If you have one day in Chiang Rai, Where will you go?
Chiang Rai is a province in the northern of Thailand, close to Chiang Mai. But we do not know where to go, what to eat, or is it going to be as fun as Chiang Mai? So, today I will take you to Chiang Rai to get to know more about this Northern Province in 1 day. Let's Go!!!!
If you arrive at the King Mengrai Monument that mean you are in the city of Chiang Rai, people here call " 5 Yaek Phokhun Meng Rai" (Only 10 KM. from the airport).
This is the first spot where we should pray for blessings with King Mengrai when you arrive in Chiang Rai.
What to eat?
"An army marches on its stomach" Staring with what to eat?, there are recommended restaurants not less than in Chiang Mai and different styles
>>> Laab Sanamkeela for Isaan Food (Local North Eastern Food)
>>> Chor. Chareonchai for Chinese porridge
>>> Jea Saharos for Pork organ soup
>>> Salungkham for Local food
I might not be able to recommend all restaurants in Chiang Rai but I choose to recommend 3 famous restaurants on Kok Riverside
The coffee shop with English House Style gives a feeling like going to visit your English friend at home. It is the first high end coffee shop of Chiang Rai City
Recommend Menus: Coffee both hot and cold and Banoffi
Melt In Your Mouth
The second shop is "Melt In Your Mouth ", decorated in English style, basic but luxury and look clean. I like the atmosphere of this cafe the most because it is airy and comfortable.
P.S. I have tried their breakfast but I do not like it. I would recommend bakery and coffee are better. They have their own coffee recipe. For more details do not hesitate to ask them.
Manorom and Happiness dust
The concept here just likes a dream restaurant, everything so beautiful and peace as well as food that taste good and look good. Moreover, they hire good looking staffs to service you. It gives you a feeling like you are in a sweet dream.
P.S. In 3 recommend restaurant, I only try food here and I would like to say that it taste so good. May be because the owner of this restaurant is a son of Salungkham Restaurant owner (open for a long time) so every menu here are very delicious and also very neat on each dish's decoration. Moreover, there is a chef from Sirocco works here too. That's why all food comes out perfectly.
I would say that these 3 restaurants are quite expensive about 300-400 baht per person. But do not be so sad, there must be something else that suits you. Here you are>> Lunch Buffet at Le Meridien Chiang Rai for 269 baht including drinks.
Lunch Buffet at Le Meridien Chiang Rai for 269 baht including drinks
With the atmosphere of the hotel is quite good not less than the other 3 restaurants that I recommend above, and also located at Kok riverside as well. For buffet, it is international buffet; there are many kind of food from different part of the world. For the taste, I would say it is not that bad. (It does not like a 3000 baht buffet at Mandarin Oriental but it is valuable and good enough or more than enough for a 269 baht buffet).
Where to go?
One day in Chiang Rai, where should we go? For me, I would recommend that we go to a city tour by tram so we can know more about this city.
Chiang Rai City Tour by Tram
This city tour is for free, it takes about 1-2 hours and there is only 2 rounds; 9.30 am. and 1.30 pm. For tourist attraction places, the tram will take us around the city and stop by 7-8 tourist attraction places, or adjust to suitability of each round. Now, let's see where should we go???^^
This is a new tourist attraction place, "Chalermprakiet building". The museum inside the building is still under renovation. Here is also the place where they keep Royal Vehicle for important activities in Chiang Rai.^^
Most of Royal Vehicles are in Lanna Style either in Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Phrae, Nan, Maehongson styles, etc.
Chiang Rai Royal Vehicle is in Blue as in the picture if you like to visit.
Next stop is Wat Phra Singh, where used to be a place to keep Phra Buddha Sihing from Lanka (Now Phra Buddha Sihing has relocated to National Museum Bangkok)
Even though Phra Buddha Sihing is not here but they still take a good care of the hall and reproduce a new Phra Buddha Sihing to replace with the real one.
The sculpture wooden door from one piece of wood, which created by Thailand National Artist, Professor Thawan Duchanee. It located at the entrance of the new hall, which you should not miss. This is the most valuable art that you cannot be appraised.
" Wat Phra Kaew" is another important temple, it used to be a place for the Emerald Buddha from Laos. Now the Emerald Buddha has relocated to Temple of the Emerald Buddha, Bangkok (for me, I think this temple is the most important one). If you have not come here yet, you should try because here is shady and peaceful as it is the number one temple of the city.
" Wat Phra That Doi Chom Thong" is the beginning of Chiang Rai City (If anyone like to know the story, you have to take a tram for city tour and the guide tour will tell you all about it ^^)
Moreover, there is The Navel City Pillar of Chiang Rai; the main pillar and 108 surrounding pillars were constructed base on Hinduism believe for worshipping to the good of King Mengrai.
Wat Ming Muang" is anther important temple of Chiang Rai. This temple decorated in Tai Yai Style because here is the temple where the Queen of King Mengrai came for practicing the dharma (she is Burmese).
The last spot that the tram will pass is Flag and Lamp Park (Suan Tung Lae Khom) Chiang Rai. It is a public park located in the middle of the city. There will be a Chiang Rai Flower Festival at the end of December. If you like winter flowers, you should not miss here and the highlight is Tulips.
If anyone likes to travel in the city on Saturday, there is also a " Chiang Rai Walking Street". Even the distant and shops are less than in Chiang Mai, but you can have fun and chill out here as well.
Also there is a show of Light and Sound at " Chiang Rai Clock Tower" (Designed by Professor Chalermchai) and shows at 7.00pm, 8.00pm. and 9.00 pm. of everyday. Do not forget to visit!!!
If just the city tour is not enough, I will take you outside the town but not that far. Let's go ^^
" Kua Silapa" is an art gallery for artists in Chiang Rai, it is not too far from the city. If you do not have your own car, you can take a bus from the city (Heading Mae Sai). (During the time I went, there was an exhibition of Professor Thawan Duchanee).
There is a restaurant in here called " Krua Silapin". Taste of food is good but price is quite expensive; recommended menu is Fried Beef with Black Pepper.
" Baandum Museum" is not too far from Kua Silapa. Here is a museum of art of Professor Thawan Duchanee. If you are a big fan of him you should not miss it for any reasons.
We talk about Baandum (Black House) so we have to talk about Wat Kaw (White Temple) or Wat Rong Khun too. It is very easy to get here, if you do not have car, just take a public bus for only 20 baht. I would say that "Wat Rong Khun is an Art Definition of Professor Chalermchai and Baandum Meuseum is an Art Definition of Professor Thawan Duchanee".
About 15 minutes from Kua Sillapa , we will arrive at Mae Fah Luang University, the most beautiful university in Thialand where you should come to visit. For people who are going to drive to Mae Sai, you should stop by to pay a respect to Phra Chao Lanthong and Princess Srinagarindra for your lucky.
China Garden: Chinese Language Faculty
If you go during Red Padauk flower blossom, it is very red all over and very beautiful.
Phra Chao Lanthong (Buddha of the university)
Another tourist attraction place that we should not miss is Singha Park especially for people who love nature. To get here, you need to drive or take a taxi. Right now there is no entrance fee. There are many activities here, but the most interesting one for me is Sling 4 base for 800 baht per person. If you like to eat, there is also a lunch buffet for about 300 baht and A La Cart menu for dinner.
Where to Stay?
We will end this review with where to stay in Chiang Rai?
There is a good hotel at 5 Yaek Phokhun which is Rasa Boutique Hotel Chiang Rai
Rasa is a small boutique hotel, decorated in Moroccan style. Let's go discover the hotel^^
Quite a small and cozy lobby as you can see^^
They provide a Chlorophyll Drink for a welcome drink
There is also a big pool for you to enjoy
There is a bar beside the pool and it opens only at night. Such a good atmosphere especially in winter.... Oh My GOD!!!
For a hotel restaurant, food tastes good and price is not expensive if you compare with outside. The price starts from about 100 baht and no plus ^^ that's so nice.
This is butterfly pea water with lemon and soda (Sorry I cannot remember the name of the menu hahahaha)
Rasa Salad and Rasa Dressing (Special Recipe)
Hors d'oeuvres Mueng, big set is only a hundred something.
Premium Sausages with fried noodle, taste good but quite expensive about 300 something.
For dessert, Melon Fruit Salad (Melon from Hokkaido), Let's try it!!!
Passion Fruit Cheesecake
Blueberry Cheese pie
For breakfast, I think it is enough for breakfast and taste is general.
Alright, let's go to the room, there is one room type and 1 suite only
We will go to room with Green and Brown Theme first
I like Blue and Purple theme
And the last one is White and Orange theme. If you like a bright room, I suggest this room.
For the only one suite, the size of the room is 2 times of the normal room, and it is the most beautiful room I think.
Bathroom has the same deign and quite small. Over all is okay but the water shower has less pressure.
How to get to Chiang Rai?
There are many ways to get to Chiang Rai, I would recommend you to take plane. It is easier, shorter time and not that expensive if you can find a good deal. Like I choose a promotion of Bangkok airways only a thousand something and can enjoy both in passenger lounge and on broad the plane.
The passengers lounge, snacks are provided.
Blue Ribbon Lounge provides more food. I am not sure if a AIS serenade still have accessed.
Here is the meal on broad>>>Hmm...Yummy!!!
Actually, details in this review cannot finish in one day, so I conclude into 2 different trips as followed:
9.00 Phokhun Mengrai (Free)
9.30 Chiang Rai City Tour by Tram (Free)
11.00 Lunch Buffet at Le Meridian Chiang Rai 269 baht per person
14.00 Wat Rong Khun (Free)
15.00 Singha Park (Free)
17.30 Walking Street on Saturday (Free)
19.00 Show Light and sound at Clock Tower (Free)
19.30 Dinner at Chor. Chareonchai Restaurant or Salungkhum Restaurant
9.30 Phokhun Mengrai (Free)
10.00 Visit art gallory at Kua Sillapa, Baandum Museum and Mae Pah Luang University
12.30 Have lunch at Manorom, Chevit Dhammada or Melt in You
13.30 Chiang Rai City Tour by Tram (Free)
15.00 Singha Park (Free)
17.30 Dinner at Phupirom restaurant in Singha Park
19.00 Show Light and sound at Clock Tower (Free)