Recently we rented a motorbike and got out to explore a bit more of the area around Chiang Mai. We’ve been waiting for a perfectly cloudless sunny day to go; with it being rainy season at the moment it often pours for an hour in the afternoons (just like Florida!). Once we got our bike, we checked out a famous temple, a beautiful lake, and joined a hike to the Taad Mook Waterfall a few days later.
We finally made it up to the famous temple, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep which sits up on the nearby mountain, Doi Suthep. Wat Phra That Doi Suthep was founded in 1383 but it wasn’t until 1935 that a road was built up to it from the city. This temple is absolutely beautiful but the real attraction up here are the views of Chiang Mai. Watching planes take off from the airport is pretty interesting too, it takes such a long time for them to reach your eye level from up on the mountain.
The next day, we headed out to spend time at the popular lake about 14 km (9 miles) north of us, Huay Tueng Tao. This lake is really awesome! We decided not to brave the murky waters but people do come here to swim. The lake is dotted with small huts along the waters edge where you can relax and order food and drinks all day long! And even better, the scenery is breathtaking with views of all the surrounding mountains. We rode the motorbike up here and enjoyed getting to see areas north of the city.
A few days later we joined a group hike up to the Taad Mook Waterfall not far from Huay Tueng Tao Lake. This hike can only be accomplished with an experienced guide who knows the way to the waterfall – we never could have found it on our own! Thankfully there is an experienced hiker who organizes meet ups to hike to different waterfalls and scenic spots in the area. We hiked up about 350 meters (1,150 feet) and covered about 8 km (5 miles) total. The hike was very slippery and muddy through jungle vegetation but totally worth it! The waterfall was huge! Carlos got in and enjoyed the fresh river water and made it out with NO leeches in sight haha. Sandy, the incredible hiking beagle was part of the group. She has hiked up to the peak of Doi Pui! Wow.
We are loving Chiang Mai and can’t wait to explore more scenic areas and venture out to the northern city of Pai in the coming weeks!