11 Things To Do In Chiang Rai

Chiang Rai Beach

#11 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: 24/7
Admission fee: None but if you would like to sit inside one of the shelters you might have to pay 100 THB and order some food, which is mainly Thai cuisine.

Go there, pick a spot to sit and order some food or drinks.

Overall, there is nothing too exciting about this place, but if you just treat it as what it is; a place to relax, chill and unwind next to the river. It’s a good place to have a cold drink or enjoy a picnic with some friends and family.

Don’t expect too much. If you want to experience amazing scenery, actions, or adventure this is not the place.

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Choui Fong Tea Plantation

Choui Fong Tea Plantation in Chiang Rai

#10 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: 8:30am to 5:00pm daily
Admission fee: none

Similar to the last attraction at Signha Park, the tea plantation that I visited was called Choui Fong Tea Plantation. There are several tea and coffee plantations all over Chiang Rai, but this is one is the most popular plantations.

It’s one of the tourist spots you stop between different tours. Overall, there isn’t much here besides great views of the landscape, which are full of little green tea plants. There were a couple of modern buildings at the top of the hills where you can grab some tea, coffee, deserts and food. You can also try some different tea drinks and buy fresh tea to take back home.

The green matcha tea at the shop was some of the best matcha teas I’ve ever tried. Grab a nice cold matcha to cool off, have a sit, maybe take some photos and enjoy the view.

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Singha Park

Singha Park in Chiang Rai

#9 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: 9am to 5pm daily
Admission fee: none, but you can rent a bicycle for 150 THB/hr or book a tour around the park for 50 THB.

My first impression of this park was that it was HUGE. There were tea/coffee plantations, a zoo, lake, restaurants, beautiful flowers and stunning views as well as bike trails. Plus, everything was very clean and organized. It didn’t felt like I was in Thailand, I thought I was in some national park back in North America. You can rent a bicycle, book a ride around the park in a small train, or use your own transportation.

It will take you about half a day if you want to see everything in this huge park. If you’re into cycling, hiking, nature, green fields, organic food and flowers then it’s the perfect day trip for you. Make sure to visit in February if you’re into balloons because each year this park hosts the Great Balloon Festival.

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Doi Tung Royal Villa

Doi Tung Royal Villa in Chiang Rai

#8 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: 8am to 5pm
Admission fee: There are four different attractions; one is free and the other three are 90 THB each for both Thais and foreigners.

Doi Tung Royal Villa is located in the mountain range of Doi Tung. This is a great place to get an insight into the late Queen’s life in Doi Tung (Late King Rama IX’s mother).

It is a fantastic day trip if you enjoy relaxing walks around stunning gardens. The gardens were pack full with beautiful flowers and breath-taking views can be admired from the royal villa.

The Royal Villa and its garden is huge. Both the villa and the gardens were in immaculate condition. The villa itself was built entirely from wood in a European style and you can witness some breath-taking views from the balconies.

Doi Tung Royal Villa in Chiang Rai

You can easily spend an entire day visiting all four attractions. This is by far one of the biggest and most beautiful gardens I have ever visited.

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Doi Mae Salong

Doi Mae Salong Toursim Village

#7 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: 24/7
Admission fee: none

Would you like to be “off the beaten track” and away from civilization? You can’t get more remote than Doi Mae Salong. Stand anywhere along the way to this area and you’ll not see or hear any noise created by humans. You’ll only hear insects, birds and the wind blowing through the leaves with spectacular mountainous scenery. You can book a tour, or you can drive and visit the area independently. Make sure to be very careful going up and around the mountains though.

Once you arrive at Doi Mae Salong Village, you must visit the Wat Santikhiri Temple at the top of the mountain. At the top there is a viewpoint overlooking the Doi Mae Salong Village which offers stunning views. Go there during sunset or sunrise to have an unforgettable experience.

In the middle of the village are markets selling local goods, lots of tea and herbs, as well as souvenir shops. There are restaurants, hotels, an ATM and even a 7 eleven. This is a Thai/Chinese community with many friendly locals. Many locals can speak Chinese and Thai as well as some English. This village is full with history and culture. It is a very interesting and fascinating place to visit.

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Chiang Rai Night Market

Chiang Rai Night Market

#6 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: 5pm to 10 pm for both Saturday and Sunday
Admission fee: none

Don’t confuse this with the Chiang Rai Night Bazaar. There are two different night markets in two separate locations; one location for the Saturday Night Market and another location for the Sunday Night Market.

The Night Markets in Chiang Rai are a smaller version of the night markets in Chiang Mai. They are one of the most popular things Thai people enjoy doing on the weekends. They love shopping and eating.

You can expect to see rows of street vendors offering everything from Thai street food, and souvenirs, to clothing and fruit stalls. You’ll also find lots of places to drink and dance too (if you’re into Northern Thai folk music).

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Night Brazaar

Chiang Rai Night Bazaar Dancing Thai Performers

#5 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: 6pm to 11pm daily
Admission fee: none

Smack in the middle of the city is one of the most popular attractions in Chiang Rai, the Chiang Rai Night Bazaar. This Night Bazaar has two separate stages about 5 minute walk from one another. The stages are for the live performers and live music. In front of each stage are rows of chairs and tables where people sit to order food, drink and watch the performers on stage. You can see the performers walking back and forth from both stages.

Hot pot at Night Bazaar Chiang Rai

In between the stages are the vendors where you can buy clothing, souvenirs or something to eat and drink. A popular dish to eat here is the hot pot, which we highly recommend you should try eating at least once. You will be given a small pot and charcoal, along with various foods. All you have to do is fill the pot with all your favourite ingredients, close the lid and wait for it to cook. I also like the lime with honey and soda drink. The food was very affordable, but it is all mainly Thai food.

This was one of my favourite attractions in Chiang Rai. I loved tasting lots of delicious food and I’ll never get tired watching those beautiful Thai dancers.

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Khun Korn Waterfall

Khun Korn Waterfall in Chiang Rai

#4 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: 9am to 4:30pm daily
Admission fee: none

This is the tallest waterfall in Chiang Rai, standing at 70m tall. It takes approximately 40-60 minutes to drive to the waterfall from Chiang Rai centre. Then, it is a good 3 km, or 30-minute, hike up the trail from the parking lot to this beautiful waterfall.

If you visit this waterfall early and during the workdays, you might be able to have the entire waterfall to yourself. It is a quiet place, which doesn’t get too busy and is away from the city.

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Wat Rong Khun (The White Temple)

Wat Rong Khun (The White Temple)

#3 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: 8am to 5pm daily
Admission fee: Thai nationals or Asians = free, foreigners or non-Asians = 50 THB

About 20 minute drive south of Chiang Rai city lies one of the biggest tourist attractions in Thailand. Wat Rong Khun, or White Temple as it is more commonly known by foreigners, is one of the most popular temples to visit.

The White Temple is an unique and unconventional Buddhist temple. To me, it represents a work of art, an expression more than just a temple. It is privately owned by Chalermchai Kositpipat, who designed and built this work of art. This is the same artist who designed and built the Golden Clock Tower in central Chiang Rai.

Chalermchai Kositpipat has spent over 40 million THB (about $1.2 million USD) on the construction of the White Temple from his own pocket. Today, the work is still on going. If you visit the temple you can still see people repainting, or working around the temple.

There is no entrance fee charged to Thai nationals. However, donations are accepted but must not exceeding 10,000 THB. Foreigner’s must pay a 50 THB entrance fee.

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Golden Clock Tower

Clock Tower in Chiang Rai

#2 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: Open 24/7 but if you visit at 7pm, 8pm or 9pm you will be able to watch the light show.
Admission fee: none

This Golden Clock Tower is a must see if you’re in Chiang Mai. I have never seen anything like this before.

The Golden Clock Tower is located in the heart of the city, in Downtown, not far from the Night Bazaar. Follow the matching street lights and you’ll be guided to the Golden Clock Tower. This is not your regular clock tower; it is a work of art.

You must check out this top attraction at night to admire the light show, which takes place every night at 7pm, 8pm and 9pm. Enjoy listening to the music and watch the pretty lights illuminate the evening sky. If you visit during the daytime, it is not as impressive as the light show during the evenings. You must see it at night. Grab a drink or order some Thai food from one of the many food stalls along the road side and enjoy the light show.

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Wat Huai Pla Kung

#1 Things To Do In Chiang Rai - Wat Huai Pla Kung in Chiang Rai

#1 things to do in Chiang Rai

Operating hours: n/a
Admission fee: none, optional

At the entrance of this attraction stands a huge and spectacular statue of the Bodhisattva (the woman statue). The Thai people call her Chao Mae Kwan Yin. To one side of the statue lies a traditional looking white Thai temple and to the opposite side a 9 Tier Temple. All three structures are beautiful, enhanced by the mountain backdrop.

During my visit, the Chao Mae Kwan Yin statue (the giant white statue) was under construction. However, during the daytime, you can go inside the statue and use the elevator, or the stairs if you choose, to get to the top of the statue. At the top is a lookout window at the forehead of the statue, which you can look through. This will cost you about 40 THB. This statue was one of the largest and most impressive statues I have ever seen.

There were two temples adjacent to the statue. The temple in the center looked to me like a traditional Thai temple. This temple was still under construction at the time of my visit. Plus, it was during the evening, therefore, we weren’t allowed in.

The last temple was the 9 Tier Temple, a 9-storey Chinese style temple. We were allowed to go inside and used the stairs to get to the top of the temple. Inside were many different wooden, hand carved statues of varies Buddha’s.

These astonishing monuments are truly amazing to view from the outside, but even more beautiful inside. They are all well worth a visit and if you’re a Buddhist, this is a must visit if you’re in town.

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Author: k5


Hi, I’m currently living in Thailand. I’m a artist, designer, travel blogger, and sometimes a YouTuber...

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