Baan Tam Chiang Dao communities are ideal gateways for an exploration of Doi Luang Chiang Dao, Thailand’s third highest peak and a haven for rare plant species. The village is located approximately 85 km’s from Chiang Mai city, at the foot of the mountain and close to Doi Chiang Dao Wildlife Sanctuary.
The highlights of Doi Luang Chiang Dao area
“Trek to the awe-inspiring summit of Chiang Dao; study nature and enjoy fantastic views; explore forest and caves.”
Why is Doi Luang Chiang Dao area special?
Chiang Dao has been molded by the elements into a natural limestone horseshoe, which supports a unique environment, including alpine forest, and micro-habitats for many varieties of indigenous species which cannot be found elsewhere.
The biodiversity of the mountain and surrounding forest environments have been recognised by the government. They are protected inside the Doi Chiang Dao Wildlife Sanctuary.
Villagers also have a community bamboo forest. Every year, they help each other to harvest bamboo, and divide the profits.
Visitor numbers to the summit of Chiang Dao are carefully controlled, and it is only possible to climb the mountain between November and May. However, guests can visit local villages and participate in cultural exchange programs all year.
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Activities for guests:
A visit to Chiang Dao can offer a mixture of cultural insights, warm hospitality, stunning nature and challenging adventure.
- Doi Luang Chiang Dao Trek: (Seasonal– November to May). Trekking to the peak of Doi Chiang Dao, accompanied by local guides is a classic adventure. On route, trained local guides will introduce you to rare plant species. An early start will be rewarded by a 360 degree view of sunrise from the peak of Doi Chiang Dao. Watch surrounding peaks gradually appear through a sea of clouds. Stops can also be made to visit other scenic areas, such as caves and waterfalls;
- Experience daily life: in the three contrasting villages of Baan Hua Tung, Baan Tam and Baan Faa Suay. Guests can visit a community forest, make a bamboo basket, or meet a traditional village herbalist.
- History: Chiang Dao is known for many ancient historical sites, dating from the King Meng Rai and King Naresuan eras. Guests can visit local caves and temples, and listen to royal tales from years gone by.
Green Corner: People and Planet
The Doi Chiang Dao Wildlife Sanctuary, together with the local office of tourism have established and enforced ecotourism policies in this area. For example, tourists must hire only trained and registered guides and porters from the Doi Chiang Dao Wildlife Sanctuary office. Trekkers must keep to the designated trails, and camp in appointed areas.
Guides are trained to advise guests how to avoid disturbing and harming local habitats and ecosystems. By hiring the locally registered forest guides and porters, tourists help to create more jobs and increase income for the local villagers. Opportunities presented by tourism also lead to good relations between local community members and the forest authorities.