Feb 28, 2012

Chiang Dao เชียงดาว: Mountains, mystic caves
and splendid temples

See the locations on Chiang Dao Google Map

Picture by abmiller99
Doi Chiang Dao, the third of the highest mountains in Thailand

Chiang Dao lies 72 km north of Chiang Mai above the Menam Ping gorge on the green slopes of Doi Chiang Dao mountain. The name means "City of Stars". Limestone peaks reaching a height of 2186 m make Chiang Dao an impressive area. Every Tuesday morning the town has a market with hilltribe people.

Chiang Dao is famous for its cave complex Tham Chiang Dao ถ้ำเชียงดาว, that is believed to stretch for many kilometres into Doi Chiang Dao. Tham Phra Nawn (360m) and Tham Seua Dao (540m) are illuminated by electric lights. You can explore Tham Phra Nawn alone on a good path. You will see many stalagmite and stalactite formations and buddha images (see gallery by Lek). Inside there are signs pointing to the entrances of the longer and darker caves Tham Maa (7365m), Tham Kaew (477m) and Tham Naam (660m). Women with lanterns are waiting here and offering guided tours.

Picture by marhas
The entrance to many hundred meters of caves

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Inside the main cave

Picture by DarkB4Dawn

Picture by marhas
A fish pond outside the cave invites for meditation

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Only good eyes discover something in the middle of the green vegetation: A lying stone Buddha image

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Picture by bwaters23

Picture by marhas
Medicine from the nature is offered nearby the cave entrance by women form the hilltribes living in the region

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Wonderful roof: Wat Phare Rachsamjammadhevesrnechai near the cave. And a very special Chedi:

Picture by marhas

More to see

Wat Tham Pha Plong: This temple lies on the end of the road, which goes past the caves. It's 500 steps up the mountain. The highly estimated monk. Looang Boo Sim Buddhacaro spent over ten years teaching here. Under the stupa there is a big cave. See gallery on tripadvisor.com. See more pictures on lochstein.de

Picture by zenatplay
Wat Tham Pha Plong

Chiang Dao National Park: The area is popular for trekking and bird watching, there are many Lisu and Karen hill tribe villages in the park. Doi Luang Chiang Dao is a limestone mountain (2,195 metres from sea level)m third highest mountain in Thailand. The park covers also the area of Pha Dang mountain. Read more about birdwatching on thaibirding.com.

Srisangwan Waterfall: See video on youtube

Pang Tong Waterfall: The Khun Mae Ngai river is its origin. Read more

Where to stay in Chiang Dao

Malee's Nature Lovers Bungalows: From 350 Bath. Situated 5km outside Chiang Dao and 1km beyond Chiang Dao's cave complex.

Picture by Hanumann

Chiang Dao Nest 1 and 2: From 695 Bath. On a dead end road, which terminates about 1km further at Wat Tham Paplong Temple. 20 bungalows and two restaurants across two sites within 1km of each other. One is Wicha's Gourmet kitchen.

Nature Home Guesthouse: From 450 Bath. 233 M.12 Ban Rong Vua. 2 km from the town center and rather close to the famous Chiang Dao Cave. Phone +66 (0) 89 913 3911. Five Bungalows.

Chiang Dao Hut: From 300 Bath. Three bungalows, own by a Thai couple, who came up from Chiang Mai.

Royal Ping Garden & Resort: From 1800 Bath

What to see near Mae Taeng

Picture by marhas
Exciting: Wat Ban Den

Wat Ban Den วัดเด่นสะหรีศรีเมืองแกน: A very attractive and unusual temple. Abbott Kruba Tuang took over the temple in bad condition in 1988. He arrived to raise funds of several millions Bath and rebuilt Wat Ban Den in an extraordinary way. He built also 12 Chedis. Each of these is dedicated to one of the 12 Animals of the Thai Zodiac. According to Thai mythology, when people die their spirit stays in the Pagoda of their birth sign. sOME Thais believe they should make at least one pilgrimage during their lifetime to the designated temple. With creating the 12 Chedis Abott Kruba Tuang lied the fundament for attracting many visitors.

Picture by marhas

Picture by marhas

Picture by marhas

Picture by marhas

Picture by marhas

Picture by marhas
After all: A wonderful outlook

Wat Thung Luang:

Mae Taman Elephant Camp:

Wat Doi Mae Pang วัดดอยแม่ปั๋ง: On Route 1001 to Phrao: Luang Poo Waen Sujitnoh was the famous monk, who lived in this forest temple until he died in 1985. Read more about his life. The temple consists mainly of wooden buildings. Read more in the blog "Thai Forest Tradition".

More attractions here

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