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Chiang Mai:
Treasure in the North of Thailand

Chiang Mai is a treasure in the north of Thailand. You Know Thailand can help you find the best flights, hotels, and things to do in this amazing city. Whether you want to explore the temples, the markets, or the nature, we have the perfect tips, deals, and suggestions for you. Compare all the top travel sites in one click here and get ready to discover the wonders of Thailand.

Chiang Mai is a popular destination for travellers who want to experience the culture, nature and food of northern Thailand. It has a rich history, beautiful temples, friendly locals and a laid-back vibe. Many people visit Chiang Mai for a few days or weeks, but some decide to stay longer and make it their home. They are attracted by the low cost of living, the creative community, the digital nomad scene and the opportunities to learn new skills. Chiang Mai is a city that offers something for everyone, whether you are looking for adventure, relaxation or inspiration.

If you're looking for a spiritual adventure, you can't go wrong with Chiang Mai. This city is home to more than 300 temples, each with its own history and charm. You can spend days exploring the different styles and designs of these sacred sites, from the ancient Lanna architecture to the modern and colourful murals. Whether you want to admire the golden stupas, meditate with the monks, or learn about the Buddhist culture, you'll find something to suit your interests and mood. Here are some of the most popular and impressive temples you should visit in Chiang Mai.

 One of the most impressive temples is Wat Si Suphan, or the "Silver Temple". It's the oldest temple in Chiang Mai and it dates back to the 13th century. The temple is covered with silver decorations and sculptures that show amazing craftsmanship and detail.

Image by Peter Borter

Another temple that you shouldn't miss is Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, which is located on a mountain overlooking the city. You can enjoy a panoramic view of Chiang Mai from there, but you have to climb 300 steps or take a lift for a small fee. The entrance fee is 30 Bhat, which is not much considering how much it costs to preserve these ancient temples. So, don't be stingy and appreciate the beauty and history of these places.​ The temple is adorned with golden spires, statues, bells and murals that reflect the Lanna culture and history.

Chang Mai

For a fun and lively market experience, you should definitely check out the Talat Warborot market, the biggest one in Chiang Mai. You can find all kinds of goods and food there, and enjoy the local culture and atmosphere. Another great place to visit is the Night Bazaar, a huge night market that has everything you could want to buy. It's a colourful and exciting place to shop and explore.

Image by Kelvin Zyteng

Chiang Mai also boasts some fantastic cooking classes, offering the opportunity to learn Northern Thai style cooking which is distinct from the rest of Thailand. So if you're looking to try something new and expand your culinary horizons, this is definitely something worth considering!

Food Photography

If you love museums, Chiang Mai is the place for you! There are so many amazing ones to visit, like the Arts and Cultural Centre, where you can learn all about the local culture and history. It's a great way to get a feel for the city and its people. And if you want more, there's a TripAdvisor link here with some other awesome options.

One of the highlights of visiting Chiang Mai is seeing the amazing elephants. But don't make the mistake of riding them. It hurts them a lot and they only do it because they are afraid of being punished. A better way to enjoy their company is to go to an elephant sanctuary where you can treat them with kindness and respect. You can help them wash and feed them, and see how happy they are.

Did you know?

The elephant in Thai is "Chang," which is why you see elephants on the front of Chang beer.

I had a great time in Chiang Mai, especially when I went to the Elephant Nature Park and stayed in a jungle villa. It was so cool to see the elephants up close and learn about their stories. You can stay in a resort close to the park and have amazing views of the hills and the elephants.

Even if you can't go to the Elephant Nature Park, there are other places in Chiang Mai where you can hang out with elephants and support their conservation. Trust me, it's a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you won't regret. Chiang Mai is full of natural wonders and awesome animals.

Chiang Mai Elephant Sanctuary
Chiang Mai Elephant Sanctuary

Chiang Mai is a great destination for nightlife lovers. You can find all kinds of places to have fun, from clubs to bars to pubs.

If you want to dance the night away with a young crowd, Nimman Road is the place to go. There are many clubs there that play different kinds of music, from pop to hip-hop to EDM. You can also find some bars there that serve drinks and snacks.

If you prefer a more chill atmosphere, you can go to the old city, where there are many bars that cater to different tastes. Some of them are shady and offer more than just drinks, so be careful if you go there. Others are more respectable and offer live music or karaoke.

And if you want to enjoy a nice dinner and a drink, you can go to one of the many restaurants along the Ping River. There you can find delicious food and relaxing music. Some of them even have live bands that play jazz or blues.

Image by Jacek Janiczak

Doi Suthep-Pui National Park is one of the most popular attractions in Chiang Mai, Thailand. It covers an area of over 260 square kilometres and includes two mountains, Doi Suthep and Doi Pui, as well as several waterfalls, caves, temples and forests. The park is home to a rich diversity of wildlife, such as gibbons, macaques, deer, bears and birds. You can enjoy hiking, biking, camping or sightseeing in this beautiful natural setting. Doi Suthep-Pui National Park is a must-see destination for anyone who loves nature, culture and adventure.

Image by Anna Sushok

If you're looking for a fun and relaxing day out with your family or friends, you should definitely check out the Chiang Mai Zoo. It's one of the largest and most diverse zoos in Thailand, with over 400 species of animals from all over the world. You can see pandas, giraffes, elephants, tigers, koalas, penguins, and many more. You can also enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Doi Suthep mountain range, which surrounds the zoo. The zoo has plenty of attractions and activities for everyone, such as the aquarium, the snow dome, the bird park, the adventure park, and the night safari. You can also feed some of the animals, take a tram ride around the zoo, or watch some amazing shows. The Chiang Mai Zoo is a great place to learn about nature and wildlife while having a blast at the same time. Don't miss this opportunity to visit one of the best zoos in Asia!

Image by Zulnureen Shariff

Royal Park Rajapruek is a beautiful botanical garden in Chiang Mai, Thailand. It covers an area of 80 hectares and features a variety of plants, flowers, and trees from different regions and climates. The park was originally built to host the 2006 International Horticultural Exposition and was later renamed in honour of King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who was also known as Rama IX. The park is divided into several zones, such as the orchid pavilion, the tropical garden, the water garden, and the international garden. The park also has a royal pavilion that showcases the Thai architectural style and culture. The park is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and the entrance fee is 100 baht for adults and 50 baht for children. The park is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike, who enjoy the natural beauty and tranquillity of the place. Royal Park Rajapruek is a must-see attraction for anyone who loves plants and flowers.

If you're looking for a fun and colourful way to experience a different culture, you should attend a Thai festival. There are many festivals throughout the year in Thailand, each with its own significance and traditions. Some of the most popular ones are Songkran, the water festival that marks the Thai New Year; Loy Krathong, the festival of lights where people float lanterns on rivers and lakes; and Yee Peng, the lantern festival that coincides with Loy Krathong and fills the sky with glowing paper lanterns. Attending a Thai festival is a great opportunity to learn about the history, religion, and customs of this amazing country. You can also enjoy delicious food, lively music, and friendly people. Whether you want to get wet and wild at Songkran, make a wish at Loy Krathong, or marvel at the beauty of Yee Peng, you'll have an unforgettable experience at a Thai festival.

Image by Diomari Madulara

Chiang Mai is a paradise for thrill-seekers and adventure lovers. You can explore the lush green jungle from above by zip lining, or from below by rafting or kayaking. You can also ride an ATV on dirt roads, hike to waterfalls, or climb up rocks. There's something for everyone here, so don't miss out on the fun!

Why are there so many digital Nomads here?

If you're looking for a laid-back and affordable place to live and work remotely, you can't go wrong with Chiang Mai. This city has everything a digital nomad needs: cheap accommodation, fast internet, and tons of options for co-working and networking. Not to mention the amazing nature and culture that surrounds you. Whether you want to hike in the lush forests, visit ancient temples, or sample delicious street food, you'll find something to love in Chiang Mai. It's no wonder that this city is the ultimate digital nomad hotspot!


Above the Clouds

Chiang Mai is well connected to other parts of Thailand and Southeast Asia, with multiple options for transportation.

If you're travelling within Thailand, the most common way to get to Chiang Mai is by plane. Chiang Mai International Airport has flights from Bangkok, Phuket, and other cities in Thailand, as well as international destinations like Singapore and Hong Kong.

If you prefer to travel by train, there are overnight trains from Bangkok's Krung Thep Aphiwat Central Terminal Station and Don Mueang that arrive in Chiang Mai early in the morning. The journey takes around 12-15 hours, and sleeper cabins are available.

Buses are another popular option, with frequent departures from Bangkok's Mo Chit bus terminal and Sombat Tour Viphavadee 13 as well as other cities in Thailand. The journey takes around 10-12 hours and there are both day and overnight buses available.

If you're coming from neighbouring countries like Laos or Myanmar, there are also buses and minivans that connect to Chiang Mai.

To have a look at the options available and book your transport use the Asian Public Transport form below, If you're not coming from Bangkok, simply change that section on the form.

Once you're in Chiang Mai, there are plenty of options for getting around including tuk-tuks, songthaews (red trucks), motorbikes, and bicycles.

Taxis from airport


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Chiang Mai has a variety of areas to stay in, depending on your preferences and interests. Here are a few popular areas to consider:

Old City - This area is surrounded by ancient walls and a moat and is the cultural heart of Chiang Mai. It's full of historic temples, markets, and restaurants.

Nimmanhaemin Road - Known as Nimman for short, this trendy area is popular with young locals and tourists alike. It's full of boutique shops, cafes, and galleries, making it a great place to stay if you're into the arts and culture scene.

Night Bazaar - This area is great for shoppers, as it's home to one of Chiang Mai's largest night markets. It's also close to many popular temples and cultural attractions.


Riverside - If you're looking for a more peaceful and scenic stay, the riverside area is a good choice. It offers a lovely view of the river and is home to many luxury hotels and resorts.

Mae Rim - Located about 30 minutes outside of the city centre, Mae Rim is a rural area that's great for outdoor enthusiasts. It's home to several elephant sanctuaries, waterfalls, and hiking trails.


There are many tours you can do in Chiang Mai, depending on your interests.

Here are some popular options:

Elephant Sanctuaries: As mentioned earlier, visiting an elephant sanctuary is a must-do activity in Chiang Mai. Many tour companies offer packages where you can spend a day or more interacting with the gentle giants, feeding them, and bathing them.

Doi Inthanon National Park: This is Thailand's highest mountain, and the park is home to waterfalls, hill tribe villages, and temples. You can take a day trip or opt for an overnight stay to explore the park fully.

Chiang Rai: A Day trip to Chiang Rai will take you to the famous White Temple, Blue Temple, and the Golden Triangle. You can also visit hill tribe villages and hot springs on this tour.

Cooking Classes: Northern Thai cuisine is unique, and if you're a foodie, you can take a cooking class to learn how to prepare local dishes.

Night Safari: If you're interested in wildlife, you can take a night safari to see nocturnal animals in their natural habitat.

Trekking: Chiang Mai is surrounded by lush forests and mountainous terrain, making it an ideal location for trekking. You can take a day trek or opt for a multi-day trek, staying overnight in local villages.

Zip Lining: Chiang Mai has several zip-lining courses, offering breathtaking views of the jungle canopy.

Take a look at the options below!

Deep jungles of North Thailand


Lop Buri

Nakhon Sawan - Bang Mun Nak



Lampang - Chao Son

Chiang Mai

Driving option: Khao Yai

If you are looking for a memorable and enriching travel experience, you might want to consider customising your own tour to the north of Thailand. This tour will take you on a fascinating journey through the historical and natural wonders of central Thailand, before ending in the lively city of Chiang Mai.

You will begin your tour in Ayutthaya, the former capital of Siam, where you will marvel at the ancient ruins of temples, palaces, and monasteries that testify to the glory of the past. Then, you will travel to Lop Buri, a city with a unique Khmer-style temple and monkeys that live among the locals.

From Lop Buri, you will head to Nakhon Sawan and visit Bang Mun Nak, a town that preserves the traditional wooden architecture and culture of Thailand. You will enjoy the authentic Thai cuisine and hospitality as you explore this quaint town.

Your next destination is Phitsanulok, the birthplace of King Naresuan the Great, one of the most revered monarchs in Thai history. You will visit Wat Maha That, a temple that houses one of the largest Buddha statues in Thailand. Then, you will continue to Sukhothai, the first kingdom of Siam, where you will admire the beautiful ruins of the Sukhothai Historical Park.

After Sukhothai, you will visit Lampang, a town known for its exquisite ceramics and rich heritage. You will learn about the history and culture of this region and see how the locals make their pottery.

Your tour will conclude in Chiang Mai, the cultural capital of northern Thailand. You will explore the vibrant city and its historic temples, as well as enjoy the nightlife and shopping options.

This tour is a perfect way to experience the diversity and beauty of central and northern Thailand. You will discover the amazing history, culture, and nature of this region and create unforgettable memories.


Image by Polina Kocheva

Pai is a town in northern Thailand near the border with Myanmar that attracts many tourists for its natural beauty, cultural diversity, and relaxed atmosphere.

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Lampang Temple
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