Chiang Mai

chiang mai 400
Chiang Mai Temples
Photo by: leozaza, Creative Commons

Thailand on your mind? Where do you start a trip to a land as vast and as enchanting as Thailand? If you desire sun, sand and solitude in the beautiful, unspoiled islands and beaches, Thailand will not disappoint. On the other hand, if you happen to be a visitor who desires to experience something mystical, then Chiang Mai’s temples that seem to be frozen in time with an old-world feel are a must-see.

Chiang Mai excites the senses with its spectacular scenery and centuries of history. That Chiang Mai is picturesque and exotic – with rolling hills, serene lakes and cascading waterfalls, and majestic mountains — is just the tip of the iceberg. The city also basks in the golden glow of temples. Add to these the savory cuisine, the amiable people, the relaxing boat villages (or pulsating nightlife), and you have all the ingredients for a pleasurable stay.

Chiang Mai’s temple attractions may best be described in one word: amazing. With its glorious sunset to the intriguing site where ashes of a previous royal family remain, to centuries-old Buddha metal images, Wat Suan Dok beckons. There’s also the ancient Wat Chuang Man that’s known to date back to 1296, where Chiang Mai’s sovereign founder resided. Another temple visitors shouldn’t miss is the Wat Phra Singh, which lies on a compound with a beautiful chapel with remarkable murals and woodcarvings. If you’re interested in authentic Thai history & culture, the Chiang Mai National Museum — with its ancient artifacts, art works, Buddha images and combat weaponry – will be worth visiting. Meantime, shopaholics will most likely be delighted with the quality handicrafts at the bustling city emporium or night market.

Indeed, Chiang Mai is a jewel waiting to be discovered by first-time visitors, or those who did not have the time to get past other popular destinations like Phuket and Koh Samui during their first sojourn.

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