8. Chiang Rai
Chiang Rai is located in the midst of mountains and hills and is said to have retained much of the ancient culture and tradition and is the best place to experience the local and authentic Thai living. Popular attractions include the White Temple, the only handcrafted temple in Thailand and exotic and beautiful botanical garden Doi Tung, Hill tribes and the National Museum. You can also enjoy elephant riding, petting, and feeding and take advantage of the rich handicrafts items for sale like clothing, jewelry, and foodstuff. Awesome rock formation and caves can also be seen from Big Cave and Fish Cave to name a few. You can also explore the vast Mekong River riding on a long propeller boat with other tourists.
Doi Tung is another popular tourist spot in Chiang Rai, a Buddhist shrine built in 911 AD located on a sacred hilltop which claims that the collar bones of the Lord Buddha is enshrined in the pagodas. Many tourists and Thai locals flock to this place and give homage to their god Buddha. Also, many small and traditional villages can be passed by on your way up to the hilltop where you can enjoy shopping for handwoven textiles and hand made silver jewelry. Another tourist spot of Chiang Rai which you must not miss is called Doi Mae Salong or more known as Thailand’s little Switzerland. Located 6,000 feet above sea level, the air is cool throughout the year and many dwellers are of Chinese descendants.