The Chiang Dao homestays
We have made many trips involving communities in the Chiang Dao district. We have developed close relationships with these communities. There are Dara-ang (Palong or Palaung), Akha, Karen, Lahu and Lisu people living in this area. It is the district with the highest ethnic diversity in North Thailand. We are still making lots of trips in this area because it is very scenic and there are many forest trails. Chiang Dao homestays are one of our projects.
Homestay of Lung Keng
Lung Keng is Dara-ang. He and his family escaped political violence in his country of birth Myanmar in the mid-1980s. He has been operating his homestay since the early 2000s. In those days Chiang Dao district attracted many tourists because there was at least one elephant camp that offered elephant rides. In 2012 these camps closed. There are no elephant rides on offer anymore.
Because there were fewer tourists visiting Chiang Dao, the homestay of Lung Keng deteriorated. We have invested 500USD to improve the homestay and will promote Lung Keng’s homestay. The homestay is located in Huay Pong village where Red Lahu and Dara-ang people are living together. “Lung”, by the way, is a Thai word to call men who are over 50 years old.
Homestay of Lung Boon
Lung Boon and his family also escaped from political violence in the mid-1980s. We have sent many guests to his homestay which is in the Dara-ang village Mae Chon. In 2019 we installed a traditional rice pounder next to this house. There wasn’t any in the village. Now we can show the traditional way of rice pounding to guests. We also financed the construction of another western toilet and shower at the homestay so Lung Boon can accommodate student groups. Total investment: 350USD.
Homestay of Sukhum
Sukhum is one of our trekking guides. Sukhum is Karen and married Ong, a Dara-ang girl. They have two children. They live in the Dara-ang village Mae Chon. Sukhum and Ong have about nine rai (14400 sqm) on which they have planted fruit trees and lots of other crops. Before the Covid-19 crisis, we had plans to support Sukhum and Ong financially in the establishment of the homestay. We hope the situation improves and we can then pick up this project again.