Chiang Mai is a city built on the roots of a traditional heritage
that dig deep into the soil of time. It's a city with a beautiful
cultural personality of its own. In addition, it's been blessed
with much majestic beauty in nature. The people themselves are
an unforgettable part of Chiang Mai. Handicrafts of silk, silver
and wood are timeless souvenirs for visitors from all over the
globe. Along with all this, a wide variety of accommodations,
restaurants, and entertainment all help to make Chiang Mai one
of Thailand's prime tourist attractions..
Chiang Mai, 761 kms. by rail, approximately 700 kms. by road
north of Bangkok, with an area of 20,107.1 sq.lms., is Thailand's
second largest city and capital of the northern region.
ChiangMai is administratively divided into 22 Amphurs districts)
San Pa Tong
Situated between north latitude 17-21 and east longitude 98-99,
the province of Chiang Mai is found in the upper area of Thailand's
northern region. Chiang Mai valley is 310 meters (1,027 feet)
above sea level. The widest point of the province measures 136
kms. (85 miles), and the longest 320 kms. (200 miles). To the
north, a 277 kms. (141.82 miles) stretch of mountains divides
Chiang Mai's northern districts of Fang and Mae Ai from Myanmar's
(Burma's) Chiang Tung (Shan) State. In certain areas, the Kok
River also acts as a border between Chiang Mai and Myanmar.
On the east, Chiang Mai is bodered by the Chaing Rai, Lampang,
and Lamphun provinces. The Mae Tuen River, Ream Mountain, and
Luang Mountain separate Chiang Mai's South from the province
of Tak. Some portions of Chiang Mai's South also border the
Lamphun province. Tothe west, Chiang Mai is bordered by Mae
Hong Son province.
A large part (69.31 %) of Chiang Mai's land is covered by mountains
and forests. These generally run in a north-south pattern through
the province and give birth to several streams and tributaries
(such as the Mae Jam, Mae Ngud, and Mae Klang) which in turn
feed important rivers and irrigation canals (such as the Muang
and Faay) which provide the water necessary to Chiang Mai's
agriculture. Chiang Mai's largest and most important river is
the Ping, which originates in the mountains of Chiang Dao and
flows southward for 540 kilometers (337.5 miles). It is along
the banks of this river that Chiang Mai's flat, fertile valley
Chiang Mai is also home to Inthanon Mountain, which stands 2,575
meters (8,448 feet) above sea level and is Thailand's highest
Cool Season : (late October to end of Februry). average temperature
21? C and much cooler at night. The colest months are December
Hot Season : (early March to end of May) Average temperature
29.9? C. The hottest month is April.
Rainy Season : (early June to end of October). Average temperature
25.5? C. The wettest month is September.
With a population of 1,547,085 Chiang Mai is one of Thailand's
largest provinces. Of the above number, 170,348 are currently
living in Chiang Mai's city area with the rest distributed
throughout Chiang Mai's 21 districts, 2 sub-districts. 80%
of the people in Chiang Mai are locals by birth, and speak
a sialext that is a slight variation of the central Thai language.
The remaining 20% is made up of Thai nationals and foreigners
who have moved to Chiang Mai to work, study, or retire.
There are many hilltribe people living in the mountainous
districts surrounding Chiang Mai such as Omkoi, Mae Jam,
Chiang Dao, and Mae Ai. Statistics reported by the Tribal
Research Institute of Chiang Mai stated that in the year 1992
there were 1,049 hilltribe villages in the Chiang Mai province,
constituting a total of 174,195 people. Of this amount, 106,116
were from the Karen tribe, 27,392 from the Lahu (Musur) tribe,
17,198 from the Hmong (Meo) tribe, 10,873 form the Lisu tribe,
8,862 from the Lua tribe, 2,609 from the Akha tribe, 1,145
from the Mien (yao) tribe, and 485 from the Palong tribe.
The hilltribe people are agricultural; planting fields, raising
animals, and hunting for a living. Since each tribe has its
own culture and language, they blanket the hills of Chiang
Mai with an interesting patchwork quilt of diverse variety.
The majority (80%) of the Chiang Mai people earn a living
through agriculture and agricultural related professions.
The second largest vocation is tourism and its directly and
indirectly related jobs. General commerce and industry-mainly
in the form of handicrafts, and of processing agricultural
products-are the two other major professions in which the
Chiang Mai people are involved.
CHIANG MAI ATTRACTIONS
Chiang Mai is often spoken of by tourists and visitors as
being a city with a distinct beauty and cultural heritage
of its own. Along with its numerous ancient temples and buildings,
Nature added her own handiwork in the majestic mountains and
combine to compose a captivating symphony which draws both
domestic and international tourists back to see this city
of old time, tine, and time again.