Chiang Mai’s climate is tropical and balmy and as such the landscapes around the city are verdant for much of the year. Trees, shrubs and flowers thrive in Chiang Mai’s favourable weather. Gardens, parks and national parks around Chiang Mai are lush and boast collections of flowers which can only be described as amazing.
Most tourists only see the Old City’s Suan Buak Haad Park or the well-manicured gardens at San Kamphaeng Hot Springs. Besides these there a number of other parks and gardens which feature one-of-a-kind attractions and are ideal for a day’s excursion. At parks and gardens in the locality, it is possible to see greenhouses with desert cactuses, interact with deer and peacocks, and bounce around on inflatable amusements in a disused quarry.
Parks and Gardens in Chiang Mai:
Royal Park Ratchaphruek | Queen Sirikit Garden | Suan Buak Haad Park | Tweechol Garden | Further Reading
*Note: Entrance fees do change, we recommend you to check with the parks before visiting.
ROYAL PARK RATCHAPHRUEK
Venue for the celebrated Royal Park Ratchaphruek Flower Festival in 2006, Royal Park Ratchaphruek is in the same direction as the Grand Canyon Water Park, but not quite as far. The 200-acre complex is maintained to the same high standards set during the Flower Fest and is a fascinating destination for fans of flowers, horticultural masterpieces and exceptional architecture. The different zones at Ratchaphruek are based on traditional gardens from around the world.
They contain collections of plants and typical traditional buildings from nations including South Korea, Japan and Sudan. Gorgeous orchids such as Bromheadia Aporoides and Paphiopedilum Delenatii, bromeliads and tulips are among the massive portfolio. Ho Kham Luang (the Royal Pavilion) is the flagship of the buildings and looks like a majestic Lanna palace from days of yore.
Royal Park Ratchaphruek : – T. Mae Hia, A. Muang, Chiang Mai 50100100 | Open: 08:00-18:00 (Daily) | Entrance Fees: Adult 200 B, Child 150 B | Tel: +66 53 114 110-5 | Website | E-mail | Map
QUEEN SIRIKIT BOTANICAL GARDEN
Queen Sirikit Botanical Garden is another definitive Chiang Mai highlight for lovers of plants and innate natural beauty. These gardens are situated in the Mae Sa Valley and are about 40kms north of central Chiang Mai. They are spread over slopes of the valley and boast a vast collection of Thai, Asian and international flowers, plants and trees.
Various designated paths lead through the facility. There is also an aerial walkway which gives visitors commanding views over the treetops. Banana Avenue has more than 200 varieties of this species while the Ornamental Garden’s colourful blooms are a teaser before the greenhouses. A greenhouse with tropical orchids provides a pleasing contrast to the Arid House’s cactuses and agaves.
Queen Sirikit Botanic Garden: #100, M.9, T. Mae Ram, A. Mae Rim, Chiang Mai 50180 | Open: 08:30-17:00 (Daily) | Entrance Fees: Adult 100 B, Child 50 B | Tel: +66 53 841 234 | Website | E-mail | Map
SUAN BUAK HAAD PARK
Suan Buak Haad Park (sometimes Nong Buak Haad Park) is Chiang Mai’s main public park. It is located in the southwest corner of the Old City. The city’s municipal authorities take pride in the park and it is lovingly maintained. A series of large ponds is perfectly harmonized by ornate bridges and tall palm, rain and banyan trees. Orange jessamine is one of the many blooms which add a touch of the exotic to Suan Buak Haad Park.
The grass around the ponds is soft and perfect for a picnic. Picnic mats are available for rent in the park and vendors on the street outside sell a range of drinks and snacks. There is an 800-metre-long path in the park which is popular with joggers. Those visiting the park very early in the morning will see local residents doing their tai-chi exercises.
Suan Buak Haad Park: – T. Phra Singh, A. Muang, Chiang Mai 50200 | Open: 05:00-21:00 (Daily) | Entrance Fee: Free | Map
TWEECHOL BOTANICAL GARDEN
Less than 20kms east of Chiang Mai, Tweechol Botanical Garden is an appealing daytrip for the whole family. The palm gardens feature 100-plus different varieties of this tree. The four domed structures which comprise Centre Point are packed with cactuses, wild orchids, ferns and countless other plants and flowers. Tweechol’s gardeners are famed for their topiary creations of camels, giraffes and dinosaurs.
Lakes keep the gardens cool on hot days and are one of the few locations in Northern Thailand offering paddle-boating. The petting zoo provides the chance of meeting and greeting camels, swans, deer and ostriches. The onsite Lanna Museum houses a varied collection of artefacts, utensils and Buddha statues.
Tweechol Botanical Garden: #118, M. 7, T. Cheng Doi, A. Doi Saket, Chiang Mai 50220 | Open: 08:30-17:00 (Daily) | Entrance Fees: Adult 86 B, Child 43 B | Tel: +66 53 868 891-3 | Website | E-mail | Map