Chiang Mai, the big city in northern Thailand, is surrounded by lush mountains and dotted with ancient temples. It is a perfect destination for your vacation due to the various travel options such as shopping malls, natural attractions, or chilling cafés. It is the best hub to explore the northern tradition and culture of Thailand.   

For those who are planning to visit this amazing city, check this out, we proudly represent a list of 8 things to do in Chiang Mai that you shouldn’t miss!

  1. Elephant Sanctuary
  2. Tethered Hot Air Ballon Adventure
  3. Water Park Fun
  4. Tuk-tuk Tour
  5. Doi Inthanon & Doi Suthep Tour
  6. Thai Cooking Class
  7. Chiang Rai Tour
  8. Whitewater Rafting

1. Elephant Sanctuary

Be a guardian for these big animals. 

Elephants are the national symbol of Thailand. They are not only wild animals but also a significant part of Thailand’s history. Thai people honor the elephant’s incredible strength, durability, and longevity.

The elephant sanctuary allows you to touch, feed, photograph, and bathe the happy elephants in a safe and sustainable environment. You’ll be relieved to see how the Chiang Mai Elephant Jungle Sanctuary unquestionably provides them home and care these heartwarming animals deserve.  

If you are looking for a destination where you can get close to the elephants and sustain the animal welfare at the same time, you should absolutely check out the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary.  

2. Tethered Hot Air Balloon Adventure

Have a chilled-out afternoon in Chiang Mai.

A hot air balloon ride is a great activity for both solo travelers and friends & family visitors alike. Relax your day out away from Chiang Mai city with these comforting and photogenic sights and the sunset on the farmland. This package includes hotel pick-up & drop-off, professional staff to supervise, an unlimited number of 5-minute tethered hot air balloon rides for 2 hours, and a dinner set!

3. Water Park Fun

Enjoy a day of thrills and spills at Grand Canyon Water Park.

Grand Canyon is the biggest inflatable water park in Chiang Mai, a perfect place for adrenaline junkies! It offers a wide range of entertaining activities from cliff-jumping to wakeboarding. There is also a kid zone, where two huge kid-friendly pools complete with miniature water slides, balls, and fountains.

4. Tuk-tuk Tour

Hop on a tuk-tuk and travel around Chiang Mai.

If you are looking for an extraordinary way of touring Chiang Mai, check out tuk-tuk tours, which is the three-wheeled motorbike-like taxi that is unique to Thailand. Get picked up by a tuk-tuk and explore the historical city abundant in ancient, such as Tha Pae Gate, 3 Kings Monument, and Warorot Market. You can also take a tuk-tuk night tour to experience the nighttime charm of Chiang Mai!

5. Doi Inthanon & Doi Suthep Tour

Explore the ancient temples in Town.


Chiang Mai is a city with a rich and unique history. One of the symbols that shows how it is distinct from others is the ancient temples. The neat design that keeps the long history in architecture strikes visitors from all over the world.

Doi Inthanon and Doi Suthep are must-visit mountains to explore the northern Thai scenery. Both are located in Chiang Mai, but each has a different fascination.

Doi Inthanon is famous for its sea of clouds and the temple made by the Majesty King & Queen of Thailand Kingdom, while Doi Suthep is well known for a beautiful Lanna traditional monastery.  

In order to reach them from Chiang Mai City, Doi Suthep will take about an hour while Doi Inthanon takes 2 hours and a half. Sometimes, taking public transportation may be hard for foreign tourists due to a language barrier. We highly recommend you book packages on Trazy. Our services provide an English-speaking tour guide and safe transportation throughout your memorable trip.  

6. Thai Cooking Class

Enjoy eating Chiang Mai’s mouth-watering street food.

Last but not least, food is always the highlight of traveling. If you are a food explorer, you shouldn’t miss out on the Thai local food in Chiang Mai!

Chiang Mai’s local food is distinct from other parts of Thailand. The northern dish is usually less spicy than the southern or eastern cuisines. This is the influence of Burmese and Chinese food in the past. The top 3 must-try local dishes are Khao Soi (Egg Noodle Curry), Khan Toke (Traditional Northern-style cuisine), and Sai Oua (Grilled Herb Sausage). 

If you are interested in a Thai home cooking experience, check out Grandma’s Cooking School based in a charming village in the Saraphi District of Chiang Mai, which offers a fun and insightful Thai cooking class. You’ll also get to visit a local market and witness the local atmosphere of buying fresh produce.

7. Chiang Rai Tour

Experience another northern fascinating province of Thailand.

Chiang Mai is the big transportation hub to other northern provinces of Thailand. Chiang Rai is one of the best choices to go because it is not too far (just 4 hours by bus) and you can experience another remarkable Thai northern fascination. We highly recommend you to go to Wat Rong Khun, Baan Dam, Blue Temple, and Golden Triangle.

Wat Rong Khun or White Temple is designed by a very famous artist of Thailand, Dr.  Chalermchai Kositpipat. The architecture is remarkable for the “heaven gate” belonging to the Buddhist belief. The highlight spot of this place is the bridge of “the cycle of rebirth” which is also the symbol of the temple.    

Baan Dam or Black House is a collection of more than 40 buildings of houses in black color and various shapes. This place is a museum, art studio, and traditional house at the same time.

Wat Rong Suea Ten or The Blue Temple is a blue-colored temple, which is beautiful both inside and outside. Here, you will feel mesmerized by amazingly detailed structures and the general vibes coming from the use of blue color.

Visiting Chiang Rai for these 3 majestic temples is one of the most popular day tours from Chiang Mai as you can see the “White Temple”, “Black House”, and “Blue Temple” in one day.

Golden Triangle Park is the joint point of 3 neighboring countries: Thailand, Myanmar, and Laos. You can see the river which flows through and trisects the area into 3 counties. It has been one of the most extensive opium-producing areas of Asia. In order to witness this unique borderline between three countries, hop on a day tour that will take you to the Golden Triangle along with other must-visit attractions in Chiang Rai!

8. Whitewater Rafting

Join this only rafting tour rated “Excellent” in Chiang Mai.

Mae Taeng River is a popular whitewater rafting spot in Chiang Mai for its wild attractions and grade 3-5 rapids. Go on a journey down the river with lush jungles, magnificent rice fields, and breathtaking canyons while admiring the unspoiled villages in the area!

For more travel tips and ideas for your next trip to Thailand, make sure you visit Chiang Mai, Your Travel Shop for Asia!

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