[UPDATED 19-Dec-2016]Updated links and notes on nearby places to eat. I haven’t used this bus route since 2013. It gets a lot of hits, so I update what I can. [END UPDATE 19-Dec-2016]
The bus station in Hua Hin is between sois 96 and 96/1 on the west (inland) side of Petchkasem Road, the main north – south road through town. It’s about 1.5 km south of the road that runs from the train station to the beach.
This page has photos of the bus station that might help you locate it. It also has the bus schedule, but it’s not official.
Some landmarks may help in locating the station. Going south on Petchkasem Rd. from the tourist district you’ll pass under a pedestrian bridge, next is a mall (Market Village) on your right. In about 1/2 km you’ll see two things: an 18 story narrow yellow condo tower on the left and the first opportunity to make a U-turn. The bus station is about 150 meters farther south.
If you’re in a vehicle, and running out of time or the traffic going north is bad, get off while heading south then walk across Petchkasem to save a few minutes.
I hate long bus rides. Four hours is too long. Planes, trains and buses are the usual means of going from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, but I’m in HH, which means a 2.5 hour ride in a minibus, then a cross town trip to reach any of those options. That means a 1.5 days for bus and train. Decided to go with the 1 day option direct from HH.
There are two overnight buses to Chiang Mai from HH. Here is the official schedule Took the one day time bus because I couldn’t remember the last time I took an all day bus ride but did remember how poorly I slept on overnight bus rides. Figured a loaded mp3 player, riveting book and some OTC pain pills might make the 12.5 hour daytime ride bearable. They did.
The bus was clean, quiet and ran on time. Air con wasn’t too cold and – shock and amazement – the overhead vents could be closed and/or aimed. Seats had plenty of leg room and reclined way back. Unfortunately the middle of the headrest only came to my shoulder so there was no way to get comfortable with it tilted beyond 20 degrees. There were neck pillows for everyone. Fuchsia colored blankets too.
The stewardess kept us supplied with drinks and snacks. The snacks were made of mostly white flour, sugar and palm oil, so I was glad I brought my own.
Where did they get the fabric for the walls and seats? Was it discovered in a warehouse in boxes that hadn’t been opened since 1968?
Northbound driver(s) were OK. A southbound one made me cinch the seat belt tight. In low rolling hill terrain, he’d try to pass a car while climbing the hill to a blind crest, back off at the last minute, then follow the car down the next hill, only to pull out and try to pass again while climbing.
Why don’t bus bathrooms have floor drains? I managed to avoid the bathroom until around sunset. Found out that too many of those who preceded me belonged on a different vehicle. This one:
The bus station in Hua Hin is between sois 96 and 96/1 on Petchkasem Road, the main north – south road through town.
Across the street from the bus station and a bit north (left facing the street) is Coffee 77.
Strong, from Robusta beans. Decent and inexpensive food is available in Thai-sized servings.
Better food with larger servings, but still good value, is 2 shops south of the bus station, same side of the street. I eat their regularly. I believe it’s called ‘The Station’.