Tham Chiang Dao, the area’s trademark tourist attraction, consists of more than 12 kilometres of underground passages and caverns, though much of it is not accessible to tourists. In fact, the caverns are so numerous, and the passages so complex, that visitors are not allowed to enter without a guide — save for a couple of permanently lit areas — because being lost in a massive system of ... Read more about Chiang Dao Cave .
There are some easy hikes you can do on your own around Chiang Dao, such as a marked nature trail or a climb up to a mountain temple. Like much of Thailand's mountainous north -- Doi Inthanon, Doi Ang Khang, Pha Hom Pok), the area is renowned as a bird watching mecca. The cool upper elevations form the southern limits for many Eurasian temperate species, with the warm lower slopes being the ... Read more about Hiking .
Chiang Dao is home to several temples that are worth a look while you're having a wander around town. Wat Mae It boasts some unusual sculptures while Wat Don Sri Sa-ard is a particularly beautifully set ... Read more about Temples .
As with just about every town in the country, from the very early morning through to the evening, Chiang Dao offers a few local markets to explore and enjoy -- mostly for their people-watching and snack opportunities. The ones you'll most likely encounter are the morning and night markets, but there is also a daytime ... Read more about Markets .
One of Thailand’s larger national parks, at 1,225 square kilometres, but also one of its least visited, remote Pha Daeng lies in the very far north of Chiang Mai province and abuts the Burmese border. To the east, the park includes the southern slopes of Doi Ang Khang and to the west stretches almost as far as Wiang Haeng. It incorporates parts of Chiang Dao district and this is where the ... Read more about Pha Daeng National Park .
Jutting steeply into the sky, and clearly visible from town, this limestone behemoth -- the third largest mountain in the country -- casts a regal presence over the valley. If you’re considering a hike to the summit of Doi Chiang Dao, or indeed other hikes in the area, then any guesthouse will be glad to help. Since guides and entry permits are compulsory for hikes to the mountaintop, ... Read more about Doi Chiang Dao .
Head north out of Chiang Dao on Route 1322 until Thailand runs out and you hit the Burmese frontier. There you’ll find the remote, border village of Arunothai. It’s around 50 kilometres along a great road — to be strictly accurate, Arunothai is actually some three kilometres shy of the border at Lak ... Read more about Arunothai .