Our Chiang Mai Trekking Areas
Table of Contents
Our Chiang Mai Trekking Areas – introduction
On this page, we list the Chiang Mai trekking areas where we take our guests trekking, bamboo rafting, and other activities. Most of these areas are national parks and some we call trekking areas. In all these areas we have organized trips for a long time and our guides know the trails and communities.
The Doi Suthep-Pui National Park
The Doi Suthep-Pui National Park is an outstanding trekking area. There are many trails in this fantastic national park which is on the doorstep of Chiang Mai. Doi Suthep-Pui National Park has everything: beautiful forest, great views, waterfalls, Hmong villages, Buddhist temples, flower gardens, and lots of history. We can also highly recommend spending a night on the mountain. The historic Opium Trail is one of the best day treks you can make out of Chiang Mai.
Doi Inthanon National Park
Doi Inthanon is also nicknamed the “Roof of Thailand. It is the highest mountain in the country. Doi Inthanon National Park is probably the most popular protected area in Thailand. Especially in the cold season, the national park attracts many visitors. Most of them come on a day tour and hike one of two very popular and beautiful trails. The Hmong and the Karen tribes respectively manage the Kew Mae Pan and Pha Dok Siew trails. We love these two trails but there are many other great trails in this park.
The Chiang Dao Trekking Area
The Chiang Dao trekking area is another of our favorite areas. It is quite different from others because of the diversity of tribal villages. There are Akha, Palong, Lisu, Lahu and Karen villages in the Chiang Dao district. We support several homestays in this trekking area.
Thailand’s second-highest mountain, Doi Luang Chiang Dao, is also in this area. In the past you could hike to the summit of Doi Luang Chiang Dao and spend the night in tents just under the summit. Conquering Doi Luang Chiang Dao is a challenge but in recent years it has become more difficult. For the past couple of years authorities closed the third-highest mountain of Thailand and didn’t allow hiking to the summit. Hiking to the summit of Doi Luang Chiang Dao is possible again in the dry season but it is notoriously difficult to book. It is such a hassle that we decided not to offer it again.
Huai Nam Dang National Park
The Huai Nam Dang National park is northwest of Chiang Mai. For many years it has been a very popular trekking area. Most of the villages are from the Karen tribe but there are also Lahu and Lisu villages in the park. The scenery is very spectacular. It is a mountainous park so prepare yourself for some serious workouts. Most of the trekkings end with a trip by bamboo raft on the Taeng River. This is the best and most exciting bamboo rafting in North Thailand.
The Mae Wang Trekking Area
The Mae Wang Trekking area is adjacent to the Doi Inthanon National Park. Most of the villages are from the Karen hill tribe. It is a mountainous national park with some very nice waterfalls, a Royal Project, and nice bamboo rafting on the Wang River. In and around the protected area there are a number of elephant camps. The Tong Bai Elephant Foundation, home of the wonderful Tong Bai Elephant Tour, is based in the Mae Wang area. Our multiple-day Doi Inthanon trekkings end in the Mae Wang National Park.
Chaeson National Park
The Chaeson National Park is a great national park. The village Mae Kampong has become a very popular destination. We use this village as the jump-off point for treks into Chaeson National Park. The boundary of the park is only a short drive from Ban Mae Kampong. From there we trek to the summit of Doi Mon Lan and descend through the forest back to Ban Mae Kampong. The Chaeson National Park is very mountainous so prepare yourself for some serious trekking. The forest is relatively undisturbed and well-protected. There are no hill tribe villages in the park.