Cultural highlights for Chiang Mai City.
Wat Doi Suthep
Considered the holiest place in Northern Thailand, the temple of Doi Suthep overlooks Chiang Mai from hills to the north of the city. It was established by King Keu Naone in 1383 and is a shining example of Northern Thai devotion, architecture, and craftsmanship.
Chiang Mai Zoo
At the foot of Wat Doi Suthep is the Chiang Mai Zoo, covering 200 acres of land and boasting a population of close to 400 species. Come and see resident pandas Lin Hui and Chuang Chuang!
Queen Sirikit Botanical Garden
Established to promote botanical research, biodiversity, and native species, the Queen Sirikit Botanical Garden is set in a rainforest 30 minutes north of the city. Be sure to check out the 400-metre canopy walkway and the Carnivorous Plant House.
Royal Flora Ratchapruak Garden
The Royal Gardens is Southeast Asia’s largest outdoor botanical exhibition, featuring more than 8,000 plant and flower species.
In a city of more than 300 temples, at 700 years old, Wat Umong boasts the longest history. Located near the cultural hub of Ban Kang Wat, it features a network of underground tunnels and a large fish pond on its bucolic grounds.
A sprawling, bustling market area popular with locals and tourists alike, the vast network of stalls at Warorot Market offer everything from fresh and preserved delicacies, prepared foods, produce, local textiles, cut flowers, Northern Thai souvenirs, clothing, toys, personal care items, and everything in between.
Wat Phra Singh
Venerated as the second most important temple in Chiang Mai after Doi Suthep, Wat Phra Singh’s construction began in 1365, and in 1935 it was named a royal temple of the first grade. Located within the Old City, the temple is always lively with worshippers and tourists.
The Saturday Walking Street along Wualai Road and the Sunday Walking Street along Rachadamnoen Road are bustling night markets with the air of a street fair located within the walls of the Old City. Hundreds of stalls line the streets; be prepared for colorful crowds, handicrafts new and old, and a bounty of street food.
Wat Chedi Luang
Wat Chedi Luang, or temple of the royal stupa, sits at the centre of the Old City and is one of the tallest structures within it. It hosts the Chiang Mai City pillar which was erected at the city’s founding. A giant gum tree on the temple grounds is one of three in the city that is believed to protect Chiang Mai from harm.
Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre
Located behind the Three Kings Monument in the Old City, the Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre is housed in the restored former provincial government building built in 1927. Be sure to visit the recreated Lanna-style village on the second floor.
Lanna Folklife Museum
Life-sized dioramas simulate traditional Lanna village life at the Lanna Folklife Museum, housed in the former Provincial Court building near the Three Kings Monument.
Lanna Traditional House Museum
Nine traditional houses and four rice granaries comprise the Lanna Traditional House Museum, established to promote learning and scholarship around Lanna culture, architecture, and handicrafts.