Things to do in Chiang Mai
You can find this beautiful city Chiang Mai in mountainous northern Thailand. It was founded in 1296, and was capital of the independent Lanna Kingdom until 1558. This is a vintage city and you can certainly find various things to do in Chiang Mai.
#1 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Enjoy Thai iced tea
Thai iced tea is also famous as ‘Cha Yen’. It is one of the most refreshing drinks in the city. The procedure of making this tea is completely different from that of ordinary tea. This strongly brewed Ceylon tea is sweetened and then topped with condensed milk. It is your choice to make the tea as you wish to make. If you want half Ceylon ta and half condensed milk then you can certainly enjoy this as well. If you are a tourist and want to enjoy this specific tea, then you can find it almost in any restaurant in Chiang Mai.
#2 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Dine and enjoy Khao Soi
Thailand is certainly famous for its innovative traditional food. Soup, in particular have a special taste. Khao soi, is a northern Thai coconut curry soup. It is an iconic part of the regions cuisine. It is made with a red curry, a splash of coconut milk, chicken and crunchy noodles on top.
You can certainly enjoy the dine in this delicious bowl at Ginger & Café.
#3 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Enjoy lavish shopping at Nimmanhaemin Road
The most trendiest part of Chiang Mai is the Nimmanhaemin Road. It is full of fancy bars and restaurants. You can find various hotels as well as bars on this road. It is specifically that place in the city where all the up and coming citizens of the area hang out. People like to sit and chat with each other on this road. The main road has various high end bars and the side streets (soi’s) are full of them. At one end of the road there is a new shopping mall which contains many designer shops as well as a multiplex cinema and many famous restaurant. Nimmanhaemin Road is the most expensive part of Chiang Mai both in terms of property and general eating out or picnic spot.
#4 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Visit Doi Inthanon National Park
Out of all the highest mountain in Thailand, Doi Inthanon National Park is home to the highest of them all. It is certainly an extension to the Shan Hills. It is made mostly from granite. The park certainly covers a land area of 48,240 hectares. People usually hike up to the peak of the mountain to view the mountains, as well as sun sets. The highest point of the mountain is 2565 metres tall. The temperature at the mountains could hit lows of -8 degrees centigrade. While you are in the park you will certainly get mesmerized by the various kinds of birds. Doi Inthanon is the place where you will find birds that cannot be find anywhere in the world.
#5 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Enjoy at Warorot Market
Warorot Market is situated right next to the Ping River. In Thailand, most of the other markets are usually night markets but Warorot opens early in the morning and closes when darkness arrives. This is the market with usually low price rates so the locals shop there. The rates in this specific market are not usually as inflated as that of the other tourist markets. You can certainly find just almost everything at the market. This may include vegetables, fruit, meat, clothing, jewellery, souvenirs, fireworks and many other things. There are a lot of Thai Handicraft goods when you come out the market and venture into the side streets. These handicrafts are made by the local Hill Tribe and again at much cheaper prices than anywhere else.
#6 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Mesmerize yourself through Mae Ping River
An excellent way to spend an afternoon, is a trip of two hours through a boat on Mae Ping River. On this long and calm journey you will get to witness as the scenery along the river changes. You will also get to witness various beautiful traditional teak houses as well as a lot of rural greenery along the Wat. While you are at the house, you can also see how the production of jasmine rice is completed as well as further relaxing in the luscious gardens.
#7 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Visit Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon at Chiang Mai is naturally found place. It is an old soil quarry. It is a huge canyon that is now filled with water. Most of the people are unaware of this place. This place has certainly has some amazing views. Due to increased number of rain water in the river, the water has accumulated in the Canyon. The Canyon is very deep and the water filling is now estimated to be forty meters deep. If you are a tourist, then you must have to pay a visit in here. You can certainly find a nice restaurant at the entrance. Stop here, grab a drink, before starting your adventure. You will certainly never get bored of the views and sights at the site.
#8 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Enjoy Bartering at the Night Bazar
Thailand is full of markets and bazaars where you can buy or barter. BArter is a form of trading in which yo can buy goods in exchange of goods. In Chiang Mai, bartering occurs at Chang Klan Road. This is just a road during the day but, at night the whole place lights up as the stall holders drag out their stalls and get set up for the night. Number of various traders, line down the road selling various goods. These may include fake designer items, lanterns and other handcrafted goods. There is no mention of any price on a lot of things will not have a price on and bartering is openly encouraged. The market is open every single day of the year whatever the weather is.
#9 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Visit Wat Phra Singh
Wat Phra Singh is a Buddhist temple and monastery that was founded in the 14th century. In the 14th century it was the place for Monks to live in. It is certainly famous for its Temple of the Lion Buddha. There are two Buddha statues in the temple. There are 700 monks living in the temple who regularly come to talk to the tourists and are normally very friendly. Assembly hall, which is the largest building at the site was rebuilt in 1925. There sits Phra Chao Thong Tip, a very large copper and gold cast of the seated Buddha. There are some other buildings can be found on the site. You can certainly explore a lot there when you arrive.
#10 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Meet long-neck Karen Tribe
Karen – a tribal group who are originally from Myanmar. However, they fled to Thailand during the political unrest of the past. They now live in small villages one of which is in Mae Rim just outside of Chiang Mai. Karen is a tribe in which the women are obliged to wear rings around their necks from age 5 to 21. Each year the ring is added. They do this because they think that long necks are the symbol of beauty for the ladies. Tourists usually pay a visit to these ladies, observe their life routine and get impress from their skills. If you are a tourist or not a local one, then always go with some guide or a local. These people usually talk to locals.
#11 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Enjoy Loi Krathong Festival
The festival of Loi Krathong is celebrated in Chiang Mai more than any other city in Thailand. It is basically an annual event that ties in with the twelfth lunar month. A Krathong is a basket that is in a shape of a lotus and has a candle sitting in the center of it. It is like a gas lantern that goes into the water when released. The ritual is usually done by a group of monks. The monks place these in the water of the moat that surrounds part of Chiang Mai and left to float of into the distance. This is done to show respect to Buddha. At the same time when the monks release the Krathongs you will see thousands of lanterns that fills up the sky above.
#12 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Surprise yourself at San Kamphaeng Hot Springs
San Kamphaeng Hot Springs are nurtured within a wooded area and surrounded by mountains. There are naturally occurred hot springs at San Kamphaeng. One can find mineral baths and a traditional mineral water swimming pool at the hot springs. Due to the high sulfur content in the water, the waters in the springs have Curative powers. You can enjoy the views as well as take professional photographs.
#13 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Khantoke Dinner
Thailand, in particular Chiang Mai is famous for its rich traditional Lanna culture. Whenever you visit Chiang Mai take advantage of a Khantoke dinner. Tourists like to taste new and traditional innovative dishes. When you arrive at the dinner, the chefs will serve you freshly cooked meal in the form of a round plate on which various dishes are available. As this is a traditional food, therefore you have to sit on the floor and will be served with “toke”. Depending on where you choose to go for your dinner you may also be treated to some classical Thai orchestral music.
#14 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Shop at Weekend Market
There are a lot of market places to visit in Thailand. This market is also known as the Sunday Market or the Walking Market. It is probably the most famous of all the markets in Chiang Mai. The timings of opening and closing of the market is specific. The market opens every Sunday. People start to put their stalls at Thapae Gate and running along the entire length of the Ratchadamnoen Road. As you walk, you can see a lot of the stalls on the market selling handmade goods. You can witness several Buddhist temples along the Ratchadamnoen Road. Tourists can find a lot of attractions in the market. You can find as well street artists singing, dancing or performing some other kind of act.
#15 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Visit Umbrella factory
The umbrella factory is located about 8 km Southeast of Chiang Mai. It is the production of bare-bones at Bo Sang Handicraft Centre. There are devoted workers who knows about making every part of the umbrella, from beginning to end. They are so careful about their product that even the paper was created within premises and meticulously applied by a single woman.
#16 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Enjoy you ride through Songthaew
While travelling in an unknown land, one can feel hesitation to use public transport. If you are a visitor then you must try hitching a ride on a songthaew. These are basically the shared taxi trucks. It is not like a normal taxi which is booked for a single ride. You might witness dozens of them throughout the city of Chiang Mai. They do not have the specific scheduled routes. When you wave one down, you need to tell them where you are going. As most of the locals drive, they might just give you answer by nodding.
#17 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Witness Wat Chedi Luang
An eye-catching Buddhist temple which is centrally located inside the city walls of Chiang Mai is Wat Chedi Luang. Being a tourist or lover of historical sites, you must pay a visit there. This amazingly sculpted building is worth spending your time and money. Explore its large viharn (sermon hall), naga dragons at it’s doorstep. The tourists can also ruin brick chedi that sits behind the grand assembly hall.
#18 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Enjoy a ride on Tuk Tuk
In Thailand a lot of people use public transport services to move from one place to another. We have discussed about Songthaew, Tuk Tuk on the other hand is the most famous and common. Tuk Tuk is means of transport that carries people from one place to another and charge per the route. A tuk tuk is a 3-wheeled motorized vehicle. The fares typically run from 60 – 100 baht. However, confirm the price before jumping in the Tuk Tuk.
#19 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Mae Hong Son Loop
Travelers and tourists find no pain in traveling. rather they find it adventurous and informative. The Mae Hong Son Loop is a four day ride through motorbike or scooter. If you have time and want to explore the Northern part of Thailand, then without wasting time, plan a trip. You need to complete the circle starting from Chiang Mai, you spend nights in Mae Sariang, Mae Hong Son and funky Pai, before returning back to the city. On your way towards Mae Hong Son Loop, you can mesmerize by viewing sensational mountain scenery, unique hill tribes, gorgeous waterfalls and mind-blowing roads.
#20 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Relax your mind and soul at Wat Doi Suthep
Thailand, in particular, Chiang Mai is full of places where you can enjoy your inner soul peace. Perhaps, the most famous one is the Doi Suthep Vipassana Meditation Centre. The temple is located on top of Suthep Mountain. Every single day, this temple receives thousands of visitors. This place is usually occupied with monks. However, the monks let their open and provide 3-28 days course to those who want to learn meditation. While you are in the temple, you are not allowed to speak. Basically all your energies are focused on breathing and clearing your mind of thoughts and troubles.
#20 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Visit the underground ancient city Wiang Kum Kam
Wiang Kum Kam is an ancient city that is located in countryside about 5 km south of Chiang Mai. Ping River flows along with the city. The city was developed back to the eighth-century Haripunchai Kingdom. While your visit in the city you will witness many interesting items and structures such as stone tablets with Mon inscriptions, Buddhist sculptures and architecture, earthenware and pottery. To enjoy the ruins it is best to take a horse-led carriage.
#21 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Get knowledge from Lanna Folklife Museum
Museums are full of information especially historical and agricultural background. The Lanna Folklife Museum is an interesting museum. It is full of exhibitions and information about the lives, history and culture of the Lanna people of northern Thailand. The museum which is also known as Lanna Heritage Centre is situated opposite the three Kings Monument in the center of the old city. The site of the museum is inside the old municipal court of Chiang Mai. These types of buildings keep on renovating. This one has also been renovated and now looks like a white colonial style building. The museum offers a lot of informative data about the city’s history in English, Thai and Chinese.
#22 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Zip line through the jungle
If you are afraid of heights then it is the best way to eliminate your phobia by swing through the zip, hundreds meter above the ground. Zip line in Chiang Mai is very terrified yet most memorable Thai experience.
#23 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Visit Elephant Sanctuary
Thailand is one of those countries in the world that gives protection and shelter to the wild life. It includes elephants at the top most list. There are a lot of Elephant Sanctuaries throughout Thailand, however, in Chiang Mai yo can find a lot of them. Now you have to do one difficult task. Find one such sanctuary that does NOT include riding them. The reason is that elephant’s spines are not made anatomically to carry people all day. They are heavy weighted and can hardly bear their own weight to walk. By hoping onto their backs we are causing them pain. This is animal violence. This is known as Phajaan.
#24 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai – Thai cooking class
All around the world, Thailand is famous for its taste and innovative food. It is hard to find the blend of sweet, spicy and salty in the same dish. However, in Thai cuisine it is an easy way to find the dish. Thai food can be conveniently prepared without much hassle or preparation.
#25 of 25 things to do in Chiang Mai –Hike to The Wat Pha Lat Temple
Wat Pha Lat Temple is the unique one because it is surrounded by the jungle. Therefore, it has a completely different feel than the temples within the Old City. If you are a hiker or interested in climbing up to the mountains then this is the best place for you. There are far less people who came to the temple because they have to hike to the top of the mountain. Once you reach there you will feel inner relaxation. Take a tour of the surroundings, spend 30 minutes to wander around, take photos and enjoy this beautiful place.
You can find other things to do in Thailand: