Ban Chiang is an archeological site in Nong Han District, Udon Thani Province, Thailand. It has been on the UNESCO world heritage list since 1992. Discovered in 1966, the site attracted enormous publicity due to its attractive red painted pottery.
Ban Chiang is considered one of the most significant archaeological sites in Southeast Asia and was registered as a World Heritage Site in 1992. Excavations at a large, oval mound at the site uncovered pre-historic artifacts, especially pottery and bronze implements. Since the discovery of the site in 1966, the dating of Ban Chiang artifacts has been adjusted and refined over time in line with advances in the understanding and techniques of radiometric dating. This research has revealed that the site dates to as early as 3,500 years ago and that the site was continuously occupied for at least 2,000 years. The discoveries at the site, from both Neolithic and Bronze Age civilizations, have shown it has long been a habitation and burial site.
Research at Ban Chiang has greatly enhanced understanding of the early history of what is now Thailand. According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Ban Chiang is considered the most important prehistoric settlement so far discovered in Southeast Asia. The site shows an important stage in human cultural, social and technological evolution, with some of the earliest evidence of wet-rice agriculture and domestication of cattle, pigs and chickens in the region as well as early examples of the manufacture and use of metals. Many of these artifacts and the stories behind them are on display at Ban Chiang National Museum.
Ban Chiang National Museum is about 56 kilometers from Mueang District. Take Highway No. 22 to Km. 50 and turn left onto Highway No. 2225, where a road sign indicates the way to Ban Chiang 6 kilometers further down the road. There are several villages in the area, such as Ban Kham O and Ban Pu Lu, where Ban Chiang-inspired handicrafts can be bought.
The museum is open to the general public every day except Mondays and Tuesdays from 9.00 am to 4.00 pm. An admission fee of 150 baht is charged.
For more information, contact:
The Tourism Authority of Thailand, Udon Thani Office
Tel: 66 (0) 4232 5406-7
Nong Han District
Tel: 66 (0) 4226 1230, 66 (0) 4226 1275
Bang Chiang Sub-district
Tel: 66 (0) 4223 5001, 66 (0) 4223 5215
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