About Tat Mok
Tat Mok National Park is a small national park covering 290 km² montane area, around 15 km east from Phetchabun City in Phetchabun Province. The main attractions of the park are Tat Mok Waterfall and a campsite with a good view of Phetchabun valley. Both the park and the waterfall are named after Tat Mok Mountains.
The park forests consist of mixed deciduous, deciduous dipterocarp and dry evergreen forests. Some of the tree species to mention are takian, Dipterocarpus alatus, Xylia xylocarpa, teak, Pterocarpus macrocarpus, tabaek as well as various bamboos (Source Wikipedia).
Being so small, the park still has some impressive wildlife thanks to being adjacent to two major protected sites like Nam Nao National Park to the north and Phu Khieo Wildlife Sanctuary to the east. Although not commonly seen, Asian elephants, gaurs, golden jackals, Indochinese serows, sambar deer, Malayan porcupines, Assam macaques, Bengal slow loris, wild boars, northern treeshrews, finlayson's squirrels, grey-bellied squirrels are few of the mammals recorded from the park.
There are currently around 115 bird species reported from Tat Mok National Park. Few interesting birds found in the park are; eared pittas, blue pittas, scaly-breasted partridges, grey peacock-pheasants, silver pheasants, heart-spotted woodpeckers, bay woodpeckers, greater flamebacks, dark-sided thrushes, streaked wren-babblers, moustached barbets, great barbets, green-eared barbets, large scimitar babblers, Indochinese cuckooshrikes, slaty-backed forktails, wreathed hornbills, great hornbills and besras.
There are no public transportation services that pass by the entrance of the park. Visitors must have their own vehicle, lighter motorcycles are allowed inside the park.
Entrance fees & opening times
The entrance fees are 100 Baht for adults and 50 baht for children. The park is open 6 am to 6 pm all year round.
Tat Mok National Park is open 6 am to 6 pm every day but will be closed from 1st July until 30th September every year.
There is no mobile reception in the visitor center area of the park but there is mobile reception at Lan Chom Dao Campsite. The visitor center has free wireless internet, but at very low speed and connection is lost from time to time. Ask the park rangers for login credentials.
Stay & eat
There are four park accommodations for rent near the visitor center. Two of these are for 6 people each for 1,000 Baht per night, the other two are for 40 people each 4,000 Baht per night. A significant discount will apply when booked for Mon-Thu.
The park accommodations can be booked through the DNP website in advance. As the money transfer must be done within 2 days and the fact it takes a longer time with transfers from abroad, it is only possible to book from within Thailand only. Payments can be done at 7-Eleven convenience stores or banks.
The park has two camping grounds. The first one is Lan Chom Dao, 5 km from the entrance at top of a mountain called Lan Chom Dao, 630 meters asl, with 180° clear open view over Phetchaburi valley. The second campsite is at Huai Bong Ranger Station, next to the visitor center, 11 km from the park entrance and about 9 km before the trailhead to Tak Mok Waterfall.
Tents are available for rent at both campsites, but there may not be staff at the first campsite on weekdays to help with tents. The second campsite has permanent staff all year round. Tents are available for rent for 225 Baht (4 people), a sleeping set including a sleeping bag, a sleeping mat and a pillow cost 60 Baht.
There are no restaurants or shops inside the park, visitors are recommended to have snacks and beverages with them. There is one restaurant a bit from the checkpoint at the junction to the main road to Phetchaburi, but it is only open during the week-ends and other busy days. Sometimes they can be open briefly in the late afternoon. Alternative restaurants are more near Phetchabun.
Western Isaan Forest Complex
Tat Mok National Park is part of Western Isaan Forest Complex including three other national parks and four wildlife sanctuaries covering 4,594 km² all together.
The protected areas within the complex are; Nam Nao National Park, Tat Mok National Park, Phu Pha Man National Park, Phu Kradueng National Park, Phu Khieo Wildlife Sanctuary, Pha Phung Wildlife Sanctuary, Phu Pha Daeng Wildlife Sanctuary, Taboa Huai Yai Wildlife Sanctuary.
The attractions of Tat Mok
Tat Mok Waterfall
The main attractions of the park are around 200 to 300 meter asl. The waterfall is accessible by a 2 km long rocky trail along Song Nang Nature Trail; this trail also leads to Song Nang Waterfall.
The trail head is found at the end of the road 19 km east from the park entrance. The trail ascends from around 630 meters asl up to around 850 meters asl. A couple of hundred meters before reaching Song Nang Waterfall trail there is a trail fork, the trail to the right will lead to Tat Mok Waterfall. The last few hundred meters of the trail is quite steep. There is no guide requirement to walk the trail.
Song Nang Waterfall
A 12 tiered waterfall accessible by the same trail to Tat Mok, compared to 200-300 meters tall Tat Mok Waterfall, quite small, but in relatively terms quite high, multi-tiered and impressive waterfall. Only the first couple of tiers are accessible by trail.
Lan Chom Dao Campsite
It is the first camp in Tat Mok National Park, 5 km from the checkpoint accessible from a side road north from around km 3. The campsite is relatively spacious, it has a very good and clear view over Phetchaburi valley.
There are no park premises in Lan Chom Dao Campsite apart from a ranger station and toilet/shower facilities.
There are tents available for rent but there may not be any staff at the campsite to rent. There are always staff at the campsite during busy days like week-ends and holidays.
Huai Bong Ranger Station Campsite
Next to the main visitor center at km 11, it is actually two separate camping grounds with 300 meters between. The first one is quite a small one right behind the visitor center, the second one is very spacious. There are tents available for rent as well as toilet and shower facilities in both campsites.
There are a few viewpoints along the road through the national park. These viewpoints have a relatively clear view, facing mountains with a good view of narrow valleys between.