Ah, amazing Chiang Mai, where the air is instantly fresher, and afternoons are filled with all things cultural. It’s also one of our absolute favourite places to visit during the winter months, and with so much beautiful natural surroundings, it’s hardly a surprise why.
Plus the cooler months = comfort, so a number of outdoor activities and exploring can be done without getting all hot and sweaty within the first 15 minutes, ya know what I’m saying.
But with so much incredible nature around you, especially including the areas that surround the main city, Chiang Mai, there truly is so much to be discovered, and what better way to do so than with the one you love!
So why not have some special quality time for the two of you while getting to know Northern Thailand a little bit more! We’ve chosen to go exploring the gorgeously green towns of Chiang Dao and Mae Rim, away from the crowds, both just under 1.5 hours from Chiang Mai.
Conquer Thailand’s 3rd tallest mountain and the famous Lod Cave
Never heard of it before? Or maybe you’re familiar with the Doi Chiang Dao summit (also known as Doi Luang Chiang Dao and is 2175 metres high!)? Either way, Chiang Dao is a must for nature lovers, and this peaceful village makes the perfect escape.
It’s a lot cooler than the city of Chiang Mai and really has this jungle / mountain-esque feel to it, where you’re always surrounded by something green!
Enjoy exploring their many caves, such as the famous Lod Cave and the Chiang Dao Cave at Wat Tham (it’s super cool and definitely worth checking)!
Adventure through the Chiang Dao Provincial Forest or even hike some of the Doi Chiang Dao Summit. There’s also a few waterfalls and hot springs, and the food in this part of the North is amazing – so do over-indulge!
Visit botanical gardens and Chiang Mai’s hilltop tribes
There are butterfly farms, botanical gardens and gorgeous views; plus, did we mention it’s also the perfect spot to witness the beauty of a sea of low hanging clouds?
The surroundings are, of course, as green as ever, whether it be a rice paddy or the trees at Mae Sa Waterfall. The stunning Queen Sirikit Botanical Garden should not be missed, as well as the famous Mon Cham hilltop restaurant (with views that don’t disappoint!).
Visit a hilltop tribe, check out the Elephant PoopooPaper Park or if you’re feeling adventurous, zipline across the rice fields and among the trees with Eagle Track Zipline.
1. Experience a stay in the mountains like no other – North Star Valley (Mae Rim)
Things don’t get more whimsical than this… Picture yourself waking up to a 360º view surrounding you, tucked away in a hidden valley, overlooking mountain ranges and all the green in the world.
Not to mention, these completely see-through bubble tents are insane! You can also opt for the bathtub option, which comes with a private outdoor tub looking out over the horizon…
With everything done in white, there’s a real softness to it all – and that includes even the duvet covers! 😉
North Star Valley
Rate:From 3500 Baht / approx. USD $109 Address: 77/9 Moo 1, Pong Yaeng Nai Soi 6, Pong Yaeng, Mae Rim District, Chiang Mai 50180, Thailand (Coordinates here) Contact: +66 80 565 1111
2. Spend the night in a cave (a very comfortable one…) – Vaya House (บ้านหว่าญ่า) (Mae Rim)
Oooo I’m very into these units and this is stylish to the max, also offering guests unique stays (you can even spend the night sleeping on the inside of mountain rock, but still keeping things comfortable).
The other units are built geometrically in square shapes and sizes, giving it a bit of an edge – not to mention some are placed on the edge – and the interiors have been set up to accommodate modern amenities – i.e. Flatscreen TVs, sofas and a living space area.
All have their own wooden balcony patios overlooking the mountains of Mae Rim, and in the mornings you can catch the mist billowing in.
We also have to mention the property’s dining area. It’s built on the highest point of land so you’re literally sitting in the clouds – super romantic…
Rate: From 1390 Baht per person / approx. USD $45.53 (per couple) Address: 91 Moo 7, Mae Raem, Mae Rim District, Chiang Mai 50180, Thailand (Coordinates here) Contact: +66 97 932 2282 Website
3. Wake up to misty clouds, and enjoy stunning views from your bed – Phu Doi Homestay (Mae Rim)
The views here are absolutely everything, and with a canvas tent perched on the edge of a mountain, overlooking an abundance of lush green treetops and hills, all you’ll feel is utter bliss!
Pathways are lined with wildflowers, low hanging clouds rolling in are guaranteed, and all I’m gonna say is think of the photos!
Tented units are set up in two rows and are super spacious. They are individually built and all have their own balconies (on which the tent is too!) and each have a private bathroom (the rather gorgeous wooden structure next to your tent).
There’s also a second (but limited) option of gorgeous and minimalist wooden individual rooms – all placed around the mountain and are super private too.
Phu Doi Homestay
Rate:From 1390 Baht / approx. USD $45.56 Address: ภูดอย โฮมสเตย์ แม่แรม Amphoe Mae Rim, Chang Wat Chiang Mai 50180, Thailand (Coordinates here) Contact: +66 98 792 6492
4. Somebody get Tarzan and Jane, we found their next escape in Thailand! – The Treehouse Hideaway (Chiang Dao)
Surrounded by waterfalls, streams, jungle trees and evergreens, it truly feels like you’ve escaped to a secret jungle.
Being a treehouse and all, naturally, the accommodation has been built in raw woods and bamboo and fits perfectly among the trees.
The rooms are set up in a type of open-plan space, with corner bedrooms and beds right next to the open balcony so you’re 100% immersed by nature. It all feels rather whimsical…
There’s a communal chill and eating area made from beautiful woods located in the centre of the house which gives it a special homely vibe, and it has the most spectacular views from here.
This is the ultimate choice in escaping the crowds and enjoying some zen time with your honey above ground.
The Treehouse Hideaway
Rate:From 750 Baht per person / approx. USD $24.58 (including two meals) Address: Mae Mae Village, Tambon Mae Na, Amphoe Chiang Dao, Chang Wat Chiang Mai 50170, Thailand (Coordinates here) Contact: +66 81 958 5601
5. Stroll through wildflowers and enjoy some serious misty morning cuddles – Phu Mok House (บ้านภูหมอก) (Mae Rim)
With this entire area of the North being filled with hillsides, it’s no surprise to find another mountain-stay amongst a sea of clouds with splendid views!
These cabin-style houses are ultra-cute, cleverly and compactly built from bamboo, wood and tin and are super traditional (natural vibes!!).
Each unit is completely separate and comes with a lovely large patio – perfect for morning coffees with your love, or watching the sun go down.
Or enjoy a delicious hotpot without having to go anywhere, ideal for those chilly evenings!
There are so many different varieties of beautiful flower species around you too, which makes you feel as if you’re in some sort of winter wonderland, or running through the Swiss mountain hillsides singing yodelayheeHOO…
Phu Mok House
Rate:From 1800 Baht / approx. USD $58.97 (per couple) Address: 118 Village No. 11, Mae Rim District, Mae Ram Subdistrict, Chiang Mai Province Mae rim (Coordinates here) Contact: +66 82 894 6861
6. It could be a scene from a fairytale novel – Cher Cheeva Homestay (Chiang Dao)
A fairy-like escape set among the wispy trees and running waters from the river stream, spend a night or two in it all, taking in your surroundings, exploring and just enjoying life in general and the small things that matter with your lover.
Rustic and raw, the house is built upwards, almost like something from a fairytale, ready to take off into the treetops.
The rooms are quite basic, with traditional mattresses on the ground, scattered Thai cushions, and open and light space.
The whole scene here feels like some sort of magical forest adventure, perfect for couples that are easy-going, adventurous and are nature lovers! 💚
PS: They also do an amazing drip coffee using fresh, local beans! Remember, the Chiang Mai region is famous for its coffee.
Cher Cheeva Homestay
Rate: From 1500 Baht / approx. USD $49.16 (for two people, including breakfast) Address: 99 Moo 11, Mae Na, Chiang Dao District, Chiang Mai 50170, Thailand (Coordinates here) Contact: +66 96 698 9061, +66 86 568 2908
7. This feels like the traditional Chiang Mai province – Baan Wang Rim Kong Homestay (Chiang Dao)
Quite different from some of the other stays, you might be keen on the idea that you’re actually on solid ground, amidst a rice field, next to a river.
From grassy green patches to lands around you, you’ll feel as if you’ve truly escaped the hustle and bustle of normal, everyday life, spending life in the slow lane for the next few days, floating down the river (no really, you can. Grab a tube and take a chill downstream).
There are a few different options available from basic tents literally located right on the riverbank to bamboo bungalows (both private and dorm-style options).
Beds are large and comfortable in the huts, with the windows totally opening up onto the river in front, so you’re always looking into horizons of nature.
Baan Wang Rim Kong Homestay
Rate:From 350 Baht / approx. USD $11.47 (per person) Address: Village No. 2, Ban Wang Mariu, Mueang Khong, Chiang Dao District, Chiang Mai, Thailand (Coordinates here) Contact: +66 84 790 5303
8. A gorgeously green, chic stay next to a Coffee Plantation – Khiang Fha Tara Prai Homestay (เคียงฟ้าธาราไพร แม่แมะ) (Chiang Dao)
Okay, this seriously reminds me of Jurassic Park for some reason, and with the mix of lush and tropical trees and plants around you, it feels like you’re deep in the jungle.
Being so deep among the trees, misty whiffs of clouds constantly surround the place (most of the time) and it really has that wintery feel to it – the one we seek with our loves because let’s be real, cold mornings are meant for snuggles and sleeping in…
And come night time, a fire is made up on the gorgeous terrace, where you can cosy up around the fire, under fairy lights and glistening stars and cuddle into your darling’s arms – or even roast some marshmallows!
It’s absolutely beautiful here and I am so into the design aesthetic that they’ve used; Japanese umbrellas here and there and chic, minimalistic furniture decorating the spaces.
If you want to do some exploring, take a walk through their Organic Coffee Farm where you’ll find a small pathway that leads to the small running river up ahead.
Khiang Fha Tara Prai Homestay
Rate: From 650 Baht per person / approx. USD $21.30 (including two meals) Address: Baan Mae Mae, Mae Na Subdistrict, Chiang Dao District, Chiang Mai Province Chiang Mai, Thailand (Coordinates here) Contact: +66 98 435 7542
10. If you’re after some of our more modern comforts and a room – Mon Saan (Mae Rim)
Structured and cool, these ‘black box houses’ made from a mix of organic and raw materials (yet look super trendy) are a delightful choice if you want to spend some time amongst nature with your comforts…ah, a big soft bed!
We’re so into the windows too, they’re big and fill the space of the front wall, so you have an open view of the landscape ahead.
There are actually three different accommodation type options; Black House boxes, Bamboo huts and a large canvas tent in its own private area (balcony and toilet included).
Every unit of different accommodation types are placed down the hill, so no matter where you look out in front (or what level you’re on) there’s a view guaranteed.
Rate:From 1700 Baht per person / approx. USD $55.72 (per couple) Address: 47 ม 11 ต แม่ แรม อ แม่ริม Tambon Mae Raem, Amphoe Mae Rim, Chang Wat Chiang Mai 50180, Thailand (Coordinates here) Contact: +66 93 048 1911
So if you’re after a sweet escape with your honey, looking to try something new and unique when travel is possible once again, make sure to head to the North for an ultimate romantic nature retreat!
Do let us know how your experience went, and if the romance was all it lead up to be, or simply share your holiday photos with us, we’d love to indulge! Use the hashtag #TripCanvas or pop us a comment below!
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I live to travel and I travel to live. I'm a traveling Gypsy with a passion for the English word, being inspired daily by the different cultures and colours, scents and scenic overloads, sensory explosions and mind-awakening experiences. The ones that take your breathe away. Walking along the earth, one country at a time, it's what I live for; a life full of adventure, sharing my thoughts and experiences through literature