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Travel Guide of Chiang Mai in Thailand by Influencers and Travelers

Chiang Mai is the second largest Province of Thailand. It lies in upper northern Thailand and has a population of 1.78 million people.

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Pictures and Stories of Chiang Mai from Influencers

20 pictures of Chiang Mai from Sacha Styles, Colton Duke, Jesse Schoff and other travelers

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How to visit Chiang Mai ?

To reach Chiang Mai, you can either take a direct flight from major cities worldwide, or take a domestic flight from Bangkok (1 hour). Alternatively, you can travel by train (12-15 hours) or bus (9-11 hours) from the Thai capital.

Booking in advance is recommended for popular activities, such as elephant sanctuaries, cooking classes, and guided temple tours. You should also book your accommodations in advance, especially during the high season (November to February).

Costs in Chiang Mai are generally lower than in Bangkok or popular beach destinations in Thailand. Street food costs around $1-$3 per meal, while a mid-range restaurant meal can be about $5-$10. Accommodations range from budget hostels at $5-$10 per night to luxury hotels and resorts starting from $100.

Top things to do in Chiang Mai include exploring the Old City, visiting the ancient temples, such as Wat Phra Singh and Wat Chedi Luang, and taking a trip to the breathtaking Doi Suthep Temple. Don't miss the famous Night Bazaar for shopping and food. For outdoor enthusiasts, embark on a jungle trek, visit an ethical elephant sanctuary, or go zip-lining through the lush forests.

For dining, try Khao Soi Khun Yai, known for its delicious Khao Soi (a northern Thai curry noodle soup), or Dash Restaurant for a mix of Thai and international cuisine in a cozy atmosphere. Another option is Ginger & Kafe, which offers flavorful Thai dishes in a stylish setting.

When it comes to accommodation, consider the budget-friendly Hug Hostel for its modern design and excellent location. For mid-range options, BED Phrasingh Hotel is a stylish boutique hotel near the Old City, and Rimping Village is a charming, family-friendly option with a pool.

Off the beaten path:
For a unique experience, visit the lesser-known Wat Phra That Doi Kham Temple, located on a hill overlooking Chiang Mai. This hidden gem is adorned with intricate carvings and offers stunning views of the city. Another unusual experience is the Chiang Mai Night Safari, a nocturnal zoo with guided tram tours through wildlife habitats. Finally, if you're visiting during February, don't miss the Chiang Mai Flower Festival, a colorful event showcasing the city's floral beauty through parades and garden displays.

The Best Things to Do and Visit around Chiang Mai

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1 - Wat Loi Khro

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Wat Loi Khro things to do in Chiang Mai

2 - Chiang Mai Zoo

Chiang Mai Zoo and Aquarium is a 200-acre zoo on Huay Kaew Road, Chiang Mai Province, Thailand, just west of Chiang Mai University. It is the first commercial zoo in northern Thailand, established on 16 June 1977.

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Chiang Mai Zoo things to do in Chiang Mai

3 - Trekking | Northern Thailand

A 6-hour climb to the 1,650-meter summit of Doi Pui, in the Doi Suthep National Park. It is one of Thailand's most rewarding peaks, with highland jungle and hill tribe contact. Experience the way monks live in the northern region.

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Trekking | Northern Thailand things to do in Chiang Mai

4 - Chiang Mai University

Chiang Mai University is a public research university in northern Thailand founded in 1964. It has a strong emphasis on engineering, science, agriculture, and medicine.

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Chiang Mai University things to do in Chiang Mai

5 - Wat Chediliem

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Wat Chediliem things to do in Chiang Mai

6 - Wat Chiang Man

Wat Chiang Man is a Buddhist temple inside the old city of Chiang Mai, in northern Thailand.

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Wat Chiang Man things to do in Chiang Mai

7 - Wat Lok Moli

Wat Lok Moli is a Buddhist temple in Chiang Mai, northern Thailand. The temple is situated on the north side of the north moat surrounding the old part of the city, about 400 meters west of the Chang Phuak city gate.

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Wat Lok Moli things to do in Chiang Mai

8 - Wat Chedi Luang

   6 km away

Wat Chedi Luang is a Buddhist temple in the historic centre of Chiang Mai, Thailand. The current temple grounds were originally made up of three temples — Wat Chedi Luang, Wat Ho Tham and Wat Sukmin.

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Wat Chedi Luang things to do in Chiang Mai Wat Chedi Luang things to do in Chiang Mai

9 - Wat Umong Suan Phutthatham

   6 km away

Wat Umong is a 700-year-old Buddhist temple in Chiang Mai, Thailand. It should not be confused with the temple with a similar name within the old city moat of Chiang Mai, whose complete name is "Wat Umong Maha Thera Chan".

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Wat Umong Suan Phutthatham things to do in Chiang Mai

10 - Doi Suthep

   6 km away

Doi Suthep–Pui National Park is a national park in Chiang Mai Province in Thailand. It includes Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, a Buddhist temple, and Bhubing Palace, the winter residence of King Bhumibol Adulyadej and family.

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Doi Suthep things to do in Chiang Mai Doi Suthep things to do in Chiang Mai

11 - Wat Suan Dok

   6 km away

Wat Suan Dok, also known as Wat Buppharam is a Buddhist temple in Chiang Mai, northern Thailand. It is a Royal Temple of the Third Class. The temple is on Suthep Road, approximately one kilometre west of Suan Dok gate at the west side of the moat. The Chiang Mai campus of the Buddhist Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University is housed within the temple compound.

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Wat Suan Dok things to do in Chiang Mai

12 - Doi Suthep

   8 km away

Doi Suthep, is a mountain west of Chiang Mai, Thailand. It is 1,676 metres in elevation and is one of the twin peaks of a granite mountain. The other peak is known as Doi Pui and is slightly higher. Doi Suthep is 15 kilometres from Chiang Mai city centre. The vegetation below 1,000 metres is mostly deciduous forest, with evergreen forest above this elevation.

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Doi Suthep things to do in Chiang Mai Doi Suthep things to do in Chiang Mai

13 - Bhubing Palace

   8 km away

Bhubing Rajanives Palace is a royal residence in Doi Buak Ha, Muang District, Chiang Mai Province, Thailand.

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Bhubing Palace things to do in Chiang Mai

14 - Wat Phra That Doi Kham

   8 km away
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Wat Phra That Doi Kham things to do in Chiang Mai

15 - Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep

   8 km away
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Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep things to do in Chiang Mai

16 - Ruins of "Wat E-Kang"

   10 km away

Wat I Khang is a ruined 16th or 17th century temple in the Wiang Kum Kam archaeological complex near modern Chiang Mai in northern Thailand.

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Ruins of "Wat E-Kang" things to do in Chiang Mai

17 - Wiang Kum Kam

   10 km away

Wiang Kum Kam is an historic settlement and archaeological site along the Ping River, which was built by King Mangrai the Great as his capital before he moved it to Chiang Mai.

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Wiang Kum Kam things to do in Chiang Mai Wiang Kum Kam things to do in Chiang Mai

18 - Chiang Mai Night Safari

   12 km away

Chiang Mai Night Safari is located in the sub-district of Mae Hia in Chiang Mai, and the district Nong Khwai, and the district Hang Dong. The zoo is located west of Royal Park Rajapruek. Chiang Mai Night Safari is a government property under the Zoological Park Organization. The park was opened for the first time on the 18th of November 2005 and opened officially on the 6 February 2006.

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Chiang Mai Night Safari things to do in Chiang Mai

19 - Bo Sang

   14 km away

Bo Sang, also known as Ban Bo Sang is a muban in Ton Pao sub-district, San Kamphaeng district in the outskirts of Chiang Mai in upper northern Thailand.

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Bo Sang things to do in Chiang Mai

20 - Baan Tong Luang Eco-agricultural Village

   17 km away
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Baan Tong Luang Eco-agricultural Village things to do in Chiang Mai

21 - Doi Suthep Chiang Mai

   19 km away
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Doi Suthep Chiang Mai things to do in Chiang Mai

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Learn More about Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai is the second-largest city in Thailand, located in the north of the country. 

It is well known by nomads from all over the world who come to enjoy its quality of life and its reasonable prices. 

Chiang Mai, an Asian city without horns

It is an Asian-style city, without architectural unity and necessarily sidewalks, with some polluted main roads that it is better to avoid.
But the main part of the center is made up of alleys that wind quietly between the houses and the Buddhist temples

The inhabitants have a lot of taste. They are particularly gifted in mixing the old with the new, the cute with the quirky.
Unlike cities that seek modernity at all costs, Chiang Mai has built its personality, contemporary and traditional at the same time.

Chiang Mai: a dream city for food lovers

Street food stalls are everywhere. The prices are so low that it is often better to eat outside than to cook.
And it's delicious! On the other hand, the portions are not generous because Thai people prefer to eat little but often.

The lively Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai moves to please its visitors and locals, with festivals, concerts, photo exhibitions, designer markets...
You can attend the Flower Festival, a big parade of colorful and fragrant floats held on the first weekend of February when flowers are said to be at their most resplendent.

Discover the nearby town of Bo Sang, known for its handmade umbrellas.
A festival takes place there on the third weekend of January. To be considered only for its pretty parade of women with parasols on their bikes.

The Chiang Mai temples tour

Chiang Mai does not joke with the temples. It's hard to walk a hundred yards without coming across a glittering roof, a stūpa, or a pair of dragons. 
Most of the time, all three at the same time. If you decide to enter a temple and crouch down like Buddhists to greet a Buddha statue, be aware that feet are considered unclean.
So be careful never to put your feet in the direction of the great man.

Wat Saen Muang Ma Luang, a little jewel in the city center.

Frequently Asked Questions by Travelers planning a trip to Chiang Mai

Where to sleep in Chiang Mai?

For a short stay, we can recommend the Tarntong Boutique 
A hotel with modern rooms and an excellent breakfast. 
The only drawback is that this hotel is about 20 minutes walk from the center.

 For a slightly higher budget, you can stay in the center of Chiang Mai. 

If you plan to stay for a month or more, don't hesitate to book anything and to look for an already furnished and equipped apartment once you are there.
 The offer is vast and it is therefore quite simple except between December and February, the favorite season of nomads. 

The elephant is the symbol of Chiang Mai and many tourists come here to meet the famous pachyderm. 

For our part, we left without seeing one because we do not support this business based on the exploitation of animals and the barbaric practices that are hidden from the eyes of tourists.

If you want to see them, we recommend a safari in Khao Yai National Park, where you can observe wild elephants. 

You also can visit one of the few refuges that take care of animals rescued from their trainers, like the Elephant Nature Park seems to be.

 Huay Tung Tao Lake

Twelve kilometers north of Chiang Mai is the Huay Tung Tao lake, which the Thais love on weekends with their families.
It is possible to swim there but the water seems a little too cool to us! Then we walk and eat in one of the dozens of huts on stilts placed at the edge of the lake.

A little bucolic outing!

   Where to Stay near Chiang Mai

   More Travel spots to explore around Chiang Mai

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Discover more travel spots to explore around Chiang Mai

  🐾 Wildlife spots     🏰 Temple spots     🌴 Jungle spots     🏘️ Town spots     🏞️ Waterway spots     🗼 Landmark spots     ⛰️ Hill station spots     🏨 Resort spots     🌲 Nature reserve spots     🌲 Forest spots     Norwegian forest cat spots     🌲 Ecoregion spots     ⛰️ Hill spots     ⛰️ Mountain bike spots     🏘️ Cottage spots     🏰 Place of worship spots     Water park spots     🏞️ Watercourse spots  

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