The Amazing Tribal Diversity of Chiang Dao

Price per person in THB
2 persons 3 persons 4 persons 5 persons 6 persons 7 persons 8 persons
8,900  7,400 6,300  5,700  5,200 4,900 4,700

During this three-day private tour you will explore the beautiful mountains of Northern Thailand, home to a variety of tribal people. You will visit the Karen and the Dara-ang. Your overnights in the Dara-ang villages will support local people. We have been working with these villages for a long time. We consider this one of our Chiang Mai jungle trekking and forest bathing tours.

Total driving time:
Day one: two hours
Day two: none
Day three: two hours

From: 8,900.00 ฿

Palm trees rice fields and mountains
View on Doi Luang Chiang Dao

Day 1: Chiang Mai- Palong village

Bamboo rafting on the Taeng River

This trip is a private trekking tour. Your trekking guide will pick you up at your hotel or guesthouse for your Chiang Dao trekking. Here you can find more about the history and background of hill tribe trekking in Chiang Mai. We will drive into the mountains. On the way, you’ll stop at the Mae Ma Lai market. Your guide will do some shopping in the coming days. He will take you along and will explain the different ingredients used in the Thai kitchen. Then, continue to a riverside camp on the Tang River, where you will experience a traditional bamboo raft trip. Continue by car to Chiang Dao, where we will start trekking.

Royal Project at Paang Daeng Nai

We will start our trek with the hike to the Palong village Paang Daeng Nai, which is part of one of the Royal projects. Here the guide will explain this agricultural project. Lunch will be in the village. Only a handful of Palong communities in Northern Thailand, and the Palong tribe only recently moved from Myanmar to Thailand. The women wear a distinctive costume, mostly in red, with rattan hoops and a silver belt worn around the waist.

Belt detail of Palong people Palong Hill Tribe
Detail of waistband of Silver Palong woman, Mae Chon, Chiang Dao

Overnight at the village

Your guide will introduce you to the Thai kitchen and explain all the different herbs we use for Thai dishes. After that, you can help him to cook dinner. After dinner, he will take you to one of the local houses to tell you stories about the daily life of the Palong and the village’s history.
Overnight will be at Palong hill tribe village Ban Pang Daeng Nai

Day 2: Baan Pang Daeng Nai – Ban Mae Chon

Great trekking

Today is the second day of your Chiang Dao private trekking. After the sounds of nature and the locals woke you up, your guide will prepare breakfast. After breakfast, your guide will show you around the village. He will explain the village shrine and the ‘huja rawl,’ the village heart. After this, we will continue our trek through the forest for about 3-4 hours to another Palong village. Your guide will take his time to explain the natural environment. We invite you to recognize wild ginger, rattan, and the pitcher plant in the forest and tell you about bamboo and its many uses.

Mae Chon, a village of the Palong people

We walk out of the forest into Mae Chon, another Palong village. Once we have arrived in the village, you can rest for a while or play with the children. Your guide will prepare your evening meal for you all, and if you like, you can join him in cooking dinner. At the campfire after dinner, it’s time to share some more stories with your guide and the local Palong people.
Overnight will be at Palong hill tribe village Ban Mae Chon.


Three women in traditional dress and one man
Palong weavers and their textiles, Mae Chon, Chiang Dao district

Day 3: Ban Mae Chon – Chiang Mai

Spirit Temple at Lahu village

It is the third day of your Chiang Dao private trekking. After the sounds of nature and the locals woke you up, your guide will prepare breakfast. After breakfast, we will trek for about 2,5 hours to the Karen village Thakilek. We will stop at a Lahu village, where we will visit the fascinating spirit temple. After this, we will continue trekking to the Karen village.

Elephant Poo Poo Paper Park

Drive to the foot of Doi Luang Chiang Dao, the 3rd highest mountain in Thailand. Here we will have lunch in a local restaurant. Visit the famous Caves of Chiang Dao. Drive back to Chiang Mai. The last stop today will be the Elephant Poo Poo Paper Park. During an excellent self-guided tour, you will see all the stages of the production of paper from elephant dung and learn about the history of papermaking. Return to Chiang Mai. It is the end of your Chiang Dao private trekking.

colorful sa paper drying in the sun Elephant Poo Poo Paper Park
Elephant Poo Poo Paper Park


Comfortable transportation

Mae Malai local market

Whitewater rafting

Great trekking

Palong tribal culture

Great food

Two overnights in Palong villages

Local life

Fruit and vegetable gardens

Lahu village and spirit temple

Karen tribal culture

Chiang Dao Cave

Elephant Poo Poo Paper Park


What is included?

English speaking guide
Transportation by AC minibus
Accommodation in a local house
One breakfast, two lunches, and one dinner
Drinking water during meals
Coffee and tea
Rubber boat whitewater rafting (about 30 mins)
Elephant Poo Poo Paper Park
Chiang Dao Cave
Limited Medical Insurance
Use of sheet bag or sleeping bag
Use of Mosquito net
Use of Backpack (on request)
Toilet paper & Soap
A flashlight is provided in the village

What is not included?

Other drinks except for water during meals
Personal expenses


Day 1
08.00 – Departure from hotel
09.00 – Visit a local market
09.15 – Drive to the White water rafting camp
09.45 – Arrive at the camp
10.00 – Start white water rafting
10.40 – Finish the rafting trip
11.00 – Departure to Chiang Dao
12.00 – Lunch at a local restaurant
13.00 – Start hiking about two to three hours
16.00 – Arrival at the Palong village where we stay overnight
16.30 – Visit around the village
17.00 – Help guide cooking dinner
18.00 – Dinner at the village before free at leisure

Day 2
08.30 – Start hiking for about three to four hours to another Palong village
12.00 – Picnic lunch in the jungle
13.30 – Arrival at the village, rest and relax
14.30 – Visit around the village, meet local people, and join activities at the village
17.00 – Help guide cooking dinner
18.00 – Dinner at the village before free at leisure

Day 3
09.00 – Start hiking for about one hour to a Lahu village
10.00 – Visit the Lahu village and spirit temple
10.30 – Continue hiking for half an hour to Karen village
11.00 – Visit the village
11.30 – Departure from the village
12.30 – Lunch at a local restaurant
13.30 – Drive to visit Elephant Poo Poo Paper Camp
14.30 – Visit Elephant Poo Poo Paper Camp
15.00 – Drive back to Chiang Mai
16.00 – Drop off at the hotel

What to bring

Short sleeve shirts for the daytime (bring a spare one, just in case)
Long sleeves for the evening (especially in the winter Nov – Feb it can be a bit cold)
Shoes with good grip (especially in the rainy season from May-Sep)
A hat or cap
Flip flops
Your personal toiletries
Personal medication
Fully charged batteries or even an extra battery for your camera.
1000-1500 Thai Baht per person in small notes (not bigger than 500 Thai Baht and plenty of 100 Thai Baht notes). This is for souvenirs, drinks, and tips.