Categories
Chiang Mai Sightseeing Chiang Mai Temples

Umong Temple

Umong Temple Tranquility and Nature

umong temple, wat umong

Umong temple is a unique temple outside from the touristic visit and very much worth the visit.

Set in the jungle, nestled at the foot of Doi Suthep mountain, yet just a couple of kilometers from Thapae Gate, there is a certain air of mystery that reigns around Umong Temple. From the parking area, you will have to walk through a big park before getting to the main chedi and the tunnels.

umong temple, wat umong
umong temple, wat umong

One of the most beautiful aspects to this temple is its tunnels, dating back to the 13th century. After removing your shoes, the air, which smells of spicy incense and damp earth, becomes obviously cooler as you walk through one of the three entrances. Inside, there are a few Buddha statues in enclaves where locals will leave flowers and pray.

umong temple, wat umong
umong temple, wat umong

The bell shaped chedi above the tunnel can be reached by a stairway. You can walk from this chedi to the North, above the tunnels, to see a fine Buddha image cast in the ascetic style. Umong temple is home to a famous meditation center, that is why the area is so quiet and relaxing. If you are interested in learning more about Buddhism in general, there is a monk chat every Sunday at 3pm. A western monk, who has studied and lived in Thailand for a long time will answer any question you have.

umong temple, wat umong
umong temple, wat umong

Another interesting aspect of Umong temple is the large pond replete with fish, turtles and birds. You can cross the bridge to the little island and feed the animals. A short trail takes you around the pond. The natural aspect of the temple makes it a great place to observe birds. Wat Umong is only 10 minutes’ drive from the city’s center.

Categories
Believe and Worship

Amulet

Buddha Amulets

buddha amulets, amulet, amulets

Since ancient times, wearing an amulet was supposed to endow the owner with either a protective quality, or would herald the coming of good luck and fortune.

A Buddha amulet is called “Pha Kwaeng” in Thai language. Like Christian crosses, Thai Buddha amulets can be made of metal or precious stones. Yet a majority of them today are still a combination of clay and incense ash. They are then moulded into a Buddha statue. Sometimes, pollen, herbs, metal bars (with scripture carved on), an eyebrow hair from a holy monk and a drop of his blood may also be contained inside. The amulet will give protection after being blessed by a renowned monk.

buddha amulets, amulet, amulets

buddha amulets, amulet, amulets

The story behind the amulet making says that once upon a time a renowned monk in Thailand was invited by the king to bless the population after a dangerous drought afflicted the nation. Unable to bring the large Buddha statue from his temple, he had a dream in which Buddha told him to make a smaller reproduction of his statue which would be easier to carry with him. He did the Buddha statue’s reproduction and the drought quickly disappeared after his arrival in town. The king then asked him to make more amulets and spread them among the population for protection.

buddha amulets, amulet, amulets

buddha amulets, amulet, amulets

In Thailand, people have such a craze for collecting amulets that there are no less than half-dozen magazines devoted solely to amulets.

Thai Buddha amulets can be made into different shapes, such as round, square and triangular. They can be purchased at temples, especially those that have particularly well-known monks or Buddha images. Amulets purchased inside temples will generally be new.

buddha amulets, amulet, amulets

buddha amulets, amulet, amulets

The big market is for older images which can be found at market around the country. In Chiang Mai, the Second Hand Market (Saturday and Sunday), located on Bumrungrad street, has become famous among amulet lovers. It presents about fifty stands of amulet.

Note however that in Thai language people use the term “rent” when referring to the purchase of a Buddha image. You don’t buy a Buddha, you rent it from its previous owner for a one-time fee.

Categories
Chiang Mai Activities Chiang Mai Sightseeing

Chiangmai Zoo

Chiangmai Zoo is a nice place to spend the day with family

chiangmai zoo, chiang mai zoo, attractions in chiang mai

Chiangmai Zoo is the first and only one zoo in the North. Located on the foothill of Doi Suthep, near Chiang Mai University. With the beautiful landscape, coveredc the hillside and mountainous tropical rainforest, you will touch the clean, fresh air in the Zoo which is the nearest jungle of the city, ‘ At the view point you can see the beautiful scenery of Chiang Mai city.

The camping area is one of our facilities which you can contact in advance for camping. Chiangmai Zoo keeps various kinds of rare wild animals of native and tropical zone. More than 6,000 animals of 69 species of Mammals , 311 species of Birds, 15 species of Reptiles and 60 species of fresh water fishes. Some species are very rare endangered and strongly protected in Thailand, for example the Fea’s muntjak, the Malayan Tapir, the Asiatic elephant with newborn cub, many of tropical birds and reptiles. All of them look well in their enclosures which improve like their natural habitat and provide for natural requirement. The Chiang Mai Zoo is very concerned for the animals right and respect to all of our animals in the collection

chiangmai zoo, chiang mai zoo, attractions in chiang mai

Deer Park collect over hundred deer of tropical species. In the big park about 40 acre. You can feed the deer at the terrace. Touch of the nature of the waterfall the flying bird in Nakonping walk-though aviary. You can walk in the big aviary about 2.5 acre. It suitable for peoples whom like bird watching.

Fresh water aquarium, it is the center of beautiful and rare about 60 species for education of Fresh water fish.

Children’s zoo the land of happiness for children and family with small domestic and pet animals such as Rabbit, Pony, Turkey children playground. The stuffed animals, education room.

chiangmai zoo, chiang mai zoo, attractions in chiang mai

The star animal : the nice Humboldt penguin in the air-condition’s room, Cape Fur Seal you can see it swim in the swimming pool.

Although there are plenty of exhibits to see, there are a few that stand out above the rest. The highlight is, of course, the panda exhibit. Chuang Chuang and Lin Hui (or Thewan and Thewee as they are known to the Thais) are easily the zoo’s most charismatic and photogenic residents. Their multi-million baht enclosure is designed to accurately simulate the cool mountain climate of their natural home, making it a great place to come and seek refuge from the heat.

chiangmai zoo, chiang mai zoo, attractions in chiang mai

The pandas are at their most active in the morning, romping, wrestling and playing on the structures in their spacious home. If you go in the afternoon they’ll spend as much time watching you as you do watching them. Visiting the pandas is an extra 100 baht for adults and 50 baht for children but the fee is worth it and no visit to the Chiang Mai Zoo is complete with stopping in and observing these fascinating and gentle creatures.

chiangmai zoo, chiang mai zoo, attractions in chiang mai

The Chiang Mai Zoo Aquarium is well worth a visit. 60 species of tropical freshwater fishes, featuring Giant Mekhong Catfish and Striped Catfish, Siamese Giant Carp, Ture Eel. This exclusive arrangement allows fresh water and salt water creatures to coexist under one roof, alongside representative territories from other significant ecosystems. The inspiration for this astonishing concept comes from the great Mekong River “itself an exhibit at the aquarium” as it represent the major waterway that feeds and quenches the thirst of millions of people across the six neighboring countries that its waters sustain.

There are Trams that run the route and they cost an extra 30 Thb/Person

Categories
Chiang Mai Sightseeing

Phuping Palace

Phuping Palace is a great place with beautiful gardens and greenery

phuping palace, bhubing palace, winter palace

Phuping Palace is the Royal winter residence of the Thai Royal Family. It is located in thearea of Doi Suthep – Pui National Park where temperatures are lower than in town and the atmosphere is more moist. The Palace that was completed in 1961 is also used to receive guests of the Royal Family.

Phuping Palace is located in the west of Chiang Mai city and can easily be combined as part of a day trip or half-day trip to the nearby Doi Suthep temple, the holiest temple in the north of Thailand and Doi Pui Hmong village. Phuping Palace has become known as the winter palace because members of the royal family stay here when they visit the north of Thailand during the cool season when the mountain air is cool and clean and the flowers are in full bloom. The palace is also used for prominent State visitors from overseas. The king and queen of Denmark were the first foreign royals to stay at Bhuping Palace when they visited Thailand in January 1962.

phuping palace, bhubing palace, winter palace

phuping palace, bhubing palace, winter palace

Phra Tamnak Phuping Rajanives was built in northern Thai architectural style called “Ruen Mu” (Group of Houses). The building sits on stilts. The upper floor is the royal residential area while the ground floor houses the royal entourage. The building master plan was design by Prince Samaichalerm Kridagara while Mom Rachawongse Mitrarun Kasemsri designed the building.

As the Palace buildings are not open to the public, the main attraction are the landscaped gardens that can be visited when none of the members of the Thai Royal Family stays at the Palace.

phuping palace, bhubing palace, winter palace

phuping palace, bhubing palace, winter palace

One of the main attractions is the rose garden named Suan Suwaree. Besides the roses, the spread out gardens contain many species of flowers and plants such as several species of camellias, ferns, giant bamboo and colorful orchids.

A large water reservoir with fountains provides water for the Palace complex during the dry season. Even the water reservoir is beautiful with colored lights, musical fountains etc.

The landscaped gardens and grounds are open to the general public every day from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Visitors should wear appropriate attire. The palace is closed when the Royal Family is in residence, between January and early March.

phuping palace, bhubing palace, winter palace

phuping palace, bhubing palace, winter palace

Entry to the buildings themselves is prohibited, but you are free to explore the grounds and take photos. When visiting any royal grounds in Thailand you should dress and behave respectfully. At Phuping Palace you are not allowed to wear shorts or skimpy clothing. Shoulders must be covered. At the entrance to the grounds there is a clothes rental service for visitors who arrive without suitable attire. Admission is 50 Baht per person. 

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

hmong village, doi pui hmong tribal village, hmong tribal village, doi pui hmong village

The travel to Phuping palace is easy because it is the same way to Doi Suthep, a renowned mountain, which is about 5 km from Chiang Mai. You can take a red pick-up passing in front of Chiang Mai Zoo. You can also stop over to pay homage to Khru Ba Si Wichai Monument. Khru Ba Si Wichai is the one who constructed Phra That Doi Sutheip Temple. The red pick-up services are provided to lead to Doi Suthep temple, Phuping Palace and Doi Pui Hmong Village. The distance from Chiang Mai Zoo to Phuping Palace is about 17 km. The most comfortable way is by private taxi. Taxis or minivans can be booked by most travel agents in Chiang Mai town. 

Categories
Chiang Mai Markets & Shopping

Warorot Market

Exploring Warorot Market the main market in Chaing Mai

warorot market, kad luang, chiang mai market

Warorot Market is a local Thai market and a busy hive of activity in Chiang Mai city center, opening early in the morning and closing after dark.

Warorot Market is…something else.  You literally can get just about anything within this area from jeans to furniture and kitchen ware, fabric and medicine, donuts, dried fruit, Souvenirs, woks, wigs, shirts, hats, lotions, bags, tea leaves, spices, fresh produce, chopsticks, handicrafts and etc.  There are several buildings and alley ways that make up the total area and are well worth a couple areas discovering all the nooks and crannies. 

warorot market, kad luang, chiang mai market

Warorot Market is known as Kad Luang (‘big market’) to locals. Big market is about right from a three-storey undercover complex, Warorot extends out to countless street stalls and shopfronts on both sides of Chang Moi Road. As a result, the name Warorot is often used to refer to Chiang Mai’s entire downtown area, the patch of China Town that sits between Thapae Gate and the Ping River.

Warorot used to be the trading centre for the north of Thailand. Nowadays it is a place where you can go to find pretty much anything you need from plastic containers to fresh meat.

warorot market, kad luang, chiang mai market

Warorot market is situated at the corner of Chang Klang Road and Chang Moi Road, very near to the Ping River.  It opens daily early in the morning and closes after dark. Go by foot, pedicab, Tuk-Tuk or Songtheaw as it is nearly impossible to get a park there unless you have a motor bike.

If you are after a taste of real Chiang Mai life then a wander round Warorot Market is highly recommended.  

After snacking on the sai ua and fried pork we decided make the trip to other side of the street to go check out Ton Lamyai market.

warorot market, kad luang, chiang mai market

The Chiang Mai Flower Market, Ton Lamyai, is situated by Worarot Market and runs along the Ping River towards Thapae Road. The market is the only place in Chiang Mai to buy fresh cut flowers and abounds with colour.

The market is open 24 hours but is best visited at night when you can witness thousands of fresh blooms arrive on the back of pick up trucks just hours after being cut. If you are looking for a display or bouquet as a gift this is definitely the place to come and the many vendors will make you something special at unbelievable prices.

warorot market, kad luang, chiang mai market

Much more fun is to pick your way through the various specialist stalls at Ton Lamyai (normally on the river side of the road) and choose your own individual flowers and bouquets.

There are flowers of all descriptions from roses to chrysanthemums, lilies to birds of paradise all ready to reach their absolute prime. To the western eye is is perhaps the orchids that really catch the eye. These beautiful flowers are available in hundreds of varieties and colour. It is amazing to see piles of fresh cuts orchids several feet high that would cost a King’s ransom at home but can be bought for a song at Ton Lamyai.

Categories
Chiang Mai Sightseeing Chiang Mai Temples

Doi Suthep Temple

Doi Suthep Temple the jewel of Chiang Mai

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

Overlooking the city of Chiang Mai, the 5,283-foot mountain called Doi Suthep is part of the twin-peaked Doi Suthep-Doi Pui National Park. There was no proper road up the mountain until the mid-1930’s, when a monk named Phra Khruba Srivichai initiated the construction of one, mainly with volunteer labor, to help pilgrims who wanted to visit the famous Wat Phra That Doi Suthep near the summit. This temple offers spectacular views and much lower temperatures even in the hottest months.

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

Doi Suthep temple is one of the most beautiful temples in the North of Thailand, but it is also one of the most famous amongst visitors. If you wish to discover this beautiful temple in a quiet and more private atmosphere, get there early in the morning. Before 8am the temple is very silent, still bathed in the light of the sunrise and blissfully empty. If you arrive around 7am, you will also have the pleasure of seeing monks returning by foot from the city for their morning alms ceremonies.

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

Another magical moment of the day to discover Doi Suthep temple is in the evening. The evening monks chanting ceremony is an unforgettable moment to witness (around 18.00).

As Doi Suthep temple has public opening times, you might want to contact your hotel’s receptionist and arrange a tour for these two private moments.

Construction of Doi Suthep temple began in 1386 under King Kuena and was completed within a few years. The temple complex was periodically expanded and embellished over the following centuries.

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

According to legend, holy relics discovered during the reign of King Ku Na (1355-85) were placed on the back of a white elephant, which transported them to near by Wat Suan Dok. The elephant was then set free to wander, and it climbed the mountain to the site of the actual temple, were it trumpeted three times, turned around three times, knelt down and then died. The temple was immediately built on the miraculously chosen site.

Wat Doi Suthep is approached by a steep flight of 300 stairs flanked by green trees and guarded by 16th-century Naga (mystic snake) figures. An easier, if less atmospheric, route is via an adjacent cable car.

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

Enclosed by a frescoes cloister, the upper terrace is home to a tightly-packed complex of small shrines, bells, golden umbrellas and Buddha statues. In the center of the upper terrace is the great chedi, a 16th-century expansion of the 14th-century original. The dazzling gold plated temple is modeled on Wat Phra That Haripunchai in Lamphun (build in the 9th century).

Doi Suthep temple is part of the Doi Suthep-Pui National Park, and surrounded by forest and rich jungle, supporting some 330 species of birds. From the temple’s lower terrace, you will see spectacular views over the city of Chiang Mai.

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

doi suthep temple, wat doi suthep, wat phra that doi suthep, wat phrathat doi suthep, phra that doi suthep temple, phrathat doi suthep temple

TIPS:

  • Please note that shoes must be removed when entering the temple upper terrace and shoulders must be covered.
  • Other places to be visited around Doi Suthep Temple are Phuping Palace, Mon Tha Than Falls and the Hmong Village.
Categories
Chiang Mai Sightseeing

Hmong Village

Doi Pui Hmong Village is a part of Doi Suthep-Pui National Park

hmong village, doi pui hmong tribal village, hmong tribal village, doi pui hmong village

Within Doi Pui area, there’s the Hmong Tribal Village. Doi Pui Hmong village is about 4 kilometers away from Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep. It offers an insight into how Thailand’s tribes live. The villagers wear traditional Hmong clothes, sell traditional Hmong handicrafts, and live in traditional Hmong style homes.

There are about 1,000 Hmong Hill Tribe people living in Doi Pui Hmong Village . You can see and buy Hmong handicrafts such as cross stitch material, hemp clothes etc. at the big market in this village. There is also a Hmong Museum with a beautiful garden.

hmong village, doi pui hmong tribal village, hmong tribal village, doi pui hmong village

hmong village, doi pui hmong tribal village, hmong tribal village, doi pui hmong village

To be honest, this Hmong tribal village has been hugely affected by tourists such that you can really feel that the culture it had is being lost. Having said that, not all the villagers are involved in the tourist trade…you can tell how important farming and traditional crafts like clothes making (which has surely long been a ‘tourist’ trade anyhow) still is here. The farmers come back to comforts like electricity and TV (and probably soon the internet).

Life seems hard for some here and there didn’t seem to be so many young adults chances are many have left to find work down in Chiang Mai.

hmong village, doi pui hmong tribal village, hmong tribal village, doi pui hmong village

The scenery is stunning as you can see from the pictures. When you first arrive there’s an open area where the local villagers play sport when the sun’s not high. Around this area are numerous restaurants. The streets of the village are lined with shops, most selling traditional Hmong clothes. Some even have a rental service where you can put the clothes on and have your photo taken. For the number of tourists, there seems a disorientate number of shops.

Further on and you seem to naturally make your way to an entrance (20 baht) to a beautifully cared for garden area with a trickling waterfall. It’s worth going here because the views are spectacular. There’s a path accessed from here that will take you beyond the village.

hmong village, doi pui hmong tribal village, hmong tribal village, doi pui hmong village

Heading back into the village and taking a higher road (it’s a small village so getting lost might be a 2 minute issue…) and you’ll see signs for a museum and entrance to a beautiful area where opium poppies are grown. The museum….is…interesting for…its….simplicity! There’s not much there…the opium poppy area is interesting. Some great views from here across the mountains.

All in all, it’s an interesting experience….you might not leave with a broad smile on your face but it’s thought provoking to see how tourism has affected the village….(whether you’re happy to be part of this is another question). Being there, you can see why the village grew in this area….it really is beautiful and the mountain air is so fresh. If you head up to the viewpoint above the village you can look down upon the village from quite a height.

hmong village, doi pui hmong tribal village, hmong tribal village, doi pui hmong village

hmong village, doi pui hmong tribal village, hmong tribal village, doi pui hmong village

A visit to the Tribal Village is often combined with a visit to Doi Suthep Temple, Phuping Palace and some of the waterfalls in the area, as well as a jaunt to the Hilltribes Museum.

Categories
Chiang Mai Activities Chiang Mai Sightseeing Chiang Mai Trekking

Inthanon National Park

A lovely day at Inthanon National Park

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

Inthanon National Park is the highest mountain  of Thailand, 2776 metres above sea level. Doi Inthanon forms the watershed between the Ping River to the east and the Chaem River to the west, both of which eventually feed the Chao Phraya River, which supplies water to rice farms of the central plains and to Bangkok.

Inthanon National Park extends over an area in excess of 48,000 ha and, after the road climbs through the lower dry regions, there is a noticeable drop in temperature and increase in lush vegetation. This is a land more reminiscent of the west coast of New Zealand’s South Island mists, ferns, rhododendrons and a wonderful feeling of freshness everywhere.

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

One of the places to admire such flowers bloom is at the Chiang Mai Royal Agricultural Research Center (Khun Wang) in Mae Wang district. The flowers are always in full bloom during the second week of January and will last for about two weeks. Late February is the ideal time to see the full blooms of the red rhododendrons. At the summit (in January, an average nighttime temperature is a chilly 5 Centigrade), there is a large sign which advises “The Highest Point in Thailand” and, of course, this is a photo opportunity for every visitor. The ruins of an ancient temple is a short distance through the trees and a stupa, in which the ashes of King Inthawichayanon (after whom Doi Inthanon is named) are interred, may also be visited.

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

Many activities are available at Doi Intharion : here is a list of the top activities to do, from the top of the mountain to the bottom. First is the peak of Doi Inthanon (Km 48) : once up here, you’ll be at the highest (and probably coldest) point in Thailand. From this point, if you are interested in mountain hiking, villagers can take you on a long trek in the surrounding forest where you will meet with Karen and Hmong villages (half day and full day trek). Nearby the peak of Doi Inthanon is a radar station belonging to the Thai Air Force as well as a memorial of the last ruler of Chiang Mai.

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

Just a few meters below the summit car park you will find the start to the Ang Ka natrure trail this 360m long elevated boarded walkway is well worth the effort as it will take you into the un spoilt forest and you will really be able to get a feel for the flora which exits at this altitude.

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

Kiew Mae Pan (Km 42) is one of the most beautiful and rewarding walks in the park is a new trail which begins a short distance up the main summit road from Napamaytanidol. The path leads for a kilometer or more through dense, moist evergreen forest, then emerges and follows the top of a steep slope bordering the canyon headwaters of the Mae Pan River. Dotted with red rhododendron, the trail proceeds southward for another kilometer with fine, open views to the west, then re-enters the forest and eventually terminates at Napamaytanidol Chedi. Two hours would allow a leisurely walk with camera stops.

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

About 500 meters from Kiew Mae Pan. Visit one of the best points to stop to take in the views over the Doi Inthanon National park can be found at the location of the twin Royal pagodas (Km 41.5) which were built by the Royal Thai Air Force in commemoration of the 60th birthday of Their Majesties The King and Queen in 1987 and 1992 respectively.

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

The Hmong market (Km 31) is a good choice for anyone who is looking for products or souvenirs created by members of this hill tribe. They wear Black trousers with a dark jacket with embroidered collars and green, white and blue stripes on their long sleeves. Traditional rice growing and gardens in the hills is being replaced by emphasis on other cash crops cabbage, potatoes, tomatoes and strawberries which were introduced as a substitute for opium growing. Hmong are involved in several royal projects such as the Doi Inthanon Royal Project which focus on crop substitution.

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

Wachirathan

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

Siriphum

Inthanon National Park also houses some of the region’s most beautiful waterfalls, some have calm pools where one can fully immerse oneself, while other are simply beautiful, shady spots to dip your toes. Most waterfalls can get thunderous in the wet season and caution should be exercised on slippery rocks and, if you might not always get them all to yourself, the sight of relaxed, smiling locals enjoying the tranquil settings is an experience in itself. The most spectacular waterfalls : Mae Klang, Wachirathan, Siriphum Mae Pan and Mae Ya Falls.

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

Mae Ya

inthanon national park, doi inthanon national park, inhanon, doi inthanon

Sirithan

How to get to Inthanon National Park

Inthanon National park is situated about 60km south west of Chiang Mai via highway 108 then turning right in Chom Thong onto the 1009 The highest mountain Doi Inthanon is actually a further 50 Km drive into the Park. Using public transport to visit the Park is a bit limiting, although you can charter a songteaw in Chom tong to take you to the main attractions in the park. If you don’t have your own transport then consider one of the organized tours which depart from Chiang Mai daily.

Entrance fee

The cost of entry is 300 THB for adults and 200 THB for children.

Categories
Chiang Mai Sightseeing

Khun Wang Royal Project

Khun Wang Royal Project or Chiang Mai Royal Agricultural Research Centre

khun wang royal project, khun wang cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms in chiang mai, khun wang, sakura thailand

Khun Wang Royal Project is a popular route of interested because it runs past important landmarks of Chiang Mai.

The country’s highest peak, Doi Inthanon National Park in Chiang Mai, has many charms hidden in the embrace of its remote valley.

The road leading to the summit is always packed with travellers, most of whom are just content scaling the 2,500-metre high peak and trekking back downhill the same day, perhaps not aware that there are a few quiet, interesting corners in the vicinity waiting to be explored, for example, royally-sponsored agricultural research stations that support villagers in growing colourful flowers, temperate fruit and organic vegetable.

khun wang royal project, khun wang cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms in chiang mai, khun wang royal project, khun wang cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms in chiang mai, khun wang, sakura thailand

One of them is Khun Wang Royal Project Inthanon, nestled 16 kilometres from the Hmong village of Khun Klang that wows visitors with its assortment of fruit plantations, flower gardens and a delicious meal of rainbow trout where the fish sourced fresh from a pond in its compound.

About 30 years ago, HM King Bhumibol has installed several Royal Projects throughout the Kingdom to benefit hill tribe peoples. Such programmes aim to provide an initial financial boost to villages as well as advice and guidance to get them started on the road to self sustaining activities such as farming and the sale of handicraft work.

At present, Khun Wang Royal Project grows a countless number of high-altitude crops including Arabica coffee, macadamia nuts, chestnuts, peaches, plums, strawberries, passion fruits, cape gooseberries and different kinds of cold climate flowers and vegetables. Their knowledge is also transferred to not only hilltribe farmers living nearby the centre, but also farmers in other parts of Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai and Loei living on high land at least 700m above sea level.

khun wang royal project, khun wang cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms in chiang mai, khun wang, sakura thailand

khun wang royal project, khun wang cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms in chiang mai, khun wang, sakura thailand

Although the centre is established for R&D, it also opens the door for tourists. The peak period for tourism at the centre is during December and January when the temperature is low. The lowest temperature is about 9C. The accommodation is always fully booked.

When you reach the strawberry plantations, be careful not to touch the fruits. The red ripe fruits may tempt you however these are grown for R&D and some chemical products have been applied to them for research. If you want to taste them, these ripe strawberries as well as some other cold-climate fruits and vegetables are available at the hilltribe market next to the entrance gate of Khun Wang station.

khun wang royal project, khun wang cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms in chiang mai, khun wang, sakura thailand

For those who might miss the cherry blossoms during this month, the Khun Wang Royal Agricultural Research Center is also a good place to visit during other times of the year too. It is the place where you can see many kinds of flowers and enjoy the serene atmosphere of mountain ranges.

Activities to promote the farmers

  • Promotion of vegetables including peas, sweet Brock colonies Broccoli Broccoli, tomatoes, sweet onions, Japanese radish projects. Cherry tomatoes, red bell peppers, green Confit. And yellow bell peppers
  • Promotion also promotes the planting of flowering chrysanthemum of the Royal Project Foundation. Flowers, calla lily flower Agama Pan Tuscany. carnation The current production of potted plants Has Manufacturing and production demonstration vanilla.
  • Promotion of fruit, including black seedless grapes promotion. The kiwi and Ruth
  • Actively promote Chinese tea Spanish and a Chinese tea
khun wang royal project, khun wang cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms in chiang mai, khun wang, sakura thailand
khun wang royal project, khun wang cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms in chiang mai, khun wang, sakura thailand

‘Watch the flower queen tiger stations Agricultural fertilize an’ interesting with two points 

  1. The front end fattening Agricultural Station A flower in winter 
  2. The highlight of the tunnel Paya tiger. The project must go All cafes and restaurants

Not only famous for various products, also offers accommodation only tourists who want to experience the perfect winter nature. But along the way to the center Khun Wang will caress “Sakura Thailand” or the serpent and the tiger was full on both sides. Change hill into a candy pink. In one year, there is a beautiful and romantic this. Do not miss

The period of Khun Wang Cherry Blossoms Blossom is quite difficult to forecast because it is depend on the weather during that time. Normally, they will be blooming during December – Febuary when the weather is cold down for about one month.

khun wang royal project, khun wang cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms in chiang mai, khun wang, sakura thailand

How to get to Khun Wang Royal Project

Khun Wang Royal Project Inthanon is at the Km 31 mark on Highway 1009. Its entrance is partly obscured by the Hmong village of Khun Klang. Tourist accommodation is available. To watch rainbow trouts, you need to obtain permission in advance. For information, call 053-268-567.

Opening hours

Khun Wang Royal Project is open everyday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Categories
Chiang Mai Activities Chiang Mai Trekking

Kew Mae Pan Nature Trail

Kew Mae Pan Nature Trail is one of the most beautiful tourist attractions in Chiang Mai

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Kew Mae Pan is renowned as the most picturesque viewpoint for the sea of hill fog and the sunrise at dawn atop Doi lnthanon National Park, the highest mountain in Thailand. It is a grand creation of nature to highlight that we are only small human on the mountain’s height of 2,000 meters above the sea level.

If you plan on visiting ‘Doi Inthanon‘ and see beautiful sunrise, it is a good idea to take the opportunity to visit ‘Kiew Mae Pan‘ before making a trip back.

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There are many nature trails on Doi Inthanon, the favorite one is Kew Mae Pan which suitable for everyone who have limited of time. This trail is about 3 kilometers long take about 2-4 hours every groups need a trekking leader. All 21 stations offer detailed explanations about the plants and ecosystems, whether it be ferns from ancient times, Himalayan flora species, dense cloud forest or grassland.

“At the northwestern end of Kew Mae Pan forest, you can see a tiny water source only a metre in diameter.”

The tiny stream cascades down the mountain’s evergreen forest, combining with other small streams and finally becoming an impressive waterfall hidden in the deep jungle.

kew mae pan, kew mae pan nature trail, Kiew mae pan, kiew mae pan nature trail

kew mae pan, kew mae pan nature trail, Kiew mae pan, kiew mae pan nature trail

“Its height is more than 100m in total,” Soonthorn confirmed.

During rainy season, it’s easy to spot the white stripe of the waterfall among the dense jungle while driving on highway 1192 from the national park’s second checkpoint. But it is a bit far from other attractions on the mountain, which is probably why Mae Pan Falls is far less popular than Kew Mae Pan. Standing about 2,200m above sea level, Kew Mae Pan is among the best nature trails available in Thailand’s national parks.

Kew means narrow path, and this one snakes along a towering mountain range which is home to great variety of plants and animals.

“Just dim light and fog may be enough for the delicate fern to grow. It may turn brown and lifeless in summer, however, it springs back to life once it gets moisture from the fog in the rainy and hot season,” a sign along the trail explained about the highland fern.

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kew mae pan, kew mae pan nature trail, Kiew mae pan, kiew mae pan nature trail

At such heights, we try to walk much slower than usual, allowing our lungs to absorb more oxygen from thin air.

Slow hiking, by the way, allows us to notice the natural wonder on the trail to Mae Pan Falls. Trees grow as high as 40m to get light while the cloud regularly hits the mountain and soaks the whole forest with high moisture.

Moss and tiny ferns cover all tree trunks. When cloud hits the forest, covering the whole with mist, they all seem to be shivering under green blankets. The most stunning view is a semi-alpine meadow that sits side by side with the jungle, but on the other side of the slope. The meadow is caused by severe deforestation from the past. Strong winds prevent young plants from growing here.

kew mae pan, kew mae pan nature trail, Kiew mae pan, kiew mae pan nature trail

kew mae pan, kew mae pan nature trail, Kiew mae pan, kiew mae pan nature trail

It is said that Kew Mae Pan is most beautiful during rainy season when the forest recovers its lushness after the dry spell. However, it is a pity that the trail is also temporary closed in the rainy season, allowing nature to refresh.

So, if you want to see the Doi Inthanon forest at its greenest, Kew Mae Pan Nature Trail may be a good choice.

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kew mae pan, kew mae pan nature trail, Kiew mae pan, kiew mae pan nature trail

How to get to Kew Mae Pan Nature Trail

The Kew Mae Pan Nature Trail, is found at kilometer 42 on the road to the summit.  It has been developed as an ‘educative nature trail’ and there are quite a few signs (in Thai and English) along the well-maintained trail. 

Opening hours & Entrance fee

The trail open from beginning of Nov until the end of May each year. It’s 200 baht per group to hire a guide for the trail, which isn’t optional.