In 1834, before the name Hua Hin was coined, some agricultural areas of Phetchaburi Provincewere hit by severe drought. A group of farmers moved south until they found a small village that had bright white sand and a row of rocks along the beach. They settled there and gave it the name Samore Riang (Samo Riang), which means 'rows of rocks'.
In 1921 the director of the state railway, Prince Purachatra, built the Railway Hotel close to the beach. Prince Krom Phra Naresworarit was the first member of the royal family to build a group of palaces at Ban Laem Hin, called Sukaves, and gave the beach next to his palace the name "Hua Hin". King Prajadhipok (Rama VII) liked the place so much that he built a summer palace there which was later named Klai Kang Won ('far from worries'). From 2004 until 2006 it was the full-time residence of King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX), until health issues forced him to return to Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, where medical facilities and physicians were closer at hand.
In 1932 Hua Hin was part of Pran Buri District as a minor district (king amphoe). In 1949 Hua Hin became a separate district of Prachuap Khiri Khan. After the building of Thailand's southern railway connected the district with Bangkokalong with various destinations en route, Hua Hin became the first and most popular beach resort in the country.
In August 2016, there were four bomb blasts in Hua Hin over a period of 24 hours. Two people died.