Download GPX file for this article
6.636100.423Full screen dynamic map

From Wikivoyage
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Sadao (สะเดา) is a small town in Southern Thailand. It is near two border crossings with Malaysia: Dannok (ด่านนอก) and Padang Besar


The border town and checkpoint of Dannok (which appropriately means "outpost") is 10 km south of Sadao and about 60 km from Hat Yai. The town on the Malaysian side is Bukit Kayu Hitam.

This road crossing is the busiest between Thailand and Malaysia: both countries' major trans-national highways to their capitals meet at this crossing. Most long-distance buses between Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand use this crossing.

If busy border checkpoints stress you, head to the quieter Padang Besar rail and road crossing, 12 km west of Sadao. Trains run to both capitals.

Dannok used to be just a few wayside but border trade, sleaze and shopping have led to both sides of the highway sprouting many little lanes lined with karaoke bars and nightclubs, with scantily-dressed bargirls sitting outside.

Get in[edit]

Given its highway location, bus is the usual way in. Although connections from Padang Besar make Sadao easily accessible by train.


Thai immigration information is at Thailand | Get in.

Same-day visa runs are apparently not possible in this province of Thailand, but see the remarks under Padang Besar (Thailand)#Visa for a potential workaround.

By minibus[edit]

In Dannok, vans leave from in front of 7-Eleven to Hat Yai via Sadao when full. Takes one hour and you can ask to be dropped off anywhere in Hat Yai. The fare is 55 baht, after 23:00 you probably won't get a ride for less than 100 baht. In Hat Yai, the van leaves from The Hatyai bus station terminal No. 1, near to CentralPlaze festival mall.

By taxi[edit]

A taxi to Hat Yai is about 300 baht.

By road[edit]

Sadao and Dannok are on Hwy 4, the south's main northbound road to Bangkok. Dannok is about 60 km or one hour south of Hat Yai. You can drive right up to the immigration checkpoint.

From Malaysia[edit]

You can drive, walk or catch a regular taxi or motorcycle taxi to travel the 1 km between the Bukit Kayu Hitam checkpoint and Dannok. Between the two checkpoints on the Malaysian side is a huge Duty Free shopping complex. See the Bukit Kayu Hitam page for connections within Malaysia.

Get around[edit]

Motorcycle taxis are plentiful and charge RM2 or 20 baht in Dannok.


Dannok has nothing much to see or do in the day time! More of a night life town!


A growing nightlife is developing due to Malaysian border crossers looking for a good time. There are lots of hostess and go-go bars to be found.

There are also very good traditional Thai massage parlours that offer both a body massage or foot massage at very reasonable prices.


  • The shops in Dannok are interesting enough to look around and many Malaysians come here to stock up with things from mangoes to bras. The variety is certainly more interesting than in Malaysia and prices are much cheaper.
  • Many also shop at the Duty Free Shopping Complex which is in Malaysian territory between the Thai and Malaysian immigration checkpoints. See the Bukit Kayu Hitam for details.


Dannok has 2 nice restaurants both with man-made lakes. One has a fishing pond and the other has a beautiful view! Ask the hotels or motorcycle taxis for location as it is out of the main town area but the meal at the lake view restaurant is worth the travel!


This small town is a heaven in terms of drinking places, from pubs, clubs & even a disco called Paragon. Satit Disco is one of the most interesting place where you have to visit. Turn into any lane and you're bound to find a place to get a drink! Be careful though as this town is virtually a cowboy town with very little presence of police, therefore try to stay out of trouble!


Satit Hotel. 840 baht.


  • Satit Hotel, 1/1-6 Soi Thai-Jangloon 6, (Downtown Dannok), +66 74 523875. Free Wi-Fi. Thai massage on the second floor. 425+ baht.


  • KPK Hotel (On the left side of the road). Has a swimming pool and is surrounded by clubs and shops. It offers a pick-up service from the border checkpoint.
  • Siamthana Hotel, No.99 Thai-Changloon 22 Karnchanawanich Rd (Adjacent to the Malaysian border), +66 74 523555. 650+ baht.


  • 1 Satit Grand View Hotel, 28 Moo 7 Soi, +66 74 557363. Largest hotel in Dannok. More than 200 luxury rooms. International breakfast. Free hotel shuttle (pick up from Thai customs), karaoke, spa, and massage. Free Wi-Fi and Internet cafe. ~1,700 baht.

Go next[edit]

Routes through Sadao
BangkokHat Yai  N  S  END

This city travel guide to Sadao is an outline and needs more content. It has a template, but there is not enough information present. Please plunge forward and help it grow!