No cooking skill is needed and your friendly instructors at any cookery schools ensure that everyone makes a delicious and presentable dish. It is a lot of fun to first go to the market or the organic farm and learn about the ingredients and a great learning experience to cook and eat a range of self-chosen Thai dishes.
Never miss an opportunity to experience the beauty of nature. Just imagine yourself sailing along a stream of Mae Wang River with some isles and rocks. A rafting trip on a bamboo raft takes about one hour. You can feel the cool water splashing on your body when the raft passes the rocks!
There are numerous elephant camps in Chiang Mai that give you the opportunity to get up close to these majestic animals. These camps promote sustainable, eco-friendly tourism and ensure your elephant experience does no harm to the animals and the environment. Spend your day feeding, go to the mud spa with the elephants, swim in the river to clean the mud!
Imagine a big, beautiful and gentle beast acting like a child, playfully slapping the water with her giant trunk! Well, a day spent at these elephant camps will give you memories that will last a lifetime.
There are more than twenty waterfalls in Chiang Mai that are easily reached from the city centre. Most of these waterfalls are located in the national parks which means during your visit you can also enjoy the beautiful countryside at these locations. They are well worth a visit, particularly if you enjoy swimming!
Our recommended natural wonders of waterfalls in Chiang Mai include Mae Ya Waterfall situated in Doi Inthanon National Park, Mae Sa Waterfall, Mok Fa Waterfall, Buatong Waterfall, Huai Kaew Waterfall. You should not miss the magnificence of Chiang Mai waterfalls.
Chiang Mai is the paradise of cycling in northern Thailand. The local terrain includes many mountains with good roads that are ideal for any cycling enthusiast. Experience the thrill and beauty of downhill mountain biking and cross-country trails through the jungle. You may wish to challenge yourself by climbing the perfect playground for riders such as Doi Inthanon and Doi Suthep National Park. We are sure you’ll find Chiang Mai an unforgettable cycling destination.
If hiking is your thing Chiang Mai will certainly not disappoint you. There are relatively short hiking trails that start very close to the city centre as well as many longer trails further out of town with beautiful views of the countryside, mountains, rivers and local villages. A day spent hiking in Chiang Mai is another rewarding activity that Chaing Mai has to offer. By the way, take plenty of water and sunscreen lotion with you on your hike!
Northern Thailand is dotted with numerous national parks and is known for its jungle-covered hills, mesmerizing caves and natural beauty. Thailand has preserved these natural areas of beauty for locals and visitors alike. A day exploring the parks and reconnecting with nature will help you get back to nature and experience an environment very different to the hustle and bustle of city life. There are a number of national parks in Chiang Mai that offer varieties of unique destinations including Doi Inthanon, Doi Suthep-Pui, Doi Phahom Pok, Mae Wang, Huai Nam Dang, Mae Tho, etc.
The Ping River runs through the center of the city and in times past was the hub of all trading activities in Chiang Mai. These days commerce has moved inland but the river remains and you can take a local river cruise on a traditional Thai long boat in order to soak up the riverside atmosphere and local architecture along the river. Many locals who inhabit the areas along the riverbank still live very traditional lives and these cruises offer a small insight into the way people lived in times gone by. Many cruises include lunch or dinner and can be a very pleasant way to spend an afternoon or evening with the ones you love while passing the local children playing in the river, farmer houses and countryside.
Any visit to Chiang Mai most likely will include the purchase of some local souvenirs and the Night Market is the place to find them. Held every evening in the centre of the city this large market is full of traders offering locally made souvenirs, clothing and many other items at very reasonable prices. Do not miss this chance to buy authentic “made in Thailand” goods at Night Bazaar (Anusarn Market) which is located on Chang Klan Road. Here is where you can enjoy various tasty meals at reasonable prices. Night Bazaar is open from 6:30 p.m. until midnight, every night of the week. It seems that all flavours and nationalities of food can be found here all in one place.
The central district of Chiang Mai has over 300 beautiful temples both small and large throughout the city. These Buddhist places of worship come in many different styles and are at the center of daily life in many local neighbourhoods. Chiang Mai temples are the cultural and historical heart of the city. Many temples in Chiang Mai are of “Lanna” style from the 13th to 18th century including Wat Chedi Luang, Wat Phra Singh, Wat Lok Molee, Wat Suan Dok, Wat Phra That Doi Kham. Well, it’s actually not an overstatement to say that these temples are the masterpiece of the “Lanna” era and they are worthy of exploration.
As well as there being many places to buy locally made handicrafts, there are also companies that offer you the chance to participate in making these yourself. Whether you are interested in making writing paper (“Sa” Paper), note books, hand-painted umbrellas, clay pots, silverware, gems and many other items there is a cool community of local artists and craftsmen that can help you in your endeavors. Chiang Mai is also known as the Capital of Handicrafts in Thailand. If you are a Thai handicraft lover and have shopped at the must-shop places in Chiang Mai, then your next stop should be local shops and mini factories in Sankamphaeng District, Wualai Road area, Baan Tawai, a craft village in Hang Dong District.
Cafe culture is alive and kicking in Chiang Mai with more coffee shops than you can imagine. Hangout in some of these cool places and taste either locally grown or imported coffee from the likes of multi world class award winning coffee shop Ristr8to. Enjoy the interesting and cool architecture of the shops both outside and inside the town with loads of photo opportunities!