Located at the heart of the Northeastern Thailand (Isan), Khon Kaen is the capital city of Isan and is an important centre for the region's silk trade it is also the capital of the province Khon Kaen and the Khon Kaen district. It's the home of Rajamangala University and Khon Kaen University.
Strategically important for the Isan region's infrastructure, Khon Kaen's airport was raised to international standards in 2005 with the opening of a new terminal but only domestic flights are able to land. At the end of 2006 only the national carrier (Thai Airways) operate scheduled flights daily: morning, midday and evening. Often the aircraft, are full. Direct international services are expected to start in 2007.
The city is bisected by the Mithraphap Highway, the road linking Bangkok with the Northeast and Laos. A modern, multi-lane by-pass enables through traffic to avoid the city centre to the west and connects to the airport and to the main roads to Kalasin and Maha Sarakham in the east and Udon Thani in the north.