Day 1 Chiang Mai – Doi Inthanon
Spectacular waterfalls of Doi Inthanon National Park
Your guide and driver will meet you at the hotel for your two-day/one-night tour Visit Doi Inthanon and Ancient Lanna Cities trip. We continue further into the Doi Inthanon national park. Our first stop will be the spectacular Vachirathan Waterfall, the most famous waterfall in the park. Next up is the Sirithan Waterfall, often overlooked due to time constraints. We love this little waterfall. It is only a short walk to the viewpoint. We continue to the summit of the highest mountain in Thailand. We will visit the monument of King Inthawichayanon, whose ashes are interned here.
Angka and Pha Dok Siew Nature Trails
Near the summit, we will hike the short but beautiful Angka Nature Trail. The trail leads us through a mossy cloud forest. Next, We will visit the two chedis erected in honor of his majesties King Bhumibol and Queen Sirikit. We enjoy a late lunch near the Park Headquarters. After our hike, we go to our accommodation for tonight, a small bungalow in the Karen village Ban Mae Klang Luang. You will have your private room with a toilet. After having settled a bit, we take off for the Pha Dok Siew Waterfall trail.
Most visitors to the Doi Inthanon National Park are day-trippers out of Chiang Mai. By this time of the day, they will be on their way back. Because of this, there will be few people on the trail at this time of the day. We walk down along this beautiful waterfall until we hit the trail that will lead us back to Ban Mae Klang Luang. Here we will enjoy a cup of locally grown coffee. We retire to our overnight bungalow and have dinner.
For more background on Doi Inthanon National Park, look here.
Day 2 Doi Inthanon – Lamphun – Chiang Mai
Ancient Wiang Tha Kan
After breakfast and a delicious cup of coffee, we descend the mountain. Let’s take a beautiful and unusual route back to Chiang Mai! We will follow the Ping River until we reach the turnoff of Wiang Tha Kan, a ruined city that predates Chiang Mai. Here we will visit the most significant ruins: Wiang Klang, Wat Ton Kork, and Wat Gu Mai Daeng.
We continue to Wat Phra Phutthabat Tak Pha. This amazing temple complex consists of two parts: the Wat Phra Phutthabat Tak Pha at ground level and the Phrathat Chedi Si Kruba on the mountain. The temple at ground level has a footprint of the Buddha. It is an interesting story. After seeing the footprint, we walk past the monk’s quarter to the stairs leading up to the Prathat Chedi Si Kruba. There are 469 steps…..The view from the mountain is fantastic. If the skies are clear, you can see Doi Suthep and Doi Inthanon mountains.
Lamphun, capital of the Hariphunchai Kingdom
Continue to Lamphun, certainly one of our favorite towns in North Thailand. We briefly stop at Wat Ku Kut with its ancient chedi before we continue to Wat Hariphunchai, one of the most revered temples of the North. Opposite the temple is a lovely market on the covered bridge over the Kuang River. We cross this bridge and have lunch in a unique restaurant. You will find out why. Lamphun is the town of the Tai Yong people. They migrated more than 200 years ago from Muang Yong in Shan State, Myanmar. It is a fascinating story. The Yai Yong people are, in fact, Tai Lue people.
The House of Many Elephants
One of the most famous Tai Yong people is Phet Viriya, the master carver of wooden elephants. His museum and atelier are our last destinations of today. If we are lucky, Phet himself is there. His atelier Baan Jang Nak, the House of Many Elephants, is a fantastic place. Join us, and you will see for yourself. The paintings of Petch that depict the trek of his ancestors from Muang Yong to Lanna are very much worthwhile. Baan Jang Nak is the perfect ending to a great trip. We will drop you off at the hotel at the end of the afternoon. We hoped you enjoyed our visit to Doi Inthanon and Ancient Lanna Cities tour.