Best Day Trips from Chiang Mai

By Viator, December 2013

4.5 96 Reviews | Add your review

Chiang Mai, Thailand’s northern temple-filled city, is popular with travelers for the wealth of experiences available there. There’s plenty to do in the city, but some of the area’s best attractions involve half or full day trips from Chiang Mai.

Chiang Rai and the Golden Triangle

One of the most popular day trips from Chiang Mai is to the Chiang Rai region and the Golden Triangle. From here, you can see the point where Thailand, Laos and Myanmar meet. The scenery on the drive there is beautiful, and you’ll can make stops at some local villages in the area as well.

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

Just outside of Chiang Mai, perched on the peak of Doi Suthep mountain, sits Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, the city’s most famous Buddhist temple. Once you climb the 306 steps up the mountain to the temple, you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of the city. You can see Doi Suthep temple on a half-day trip, and it’s usually better in the morning before it gets too hot.


Just 16 miles (26 kilometers) south of Chiang Mai sits Lamphun, Thailand’s oldest continuously occupied city. The city is famous for housing one of the most beautiful temples in all of Thailand — the temple Doi Suthep was modeled after — Wat Phra That Hariphunchai.


If you’re interested in learning more about Burmese Buddhism, then take a day trip to Lampang to tour the city’s many Burmese-style temples. Lampang is also famous for its horse-drawn carriages and the National Elephant Institute.

Tha Thon Hill Tribes

Northern Thailand is home to many indigenous hill tribes, each with its own distinct culture. If you’re in Chiang Mai, you should try to leave at least one day for a trek to visit a few of these tribes. One of the most famous, the Karen Tribe, are known for their elongated necks.

Contributed by Lydia Schrandt

Tours & Tickets

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Chiang Rai and Golden Triangle Day Tour from Chiang Mai

4 star rating: Recommended 30 Reviews

A chance to visit the famous Golden Triangle where the borders of Thailand, Burma and Laos meet! An early morning drive through beautiful scenery, with a stop ...  Read more

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Duration: 12 hours (approx.)

From USD $96.68

Private Tour: Hill Tribes and the Golden Triangle Tour from Chiang Rai

4.5 star rating: Recommended 2 Reviews

Start your full-day privately guided excursion to Mae Chan to visit the Yao and the Akha hilltribe villages from Chiang Rai. Your private guide offers you ...  Read more

Location: Chiang Rai, Thailand
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $92.82

Long-Neck Karen Hill Tribe Tour Including Elephant Ride from Chiang Mai

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 8 Reviews

Ride an elephant through the forest on a day trip from Chiang Mai! After watching majestic elephants at work at Maesa Elephant Camp, hop aboard and enjoy a ...  Read more

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Duration: 10 hours (approx.)

From USD $109.14

Elephant Trek, Rafting and Hilltribe Village Tour from Chiang Mai

4.5 star rating: Recommended 34 Reviews

Approximately 60 Kilometers north of Chiang Mai, situated on the banks of the Ping River is Chiang Dao Elephant Camp. In an unspoiled setting, marvel at these ...  Read more

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Duration: 9 hours (approx.)

From USD $100.55

Wat Doi Suthep Temple and White Meo Hilltribe Village Half-Day Tour from Chiang Mai

4 star rating: Recommended 7 Reviews

An inspiring trip to the mountains! Relax while you are driven up to the slopes of Doi Suthep Peak to visit a Meo hilltribe and observe their simple way of ...  Read more

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $54.14

Private Tour: Lamphun Day Trip by Train from Chiang Mai

Travel by local train to Lamphun, the ancient capital of the Hariphunchai Kingdom, on this comprehensive private tour from Chiang Mai. During your in-depth ...  Read more

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Duration: 8 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $43.51

Private Tour: Cycling and Zipline Adventure from Chiang Mai

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 3 Reviews

Take an adventurous bike and zipline private tour through rural Chiang Mai, one of Thailand’s largest cities! Spend the morning cycling through the ...  Read more

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Duration: 9-10 hours

From USD $132.13

Chiang Mai Elephants at Work Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 12 Reviews

A pleasant morning is spent in the company of the magnificent gentle giants of Chiang Mai - the Elephant.

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $36.74

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