Aside from being fascinating animals, elephants are an enduring symbol of Thai culture and royal power. Interacting with them provides a glimpse into the dynamic that has existed between Thai people and elephants for centuries. It was a 1.5 hour drive from Chiang Mai to Lampang, where the Thai Elephant Conservation Center is located for our Viator Exclusive Elephant Conservation Experience in Chang Mai. During the drive, we chatted with our guide, Sam, while watching the scenery gradually change from the shopping malls and restaurants of Chiang Mai, to the rolling green hills of the countryside.
Often overshadowed by its neighbor and “capital of the north”, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai has much to offer trekkers and those looking to explore the hill tribe communities in northern Thailand. Hill tribe trekking in Chiang Rai usually means smaller group numbers than you may find in nearby Chiang Mai, which often leads to a more comfortable and personable experience.
The Big Buddha Temple, known locally as Wat Phra Yai, is home to Koh Samui’s famous Big Buddha statue. Overlooking the Gulf of Thailand, the Big Buddha statue sits atop its own small island in the northeastern part of Koh Samui and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the region.
Perched atop a mountain just 15 kilometers from the city of Chiang Mai, Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep is one of the most sacred temples in northern Thailand. This, along with the grandeur of the temple building and stories of its mythical origins, attracts both Thai and foreign visitors from far and wide.
The great thing about the best viewpoints in Phuket is that you don’t have to go too far to find most of them. If you’ve got a means of transport you can easily visit the best viewpoints in Phuket by jumping in a hire car and setting off to explore.