The Isaan culture dominates Thailands north east and nowhere expresses this more than the bustling town of Nong Khai. Whilst all locals speak Thai many also speak the local Isan dialect. The war in Vietnam led to a mass influx of immigrants from Laos and Vietnam. This has added to the culture and diversity of the region. Due to its position on the Mekong River, Nong Khai is one of the main gateways to Laos and its capital Vientiene.
For backpackers and other budget travelers, the cheaper guesthouses and rooms are located near the riverfront with a few other places scattered around the town. Whilst area caters well for this end of the market, the luxury tourist might be disappointed with what's on offer. There are up market 5 star hotels but they are fairly few in number, so if you want to be pampered it is best to book ahead.
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