fare to Chum Phuang is 35 baht per person.
We bought bus tickets for the 9 am departure. However, the minibus arrived at almost 9.30 am.
There happened to be a Thai woman on board who could speak English, and she told the driver to drop us off at the market in Chum Phuang so we could then take a minibus to Nang Rong.
Tried to transfer from Chum Phuang to a bus bound for Nang Rong when…
We arrived next to the market in Chum Phuang at around 10.15 am. The journey from Phimai took approximately 45 minutes.
I asked a local who was selling food at the market and she told me that if I wanted to go to Nang Rong I should cross and pointed to the other side of the intersection.
When I asked another local, he told me that there were no buses to Nang Rong at the moment. I then asked another person and got the same answer. And another …If you want to go to Nang Rong, you have to go to Khorat (Nakhon Ratchasima)”.
It was raining heavily and the conditions were not ideal for hitchhiking from here.
So we had no choice but to go back to Nakhon Ratchasimaa (‘Korat’ is better understood locally).
Bus back from Chum Phuang to Nakhon Ratchasima
At this time I happened to have already booked a hotel in Nang Rong and so we decided to return to Nakhon Ratchasima (Korah), hoping that we could make it to Nang Rong that day.
Even so, we didn’t know where to catch the bus to Nakhon Ratchasimaa. I came back to the market and tried to enquire at the police station opposite, but no one was inside.
So I asked the shopkeeper at the market again, this time for the bus to Korat, and he said “that way” and pointed to the road from Phimai.
As we were walking slowly in that direction, we noticed that a bus was parked up about 300 metres away and it was going to Nakhon Ratchasima via Phimai.
It was in fact the same bus we had taken from Nakhon Ratchasima to Phimai a couple of days earlier.
Shortly after we boarded (10.30 am), the bus departed with many empty seats and picked up passengers along the way.
It also stopped at Phimai bus station, where a few people got on. After passing Phimai, the fare for the ride was collected and was 91 baht per person from Chum Phuan to Nakhon Ratchasima.
Transfer at Nakhon Ratchasima to Nang Rong
The bus arrived at Nakhon Ratchasima Bus Terminal 2 at 1 pm.
To get to Nang Rong we took a bus headed to Surin. It left from platform 12 and the fare to Nang Rong was 90 baht per person.
Departure time was 2 pm and so we had one hour for lunch which we ate at the cafeteria attached to the terminal.
The journey from Nakhon Ratchasima to Nang Rong is approximately 100 km.
The bus departed on time at 2 pm and we arrived in Nang Rong at 4 pm. The bus arrived at the Narlong bus station near the central intersection of the city.