where to dine in paradise city ...
Most people will think of Thailand as a country that has great weather and a long history, with charming, friendly people and a distinct culture. That, of course, is all true, but it also offers a gastronomic experience not to be missed.
Hua Hin has become a high-class tourist destination, developing quickly from a once sleepy fishing village. Along with this development has come an ever-increasing selection of cuisine, both Thai and international.
Only some fifteen years ago, Hua Hin would have been able to provide little more than local food outside of the few main hotels in town. Now, you can also find an enormous selection of restaurants serving dishes from all over the world, including Italy, Scandanavia, Europe, Japan, Korea, India and Mexico. This transformation is reflective of the way Hua Hin has evolved and its status now as a top travel destination.
Effectively, your food choices will be determined by how much you want to pay, the degree of formality you want and of course the type of cuisine. The major hotels will always allow non-residents to dine there, but you must be aware of dress codes in certain establishments. Needless to say, standards of cooking are extremely high and whilst you will pay for this, at least one meal at a 5 star resort is something you should try and treat yourself to during your stay - assuming you're not resident there, of course. The range of restaurants that can be found at the top hotels in Hua Hin are described in our Hotels and Resorts section.
The centre of Hua Hin is crammed with restaurants and it's easy to wander around for ages without being able to make your mind up about which to try. Despite what some may think, Thailand and Hua Hin in particular are safe places to eat from a hygene point of view. Ingredients are always fresh and kitchen and washroom facilities are as good and of as high a standard as you would expect in your home country. Instances of upset stomachs are few and far between and are more likely to have been caused by the weather temperatures on arrival - or overindulgance with the fiery chillis - as through any bad food.
It will be impossible to fully list all the restaurants in Hua Hin - there are simply too many and more are opening all the time. Generally though, do experiment and vary your culinary experience. Also take a look at our Feeding Time forum to find reviews of new and established restauaurants. Don't be shy, join in, ask any question you may have and share your experiences.
Hua Hin is famous for it's seafood. The town is right on the the Gulf of Thailand after all and you'll find superb wooden restaurants on stilts down by the fishing pier. There's also Hua Hin's night market - a must to wander through sampling the local dishes that are cooked freshly in front of you. Roadside vendors are around 24 hours a day to rustle you up a tasty snack and you'll come across an enormous variety of tropical fruits.
International restaurants in Hua Hin are of the highest quality and remember that whilst more expensive than the local Thai ones, they are still a real bargain when compared to "back home". So, come to Hua Hin, be prepared to be adventurous food wise and you'll enjoy your stay all the more.
As a couple of final pointers, if you're not too sure how chilli hot you want your food, just ask for local dishes "mai ped" (not hot). The Thais are an accommodating lot and they certainly won't want you to be put off their food if it's uncomfortable to eat. Alternatively, ask for dishes "Thai style" and you'll get what the locals have. It has been the law for a number of years now that smoking is not permitted in air conditioned restaurants and you will find that this is enforced in Hua Hin.
So, eat, drink and be merry!