Top 10 Chiang Rai Holiday Attractions in Northern Thailand39
BY Guinness Bear

Top 10 Chiang Rai Holiday Attractions in Northern Thailand

Most people visiting Thailand for a holiday tend to visit the more trodden paths of Phuket, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon (Bangkok), Pattaya, and Koh Samui. However, Chiang Rai is one of the most intriguing places in Thailand to visit in the northeast 🥇

Many people see Chiang Mai as the most popular holiday destination in the northeast. But if you want to push it to its limits, we suggest you partake in a Chiang Rai Holiday. ‘The northernmost of Thailand, the border of three countries, the land of Lanna kingdom, and home of Doi Tung Pagoda’ is Chiang Rai’s provincial motto 🏆

There are many tourist destinations nestled among the mountainous terrains. The region has a cool climate and friendly yet unique culture. Chiang Rai is ideal for visitors to experience the beauty of nature and the region's culture. Read on to discover some of the most popular places 🏅 of interest for your Chiang Rai holiday to ensure you visit the most awe-inspiring places in northern Thailand 🧔 



#10 Wat Rong Khun (White Temple)

The notable Thai painter-turned-architect Chalermchai Kositpipat designed Wat Rong Khun. He dedicated this temple to the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej 🧔 Wat Rong Khun has become a must-see place for enjoying a Chiang Rai holiday.

More well-known among foreigners as the White Temple, Wat Rong Khun is an unconventional Buddhist temple in Chiang Rai. The main building is painted white to symbolize Buddha’s purity, covered in mirrored mosaics, and beautifully sparkling in the sun 🥇 The whole compound, with nearby ponds full of colorful carp, looks picturesque, like heaven-on-earth.

Due to its dedication to the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, it ranked tenth on my list of the top 10 Chiang Rai holiday attractions.


The Bear Travel Directions:

You will find that Wat Rong Khun is located at 772 km. on Phaholyothin Road. Parking spaces are available at the entrance of the temple. 



#9 Wat Rong Suea Ten (Blue Temple)

The Wat Rong Suea Ten, also known as Blue Temple, is one of the recent monuments constructed in Chiang Rai. However, the Wat Rong Suea Ten has been built over the ruins of an ancient temple abandoned over a century ago 🧔 This temple is dedicated to tigers that once roamed around these areas and jumped over the river. Thus, Suea Ten means "Dancing Tiger."

Wat Rong Suea Ten has magnificent designs on its facade, roofs, and walls. The contrast is created by golden-blue colors that you can't ignore 🥇 However, the most noteworthy sight in the temple is the statue of the white Buddha. Although this Temple was recently constructed, it doesn't receive many tourists, making the surroundings calm. Therefore, you can have a peaceful tour of Wat Rong Suea Ten.


The Bear Travel Directions:

Wat Rong Suea Ten is a few km outside Chiang Rai. From the King Mengrai Monument, take road No. 1 to exit the city and cross the river, Kok. You will have a sign indicating the Temple on the left less than 1 kilometer after passing the river.



#8 Singha Park Chiang Rai

Singha Park was formerly known as Boon Rawd Farm and is a popular destination in Chiang Rai. The golden Singha statue, Singha Park’s landmark, elegantly stands amid the lush green hill, perfect for photos 🧔 Opposite the statue, you will find the center decorated with flowers where food and beverages, including Singha’s products, are for sale. You could book the touring car to show you around, but make sure you book in advance during the busy times of the year.

A tour guide will take you around and pull you over at specific points to take photos. Inside the park, there are a lot of exciting sites 🏅 These include a tea plantation, paddy field, monkey apple farm, big ponds, and Bhubirom Restaurant, which features a beautiful 360-degree viewpoint overlooking the tea plantations along the hills.


The Bear Travel Directions:

Singha Park is at 99 Moo 1, Denha – Dongmada Road, Mae Kon, Muang Chiang Rai, Chiang Rai 57000. Drive through Wat Rong Khun for another 6 km, then turn right at the T-junction. Drive for another 2 km, and you’ll see the entrance sign on the left-hand side. 



#7 Phu Chi Fa

Phu Chi Fa is located in the National Forest Reserve of Pa Mae Ing and Pa Mae Ngao 🏅 It is a cliff that provides stunning views of the island, beaches, and mountains in the surroundings. The peaks around Phu Chi Fa are 1,200 to 1,600 meters above sea level. The path that leads to this viewpoint has mangroves and lush greenery and will keep you amazed throughout your hike. The best time to visit Phu Chi Fa is between November and January when every flower blossoms 🧔


The Bear Travel Directions:

When you leave Chiang Rai southbound on Route 1 (Phahonyothin Road), take the turn off for Road 1020, leading you south and then east. Then take a left to 1021. Follow the 1021 – you will begin to see signs for Phu Chi Fa and take a left turnoff for 1155 before reaching the town of Ngao, and a little ahead is Phu Chi Fa forest park.



#6 Museum of Field Marshal Por. Piboonsongkram

This museum attraction was formerly built as a guesthouse for Field Marshal Por. Piboonsongkram, during his position as the Prime Minister, when was on duty in Chiang Rai. This Swiss cottage-inspired house has become a military museum-cum-learning center featuring war and military history. The museum has been divided into 4 different zones. Along the ground floor, you will find the history of the Chiang Rai military and the history of WWII arms. The second at the foyer exhibits homage to King Bhumibol Adulyadej 🥇

On the top floor at the left end is the former room of Field Marshal Por. Piboonsongkram, exhibiting his history and glorious biography. The center room on the east side shows the history of Chiang Rai and The Greater East Asia War. On the top floor at the right end, you can find the history of the Thai people. The surroundings are shady and evergreen, featuring English botanical gardens at the front. There’s a little coffee shop for visitors 🧔 


The Bear Travel Directions:

The Museum of Field Marshal Por. Piboonsongkram is in the Doi Chomtong community, Vieng, Muang Chiang Rai, and Chiang Rai. The entrance is in front of Mengrai Military Camp. 



#5 Wat Huay Pla Kang

Like any other religious monument, the Wat Huay Pla Kang (Goddess of Mercy Chiang Rai) is built on spectacular architecture reflecting Chinese styling. Wat Huay Pla Kang is known as the 9 Tier Temple due to its 9-story Pagoda. When you visit Wat Huay Pla Kang, the scintillating views will take your breath away 🧔

Because it is built atop a mountain in Muang County, the lush green views surround this place. The massive Guan Yin Statue is admirable and one of the astounding masterpieces that can be explored from the inside. You can climb the inside of the statue by an elevator, reach the forehead, and look out through the openings 🏅


The Bear Travel Directions:

Situated in the Ban Huay Pla Kung region of Muang district, Chiang Rai, Wat Huay Pla Kang is located approximately eight kilometers to the north of the central area of Chiang Rai town.



#4 King Bhumibol Adulyadej's Footprint Pavilion

King Bhumibol Adulyadej's-Footprint Pavilion is a unique point of interest when visiting the most popular places in Chiang Rai during your holiday. This one and only pavilion displaying His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s footprint is at the Doi Yot, Mengrai Military Camp. This pavilion is also where people can learn about the history of the battle between the Royal Thai Army and the communists at Doi Yao – Doi Pha Mon, Amphoe Khun Tan.

On February 27, 1982, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, together with HM Queen Sirikit and the Royal Family, visited the local people and his army at the Phraya Pipat base on Doi Yao 🏅 On that auspicious occasion, His Majesty King Bhumibol gave his footprint stamp on the plaster as morale for his people. 

The footprint is installed at the Pavilion in front of the Chiangrai Military Camp and the hall on Doi Yot. Parking spaces are available, overlooking the beautiful views of Chiang Rai town. This place is extraordinary because it has the footprint of one of the Greatest Kings in Thailand’s history, which places it at number four on my list.


The Bear Travel Directions:

Rop Wiang Sub-district, Mueang Chiang Rai District, Chiang Rai 57000, Thailand.



#3 Pong Phrabat Hot Springs

After taking a break from temple visits and sightseeing in Chiang Rai, you can spend some quiet and relaxing time at the Pong Phrabat Hot Springs. It's a place not to be missed, and you can enjoy some time away from the city in the middle of nature 🧔 

If you are with your family, you can enjoy the top-class facilities at Pong Phrabat Hot Springs, such as private rooms, hot baths, and bathrooms. In addition, you can make your day trip even more exciting by visiting the Pong Phrabat waterfalls close to the hot springs 🥇 The facility charges THB 20 per person for the pool.


The Bear Travel Directions:

Take Highway No. 1 North-East (towards the Golden Triangle) to the village of Ban Du and turn left here after 2 and a half kilometers to see the fork, Hot Springs.



#2 Choui Fong Tea Plantation

Not only regarded as one of the leading entrepreneurs in the tea farm industry but Choui Fong Tea Plantation is also set as the shooting scene in a popular TV soap opera 🏅 Choui Fong Tea Farm is managed under the corporation of Choui Fong Tea CO., LTD. This is one of the biggest tea producers and exporters in Chiang Rai, shipping to various countries, mainly Europe, the USA, Taiwan, and Japan.

A number of tea farms have been beautifully planted along and up the mountain ridges, making the whole area picturesque. It’s just a little flaw: visitors are not allowed to visit the tea manufacturing plant. However, there’s a little tea shop selling hot and cold drinks from various kinds of tea and a wide range of desserts.

One should not miss ordering something and sitting by the balcony. Watch the beautiful tea farms below, as the site is 1,200 meters above sea level, with an area of over 600 rai. 

The Bear Travel Directions:

Choui Fong Tea Plantation is located in Baan Phraya Prai, Therdtai, Mae Fah Luang District, and Chiang Rai (sharing the same entrance as Doi Mae Salong). 



#1 Doi Tung Mountain

Doi Tung was once notorious for its big land deforestation for opium farms. That was before the late Her Royal Highness Srinakarindra, Princess Mother of Thailand, turned the whole land into a usable plantation for highland locals 🧔 She named it the Doi Tung Development Royal Project.

Nowadays, Doi Tung is a popular destination for Thai and foreigners on a Chiang Rai holiday, mainly because of the beautiful scenery and many interesting sites, including the 10-rai Doi Tung Palace (Phra Tamnak Doi Tung) and the royal villa situated on the slopes of the adjacent Pa Kluay Reservoir. Here, you will find an extensive variety of orchards planted from places such as Sylvia, Petunia, Begonia, roses, and Datura. At the center of the gardens, you will also find the statue of ‘Continuity’ designed by notable artist Mesiem Yipinsoi. One of the most popular attractions is the Phra That Doi Tung Holy Relic. This is an old religious site atop the mountain. 

Mount Doi Tung takes first place on this list because, with the blessings and efforts of the late Her Royal Highness Srinakarindra, Princess Mother of Thailand, this place transformed and is one of the most visited places in Chiang Rai 🏆

The Bear Travel Directions:

Doi Tung is west of Highway 1 between Mae Chan and Mae Sai.



In terms of stunning natural beauty, not many places in Thailand can match a Chiang Rai holiday. If you want to learn and understand more about the historical roots of the Lanna empire and the local Buddhist culture, a visit to Chiang Rai is essential 🧔

So keep enjoying the stunningly beautiful Chiang Rai until I return with another top 10 places to spend your holidays in Thailand.



Written by
Guinness Bear

Hi! I'm Guinness Bear, your go-to travel companion, always on the move to uncover the most breathtaking destinations. Join me as I share my recommendations for must-visit spots and memorable experiences. Dive into my immersive "Top 10" series, and let's explore the world together!


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