Sometimes celebrating Christmas at home can get a little stressful, and with a Christmas dinner, Oxford can get booked up pretty quickly. So why not switch it up this year with a festive getaway to Chiang Mai. With so much going on around this time of year, the city is buzzing and just waiting to be explored. Need more convincing? Well here are a few reasons to book that flight…
Exploring Chiang Mai’s History
The city is beautiful for more than just its temples, however there do happen to be quite a few of them – with over 300 of them dotted all over the city and each and every one of them is full of character. Some of the most famous ones are Wat Phra That DoiSuthep, which is situated at the top of a mountain that overlooks the city. Another is the Wat SuanDok, built in the 14th century and originally meant for a well-respected monk from Sukhothai. Another temple to visit is the Wat Sri Suphan, known as the Silver Temple due to its silver decoration. The temple is covered head to toe in silver from the walls to the carvings of Buddhism legends. The temple was originally built for a silversmith and it only began its transformation to silver from 2008.
For those who prefer a more active holiday, there is plenty of ways to get the heart pumping. As the city is surrounded by mountains, hiking and trekking tours are aplenty, including DoiPui to DoiSuthep, where you can walk through lush evergreen forests and discover hill-tribe villages.
If you prefer to be up in the air, many partake in Flight of the Gibbons. A zip line within a rainforest, this adrenaline pumping experience is a massive seven hours long. Chiang Mai is great for the outdoors at the end of December, as the weather is just right.
Food and Relaxation
Of course, we can’t forget the delicious pan-Asian cuisine you’ll be enjoying during your stay in Chiang Mai. Enjoy Kajang Chicken Satay Sticks from stalls at the local street markets or sit down for a Thai Green Curry, both of which you can find on the Christmas dinner menu at Banana Tree. Some traditional delicacies of the island include Khao Soi, which is an egg noodle curry and Sai Oua, which is grilled herb sausages. Plenty of inspiration for your own Christmas menu that you can serve back home.
When you’re all exhausted from climbing through the forest and learning about the city’s history, how about indulging yourself with a trip to the hot springs where you can soak your tired feet into warm waters in the most idyllic of settings. The city is also popular for its spas which are picturesque and totally worthy of an Instagram snap.
Chiang Mai is a beautiful city in Thailand that has a little something for everyone to enjoy. And as it’s November, the Yi Peng and Loy Krathong Festivals are worth seeing if you want to celebrate an ancient tradition and bring well wishes for the future. It will definitely be an unforgettable trip away this Christmas.