Doi Suthep-Pui National Park
This park used to be known as Doi Oi Chang. Its new name comes from the name of a hermit. Doi Suthep, Doi Buakha and Doi Pui are the three main peaks in the park. The highest peak, Doi Pui, rises to 1,685 metres above sea level. Because of the high altitude, the weather on the upper slopes of the mountains is cool and pleasant all year even in the hot season, average temperature is about 20c. In the cool season, the air is cold and clear. Temperature can drop as low as 6 degrees celsius in February. August and September are the wettest months with rain falling daily. More than 300 species of birds can be seen in this National Park. A rare species of amphibian, the crocodile salamander, that can be found in only four localities in Thailand, one of which is Doi Suthep.
For more information Tel. 0 5329 51178
Doi Inthanon National Park
Doi Inthanon is the highest mountain in Thailand, 2,565 m. from sea level. The geography is bountiful with forest and the atmosphere is cool and fresh all year. The weather is cold with high humidity throughout the year, particularly at the top of the National Park. In winter, the temperature at the National Park is below zero celcius and the mountain is covered with fog all day. In summer, despite hot weather in central Chiang Mai and nearby districts, it is still freezing. Visitors to the peak of Doi Inthanon should be prepared with thick clothes.
In the park are many attractive waterfalls and caves such as: Mae Ya Waterfall (the most beautiful waterfall in Chiang Mai), Mae Klang Waterfall, Wachiratan Waterfall, Sririphum Waterfall, Huay Sai Luang Waterfall, Mae Pan Waterfall, etc.
In the Ang-ga Inthanon mountain range, close to the Mae Klang Waterfall, is the huge Borijinda Cave. To reach the cave, turn right off the Chiang Mai - Hod route at km. 58, on the road to the waterfall. After 8 kilometres turn right and keep going for one kilometre toward Doi Inthanon where a sign points to the cave. The cave has many beautiful stalactites and stalagmites, appropriately called Nom Pha, or milk of the cliff in the northern Thai language.
The Doi Inthanon Park Headquarters is located at km. 31, where visitors can find more information about what to do and see in the park. This is the area for camping, and tents are available on a pre-booked basis. The cabins and tents can be reserved in Bangkok at Tel. 02 5614292-6 ext. 724, 725 or in Chiang Mai at 053 311608, 053 355728.
Beside the main road over Doi Inthanon is The Royal Project Station in Baan Khun Klang, quite close to the National Park Office. This project was initiated in 1979 as part of His Majesty the King's efforts to help the hilltribes cultivate cash crops other than opium, to introduce them to modern agricultural practices and to help them protect forest and river catchments. This particular station has responsibility for research into temperate zone plant species as well as providing agricultural advice and support for 510 neighbourhood Karen and Hmong families.
Between km. 41 and 42 are two fine opportunities to experience nature which is spectacular all along the whole of the road over Doi Inthanon. At about 41 km. is one of the finest views to be had from Thailand's highest peak. A short walk of about 30 metres from the left side of the road gives the viewer a chance to see a sea of mist filling the valley below. A little further on, at about km. 42, is the nature trail called Giew Mae Paan. This short trail, winding through tall pristine forest for about 2.5 kilometres, a 3 hours walk, allows the hiker to experience the natural beauty of the forest at first hand.
This is the place to see warblers and kingfishers as they feed on insects in the bushes. Travellers wishing to use this path should seek permission from the National Park Office at km. 31, not only for their own safety, but also to ensure that no damage is caused to the precious environment. NOTE: every year from June 1 to October 31 the area is closed to the public.
Ob Khan National Park
This park is located on the left side of the Khan River at Namprae. This scenic route hugs the irrigation canal to Hang Dong road for about 15 kms. Then turns right on the Namprae, Ob Khan road for about 11 kms. The outstanding sights to see are Takataen Cave, Ob Khan, Pha Ou Mha, Ob Hai, Huay Yha Sai, Pha Toob and Huay Pong. The geographical features of the National Park mostly consist of high mountains. Yod Khun Tien is the highest mountain of the National Park, with an altitude of 1,550 metres.
Camping facilities with food and beverage available from 08.00 to 18.00. From two paths, visitors can take in all the natural beauty of this area. The National Park has beautiful natural tourist attractions and a great variety of interesting plants and wild animals A sightseeing information centre with 24 hour guard is provided.
For more information Tel. 0 5324 2478.
Mae Tho National Park
Covering the areas of Mae Line forest reserve in Hod district and Pha Mae Chaem forest reserve in Mae Chaem district of Chiang Mai province. The mountain extending northwards is in the same mountain range as Doi Inthanon. The park covers 990 square kilometres of forested mountains. The average altitude of the area is 1,000 metres above sea level. Doi Kew Rai-mong is the highest mountaintop (1,699 metres above sea level). Evergreen forests are found in the north. In addition, dry dipterocarp and pine forests are found in Hod district and elsewhere. Mixed deciduous and hill evergreen forests also exist in the park. A great variety of wild animals can be seen in the park. Activities include; mountain climbing, view points and rafting on the Mae Chaem river. A camp site is available, however, tourists have to bring their own equipment.
For more information please call 0 5381 8348.
Chiang Dao National Park
In the same area as Chiang Dao Wild Animal Protection Area and Sri Lanna National Park, this forest is the source of two rivers in Chiang Mai; the Ping and Mae Tang rivers. The area is a complex of mountains and fertile forests. The natural highlights of this National Park are Sri Sangwan waterfall, Pang Tong waterfall, Nivet Hole of Water, Krab cave, Tab Tao cave, Doi Pha Tang and Doi Bha Dang where you can have a magnificent view from the top of the mountain. Additionally, this area has several interesting historical sites. This park is the habitat of rare animals such as goral, wild boar, barking deer, banteng, guar, porcupine, langur, palm civet, squirrel, chipmunk, many kinds of bird and reptile. Many kinds of frogs and toads are found near the rivers.
For more information Tel. 0 5381 8348.
Doi Wiang Pha National Park
This park covers the areas of Mae Fang National Conserved Forest in Chaiprakarn, Fang District, Chiang Mai Province, and the left side of Mae Lao National Conserved Forest in Chiang Rai Province. The park has an approximate area of 583 square kilometres or 364,375 rai. The geographical features of the National Park consist of high mountains, extending northwards, which are regarded as the boundary between Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai provinces. The highest point is Doi Wiang Pha. Most of the areas are water-source forests with major gullies, particularly Fang River and branches of Lao River. The weather at the National Park can be divided into three seasons - rainy season (May-October), winter (November-February), when the weather is cool and ideal for trekking, and summer (March-April), when the weather is rather hot. Due to its abundance of forests, variety of plants, and different altitudes (300-1,834 meters), this National Park has become the source of food and a dwelling place for different kinds of wild animals.
For more information tel. 0 5381 8348.
Mae Fang National Park
This is one of the finest National Parks in Chiang Mai covering an area of about 378,125 rai or 605 square kilometres. The north and the west borders adjoin with Burma. To the south the park extends as far as Doi Chiang Dao National Park Chaiyaprakarn district in Chiang Mai. The east end covers five sub-districts. (Mai Ai, Mae Sao, Weang,Ta Ton, Pong Namron).
Mae Faang National Park is rich with lush vegetation, home to various species of wild animals like jungle fowls, wild pigs, pythons, and a colourful variety of birds. Besides its fresh and cool weather, Mae Faang National Park has spectacular waterfalls, caves, and hot springs. The great attractions of this National Park are Tard Mork Waterfall, Ponk Nam Daing Noi Waterfall, Mae Teap Waterfall, Doi Ang Klang, Doi Pa Hom Pok, Houy Pon Cave, Mae Jai Brook, and Ponk Hot Spring. Things to do include; mountain climbing, picnicking, forest trekking, cave exploring, bird watching and nature sightseeing.
For more information tel. 0 5345 1441 # 302, 303.
Khun Khan National Park
Situated in an approximate area of 240 square kilometres or 150,000 rai, covering the areas of Pa Samoeng National Conserved Forest and Mae-Chaem Forest in Chiang Mai Province, there are various kinds of forests within the National Park, including virgin forests, which can be found on mountains at an altitude of at least 1,000 metres above sea level. There are many good viewpoints on the way to Samoeng district. Pha Samoeng viewpoint is located between km. 24 and 25, on Samoeng - Mae Rim road. Pha Samoeng and Pha Mae Chaem viewpoints are located between 35th and 55th km markers on Samoeng - Wat Chan road. Pha Sam Nah is a plateau on a high mountain. It is 1,253 metres high and encircled by cliff walls on three sides. Wild animals are also found here.
For more information tel. 05381 8348.