Founded in 1926, the ancient city of Chiang Mai is situated in the Northern mountainous region of Thailand. The city is home to about 30 of the world’s most fascinating, historic temples, beautifully enchanting landscapes and wonderful cuisine. Chiang Mai is surrounded by a square walled moat.
The region inside this enclosure is today famous as the “old city”. This region is particularly famous among tourists as it offers a true Thai experience to its visitors along with many modern cafes and bars. The region beyond these walls is live with modern buildings and exciting nightlife.
When is the Best time to visit Chiang Mai?
Chiang Mai’s overall climate is pleasantly cold due to its high elevation. The months from November to January are probably the best time to visit Chiang Mai. The weather during this period is cool, with a temperature rising to a maximum of 30°C during daytime and about 10°C at night time. You can easily move around on cycles, go hiking in the mountains or just stroll around in the city without getting soaked in sweat or having to wrap yourself in layers.
June to October is the raining season and not very popular with most travellers. The months from June to October are the rainy ones which are why they are not as popular among tourists. However, the rains allow vegetation and lush green grasslands to thrive during this period, making it ideal for nature lovers or anyone who appreciates scenic beauty. The period from February to May, however, gets a little too hot for tourists as the temperature can get as high as 40°C during the day.
How to reach Chiang Mai and Where to Stay?
Travelling by Air to Chiang Mai
The Chiang Mai international airport receives international flights from around the world, which take you directly from your home country to the second most popular city in Thailand. Nok Air, Air Asia and One-to-Go are a few airlines that offer economical tickets to this airport.
The most popular way to get to this city is via Thailand’s capital, Bangkok. From here, you can reach Chiang Mai either by air or by rail or even by road. Flights between the two cities are very frequent but visitors are still advised to make their bookings online at least 3 weeks prior to their departure.
Travelling by Train to Chiang Mai
Getting to Chiang Mai on a train lets you have views of green grasslands and mountains while being lighter on the pocket. When travelling by rail, you can choose between the two levels: First class and second class. The last option of travelling by road on a bus or car is the cheapest option, perfect for adventurous travellers. Buses from Bangkok to Chiang Mai run roughly every hour.
Where to stay in Chiang Mai?
Chiang Mai offers a wide variety of hotel options to visitors. There are many five-star hotels to choose from if you want a luxurious stay, ranging from A$300 to A$1000 per day. The Shangri-La Hotel is particularly famous for offering five-star hotel services at a starting price of only A$240 while another five-star hotel Puripunn Baby Grand Boutique Hotel has a starting price of only A$208. The 4-star hotel Chankam Boutique Hotel is available at A$122.
Cheaper options include Werun Boutique Hometel (A$48), Le Canal Boutique House(A$58) and Sabaidee Chiang Mai Hotel(A$52). These hotels may not be as luxurious as the aforementioned 5-star options, but they still provide a comfortable stay with all basic facilities, perfect for people who want to spend more on experiences than luxuries.
Wat Pra ThatTemple
Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is a centuries-old temple known for its interesting Buddhist history and breathtakingly beautiful architecture. Founded in 1383, the temple also offers impressive views of downtown Chiang Mai and is home to ancient statues of Buddhist and Hindu Gods.
Wat Chedi LaungTemple
Wat Chedi Luang is another one of Chiang Mai’s famous temples located in the heart of old city. The temple is the highest point of Chiang Mai old city with the main Chedi being 80 meters tall. It once used to be home to the famous Emerald Buddha. This must-see temple is at walking distance from most of the hotels and common markets.
Talat Pradu is a famous market in Chiang Mai, perfect for people passionate about food.
In the early morning, one can try ready-made local dishes here and explore authentically
traditional thai food items. The famous night market sets up along the road and is quite
popular among tourists.
Lanna Folk MuseumMuseum - Gallery
Lanna Folklife Museum offers a look at the lifestyle, culture and history of the Lanna people of Northern Thailand. Built in1935, the museum is a tourist favourite for providing interesting facts and life-size dioramas that transport you to the Lanna village life.
Elephant Sanctuary Chiang Mai
Elephant Jungle Sanctuary is a unique place to visit in Chiang Mai. The jungle offers a serene experience to visitors with orchids blooming, butterflies all around and about 30 elephants to pet and have fun with up close. Book a Tour
What are the Interesting things to do in Chiang Mai?
Participate in the Loi Krathong festival in Chiang Mai. The whole city lights up in the evening as the sky gets filled with lanterns, and lakes and canals’ have thousands of krathongs (banana trunks decorated with flowers and candles) floating in their water. Tourists from all around the world come to visit Chiang Mai during this picturesque festival.
Chiang Mai’s Night Safari offers an unforgettable experience of wildlife in an open-top tram that takes you on a tour to see animals like white rhinos, tigers, wolves, crocodiles etc. The late-night safari show is especially not to be missed out.
Doi Inthanon National Park is another must-see destination in Chiang Mai. Known as the “Roof of Thailand”, this park is a part of the Himalayan Mountain Range. Doi Inthanon summit, birdwatching, waterfalls and the Royal Project Inthanon are some of the basic tourist attractions of this park.
If you want to relax on your tour but not miss out on a worthwhile adventure, Bhubing Palace is the place to go to. The extravagantly beautiful grounds of this palace and the mountain’s cool climate make you feel like you’re in a serene dream.
Muay Thai (Thai Boxing), national sport of the region is one of the hardest forms of martial arts. These matches are quite popular and a must-see for foreign tourists.
Surrounded by forests and mountains, Chiang Mai is among Thailand’s most visited cities. The reason for this is obvious. In today’s bustling life, the city has managed to remain true to its roots while still facilitating tourists with modern mediums of entertainment. This peaceful city is the perfect place to relax and explore the beauty of nature in the form of misty mountains, rainforests, lush green countryside and beautiful weather.
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