One of the least known landscapes for tourists visiting Chiang Mai and its surroundings are the incredible rice terraces of Ban Pa Pong Pieng. They are considered the highest in the whole country and the most beautiful. Ban Pa Pong Pieng is one of the most attractive alternative destinations in Chiang Mai.
Rice Terraces Near Chiang Mai
Located at the foot of the Doi Inthanon Nature Park, the rice terraces near Chiang Mai at Ban Pa Pong Pieng are famous for being located at the foot of the mountains of Mount Doi Inthanon. This makes them unique in the country as in Thailand these types of plantations are usually found in the flatter areas of the country. This peculiarity makes the rice grown the most appreciated in the country.
The best time to visit the rice terraces is during the rainy season (from June to November) when the area is green and wet. If you wish, you can stay in the village in some of the basic but cozy homestays.
How To Get To Ban Pa Pong Pieng
Going to Ban Pa Pong Pieng is not easy at all. The fastest way is to go from Chiang Mai to Mae Chaem by local bus (9:30 and 11:30 / 2 h / 150 bth). Once in Mae Chaem you should go by public taxi or songhtaew (direction Mae Pan waterfall) to the junction where you go up on a sand only road (70 bth). There you will have to climb the 2.5 km that would be missing on foot or by truck. Although the journey is somewhat complicated, the place is certainly worth it.
If you can, try to make a night of it at Ban Pa Pong Pieng. That way you can enjoy the spectacle of watching the sunset and sunrise over the place.
If you are travelling on your own on a rented motorbike, be careful with the route. The final access to Ban Pa Pong Pieng is by unpaved road, which means that in the rainy season you will find quite a lot of mud… avoid going if you do not know how to ride well.