coolest things to do in chiang mai
Take care elephants is one of the coolest things to do in Chiang Mai

Unlike the vibrant lifestyle of Bangkok, Chiang Mai is the destination for tourists who want to enjoy the peaceful beauty of ancient temples, friendly elephants or great natural scenery surrounding the city. These are 10 top coolest things to do in Chiang Mai you should try.

chiang mai thailand where to stay

Where to go in Chiang Mai Maesa Elephant Camp (1)
Elephant riding in Chiang Mai.
Souvenir shop at Baan Kang Wat.
Souvenir shop at Baan Kang Wat.
inclay studio
InClay Studio
wat chedi luang best places to visit in chiang mai thailand
Wat Chedi Luang, one of the top places to visit in Chiang Mai

1. Wander the Old City

10 things only do in chiang mai travel guides
Visit Chiang Mai Old City on a Segway. | coolest things to do in chiang mai

From the Tapae Gate in the old city, you can wander around the traditional markets or stroll through the small alleys with unpretentious cafes, bars, eateries.

Additionally, Segway tour – a means for visitors walking around the small town, would be a suitable option for you.

2. Visit the temples

Visiting Chiang Mai, you can not ignore the big temples such as Wat Phra Singh, Wat Chedi Luang, Wat Doi Suthep.

Chiang-Mai-Temples-Thailand Wat Phra Singh
Photo: Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep
Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep, Chiang Mai
Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep, Chiang Mai
wat phrathat doi suthep chiang mai (1)
You have to pass 309 high stone steps to admire the brilliant pagoda scene in sparkling gold. | chiang mai best places to visit
wat phrathat doi suthep chiang mai (1)
The road leads to the temple.

Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep chiang mai itinerary 3 days temples

wat chedi luang chiang mai travel blog
Wat Chedi Luang Temple. One of the most famous temples in Chiang Mai
wat chedi luang best places to visit in chiang mai thailand
Wat Chedi Luang, one of the top places to visit in Chiang Mai
Inside Wat Chedi Luang
Inside Wat Chedi Luang
Wat Umong temple chiang mai
Wat Umong

Wat Umong temple chiang mai

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Photo: chiangmai.bangkok.com

Wat Phra Singh is considered a marvelous temple in Chiang Mai with the famous statue of Phra Singh (Lion Buddha) in the 14th century.

3. Go shopping at the Sunday Walking Street Market and Night Bazaar.

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Shopping at the Sunday Walking Street Market and Night Bazaar. One of coolest things to do in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Vendors ply their trade from 4 pm until midnight, selling an array of beguiling items – much made by the stallholders themselves.

go shopping at night chiang mai travel tips
Sunday Night Market in Chiang Mai’s Old Town. One of coolest things to do in Chiang Mai, Thailand

You can find a lot of affordable items here. If you do not want to shop, this is also a great place for you to enjoy street foods.

Where should I go in Chiang Mai Tha Pae Walking Street (Sunday Walking Street) (1)

Where should I go in Chiang Mai Tha Pae Walking Street (Sunday Walking Street) (1)
The scene of the bustling night market sells a lot of goods at Tha Phae walking street.
Where should I go in Chiang Mai Tha Pae Walking Street (Sunday Walking Street) (1)
Tha Pae Walking Street (Sunday Walking Street)
Where should I go in Chiang Mai Tha Pae Walking Street (Sunday Walking Street) (1)
| coolest things to do in chiang mai
Where should I go in Chiang Mai Tha Pae Walking Street (Sunday Walking Street) (1)
| chiang mai best places to visit
Where should I go in Chiang Mai Tha Pae Walking Street (Sunday Walking Street) (1)
| coolest things to do in chiang mai

Where should I go in Chiang Mai Tha Pae Walking Street (Sunday Walking Street) (1)

 

Night market stalls at the Sunday Market Walking Street. Chiang Mai, Thailand

4. Learn how to cook or massage like a Thai

Travelling and tourism often focus on relaxation and leisure, but learning can often deepen an understanding of a local.

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Cooking Class at Baan Sabai Village. One of coolest things to do in Chiang Mai, Thailand

In Chiang Mai, you can take a cooking class that includes, along with the excellent tuition, a tour of a local market, where you can learn how to source the right foods for your dish, along with a Thai food tasting session.

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Photo: pursuitist.com

You can learn how to make appetizers, curries, soups, stir fry, and dessert, all in traditional Thai style.

learn cooking and massage in chiangmai travel tips
Massage Course in Chiang Mai Old Town. One of coolest things to do in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Thailand is also famous for its tradition of massage & Chiang Mai is the best place to get introduced to massage learning practices, learning the basic foot, leg and back northern-style at one of the city’s massage courses.

There are even shorter courses that can be completed in a day or an afternoon, a must-do in Chiang Mai.

5. Take care of elephants

Feeding the elephants in Chiang Mai. one of the unique things to do in Chiang Mai
Feeding the elephants in Chiang Mai. One of the unique things to do in Chiang Mai

Just an hour’s drive outside the center of the city, visitors will be immersed in the natural space of the elephant sanctuary.

Here, you will get many unforgettable memories out in nature, feeding and bathing the elephants.

coolest things to do in chiang mai 2

coolest things to do in chiang mai
Take care elephants is one of the coolest things to do in Chiang Mai

6. Take a dip in the Grand Canyon

Located 12 km from the city, Tueng Huay Thao Lake is a picturesque lake at the base of Doi Suthep mountain. You can swim and behold the stunning scenery here.

things only do in chiang mai travel guides
Chiang Mai Old Quarry by Conor McMillen. | coolest things to do in chiang mai

If you like adventurous games, visitors should try the feeling of jumping from a cliff into the lake Grand Canyon from a height of 10 m.

For those who prefer to relax, you can choose to take a dip in the hot springs of San Kamphaeng.

coolest things to do in chiang mai

grand canyon chiang mai (4)
Grand Canyon

grand canyon chiang mai (1)

grand canyon chiang mai (4)

grand canyon chiang mai (4)
Grand Canyon Water Park
Foreign tourists enjoy sun exposure and enjoy the beautiful landscape of Grand Canyon.

7. Go Climbing in the Great Outdoors

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Photo: xadventuresthailand.com

Around a 45 minute drive from the center of Chiang Mai is Crazy Horse Crag, known as one of the world’s greenest and diverse crags.

crazy horse crag chiang mai travel guides
Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Course. | coolest things to do in chiang mai

Here you can take a climbing course and be introduced to rock climbing in just a day or go deeper with a three-day course where you can learn to be a fundamentally solid, and safe, climber, equipped with the know-how to climb without a guide.

8. Over Chiang Mai in a hot air balloon

For a panoramic view of Chiang Mai, you can take a tour on a hot air balloon, drift peacefully over the trees, villages, lakes, and wildlife, and then be greeted with a customary champagne celebration on landing.

air baloon - things only do in chiang mai travel guides
Hot Air Balloon in Chiang Mai. One of coolest things to do in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Photo:dulich.vnexpress.net

Alternatively, you can take a microlight flight, flown by an experienced pilot, and enjoy true freedom of the skies and an elevated view of the beautiful Mae Kueng dam.

Finally, you can even charter a helicopter and pilot for a rare view from above the city, then down the Mae Ping river, the lifeline of the region.

coolest things to do in chiang mai

9. Have a peak experience atop Chiang Mai’s mountains

Doi Inthanon National Park sees first frost of the year as temperatures drop.4
The mist flowing on valley at Doi Inthanon, Chiang Mai

If you want to enjoy the magnificent natural surroundings of Chiang Mai, you can climb to the top of Doi Suthep – one of the most famous mountains here.

viewpoint on Kiw Mae Pan Trail Doi Inthanon Chiang Mai Trekking
The viewpoint on Kiw Mae Pan Trail Doi Inthanon. | chiang mai travel guide
View overlooking twin pagodas at Doi Inthanon National Park
View overlooking twin pagodas at Doi Inthanon National Park

On the trek in Doi Inthanon

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Siriphum Waterfall

Doi Inthanon National Park2

On the trek in Doi Inthanon
On the trek in Doi Inthanon. Picture: doi inthanon blog.
Doi Inthanon National Park
Trekking

Doi Inthanon National Park2

Doi Inthanon National Park2

Doi Suthep is a must for anyone visiting the city. Here at the summit is the temple known as Wat Phra Tat, an important site for Buddhists and a simply beautiful one for tourists.

mountains in chiang mai travel things to do
Chiang Mai’s Doi Suthep’s peak – Photo Credit by ultrathai. Photo:dulich.vnexpress.net

Doi Inthanon, around 100 km west of the city, crests at 2,565 meters, the highest peak in the country.

10. Visit traditional tribes

chiang mai thailand travel guides
Hill tribe in Chiang Mai. Photo:dulich.vnexpress.net

Thailand’s northern region is inhabited by many ethnic minorities. Visit traditional villages around the Chiang Mai city, you will get a better understanding of the traditional customs and the way of life of locals.

karen long neck village
Karen long neck village

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The unique village of the Karen long neck tribe.

Are you looking for more Chiang Mai travel guide and top things to do in Chiang Mai? Let’s read: Chiang Mai travel blog — The fullest Chiang Mai travel guide for a great trip to the “Rose of the North” of Thailand.

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