May 18th, 2019 | Updated on April 8th, 2023
Chiang Mai is the hub of Northern Thailand and the Capital City of the Province of this name. With a population of over 170,000 in the city proper (but more than 1 million in the metropolitan area), it is Thailand’s fifth-largest city.
Located on a plain at an elevation of 316 m, surrounded by mountains and lush countryside, it is much greener and quieter than the capital, and has a cosmopolitan air and a significant expat population, factors which have led many from Bangkok to settle permanently in this “Rose of the North“.
1. Art In Paradise, Chiang Mai 3D Art Museum
Art in Paradise Chiang Mai 3D Art Museum provides an entertaining and fun experience for all ages. Let your creativity go interacting with paintings on the walls and floors. The 3D effects that show up on the photos make it look like you are a part of the scene. Enter the world of virtual reality downloading the Art in Paradise app that creates an animation for photos and videos.
Optical illusions make the paintings come to life. There are no boundaries within this museum, so you’ll be able to explore, photograph, and get in on the fun as you please. The large, air-conditioned gallery houses of 130 artworks. Art in Paradise makes for a fun activity for a rainy day or to get out of the heat for a while. You can spend two to three hours easily posing and making silly pictures.
2. Wat Phra Singh
Chiang Mai’s most revered temple, Wat Phra Singh is dominated by an enormous, mosaic-inlaid wí·hăhn (sanctuary). Its prosperity is plain to see from the lavish monastic buildings and immaculately trimmed grounds, dotted with coffee stands and massage pavilions. Pilgrims flock here to venerate the famous Buddha image known as Phra Singh (Lion Buddha), housed in Wihan Lai Kham, a small chapel immediately south of the chedi (stupa) to the rear of the temple grounds.
3. Wat Umong
Visit several cultural and religious sites around Chiang Mai on this 9-hour tour, including lunch at a local restaurant. You’ll see Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, one of the most sacred temples in the area, as well as Wat Umong, Wat Suan Dok, and Wat Phra That Doi Kham (Temple of the Golden Mountain).
After pickup from your hotel, at 8:30am, your tour starts with the drive to Wat Prathat Doi Suthep, (note: wat = temple and doi = mountain.) It’s an important symbol of Chiang Mai. First we’ll drive up the mountain and, with your guide, ascend a 306 step stairway, walk around the temple which has a golden pagoda that contains a relic of Buddha. You can also look out at Chiang Mai city from a panoramic viewpoint. This is the heaven in Chiang Mai where you can get alot of beautiful photos.
Then, drive down the mountain to visit Wat Umong. A 700-year-old Buddhist temple located in the forest near Doi Suthep and known for its serene grounds. Spend some time at this peaceful temple where people like to come for meditation. Next up is Wat Suan Dok, another Buddhist temple, best known for its large number of pagodas in which the ashes of the Chiang Mai royal family are enshrined.
There are many white stupas in front of the Golden pagoda where you can walk around or just relax and enjoy the view.Have lunch at a local restaurant before your last visit to Wat Pra That Doi Kam, or the “Temple of the Golden Mountain,” where you can see a big sitting Buddha image and enjoy the beautiful views around the temple.This wonderful tour ends with a return to your hotel.
4. Kanta Elephant Sanctuary
Kanta Elephant Sanctuary offers visitors an enjoyable opportunity to spend quality time with elephants in their natural home, as well as gain an insight into their history and behavior, and create cherished lifelong memories of their time spent with these amazing animals with friendly, happy elephants in a safe and sustainable environment.
Feed, walk with, and observe our beautiful rescued elephants as they roam throughout our sanctuary, socialize and bathe naturally in our huge fresh water lagoons, as they would in the wild. Transform your world as you step into the tranquility of sanctuary life amidst the beautiful place in our Sanctuary.
Its Mission is to provide as many elephants as possible with the good health, freedom, and happiness they truly deserve. We use our progressive and ethically responsible approach to elephant eco-tourism as a platform to raise awareness and educate people from Thailand and around the world about elephant care as “Elephant Conservation in Action”
5. Wat Phra That Doi Kham
Reached via a steep naga stairway through the forest, this handsome wát looms above the city from the hillside above Royal Park Rajapruek. With its gilded chedi, super-sized Buddha statues and panoramic city views it’s an attractive and quieter alternative to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep.
The easiest way to get here is by rented motorcycle or chartered rót daang; follow the signs for Royal Park Rajapruek from Rte 121 and go right at the roundabout before the entrance.
6. Royal Park Rajapruek
This sprawling formal garden has 21 themed gardens donated by international governments as part of Chiang Mai’s International Horticultural Exposition in 2006. It sounds a bit corporate on paper, but the complex is actually lush, green and peaceful, with a vast wát-shaped central pavilion full of slightly over-the-top displays honouring the Thai royal family.
7. Night Bazaar
A covered market in the popular Chiang Mai Night Bazaar.
8. Wat Chiang Man
Chiang Mai’s oldest temple was established by the city’s founder, Phaya Mengrai, sometime around 1296. In front of the ubosot (ordination hall), a stone slab, engraved in 1581, bears the earliest-known reference to the city’s founding. The main wí·hăhn (sanctuary) also contains the oldest-known Buddha image created by the Lanna kingdom, cast in 1465.
9. Wat Suan Dok
Built on a former flower garden in 1373, this important monastery enshrines one half of a sacred Buddha relic; the other half was transported by white elephant to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. The main chedi is a gilded, bell-shaped structure that rises above a sea of white memorial chedi honouring the Thai royal family, with the ridge of Doi Suthep soaring behind.
10. Chiang Mai Night Safari
This expansive animal park is open day and night, but the real action happens after dark, when you can view all sorts of critters from the back of an open-sided tram. With animal shows and musical fountains, it’s all a little bit Las Vegas.
Top Hotels In Chiang Mai
1. BED Phrasingh
BED Welcomes the World with passion for hospitality and desire to make life easy and simple in BED Changkian, BED Phrasingh, BED Nimman and BED Chiangmai Gate. IMPORTANT: BED can only accommodate adults with minimum age of 18.
2. U Nimman Chiang Mai
U Nimman Chiang Mai, an exciting all-new 5-star luxury hotel, is a sophisticated yet vibrant retreat on Nimmanhemin Road, just minutes away from the city’s trendiest shopping, dining and nightlife district. Merging modern industrialist design with elements of traditional Lanna architecture, the hotel boasts 147 rooms and suites beautifully appointed with deluxe amenities. Our distinctive design is just one of the many superlatives setting U Nimman Chiang Mai as one of Thailand’s most unique, new hotels.
Indulge yourself in a superb range of 5-star features, from an all-day dining restaurant with a terrace bar, a rooftop swimming pool and bar, a wine bar with library, a state-of-the-art gym and a tranquil garden area for relaxing. For signature meetings and special events, the hotel offers 1,000 square metres of impressive function space. Enjoy The U’s one-of-a-kind service concept, including an unrestricted check-in time policy that allows you to check in at your convenience and stay in your room for 24 hours.
Additional features include complimentary breakfast whenever/wherever during your stay and a specialized U Choose Menu that allows you to select your preference of in-room pillows, soaps and teas prior to arrival. Where to stay in Chiang Mai when looking for something different? U Nimman Chiang Mai has everything the modern traveller seeks.
3. Rimping Village
Rimping Village is located in the city centre, close to the historic attractions the city offers including the famous Night Bazaar and the charming Watgate community by the Ping River. Enjoy an atmosphere of relaxation that is part and parcel of the Northern tradition. A cool, refreshing swimming pool is placed below a huge banyan tree so that guests can absorb the mood of nature while finding relief from the tropical heat.
4. Cmor Hotel Chiang Mai by Andacura
C-Mor Boutique Hotel by Andacura is the newest addition to famous Nimman Business and Entertainment District at Chiang Mai, Thailand. C-Mor Boutique Hotel offers the advantage of being in a very quiet area of Nimman and still just 4 Minutes walking distance to ‘Maya Lifestyle Mall’ and about 10 minutes walking distance to the main entertainment area of Nimman District
5. De Naga Hotel
Where locality is a priority, De Naga Chiang Mai provides this with added convenience. Situated across from Tha Pae Gate in the Old City, the hotel is placed in a prime location, right in the heart of the city. The sights and attractions of Chiang Mai are all in close proximity, with many various cultural attractions, the Sunday walking street, and local shops within 10 minutes walking distance, as well as featured a view of Doi Suthep Mountain. All rooms and villas are designed to implement modern art with the beauty of nature. The decorations and facilities are based on woods to keep the balance of nature yet keep the comfort from high technology facilities.
6. Brick House Hostel Chiang Mai
The Brick House Experience; plural nouns: the Brick House Family 1. an event or occurrence in Brick House Hostel that leaves an impression on someone. “Meeting a lot of new people and having the time of your life is a real Brick House Experience.” synonyms: involvement in, participation in, happening 2. the freedom to be who you are and explore who you are not. “When I wanted to party, we partied. When I wanted to read my book, I read my book.
Nobody judged me for what I wanted to do.” synonyms: acceptance, flexibility, liberation antonyms: restriction, peer pressure 3. the strong feeling that you belong to something that’s bigger than yourself, and have friends all over the world. “Strangers become friends in this home away from home.” synonyms: warmth, being a member of, being included, fit in.
7. Thai Akara – Lanna Boutique Hotel
Welcome to Thai Akara – Lanna Boutique Hotel. We’re ready to offer you an elegant identity way of Lanna community with charm of simplicity and kindness amidst cool, pleasant and tranquil atmosphere in the heart of Chiang Mai. For its design, it is decorated in contemporary Lanna architecture mixing Lannan identity and functions conforming to the current way seamlessly. Its 3-storey building consis.
8. Kate and Hasu Boutique Chiangmai
A small boutique hotel to be adored by our friends and our guests alike. Come and be charmed by our lovely city of Chiang Mai and let us welcome you to our favorite boutique hotel in town.
9. Arch39 Art & Craft Hotel
Sleep & Fun Come Together ! The family hotel with prime location in Chiang Mai. Arch39 Art & Craft Hotel offers accommodation in Chiang Mai. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant. A flat-screen TV with satellite channels and a shared lounge are available at the property. The hostel also offers car hire. Chang Puak Market and Chang Puak Gate are 400 m and 500 m respectively from Arch39 Art & Craft Hotel, while Wat Phra Singh is 1.1 km away.
The nearest airport is Chiang Mai International Airport, 4 km from the property. Chang Phueak is a great choice for travelers interested in nature, local food and friendly people. This is our guests’ favorite part of Chiang Mai, according to independent reviews. This property is also rated for the best value in Chiang Mai! Guests are getting more for their money when compared to other properties in this city. We speak your language!
10. Na Nirand Romantic Boutique Resort
“Na Nirand Romantic Boutique Resort” a charming hideaway nestled in the heart of Chiang Mai. Legendary stories combined with the history of the Charoenprathet road area, the location of the resort, are the inspiration behind the birth of this beautiful gem. The resort is just 5 minutes away from the Night Bazaar, 15 minutes by car to the Chiang Mai International Airport.