Chiang Mai’s Most Famous Temple

An old city within a new, separated by a mote and large brick walls is what one will find in Chiang Mai, Thailand‘s third largest city. Chiang Mai doesn’t even come close to the sprawling metropolis that is Bangkok – its vibe is more relaxed, its landscape more beautiful, and its streets are easily navigable.

Or so I thought.

Riding through Chiang Mai’s convoluted streets was the first time I was terrified behind the wheel of a motorbike. Certainly, I was scared several other times as passenger, but up until February, when I met my friends Duke and Heidi, I had only driven in and around the quiet alleys of Suwannaphum, where I teach English abroad.

The three of us each rented a bike and drove out of town toward Wat Phratat Doi Suthep the most famous temple in the area, with a foggy view overlooking the city – crossing four lanes of traffic and blending in with the herd of other motorists. It was thrilling.

So I did it again. I deemed the temple a must-see and when I returned with Nicole, I took her on a self-guided tour of Chiang Mai. We checked into a stuffy room in Old Town and then headed for the hill to visit Doi Suthep again.

Planning to visit Chiang Mai? There are man more beautiful temples to see. See this guide to the Temples in Chiang Mai.

Monks repaint the bright colors.

Girls dance for money for school and supplies.

Everybody lights incense and bows to Buddha for good luck.

Monks walk around the central Buddha three times (everything is in threes) and chant as they pray.

The foggy view.

Chiang Mai’s Most Famous Temple
Written by:Jessica J. Hill


  1. Ashley says:

    Love the photos! Chiang Mai is such a backpacker’s destination, but I never got to go there when I was backpacking in Thailand. Great post!

  2. Pamela says:

    Great pictures! Can you go up to the temple in the motorbike?

  3. ShimonZ says:

    beautiful pictures… and it sounds like a wonderful adventure… but be careful on the motorbike.

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