Chonburi Province



Map of Thailand highlighting Chonburi Province
Country  Thailand
Capital Chonburi
  Governor Phakkhrathon Thianchai (since October 2016)
  Total 4,363 km2 (1,685 sq mi)
Area rank Ranked 51st
Population (2015)
  Total 1,455,039[1]
  Rank Ranked 16th
  Density rank Ranked 13th
Time zone ICT
ISO 3166 code TH-20

Chonburi (Thai: ชลบุรี, rtgs: Chon Buri,  [tɕ͡ʰōn bū.rīː]) is an eastern province (changwat) of Thailand.[2] Neighboring provinces are (from north clockwise) Chachoengsao, Chanthaburi, and Rayong. To the west is the Gulf of Thailand. Chonburi is home to Thailand's largest tourist oriented city, Pattaya (also spelled Phatthaya), it is the only province outside the Bangkok Metropolitan Area to connect by an eight-lane motorway to Bangkok, 80 km distant. It is home to Thailand's largest and primary seaport, it has a thriving migrant and expatriate population. Due to these factors, the province's population is growing rapidly, with currently some 1.7 million residents (albeit with a large floating or unregistered population).[3] The registered population as of 31 December 2012 was 1.36 million.[4]


From historical evidence, Mueang Chonburi has been settled since sometime during the Ayutthaya period of Thai history. The region for centuries was one of small towns such as Bang Sai, Bang Pla Soi, and Bang Phra. King Rama V combined these to form Chonburi Province.


The word "chon" originates from the Sanskrit word "jala" meaning water, and the word "buri" from Sanskrit "puri" meaning "town" or "city". Hence the name of the province literally means "city of water".


The province is on the Bay of Bangkok, the northern end of the Gulf of Thailand. The Khao Khiao mountain range stretches from the northwest to the southeast of the province, while the fertile plains of the north were long used for farming. In Laem Chabang, in the south of the province, is one of the few deep-water harbours of Thailand.

The provincial permanent legal population has risen at nearly 4% annually from 1,040,865 in 2000 to 1,554,365 in 2010.[3] There is a large floating population of long term residents (non-Thai) without permanent status, on perpetual tourist visa and/or migrant workers (legal or not), as well as heavy, short term tourist influxes.


Pattaya, on the Gulf of Thailand, is a major international tourist destination.

The 20th World Scout Jamboree, organized by the World Organization of the Scout Movement, drew 30,000 teenage Boy Scouts to a naval base near the town of Sattahip, where activities included world issue awareness, a showcase of Thai science and technology, and obstacle course-style competitions between scouts from all nations.

Chonburi Province is one of the few Thai provinces which does not possess a city pillar shrine lak mueang. There is a plan to construct a shrine by 2012.


The provincial seal shows the hill Khao Sam Muk, on which there is a sala with a statue of the goddess Chao Mae Sahm Muk of whom it is believed that she protects seafaring fishermen and the local population.[5]

The provincial tree and flower is the "New Guinea Rosewood" (Pterocarpus indicus, called Mai Pradu in Thai).

The provincial motto is "Beautiful beaches, delicious khao lam, sweet sugar cane, delicate basketry products, and buffalo racing."

Administrative divisions

The province is subdivided in 11 districts (amphoe). These are further subdivided into 92 subdistricts (tambon) and 691 villages (muban).

  1. Mueang Chon Buri
  2. Ban Bueng
  3. Nong Yai
  4. Bang Lamung
  5. Phan Thong
  6. Phanat Nikhom
  1. Si Racha
  2. Ko Sichang
  3. Sattahip
  4. Bo Thong
  5. Ko Chan


Governor Komsan Eakachai

House of Representatives of Thailand

Chon Buri has eight seats in the house.

General Election 2011

Phalang Chon Party(6) is the localism party that established in 2011 for general election by former minister and local politicians.

Suchat Chomkin, Ukkit Tansawad, Ronnathep Anuwat, Pansak Ketwattha, Kusumon Khunpluem, Poramet Ngampichet.

Democratic Party(1)

Sorrawut Neungjumnong

Pheu Thai Party(1)

Admiral Suraphol Jundeang

Provincial Chief Executive Wittaya Khunpluem(2008 - ) from Phalang Chon Party

Influential person

Somchai Khunpluem, alternatively spelled Kunplome (Thai: สมชาย คุณปลื้ม), born 30 September 1937 in Chonburi, Thailand is a Thai politician and businessman, now in jail. He is also known under his nickname "Kamnan Poh" (Thai: กำนันเป๊าะ, "subdistrict headman Poh"). He has a dark influence in his home province of Chonburi and the whole eastern region and has therefore been dubbed "godfather of Chonburi" or "godfather of the east" by Thai media. Somchai was long-term mayor of Saen Suk, Mueang Chonburi District. His four sons are politicians and Phalang Chon Party founders. The father and sons are deemed to be a "dark infulence" in the chonburi area.

Cities and towns

Rank City/town Amphoe (District) population Area(km²) community town of
1 Pattaya Bang Lamung 101,939 22.2
2 Chaophraya Surasak Si Racha 80,088 306.44 Si Racha
3 Ban Suan Mueang Chonburi 61,072 n/a Chonburi
4 Laem Chabang Si Racha(and a part of Bang Lamung) 64,607 109.65
5 Nong Prue Bang Lamung 49,558 45.54 Pattaya
6 Saen Suk (Bangsaen) Mueang Chonburi 42,843 20.843 Chonburi
7 Chonburi* Mueang Chonburi 34,744 4.567
8 Angsila Mueang Chonburi 25,673 18.6 Chonburi
9 Sattahip* Sattahip 22,539 6.22
10 Huay Yai Bang Lamung 22,208 153 Pattaya
11 Si Racha* Si Racha 19,221 4.058
12 Ban Bueng* Ban Bueng 16,336 n/a
13 Huay Kapi Mueang Chonburi 15,297 14.5 Chonburi
14 Mon Nang Phanat Nikhom 13,522 52.58 Phanat Nikhom
15 Phanat Nikhom* Phanat Nikhom 11,717 2.76
16 Bang Sai Mueang Chonburi 11,140 2.16 Chonburi
17 Nong Maidaeng Mueang Chonburi 10,689 10 Chonburi
18 Bang Sare Sattahip 7,875 7.87 Sattahip
19 Don Hua Lo Mueang Chonburi 7,670 18.5 Chonburi
20 Tha Bunmee Ko Chan 6,348 5.692
21 Ko Sichang* Ko Sichang 4,975 7.9
22 Nong Phai Kaew Ban Bueng 2,018 11.692 Ban Bueng

* capital of district


Wat Yansangwararam

There has been heavy investment in the tourist city of Pattaya, the nation's primary port of Laem Chabang (at Si Ratcha), the Bangkok-Pattaya motorway, and Suvarnabhumi airport (outside but close to the province). Pattaya is the destination of local and international tourism alike within the province, which has seen a spike in skyscrapers and malls. Some nine million visitors to the province were recorded in 2012, of which 6.1 million were from abroad, the largest of these being Russians with 2.2 million visitors.[6] The character of the city has been changing from "sin city" to one which caters to all visitors including families, albeit the "sin city" continues its seemingly unstoppable growth. In addition the nationality of visitors to Pattaya and environs has been changing, with a surge of Chinese in the past five years, as well as migrant workers from Cambodia, Laos, and Myanmar, as opposed to being formerly dominated by Westerners and Thais.

Besides Pattaya, neighboring cities such as Banglamung, Si Ratcha, and even Muang Chonburi itself have developed over the past decade supporting a larger middle class and a "long-stay" expat population.



Chonburi Annual Festival (งานนมัสการพระพุทธสิหิงค์และงานกาชาดประจำปีจังหวัดชลบุรี) fair held mid-April during the Songkran Festival. Phra Phutthaishing, Chonburi's principal Buddha image, is carried in a procession around the city.

Wan Lai Festival (ประเพณีวันไหล) is a Chonburi merit-making day of the seamen on the Thai New Year during the Songkran Festival, running from 13–20 April every year. There is almsgiving to the monks, the ritual pouring of water onto the Buddha's image, sand pagoda making, splashing water and local games and sports in Chonburi. The areas where the Wan Lai Festival is organized are as follows:

Pattaya–Na Kluea Wan Lai Festival and Na Kluea Kong Khao Fair (งานประเพณีวันไหล พัทยา- นาเกลือ และงานกองข้าวนาเกลือ) are organized on 18–20 April every year at Lan Pho Public Park, Na Kluea and Wat Chai Mongkhon in south Pattaya.
Songkran Si Maha Racha Festival and Kong Khao Tradition (งานประเพณีสงกรานต์ศรีมหาราชาและงานประเพณีกองข้าว) an ancient festival of the locals. Si Racha District preserves this tradition and organizes it every year, during 19–21 April, to worship the gods who have been protecting them throughout the year. Activities include the procession led by the elderly and organizations in traditional Thai costume, a worship ceremony, spirit offering ceremony, Kong Khao tradition demonstration, local games, demonstrations, and sales of traditional desserts and local food.
Ko Phra Sai Wan Lai Festival, Bang Saen (งานประเพณีก่อพระทรายวันไหล บางแสน) Originally, it was called "Ngan Thambun Wan Lai", a gathering of people from villages to do the merit making in the Songkran Festival or the Thai New Year's Day, taking place on 16–17 April, every year. Monks from every temple in Saen Suk sub-district are invited to perform the religious ceremony. There is merit-making, food offering and bahting ceremony. Later, there are activities of sand pagoda making, water splashing, local games and sports.

Ngan Bun Klang Ban and Phanat Nikhom Basketwork (งานบุญกลางบ้าน และเครื่องจักสานพนัสนิคม) On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in the first week of May or the Thai 6th lunar month. The locals bring food, offer it to the monks, and dedicate the merit to the guardian spirits, enemies from a former life, deceased relatives, as well as, to drive out bad things, to ask for rain during the season and to wish for abundant food and plants. After the religious ceremony, there is lunch, local games, and a demonstration of Phanat Nikhom basketry making.

Chonburi Buffalo Race (งานประเพณีวิ่งควาย) In Ban Bueng and Nong Yai districts. The animals are dressed outrageously or with creatively by owners. Assembled in the courtyard in front of the town hall, the buffaloes partake in racing, or take part in physical fitness and fashion contests. The Chonburi Buffalo Race festival started more than 100 years ago.[7] Usually, the races will be complemented with booths selling locally made items, stage performances, games and beauty contests.[8] The annual Buffalo Race, held around the 11th lunar month, normally in October. It takes seven days and takes place on the field in front of the city and provincial government offices. The highlight of the festival is the buffalo race which is on the last two days. This race is 100 meters– long. The prize for the first nose past the finish line is a trophy and some money.[9]

Bangsaen Beach Legend

Bangsaen Beach[10] is a beautiful tourist attraction in Chonburi that has a legends of love story in a fisherman’s village. There is a couple who flight to living together even though they had to face many obstacles.

A long time ago in Chonburi province, Thailand, there was a fisherman’s village[11] that had Kamnun Bire as the headman. He was widowed and had a handsome son, who was named Saen. Many ladies in the village aimed to marry him, but he did not care about any of them. One day, Saen went to play with a kite on the beach, but the waves and wind were very strong, so the string snapped and his kite flew away. After the storm gradually subsided, Saen tried to find his kite, so he climbed a mountain. Then he found a lady who had picked up his kite on the mountain peak. Her name was Sammuk,[12] and she was so beautiful that Saen fell in love with her. He wanted her to give his kite back and got to know each other. After that, he came to see her every day, and both of them loved each other more and more. A couple of months later, Sean gave a ring to Sammuk and promised that they would love each other till the end of the world. If they broke the promise, they would commit suicide by jumping down the mountain where both of them first met. Then one day, Bire found out the truth then he was furious and did not allow Sean to see Sammuk. She waited for Saen every day until she heard a rumor that Bire would provide a lady to marry Saen. Both Sammuk and Saen felt sad, but they could not do anything. During blessed water ceremony on the wedding day, Sammuk turned over the ring to Saen and jumped off the mountain immediately. She jumped off the mountain as their promised. Then Saen jumped off following Sammuk. Bire was very upset, but he built a memorial monument for Saen and Sammuk.

See also


  1. "Population of the Kingdom" (PDF). Department of Provincial Affairs (DOPA) Thailand (in Thai). 2015-12-31. Retrieved 26 Apr 2016.
  2. "Chon Buri". Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT). Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  3. 1 2
  5. "Chonburi". THAILEX Travel Encyclopedia. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  7. สำนักงานคณะกรรมการวัฒนธรรมแห่งชาติ, ประเพณีวิ่งควาย (1994). ชีวิตไทยชุดบรรพบุรุษของเรา.กรุงเทพฯ : คุรุสภาลาดพร้าว, 2013
  8. "Chonburi buffalos race Oct. 14-20". Pattaya Mail. 2013-09-06. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  9. "Buffalo Racing". Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT). Retrieved 31 May 2015.
  10. "Pattaya Area Guide: Bangsaen Beach". pattaya. Retrieved 28 August 2015.
  11. "Bangsaen Beach". teakdoor. Retrieved 11 November 2015.
  12. "ตำนานเขาสามมุก จังหวัดชลบุรี". tumnandd. Retrieved 28 August 2015.
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Coordinates: 13°21′44″N 100°59′0″E / 13.36222°N 100.98333°E / 13.36222; 100.98333

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