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Chiang Mai Hill Tribe Villages

Chiang Mai Hill Tribe Villages

The verdant hills surrounding cosmopolitan Chiang Mai have long been dotted with hill tribe villages of Thailand’s many ethnic minorities. Visiting one or more of these rural outposts has become a quintessential northern Thailand experience. Here’s what you need to know about the region’s diverse peoples.

Karen Village

Originally from Myanmar, the Karen is the largest hill tribe group in Thailand, with a population of about half a million. A subgroup of the Karen, known as the Padaung or Long Neck Karen, are perhaps the most famous local hill tribe due to the heavy brass rings the women wear around their necks.

Hmong Village

Residing throughout northern Thailand and southern China, the Hmong have long been a fiercely independent group. Today, they live in mountainous areas and are known for their elaborately embroidered black jackets and hemp batik pleated skirts.

Lahu Village

Originally from the Tibetan highlands, the Lahu build their houses on high stilts. Most villages, which are often quite remote, have a central temple where a village guardian spirit is worshipped. Women traditionally wear black and red jackets, while the men don baggy green pants.

Mien Village

The Mien tribe, which originally comes from China and is also known as the Yao, is known for its silversmithing and embroidery. The tribe’s impressive traditional dress includes long black jackets with red lapels worn over intricately embroidered pants.

Akha Village

Ceremonial gates mark the entrance to each Akha village, where the houses sit on low stilts with steeply pitched roofs. The Akha are well-known for their elaborate headdresses decorated with silver coins, silver balls, seashells, and red taffeta.

Lisu Village

Hailing from eastern Tibet, the Lisu live mainly between Chiang Mai and Mae Hong Son. Extended families reside in bamboo houses, and the women often wear traditional knee-length tunics and bright multicolored hats.

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4 Tours and Activities

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3-Day Chiang Mai and Golden Triangle Tour Including Doi Mae Salong

3-Day Chiang Mai and Golden Triangle Tour Including Doi Mae Salong

star-4.5
3
Experience Thailand’s famous Golden Triangle on a 3-day tour cultural tour from Chiang Mai. Visit the border where Thailand meets with Laos and Myanmar (Burma), tour the Hall of Opium museum and marvel at the natural limestone formations within the Chiang Dao Caves. You’ll sail upon the Khong River in a longtail boat and soak in the waters of Maoe Ka Chan hot springs. This guided small-group tour also includes a visit to Doi Mae Salong, a hillside village steeped in Chinese history. Includes round-trip transport from Chiang Mai.
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  • 3 days
From
$635.00
From
$635.00

Hill Tribe Village Tour and River Cruise including Lunch from Chiang Mai

Hill Tribe Village Tour and River Cruise including Lunch from Chiang Mai

star-5
2
Encounter northern Thailand’s extraordinary cultures on a full-day river cruise to the hill tribe villages in the ancient Mon kingdom. Visit a community of Hmong-speakers as you drive the scenic roads to Thaton, dine at a village restaurant and travel the Mae Kok River to Baan Mai. Explore villages that are home to Akha, Palong and Karen peoples, whose diverse costumes, languages and traditions are among Thailand’s most vivid cultural heritage. Climb to the hilltop temple of Wat Thaton, and gaze at panoramic views of the densely forested mountain landscape.
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  • 10 hours
From
$195.08
From
$195.08

Authentic Experience in Chiang Mai: Palong Villages Stay and Chiang Dao Trek

Authentic Experience in Chiang Mai: Palong Villages Stay and Chiang Dao Trek

star-5
11
Set out from Chiang Mai to trek through northern Thailand’s mountainous jungle on a three-day private tour. With an experienced guide by your side, you’ll explore the area around Chiang Dao, visiting Karen, Akha and other remote hill tribe villages, dining on (and if you like, helping prepare) northern Thai cuisine, and bedding down in bamboo huts. You’ll even have time to enjoy Chiang Mai and its offerings at your own pace with sightseeing tips catered specifically to your interests.
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  • 5 days
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$279.79
Price varies by group size
From
$279.79
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

4-Night Hill Tribe Village Tour with Thai Jungle Trek from Chiang Mai

4-Night Hill Tribe Village Tour with Thai Jungle Trek from Chiang Mai

Explore the vast jungles and hill tribe villages of northern Thailand on a 4-night adventure trek. An experience guide leads you and your tour group of 12 or less on a multi-day hike into the local wilderness from Chiang Mai, where you’ll encounter several remote tribes, learn about their culture and customs and even assist them preparing meals. Your overnights will be split between the villages’ bamboo huts and 2-star lodging in Chiang Mai, which you’ll also have ample opportunity to enjoy either solo or along with your knowledgable guide.
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  • 5 days
  • Taking safety measures
From
$490.00
From
$490.00
Taking safety measures