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Abundant with temples, historical sites and arty attractions, Chiang Mai is also surrounded by some of the most beautiful rural landscape Thailand has to offer. While there would be plenty to explore in Chiang Mai for much longer, three days is just enough to take in the beauty and charm of the 'rose of the north.’

Good for
  • Nightlife Seeker
  • Nature Lover
  • Foodie
  • Like a Local

12 Places

4 City Tips

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12 Places

Day 1

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

Religious Sites, Observation Decks & Towers, Lookouts

Wat Chedi Luang

Ancient Ruins, Architectural Buildings, Religious Sites

Wat Phra Singh

Religious Sites

Doi Inthanon

Mountains, National Parks, Lookouts

Night Bazaar

Flea & Street Markets

Day 2

Warorot Market (Kad Luang)

Shopping Malls

Mae Sa Waterfall

Parks, Waterfalls

Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School

Cooking Classes

Sunday Night Market Walking Street - Tha Pae Gate

Flea & Street Markets

Day 3

Elephant Nature Park - Day Tours

Nature & Wildlife Tours

Green Bamboo Massage

Spas

DK David's Kitchen at 909

Restaurants

Kirsty S's City Tips

  • The easiest way to get around Chiang Mai is by cycling and there are plenty of places to hire bikes across the city. The second-best way to get around is by tuk tuk or songthaew, but be sure to agree a price with your driver upfront.
  • The cool/dry season in Chiang Mai runs from October to February, the hot season from February to June and the wet season from June to October. While you’ll see a fair bit of rain in the wet season, the clouds do make the heat more bearable, plus the countryside is beautifully green and lush.
  • Note that a friendly approach to haggling at Chiang Mai’s markets will get you further than any hard-ball tactics will. Keep it light and remember to smile. Also bear in mind that you could well be negotiating over the equivalent of just a few pennies!
  • When visiting Chiang Mai’s temples, cover up with appropriate clothing and remove your shoes before entering. Be sure not to point your feet towards an altar or shrine once inside.
    Day 1
  • Save
    Wat Phra That Doi Suthep
    Religious Sites, Observation Decks & Towers, Lookouts
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    Start your time in Chiang Mai by going to see one of its most important temples. Set high up on a hillside, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep towers over Chiang Mai and is one of the most revered Buddhist temples in the whole of northern Thailand. It features a shining golden chedi and offers panoramic views of the city below. If you’re not up to climbing the few hundred steps to reach it, you can take a cable car from the base instead.

    Good for
    • Must See
    Tips
    • Get there early and don’t forget your camera; the sunrise views from here are particularly spectacular.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 207 things to do in Chiang Mai
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Nice view from this temple 17/04/2015
    • Beautifull 17/04/2015
    • Wat Phra That Doi Suthep
    Address:
    Mueang Chiang Mai District
    Chiang Mai
    Thailand
    Phone:
    5329-5003
    Other:
  • Save
    Wat Chedi Luang
    Ancient Ruins, Architectural Buildings, Religious Sites
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    Wat Chedi Luang is one of the must-see temples in Chiang Mai. It is so named due to the gigantic brick chedi that sits within its grounds. Visually striking and built some 600 years ago, Wat Chedi Luang is particularly impressive at night when it's lit up to highlight its remarkable architecture.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The temple's central location close to the Sunday Night Market means you can easily nip back for a night-time peak later on in your trip!
    • You’ll find Wat Chedi Luang on the corner of Phra Pokklao & Ratchamanka. Despite its majesty, it’s conveniently located close to many of Chiang Mai’s guesthouses and restaurants.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 207 things to do in Chiang Mai
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Worth a Visit 17/04/2015
    • Beautiful! 16/04/2015
    • Wat Chedi Luang
    Address:
    103 Phra Pok Klao Road
    Phra Singh
    Chiang Mai 50200
    Thailand
    Phone:
    +66 53 276 140
  • Save
    Wat Phra Singh
    Religious Sites
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    Wat Phra Singh is the temple not to be missed and is home to a highly revered Buddha symbol, the Phra Singh (Lion Buddha). Elsewhere, look out for classic ancient Lanna architecture and an ornately painted main ceremonial hall.

    Good for
    • Must See
    Tips
    • Wat Phra Singh is located right at the end of Ratchadamnoen Road. The grounds are open to the public from sunrise to sunset.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #18 of 207 things to do in Chiang Mai
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • very restful despite festive atmosphere 14/04/2015
    • Many tourist! 13/04/2015
    • Wat Phra Singh
    Address:
    Singharat Road
    Chiang Mai
    Thailand
  • Save
    Doi Inthanon
    Mountains, National Parks, Lookouts
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    While in Chiang Mai, make sure you explore some of its beautiful natural surroundings. Doi Inthanon is the tallest mountain in Thailand and the national park that encompasses it showcases some truly stunning scenery. The park has hiking trails, waterfalls and two stunning pagodas. It's a popular day trip from Chiang Mai, offering a cool respite from the heat of the city.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The best way to visit Doi Inthanon is by private taxi or as part of an organized tour.
    • It’s much cooler at the Doi Inthanon National Park compared to the city, so you may want to take extra layers.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #4 of 207 things to do in Chiang Mai
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Very nice view and gardens 17/04/2015
    • Too good to describe 16/04/2015
    • Doi Inthanon
    Address:
    Cham Tong
    Chiang Mai
    Thailand
  • Save
    Night Bazaar
    Flea & Street Markets
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    Visiting the Night Bazaar is practically a rites of passage for visitors to Chiang Mai. Situated right in the heart of the city, the Night Bazaar is a great place to hang out after the sun has gone down. It’s busy yet laid-back by Thai market standards, and you’ll find all the usual tourist souvenirs here, along with a few surprises along the way.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Must See
    • Shopping Fanatic
    • Nightlife Seeker
    Tips
    • The Night Bazaar is generally a fun and safe environment but it’s wise to keep your personal belongings close to you and to look out for pickpockets.
    • Go for dinner before hitting the stalls at one of the Thai restaurants just off the main street from the market.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #40 of 207 things to do in Chiang Mai
    • A Tourist Trap that's actually well-worth one's time and money 17/04/2015
    • A must see 17/04/2015
    • Night Bazaar
    Address:
    104-1 Chang Klan Road
    Chiang Mai
    Thailand
    Phone:
    +66 53 235 575
  • Day 2
  • Save
    Warorot Market (Kad Luang)
    Shopping Malls
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    Start your day in Chiang Mai the way the locals do by heading over to the Warorot Market. Spread over three floors, this market is ideal for getting your fill of local food, whether you want to have a breakfast with a Thai twist or to choose something to savor later in the day. Part of the market is dedicated to vendors who will actually prepare and cook a meal for you from scratch there and then, with spicy aromas and flashes of pan-fire creating a real assault on the senses.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • The location of Warorot Market is close to the riverside at the end of Chang Moi Road, just north of the Night Bazaar.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #32 of 207 things to do in Chiang Mai
    • Just about anything you can think of sold here 04/04/2015
    • My favorite market ever 03/04/2015
    • Warorot Market (Kad Luang)
    Address:
    between Thapae Road and Chang Moi Roadf
    Chiang Mai
    Thailand
  • Save
    Mae Sa Waterfall
    Parks, Waterfalls
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    Mae Sa Waterfall is actually a series of falls divided into eight tiers. A trip there will provide you with some fantastic photo opportunities, as well as some great spots for hiking, swimming and picnicking amid all that stunning natural scenery.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The Mae Sa Waterfall is situated in the Doi Suthep National Park and as such there is a national park fee to pay. (Different fees apply for foreigners and Thai nationals.)
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #54 of 207 things to do in Chiang Mai
    • Boring waterfalls 11/04/2015
    • Average Waterfall, Good Hiking, and Peaceful Atmosphere 18/03/2015
    • Mae Sa Waterfall
    Address:
    Km 7 on the Mae Rim - Samoeng Road
    Chiang Mai
    Thailand
  • Save
    Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School
    Cooking Classes
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    Chiang Mai is the perfect place in which to learn how to cook delicious Thai cuisine, so if you’d prefer to stay in the city for the day, it’s a good chance to learn how to do just that. Owned and run by ‘Master Chef’ Sompon Nabnian, the Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School uses only the freshest ingredients. It teaches skilful preparation, along with how to combine the right ingredients at the right time in order to achieve the most delicious results.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    Tips
    • The Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School is located in Moon Muang Road opposite the Tha Phae Gate.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #23 of 41 Food & Drink in Chiang Mai
    • Great experience 02/04/2015
    • Yummy, glorious..... food!! 09/03/2015
    • Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School
    Address:
    47/2 Moon Muang Rd
    (opposite Tha Phae Gate)
    Chiang Mai 50200
    Thailand
    Phone:
    053 206388
    Other:
  • Save
    Sunday Night Market Walking Street - Tha Pae Gate
    Flea & Street Markets
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    If you like shopping, make sure that at least one of your days in Chiang Mai falls on a weekend. There’s a Saturday night market held here too, and both are open from late afternoon until midnight. The Sunday Walking Street Market starts at the Tha Phae Gate and stretches for around a kilometer along Ratchadamnoen Road. It’s a bustling, thriving place where market stalls fill the street, selling everything from clothes and jewellery to local arts and crafts.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Shopping Fanatic
    Tips
    • The Walking Street market is a great place to have dinner, with a whole host of food stalls offering tasty Thai dishes, as well as plenty of options for dessert.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #19 of 299 things to do in Chiang Mai Province
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Fantastic Experience, A MUST DO!! 12/04/2015
    • Go early - it opens around 4pm 10/04/2015
    • Sunday Night Market Walking Street - Tha Pae Gate
    Address:
    Rajdamnoen Road (near Tha Pae Gate))
    Thailand
  • Day 3
  • Save
    Elephant Nature Park - Day Tours
    Nature & Wildlife Tours
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    As an alternative to simply hopping on the back of an elephant with one of the many tour operators offering elephant treks, why not visit a unique elephant conservation park instead? If you’re a fan of these gentle giants you’ll be pleased to hear that the Elephant Nature Park is actually a sanctuary and rescue center rather than an unsustainable tourist attraction. On your day visit, you’ll get to hear the stories of the elephants at the park before getting the chance to feed and bathe them.

    Good for
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • If you really want to make the most of your time with the elephants, there’s also the option of an overnight stay at the park.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 84 Outdoor Activities in Chiang Mai
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • BEST THING TO DO IN CHIANG MAI 17/04/2015
    • Amazing day with the elephants! 16/04/2015
    • Elephant Nature Park - Day Tours
    Phone:
    +66 53 818 932
    Other:
  • Save
    Green Bamboo Massage
    Spas
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    While in Chiang Mai, you should treat yourself to a classic Thai massage. There are plenty of places to enjoy a massage around the city, but Green Bamboo operates in a particularly warm and friendly atmosphere with a strong focus on Lanna Thai treatments.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    Tips
    • Green Bamboo Massage operates from a traditional massage hut at 1 Moon Muang Road. It’s open from 10am until 9pm.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #8 of 113 Spas & Wellness in Chiang Mai
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Best massage on Chiang Mai!! 10/04/2015
    • A very fast 2 Hours 08/04/2015
    • Green Bamboo Massage
    Address:
    1 Moon Muang Road, Soi 1
    Chiang Mai 50200
    Thailand
    Phone:
    +66 89 827 5563
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    10:00 - 2:00
    Other:
  • Save
    DK David's Kitchen at 909
    Restaurants (French, Fusion)
    See more photos
    Kirsty S Says:

    With delicious food, exceptional service, fine wines and a relaxed atmosphere, dinner at DK David’s is a fantastic way to experience the best that Thai cuisine has to offer.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Luxury Traveller
    Tips
    • DK David’s Kitchen is a little out of town so it’s advisable to ask for a driver to be sent when you call to make a reservation.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 1,098 restaurants in Chiang Mai
    • True dining gem in Chiang Mai! 16/04/2015
    • Eveything about this place pleased me 15/04/2015
    • DK David's Kitchen at 909
    Address:
    90/9 Moo 3, Sanpisuur Road
    Sanpisuur
    Chiang Mai 50300
    Thailand
    Phone:
    +66 91 068 1744
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    10:00 - 3:00
    Other:
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