8 Places To Explore In Pai, Thailand.
Set far up north amongst the hills of Chiang Mai, near the border of Myanmar, is a small bohemian province by the name of Pai. Speak to any local or expat about Pai and they’ll either tell you it’s a must-visit or its boring as sh*t. We can now proudly say we fall into the first group of people and will speak its praises far and wide.
Getting to Pai is an adventure in itself. From Chiang Mai its a 3.5 hour trip North with 762 turns, which can be a little bit daunting for anyone who may feel the effects of motion sickness. We were advised by a family friend to use the air-conditioned Prempracha minivans and request to sit up front as the back can get quite hot and bumpy. They depart Arcade Bus Terminal daily from 6.30am-5.30pm (Check the timetable here) and cost 150 Baht per person. We were also told to go early morning when the drivers are nice and fresh and warned that they don’t hold back on the accelerators overtaking everything they can. In Australia we would call this type of driving erratic and reckless, but here in Thailand they just accept that this is the way it is. Sabai, Sabai. We must say though, we never once felt fearful for our safety as our driver handled every turn perfectly, albeit a little on the fast side of life. Upon arrival to Pai the first thing we did was hire a scooter because the majority (if not all) of the activities are self guided. You can pick them up from a number of different shops in the town center from between 150-200 Baht ($6-8 AUD) per day depending on the model.
We spent 3 days adventuring, eating and relaxing in this wonderful place and now we shall share the goodness with you all, without further adieu… here are 8 wonderful places to explore in Pai!
1. Sia Ngam Hot Springs
Have a lovely and warm morning bath up in the cool mountains of Mae Hong Son, Pai, Thailand. There’s really nothing quite like it. It was definitely the best hot springs we’ve been to making us not want to get out!
2. Buddha Bamboo Bridge
Initially made for the Buddha’s of the area as an accessible way to get back and forth from their temple to the town, it has now become a well-known spot for tourists, with its layers of lush rice terraces and surrounding mountains the surroundings are amazing.
3. Walking Street Market
You’ll walk by multiple delicious food stalls and have multiple delicious dinners. Need I say more? From the One Man Food Truck cooking the freshest, yummiest Thai to Grandma’s Pancakes and so many more, trust us… You’ll want to try everything!
4. Mor Paeng Waterfall
The first waterfall out of Pai, Mor Paeng is a three level beauty. Have a refreshing, cold swim or just sit back and enjoy your surroundings.
5. The Big White Buddha
This is an absolute must when in Pai. The big white Buddha will take your breath away! Situated amongst the mountains it is viewable from almost everywhere but nothing beats being right up and personal with it whilst watching the sunset.
6. Pai Canyon
Narrow spine like trails that weave high around the hillside and bush land. If of course you aren’t too scared of heights and narrow walk ways, Pai Canyon has proven to be a great spot for sunset!
7. The Land Split
Imagine waking up one morning to find your backyard being completely split into halves and quarters… What do you do? Well you turn your backyard into a tourist attraction of course!
8. Yun Lai Viewpoint
A 360 viewpoint of Pai and surrounding mountains nestled on a big hill with free Chinese tea and personalized hanging hearts.