Photo: Pretty valleys around Mae Salong.

Wat Santikhiri

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It is officially 718 steps up to the pagoda on the hill overlooking town, which boasts stupendous views of the surrounds.

Photo of Wat Santikhiri

Unlike nearby Wat Tha Ton, it doesn’t climb up in convenient stages. A path starts from behind the morning market; the main worshipping hall is at the foot of the hill, and then there’s the stupa with a steep, heavily wooded hillside in between. It goes without saying that the views are amazing but don’t forget that another 718 steps are waiting to take you back down again!

The track leads initially to the small wat itself -- not especially impressive -- and from here you ascend to the spectacular Chedi Phra Boromothat. It is heavily wooded, so other than a few glimpses through the trees you won’t get the full vista until you attain the summit. The chedi is hollow and though devoid of ornamentation inside it does have steps accessing the second floor. The exterior is also relatively plain in decoration: grey with gold leaf spires and flourishes, which is surprisingly toned down for these parts. Trees immediately in front have been cleared to allow an unobstructed view over the surrounds. On busy days there may be a vendor or two in the carpark.

If you’re feeling lazy, a sealed road winds its way some three or four kilometres to the summit. It starts from further up the road to the west of town, down near the hilltribe market. The best times to visit are early morning or late afternoon but if you’re walking, be warned that it’s a tricky path in the dark and if you’re driving, take great care on the very winding and very steep road.

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Location map for Wat Santikhiri

What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Mae Salong.
 Check prices, availability & reviews on Agoda or Booking
 Read up on where to eat on Mae Salong.
 Check out our listings of other things to do in and around Mae Salong.
 Read up on how to get to Mae Salong, or book your transport online with 12Go Asia.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Mae Salong? Please read this.
 Browse tours in Thailand with Tourradar.

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