Known as “the Rose of the North”, Chiang Mai is the cultural capital of Thailand, calling tourists in to enjoy the pleasant Thai way of life amidst nature’s bliss. Steeped in history and surrounded by incredible architecture, this city strikes a fine balance between the traditional and the contemporary.
Check out the fabulous attractions of Chiang Mai that must be in your itinerary for your next trip to Thailand.
Wat Phra That Doi Suthep
A sacred site for the Thais, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is a mountainous temple in the city. Tourists can reach this temple by hiking up the Doi Suthep Mountain, hopping into a songthaew or renting a motorbike. The major highlight of the temple is seven-headed serpent statues lining up the stairs to the temple and a much-revered seated Buddha at the central shrine.
Elephant Nature Park
While Thailand has several elephant camps, Chiang Mai is home to the largest number of domesticated elephants. Situated north of the city, Elephant Nature Park is an elephant rescue and rehabilitation centre where visitors can enjoy sighting the large animal from close by. It was founded in 1995 and is home to more than 35 elephants, most of which have been saved from the illegal logging industries. You can either visit the premises during the day and can either have an overnight stay at its newly renovated accommodation.
Chiang Mai is a shopper’s heaven and the city’s famous Night Bazaar is an ideal shopping spot for all the bargain lovers. This bazaar is home to numerous stalls spreading all across the street and selling everything you can think of, from clothes, jewellery and footwear to carvings, furniture and houseware. The handmade Thai silk clothes are perhaps the major highlight of this bustling and colourful market.
A Hmong tribal village, situated in Doi Suthep-Pui National Park, Doi Pui offers tourists an insight into the lifestyle of Thai tribes. Lying at the top of Doi Suthep, a 1676 metre high mountain, it is an ideal spot for trekking and revelling in the picturesque beauty of nature. Here, tourists can explore incredible wildlife, a beautiful garden, an ancient museum and many tribal houses. Besides, they can enjoy lunch at one of many small restaurants, and shop for hand-made jewellery, hand-woven textiles, tea and other goods at the shops.
Bua Thong Sticky Waterfalls
Made of limestone and mineral deposits, Bua Thong Waterfall is a small and beautiful, multi-tiered waterfall visited by a number of tourists from different parts of the world. It is called “the sticky waterfall” because of the limestone floating in the water and making the rock non-slippery. Tourists can easily climb up the waterfall to the top. Besides, there is a picnic spot and a few restaurants at the entrance of the falls, allowing you to spend a fun-filled day with family and friends.