The Mrigadayavan Palace which is located near Cha-Am in the Phetchaburi province of western Thailand, was constructed as a summer residence by King Rama VI (i.e. Vajiravudh 1910-1925) back in 1923.
This is a glorious beach-side property that is located adjacent to Bang Kra Beach which is located between the coastal towns of Cha-Am and Hua Hin. This large royal complex contains no fewer than 16 teak buildings that were constructed for King Rama VI (i.e. Vajiravudh 1910-1925) back in 1923 as his summer residence.
This palace is built on prime beachfront land and is surrounded by meticulously kept lawns and gardens which is what you would expect at a royal residence.
The palace consists of three groups of large wooden pavilions that incorporate 16 golden colored teak buildings. These were apparently built from recycled materials from an older residence that existed at Chao Samran Beach.
The King is said to have been responsible for much of the design although he also enlisted an Italian architect named Ercole Manfredi to assist with the finished design, which looks 'Victorian' in appearance.
The three pavilion groups (named 1. Samoson Sevakamataya group, 2. Bisansagara group, 3. Samudabiman group) are all high-set (i.e. built on stumps) to take advantage of the sea breezes while being cleverly joined together by a number of covered veranda's and walkways. High ceilings and fretwork are used internally to allow for both better airflow and for beauty.
The King was said to reside within the Bisansagara section of the palace which apart from his bedroom and bathroom also included his office. All official business and meetings were conducted within the Samoson Sevakamataya section, which included a hall, offices and a pavilion. The Samudabiman section is where HM Queen Indrasakdi Sachi resided along with her sister and their entourage. The King was said to be the only male that was allowed entry to this section of the palace.
By 1965 Mrigadayavan Palace was extensively restored under the direction of the King of Thailand, Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) as it was suffering from years of neglect after the death of King Rama VI in 1925.
There are a number of ways to travel to from Bangkok to Cha-Am including by plane, train or bus. Trains depart Bangkok's Hualamphong train station daily at 9.20 AM and 3.35 PM with the journey taking about 4 hours. The train station at Cha-Am is located approximately 2 kilometres from the beach so you will need to take a taxi from the train station to complete the journey.
Buses from Bangkok's southern Sai Tai bus station depart daily between the hours of 5 AM and 10 PM with the journey taking approximately 3 hours.
Flights from Bangkok (i.e. from Don Mueang Airport) to Hua Hin (located 25 kilometres from Cha-Am) are available via Solar Air who have flights on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 4 PM. Flight time is around 30 minutes with a cost of about 2,700 baht for adults.
Mrigadayavan Palace is located within the Rama VI Military Camp approximately 10 kilometres south from Cha-Am town, and approximately 14 kilometres north of Hua Hin town along Petchkasem Road. Thus, a taxi is the best way to get there.
Mrigadayavan Palace is open daily to the public (every day except for Wednesdays) between the hours of 8.30 AM until 4.30 PM. Dress codes apply so long sleeves and pants for men and no short skirts for ladies. Shoes are to be removed on entry.