Reasons to Visit Pai, Thailand

Guest blog post alert! Check out one of our teacher alum, Kirsty Turner's, take on Pai, Thailand, where she has been living for many years. 

The small town of Pai can be found nestled in the north of Thailand around a three hour drive from Chiang Mai. This is a popular place for travelers to chill out for a few days or even longer as the town is surrounded by stunning natural beauty in the form of lush mountains, flowing rivers, cascading waterfalls, hot spring, pine forests and much more. Pai has a distinctly relaxed vibe and unwinding by the river while sipping a beer or two in the evening and listening to live music are among the most popular pastimes. Here are some other great things to see and do while spending time in Pai.

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Mo Paeng Waterfall

This is the most accessible of Pai’s waterfalls and is located just seven kilometres from the town. The journey can be completed easily by motorbike and takes visitors through the countryside through several tiny villages. Entry to the waterfall is free of charge and the best time to visit is during the monsoon season when the water crashes over the rocks below and creates a fine spray.

Mae Yen Waterfall

People who have a strong sense of adventure can complete a hike through the jungle to visit this impressive waterfall. The trek takes visitors across flowing streams and through the countryside and although the trail can be tricky at times the reward of seeing this remote and very pretty waterfall is more than worth it. the trail can only be completed on foot and it takes around two and a half hours each way, so it is best to start after breakfast to be sure of getting back to the town before dark.

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Chedi Phra That Mae Yen (White Buddha)

This small temple is watched over by an impressive gigantic white Buddha statue that can be seen all over Pai. The temple and statue are located just two kilometres to the east of the town and a steep set of steps leads the way to the temple. Alternatively, it is possible to drive up the hill and part at the base of the temple. The views from the top of the temple and the white Buddha statue are among the best in Pai and the climb is best completed in early morning or late afternoon to avoid the heat of the day.

Pai Canyon

This is a great place to visit at sunset to gaze across the valleys and towards the distant mountains. Pai Canyon is located some eight kilometres from the town on the road to Chiang Mai and features enchanting narrow red ridges that drop down into valleys filled with pine trees. Entrance is free and it is best to arrive at least half an hour before sunset to secure a spot from which to watch the dying of the day.

WWII Memorial Bridge

This bridge is located close to Pai Canyon and was originally building by the Japanese during WWII. In addition to offering pretty river and countryside views, the bridge features plaques that provide interesting information about the development of Pai over the last few decades.

Chinese Village

People who wish to gain an insight into the lives of the Yunnanese hill tribes should take the time to explore this vibrant village that can be found on the way to Mae Yen Waterfall. During the high season this village is teeming with life and there is a small traditional Chinese temple to explore as well as several shops and a Chinese restaurant that provides visitors with pretty valley views while they dine.

Thanks again Kirsty! If you liked what you read, check out some of her adventure books on Amazon:

Interested in a holiday in Pai? Feel free to check out our Travel Programs and we can plan you the perfect trip.

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