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Our most recommended Chiang Rai Activities

From Chiang Mai: Chiang Rai Temples Small Group/Private Tour

1. From Chiang Mai: Chiang Rai Temples Small Group/Private Tour

What is a TripGuru Signature Experience? Unique itineraries crafted alongside famous travel bloggers and local guides Small groups only: no buses, no crowds, 8 travelers maximum Solo travelers don’t pay more – flat rates per person Quirky, charming, and creative are the words used to describe Chiang Rai by travelers and locals alike. The sights to be found here are by no means anything like the ones you’ll see in Chiang Mai, the city’s more popular sister. Before we begin temple sightseeing, we’ll break up the long three-hour drive at the Mae Khachan Hot Spring to relax, dip our feet in the steaming mineral water, maybe eat a snack, or walk around the surrounding gardens. We’ll then move on to the main attraction: the White Temple. If you’re looking for ancient ruins, you might be surprised to find a modern architectural masterpiece designed and built by local artist Chaloemchai Khositphiphat. He was rumored to have spent over THB 40 million of his own money to create this unconventional art exhibit to gain immortal life! After exploring this local wonder, we’ll have a quick lunch before heading to our next stop... The Blue Temple or Wat Rong Seua Ten literally translates to ‘temple of the dancing tiger.’ It was built on a site where tigers were said to have jumped over the river. If the White Temple was meant to be a stairway to heaven, the Black House has been called a “dark, mysterious, and almost sadistic” representation of hell, complete with preserved animals and a collection of bones. Built by Thailand national artist Thawan Duchanee (who incidentally was the mentor of Chaloemchai, the White Temple guy), the Baan Dam Museum (Black House) is a cluster of nearly 40 small shadowy structures exhibiting art dating back to the Ayutthaya period. This is truly something the likes of which we’ll never see anywhere else! Looking to make your road trip to Chiang Rai even more comfortable? You can choose to upgrade your transportation to a premium and more spacious Alphard. This ensures bigger and more comfortable seats, less people in one van (maximum of 6 people), and free snacks, cool towels, and soft drinks. You can opt for a private tour option to visit the White Temple and Golden Triangle (instead of the Blue Temple and Black House). The Golden Triangle is a triangular piece of land in which the borders of Thailand, Laos, and Myanmar all meet. The nickname was coined by the CIA in reference to this region, whose trading posts’ top product was opium. Dive deep into the wild history of this area and learn how it became one of the most notorious narcotrafficking spots in the world. This itinerary option also includes a cruise down the Mekong River.

From Chiang Mai: Chiang Rai Temples and Golden Triangle Tour

2. From Chiang Mai: Chiang Rai Temples and Golden Triangle Tour

Depart Chiang Mai for a day tour blending cultural insight, history, and natural beauty. Explore the vibrant temples of Chiang Rai including the White Temple and Blue Temple. Visit the unique Long Neck Karen tribe, and finally enjoy a scenic cruise at the historic Golden Triangle. Your journey begins with pick-up from your hotel. A comfortable air-conditioned vehicle drives you to your first stop, the Mae Khachan hot spring, a perfect place to stretch your legs after a long drive. Next, marvel at Wat Rong Khun, the White Temple. This unique temple will captivate you with its radiant structure reflecting off the surrounding pond. A set menu lunch follows, ready to recharge you for the upcoming exploration. Your tour continues to Wat Rong Suea Ten, also known as the Blue Temple, with its striking hues and intricate design. From here, proceed to Baan Dam, the Black House, a museum gallery showcasing an intriguing blend of traditional and contemporary art. Continue your day trip with a visit to the Long Neck Karen Village. Learn about the tribe's traditions and lifestyle, including their distinctive practice of elongating their necks with brass coils. The grand finale of your tour is the historic Golden Triangle, where the borders of Thailand, Laos, and Myanmar meet. Experience a scenic boat trip that allows you a closer look at this geographical marvel. As evening falls, head back to Chiang Mai, arriving at your hotel around 10:00 PM.

From Chiang Mai: Exploration of Chiang Rai's Famous Temples

3. From Chiang Mai: Exploration of Chiang Rai's Famous Temples

Immerse yourself in a fascinating journey from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai, visiting its famous, colorfully distinct temples and taking a restful pause at a natural hot spring. This day-long adventure is a harmonious blend of spirituality, culture, and relaxation. The adventure begins with a convenient pick-up from your hotel, setting the stage for an exploration of Chiang Rai's most iconic landmarks. Our trip begins with a visit to Wat Rong Khun, more commonly known as the White Temple. Covered in white with shimmering mirrors, this temple looks like something out of a dream, its image reflecting in the calm pond nearby. The peace you feel at this place and the Buddhist lessons it embodies will touch you deeply, all shown through its stunning design. Next, we'll visit the Blue Temple, also known as Wat Rong Suea Ten. It's painted in deep blues and covered in detailed designs. This temple was built where an old temple used to stand, a place once thought to be home to roaming tigers. Next, we head to the exciting Red Temple. It's full of bright colors and intricate artwork, and it brings to life Thai spiritual stories and folk tales. Every part of the Red Temple has a story to tell, which makes it a highlight of our tour. Lastly, before we conclude our tour, we make a brief stop at a natural hot spring. Here, you'll have a chance to observe the steam rising from the mineral-rich water, adding a soothing and calming interlude to your journey. As our expedition concludes, we drop you back to your hotel in Chiang Mai, leaving you with treasured memories and a deeper understanding of Thailand's spiritual and cultural heritage.

Chiang Mai: White Temple, Blue Temple & Baan Dam Musuem Tour

4. Chiang Mai: White Temple, Blue Temple & Baan Dam Musuem Tour

Exploring the most 3 icons in Chiang Rai, white&-blue temples, black house museum and hot natural spring. Pick up from Chiang Mai about 07:00-07:30 a.m. driving roughly 01:30 hour visiting the natural hot springs at Mae Kajan Hot Springs along the way. Forwarding more 01:30 hour to The White Temple well known as Wat Rong Khun, is a privately owned art exhibit in the style of a Buddhist temple, Chiang Rai Province. Designed and constructed by Chalermchai Kositpipat, a famous Thai visual artist. Forwarding to Wat Rong Khun is a unique temple that stands out through the white color. The Blue Temple also well known as Wat Rong Suea Ten, is a Buddhist temple that stands out from the others because of its sapphire blue color. The Black House or well known as Baan Dam is one of the strangest and most interesting landmarks in Chiang Rai. Exceptional entrance fee 300 THB/ adult,150 THB/ child to visiting long neck Karen village. Returning back to Chiang Mai about 18:00-18:30 p.m.

Chiang Rai: Full-Day Customizable Private Tour

5. Chiang Rai: Full-Day Customizable Private Tour

Start with pickup from your hotel and meet your passionate tour guide who will impart tidbits of history and culture on a full-day exploration of Chiang Rai. Enjoy a private tour that allows you to choose the sights and activities you want to experience, without wasting time on those you’d rather skip. Although Chiang Rai is usually overlooked in favor of its sister city Chiang Mai, dig a little deeper and discover a charming town rich in arts and culture. Originally the capital of the Mengrai Dynasty, the city was founded in the late 1200s and retains many of its Lanna influences in architecture, language, and cuisine. Simply indicate the attractions you want to see so that your guide has several options to craft the best schedule for you based on geography and diversity. If you don’t know where to start, a visit to the famous White and Blue Temples is strongly recommended. These are masterpieces in Lanna architecture and art. Also of particular interest is the Golden Triangle – a marked area where the countries of Thailand, Myanmar, and Laos meet.

From Chiang Mai: White Temple & Golden Triangle Day Trip

6. From Chiang Mai: White Temple & Golden Triangle Day Trip

Uncover the secrets of Thailand's famed Golden Triangle on this day trip from Chiang Mai. Travel aboard an air conditioned van from a centrally-located meeting point. Visit the Mae Kachan hot springs and the White Temple.  Explore the Mekong river on a longtail boat and enjoy a tasty lunch. Enjoy a pickup in central Chiang Mai, depart for Chiang Rai, stopping for a short break at Mae Kachan hot springs. Visit Wat Rong Khun, the White Temple, before continuing to the Golden Triangle area. Go to Wat Phra That Chedi Luang (limited access). See the Thailand, Laos, and Myanmar borders from the Golden Triangle viewpoint. Stop for lunch before spending time at House of Opium. Enjoy a long-tail boat trip on the mighty Mekong River. On the way back to Chiang Mai, take a break to stretch your legs in Mae Suay or Wiang Pa Pao district and enjoy a cup of coffee or tea. The estimated arrival time in Chiang Mai city is 8:30 PM. 

From Chiang Mai: Chiang Rai’s Iconic Temples and Black House

7. From Chiang Mai: Chiang Rai’s Iconic Temples and Black House

Embark on a fascinating journey from Chiang Mai to the renowned temples of Chiang Rai, along with a brief stopover at an intriguing natural hot spring. This excursion offers a rich blend of Thai culture and spirituality, nestled within an engaging day of exploration. Your adventure starts with a convenient pick-up from your accommodation, whisking you away for a day of discovery in Chiang Rai's notable landmarks. Our trip starts with a visit to Wat Rong Khun, more commonly known as the White Temple. This striking white building, decorated with twinkling mirrors, creates a beautiful scene next to a calm pond. The design of the temple tells a story about Buddha's teachings and important symbols in the religion. Next, we head to Wat Rong Suea Ten, or the Blue Temple. Adorned with vibrant blue colors and intricate designs, the temple is a tribute to its historical predecessor that once graced the same grounds, an area known to have been roamed by tigers. The adventure continues as we delve into the peculiar world of the Black House, or 'Baan Dam.' Far more than a house, this eccentric art complex showcases a wide array of intriguing art pieces. Crafted by renowned Thai artist Thawan Duchanee, it offers a captivating peek into the artist's unique perspective. Finally, our journey includes a brief stopover at a natural hot spring. Though it's not a place for swimming, the hot spring is a nice spot to stretch your legs and enjoy the natural surroundings during our journey back. After a day steeped in exploration and discovery, we'll return you to your residence, leaving you with lasting memories and a deeper understanding of Thai cultural and spiritual traditions.

From Chiang Mai: Customize Your Own Private Chiang Rai Tour

8. From Chiang Mai: Customize Your Own Private Chiang Rai Tour

On this private, customizable tour of Chiang Rai from Chiang Mai, you call all the shots and create your own itinerary. Enjoy a private driver that will bring you wherever you want to go in an air-conditioned vehicle and learn about the sights you see with a local guide. Following hotel pickup, head to Chiang Rai to start your personalized itinerary with your driver and guide. Throughout your trip, your personal guide will share their local know-how to help you learn historical details, cultural insight, and other stories about the attractions you visit. While often overlooked, the northern city of Chiang Rai is another cultural gem you should add to your Thailand bucket list. With historic temples, bustling street markets, outdoor parks, and indigenous villages on its resume, there are plenty of activities and things to do in Chiang Rai. At checkout, simply indicate the three to four attractions you want to see, with a few additional sights so that your guide has several options to craft the best schedule for you based on geography and diversity. Choose from the following sights to see on your tour: • White Temple (Wat Rong Khun)• Blue Temple (Wat Rong Suea Ten)• Black House (Baan Dam Museum)• Golden Triangle• Mae Khachan Hot Spring• Wat Phra That Pukhao Temple• Mae Sai border• Hilltribe Museum and Education Center• Khun Korn Waterfall• Pu Kaeng Waterfall

Chiang Rai: 2-Day Private White Temple & Golden Triangle

9. Chiang Rai: 2-Day Private White Temple & Golden Triangle

Departing from Chiang Mai, your first visit will be at a hot springs. Enjoy lunch at the local restaurant. Continue your journey to White Temple (Wat Rong Khun), a dazzling temple built in 1990. Its ornate all-white exterior with embedded pieces of mirror gives it a resplendent appearance which marks it as one of the most beautiful temples. Visit the Black House (Baan Dam), an original contemporary art museum before heading to your hotel in Chiang Rai. Start your second day at Choui Fong Tea Plantation, well-known for its grand view and the highest quality traditional teas cultivated. As the site is located on the hill, you will be able to get great scenery of the land. Continue to Wat Rong Sua Ten (the Blue Temple), which is famous for its magnificent blue interior with a large white Buddha that marks the spirits. The paintings are reminiscent of the style that you can see inside the White Temple. Next, you will visit Doi Tung, the former king mother's botanical garden in the mountain.  Continue to Chiang Sean for a panoramic view of the Golden Triangle, where Laos, Myanmar and Thailand meet the mighty Mekong River. it will be a good combination tour of the nature, culture and traditions as well as the beautiful landscapes (optional boat ride on the mighty Mae Khong River). Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and continue to explore Chiang Rai history at Opium Museum and head back to Chiang Mai by 6:00 PM. 

From Chiang Mai: Chiang Rai and Golden Triangle Day Trip

10. From Chiang Mai: Chiang Rai and Golden Triangle Day Trip

Soak in the waters of the Mae Kajan hot springs and visit the White Temple on this day trip from Chiang Mai. Ride in an air-conditioned coach or van. Savor and authentic Thai lunch, tasty snacks, and fresh fruits. Go to a market on Don Sao Island, the Opium House Museum, and the Long Neck tribe. Depart Chiang Mai and journey towards Chiang Rai, stopping at the hot springs of Mae Kajan to soak your feet in the healing waters. Then, visit the temple of Wat Rong Khun and marvel at is white exterior inlaid with mirrored glass. Enter the "Golden Triangle" to see the city of Chiang Saen. Enjoy lunch at a famous restaurant before climbing aboard a boat for a ride along the Mekong River (optional). Cross into Laos and go to the market at Don Sao Island. Visit the Opium House Museum to learn more about opium and why it was once as expensive as gold.  Get the chance to stop at a hill tribe village en route back to Chiang Mai and meet the people of the Long Neck tribes.

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What people are saying about Chiang Rai

This tour was amazing. To have a boat ride on the mighty Mekon in the Golden Triangle was an absolute privilege. It’s a long day but well worth it. The white temple has to be seen to be believed, it’s so impressive. It’s stunning! The food at the restaurant we stopped at was really tasty and they made put up several alternative dishes for me and my partner as we are vegans. The day is thoroughly thought out, there was also a stop at the hot springs, an opium museum, ruins from a 12th century temple and a cute coffee shop on the way back. The mini bus was extremely comfortable and ice cold water was given out after a couple of stops as was cold wet wipes.

Cookkie was an amazing host, my favorite in all of the time I spent in Thailand so far. She went above and beyond to explain all the history, and made the experience extra special. She even took extra time to take photos of us (my first photos of myself on this trip)!! The tour was gradual, didn’t feel rushed at all, it was perfect. I would suggest to make sure and bring sunscreen, a mask (Smoke in air this time if year),sunglasses and bug spray. The hot springs pit stop was pretty cool too, well worth the money, loved the entire tour!!!!!

A long day but worth it. Especially the Wat Pa Sat and Boat trip on MeKong River followed by the visit of the Opium Museum. Lunch was delicious and the coffee at Café Amazon lovely. Our guide Mr. Nong managed the time and itinerary ver well. His explanations at each site very informative and interesting. He also has a good sense of humor, which helps for a long day like this. Car was clean and today. Driver was polite and did an excellent job.

Great experience. Doing it via a tour made it so easy. Teerawut, the guide was really attentive and provided a lot of information. My favourite part was the black temple/Baandam Museum.

Guide was very friendly and helpful. Overall experience was really good. I can just recommend