Attractions in Chiang Rai Thailand
The quieter neighbor of Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai is Thailand’s northern-most city a land of outstanding natural beauty and excellent base of history. To explore the towns and villages where visitors looking to avoid the hordes can visit remote hill tribes, spot exotic wildlife, check out the golden triangle, the former center of the world’s opium trade and enjoy with the northern Thai culture, history, food, people, etc..
Located 785 kilometres north of Bangkok, Chiang Rai is the capital of Thailand’s northernmost province. At an average elevation of nearly 600 metres above sea level and covering an area of approximately 11,700 square kilometres, the province borders Myanmar to the north, and Lao PDR to the north and northeast. The area is largely mountainous, with peaks rising to 1,500 metres above sea level, and flowing between the hill ranges are several rivers, the most important being the Kok, near which the city of Chiang Rai is situated. In the far north of the province is the area known as the Golden Triangle, where the Mekong and Ruak Rivers meet to form the borders of Thailand, Myanmar and Lao PDR Inhabiting the highlands are hilltribes like the Akha, Lahu, Karen, and Hmong.
The region boasts a long history with small kingdoms dating back to the pre-Thai period, while the city of Chiang Rai was founded in 1262 by King Mengrai. It was temporarily the capital of Mengrai’s Lanna Kingdom until being superseded by Chiang Mai. Today, Chiang Rai is a small, charming city that provides the perfect base for exploring the scenic and cultural attractions of Thailand’s far north.
Attractions in Chiang Rai by Other Districts
King Mengrai Monument, The King Mengrai Stupa, Wat Rong Khun (White Temple), Wat Phra Sing, Wat Phra Kaew, Wat Phrathat Doi Chom Thong, Oub Kham Museum, Ho Watthanatham Nithat, Mae Kok River, Huay Hmak Lium Hot spring, Namtok Khun Kon Forest Park, Haad Chiang Rai
Doi Hua Mae Kham, Par Tung Hot Spring, Hilltribe Development and Welfare Centre, Laan Tong Mekong Basin Cultural Park, Wat Tham Phra Archa Tong (The monk straddle a horse to receive food)
Doi Mae Salong, Doi Tung, Rai Mae Fah Luang, Pha Mi Akha Village, Doi Hua Mae Kham
Mae Sai Border, Tham Pha Chom, Doi Nang Non (Tum Luang – Khun Naam Nang Non), Tham Pum-Tham Pla
Chiang Saen Lake, The Golden Triangle, Chiang Saen National Museum, Hall of Opium, Wat Phrathat Chedi Luang, Wat Pa Sak, Wat Phrathat Chom Kitti
Ban Hat Khlai, Ban Hat Bai
Doi Pha Tang
Phu Chi Fa Forest Park
Doi Luang National Park, Wat Jee Kong, Wat Sai Khao
Wiang Kalong, Khun Chae National Park, Mae Kachan Hot Spring
Chiang Rai Map
- Mae Fah Luang Art and Cultural Park : Five kilometre’s from Chiang Rai’s centre, this park/museum was founded by the late Princess Mother, who purchased the 140 rai plot to help assist youngsters from rural areas.
- Chiang Sean : The northern part of Chiang Rai was the ancient Lanna capital, and today stands as a historical park, complete with awe-inspiring ancient monuments in the region’s signature rust-colored stone.
- Doi Tung : Rising 2,000 metres above sea level, this revered mountain is home to several historical sites, including Doi Tung Palace, Mae Fa Lung Flower Garden and the Wat Phra Doi Tung Holy Relic.
- Wat Rong Khun : Known as the ‘White Temple’, this remarkable structure is the life-time’s work of living artist Chaloemchai Khositphiphat, who continues to add to his Opus even today. The ornate white structure contains the glorious ordination hall, Phra Ubosot, which glitters with silver shards of mirror.
- Baan Dam (Black House) : Artist Thawan Duchanee created an impressive collection of skins, bones, teeth and taxidermy of a wide array of animals. Everything at Baan Dam is black, or at least gives off a dark aura, and each one of the 15 houses is embellished and furnished with animal remains.
- The Golden Triangle : The magnificent stretch of country where the Mekong and Ruak Rivers converge, and right where you will find Anantara Golden Triangle. The region is composed of three corners of Myanmar, Thailand and Laos, and features many ancient structural remains.
- Wat Phra Kaeo : The ‘Emerald Buddha’, Thailand’s most revered Buddha image, was once housed in this wonderful temple.
- Hall of Opium and Golden Triangle Park : The Golden Triangle was one time a hub of Opium production, and documenting this fascinating history is the Hall of Opium, which sits directly opposite Anantara Golden Triangle Resort.