There are plenty of unique things to do in Pai Thailand like bathing in the hot springs or watching sunset from the Pai Canyon. Pai is located up in the beautiful mountains of Northern Thailand and is roughly a 3 hour drive from Chiang Mai. You can grab a mini van that’ll take you to Pai from Chiang Mai for around 150-200 Baht per person.
This small laid back town may not seem like much but it’s sure to hold a special place in your heart. The people, food and vibes of Pai are something that many people fall in love with and end up staying longer than expected.
How to get to Pai
To get to Pai, we used 12Go to book a van from Chiang Mai. 12Go is a super cheap and reliable way to get around Thailand and other popular Southeast Asian countries.
↠ Book: Latest 12Go prices and availability.
Where to stay
The town of Pai is small although it has plenty of places for you to stay. Wherever you stay in Pai, you’ll be close to a variety of food and cafe options. We stayed at the Rainbow House Pai and drove into town on our scooter everyday. A popular hostel in the middle of town is also Hugga Pai.
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Top 7 Things to do in Pai Thailand
1. Bamboo Bridge over the rice fields
The Bamboo Bridge Pai is one of the lesser known things to do in Pai Thailand and it’s definitely worth a visit. It’s not a very well known spot to tourists which makes it even better as you’ll have some peace and quiet. The bamboo bridge stretches out 800 meters across the lush green rice fields. Be sure to visit in the wet season when the crops haven’t been harvested yet. You’ll be walking over the lush fields, surrounded by mountains which makes this bridge perfect for photos. In the early hours you’ll even see monks making their way to the temple, as well as farmers out in the distance.
2. Visit the White Buddha
The White Buddha is located just on the outskirts of town and is one of the easiest attractions to reach. It’s located up in the hills and offers some great views overlooking the landscape. It’s the second most popular spot for sunset due to the panoramic views back over Pai town. The only challenge is the 300 steps that it takes to reach the top. As challenging as that may be for some, especially on a hot day, it’s still worth the effort. You’ll have some of the best views overlooking Pai while you admire the beauty of the incredible giant Buddha.
3. Slide down Mor Paeng Waterfall
Mor Paeng Waterfall is one of the most fun things to do in Pai Thailand. It was one of our most enjoyable days out adventuring as we watched others slide into the refreshing water. This waterfall is also very popular in Pai as it’s known for being able to slide down the smooth surface of the rocks. You can slip n slide your way down into the refreshing water without a single scratch. Be sure to watch locals or other people doing it first so you know where the safest spot is. Mor Paeng Waterfall is the perfect spot to enjoy yourself and to cool off from the heat.
4. Watch a sunset at Pai Canyon
Watching the sunset at the Pai Canyon is one of the most popular things to do in Pai Thailand. It’s best to visit during early morning hours or in the evening. This allows you to witness the orange glow that peaks over the landscape. The area provides stunning panoramic views of nature and the surrounding mountains, and is the perfect spot to watch the sunset. Unfortunately when we visited, the weather wasn’t on our side. However, we still took the chance to explore the various ridges and pathways along the red sandstone.
5. Pam Bok Waterfall
Pam Bok Waterfall is tucked away behind towering cliffs and is surrounded by nature. This waterfall feels secluded which gives it a peaceful vibe. Pam Bok Waterfall is also less touristy than the others and feels more adventurous. It’s still very easy to access as it’s only a short walk along a dirt path. We visited after some heavy rainfall so the water current was too strong and murky to swim in. During good weather, this waterfall is the perfect spot to spend the day cooling off in the refreshing swimming hole.
6. Hot Springs
The Pai Hot Springs are a great way to relax within the clean hot water. The entrance fee for foreigners is a little steep being 300Baht per person. However, the area is kept clean and is well maintained. The hot spring has different levels and the higher you go the hotter it gets. Find yourself a nice spot with pleasant temperatures and you’ll end up spending all day relaxing in some of natures finest pools. You’ll also find locals cooking eggs in the hot springs which are too hot to swim in. If it has been heavily raining then the hot springs may be closed due to safety issues.
7. Walking Street
Pai Walking Street is a night market that sells everything from souvenirs, artwork, clothing, jewellery, bags and shoes. This market was one of our favourite things to do in Pai Thailand. You’ll find the night market along Rungsiyanon Road. It’s open from around 6pm until 10.30pm each night. Our favourite part about Pai Walking Street was the street food. There is a large variety of good tasting and fresh food, with plenty of options for vegetarians. Additionally, you can get smoothies for as little as 20Baht and you’ll also find home cooked tasty deserts. The atmosphere of the night market is also very peaceful as it’s not so crazy and hectic. We spent every night at this night market because we couldn’t get enough of the great tasting market food!