You are given exactly 48 hours in Chiang Rai. Your time starts now. What will you do, where will you go and what will you see in this short span of time? We have compiled a list of the best way to roam around Chiang Rai without feeling lost!
The first 24 hours:
Welcome to Chiang Rai! Since this is your very first day here, take it easy and light, but cover a larger variety. Enjoy the nature and culture of the city and get acquainted with some local flavours.
Intricate temples of Chiang Rai: Bask in the architectural marvels
When you are in Chiang Rai, visiting Wat Rong Khun or the White Temple is a must! It is situated in the south of Chiang Rai and charges no admission fee. This white wonder has such intricate designs that will leave you awestruck. Thanks to the small mirrors, the white stone structure reflects sunlight and shimmers in the daylight. Once you’re done exploring this temple, switch over from white to blue by visiting Chiang Rai Blue Temple or Wat Rong Seua Ten. Get to the Rimkok district to see this architectural gem. This lesser-known wat has a distinct white statue of standing Buddha.
Tip: Rent a bike for easy access to both temples and to save your time.
Hot Spring of Mae Khachan: Soothe your senses and heal
The Mae Khachan hot spring offers a novel experience, so it is no surprise that it becomes a favourite stop for people heading to Chiang Rai. You must live this experience at least once in your lifetime! Soak your feet in the hot spring, buy eggs from the vendors to boil them in the water puddles, take a look around for souvenirs and wood carvings, as well as admire the silver artefacts available — this place has its own charm to rejuvenate your energy!
Tip: The hot spring is open till 10 P.M., but you should head there during daylight to get the most of your visit.
Night market: Go on a food frenzy
The best way to know a city would be through its street food, and Chiang Rai offers plenty local treats to please your taste buds. Check out the hustle and bustle of the night market as you eat out of hawker stalls, vendor units and small kitchens. Make sure you try khao soi rice noodles, yang ruam, kaeng khanun, sai oua, lap moo, crispy chicken fry and toasted tadpoles before you retire for the night. As you indulge in some cheap local food in the night market, you can pick some souvenirs to give to your friends and families.
Tip: Look out for Northern Thai food stalls or Lanna food.
The next 24 hours:
Begin your day-2 on an adventurous note and simmer the plan down by following a peaceful nature trail. It is a good time to get relaxed while giving you enough time to pack and get going soon.
Singha Park Tour: An adventurous twist to a natural trail
Start afresh by tuning yourself for an action-packed day and noon. Take a ziplining tour across the tea plantations of Singha Park. It has four bases offering the most breath-taking panoramic views. Once you are warmed up, challenge yourself to climb the zip line tower at the barn house pizzeria. Brave up to face the wild and feed animals like zebras, giraffes, walrus and other cattle. To cool down, go for seasonal fruit plucking, farm trailing, vegetable garden sighting and flower field gazing.
Tip: Rent a bicycle to take a tour of the farm.
Khun Korn Waterfall: Relax in the misty waters
Head to the Khun Korn Waterfall nearby to soothe yourself and release the stress of the day. This waterfall is super gorgeous and is one of the tallest falls of Chiang Rai. The best part is the jungle in which these waterfalls are located. Head to this forest park and take a hike spanning less than 2 kilometres to get enchanted by the spectacular view.
Tip: Wear a good pair of shoes for the hike, but pack flip flops in your backpack to change when heading to the falls.
Laluna Hotel & Resort is an ideal place to stay for its strategic location in the city centre, so you can easily explore nearby areas during your free time.
The less well-known Chiang Rai sure has all the points to make it a tourist magnet. Be it the beautiful countryside or mountains, a day admiring the lush landscapes or visiting the different places of worship, Chiang Rai offers diversity in culture and landscaping. The end of October till February is the coolest time of the year, but it’s also the peak season to travel to Chiang Rai. Plan your itinerary based on what you love to do to make your short trip enjoyable!