Chiang Mai is the largest city in the mountainous northern part of Thailand. There are many tourist destinations in and around the city including outdoor activities at the mountains, waterfalls, lakes, parks, plantations, and temples. You would be recommended to allow between three to five days to enjoy some of these activities but if you only have a day, here is what you can do and see.
Visit Pagodas By Night
Stay as near as you can to the old town square. It might look small on the map but it’s absolutely huge and will take a lot of time to travel across by walking, perhaps get a bike and cycle around the inside of the city walls of Chiang Mai to visit some of the temples.
Eat and Shop at Sunday Night Market
If you’re planning to arrive on Sunday then you’re very lucky because that’s the only day that the Walking Street night market opens. It nearly covers the entire road of Rachadamnoen with lots of food options and locally handmade souvenirs.
Bike Through Chiang Mai
Rent another bike and start to explore in the early morning. Cycle through the old town to Lamphun railway station to reach Lamphun town which lies around forty-five kilometers away from Chiang Mai.
Visit Wat Phrathat Hariphunchai
Pedal out into the countryside on concrete paths to visit Wat Phrathat Hariphunchai located in Pa Sak, Mueang Lamphun District. An ancient temple from the 11th century with absolutely beautiful decoration of the rainbow lanterns, hanging overhead all around the temple.
Known as Baan Tawai Woodcarving & Crafts Village just eighteen kilometers away from downtown, approximately half an hour away. A local artistic workshop with handmade art. you can buy some to take home as souvenirs.
Wat Umong Suan Puthatham
This is a 700 years old Buddhist temple, located against the mountain of Doi Suthep. The site is famous for its ancient tunnels with Buddha statues inside, set under the large chedi stupa. A spiritual and very natural setting allows visitors to have a wonderful time exploring.
Check out my video of the Chiang Mai & Chiang Rai Trip.