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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Headline for 10 Things to do on your first visit to Chiang Rai – How to make your first trip to Chiang Rai a memorable experience
Joanna James Joanna James
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10 Things to do on your first visit to Chiang Rai – How to make your first trip to Chiang Rai a memorable experience

The northern Thailand city Chiang Rai is where you can attempt artistic but quirky things. The city is flanked by Laos and Myanmar which is the ideal base for many adventurous activities.


Enjoy art by Thai artists at the Black House

Often called the Black Temple, the Black House is a bunch of wooden houses featuring artworks by contemporary Thai artists – you will see that the most celebrated artist is Thawan Duchanee. There are buildings scattered around which you may find to be a little bizarre.


Visit the White Temple

Wat Rong Khun is one of the main attractions in Chiang Rai. The temple is a surreal white and modern too with an eccentric appeal to it.


The Blue Temple

Rong Suea Ten or the Blue Temple features some exemplary murals that you will find appealing. The brilliant architectural masterpiece is visited by many and especially if this is your first visit, the Blue Temple is a must-see.


Sample the street food

Like every other region in Thailand, Chiang Rai is packed with street food vendors. If you are hungry, and your food budget is not what you'd like it to be – as much as you'd like to dine at one of the Chiang Rai hotels, the likes of Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort for instance – you can simply head over to one of these stalls and taste popular Thai rice noodles and the coconut milk dessert with rice balls and eggs.


Shop at the night markets

For the best but the cheapest retail therapy, visit the night markets which are prevalent in the city just like any other Thai city. There are masses of street vendors with stacks of products on offer. Night markets are the best place for you to buy hand-crafted items, souvenirs and small gift items.


Heard of the hot springs?

Between Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai is Mae Khachan Hot Springs. You can soak your tired feet in the water or lower a basket of eggs to get them cooked So, don't forget to make a stop here if you are travelling between Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai.


Spend your day with Akha Hill tribe

About a century ago, many hill tribes migrated to Northern Thailand from China. Today you can see mud covered houses dotted around the area which is the primary attraction in the region.


Walk among the flowers at Mae Fah Luang Garden

The garden stretches over a land space of 10 acres which is packed with trees and bushes that bear beautiful flowers. There are different forms of flowers that come up to 100 in number. In the evening, you can bring your partner with you for a nice evening stroll among the beautiful flora and fauna!


Make a stop at Princess Mother's home

The mother of two Thai kings – though she wasn't a queen herself – used to live at the Doi Tung Royal Villa. During her time there, she was focused on social services, and as a result, she tried to rid the area of human trafficking and drug cartels. If you drop in at the villa which is built in the Swiss architectural style, you can witness her numerous projects aimed at the well-being of the society.


The Tree Top Adventure Park

The beautiful surroundings of the park are what attract people. You can see rope bridges, zip lines and swings – take a walk 30 metres above ground among the treetops to fully take in the nature you are surrounded by.