Wat Phra That Doi Suthep: How to Get to This Famous Temple

wat phra that doi suthep how to get there

High on Doi Suthep mountain in Chiang Mai, Thailand, you’ll find the famous Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. This Buddhist temple is iconic, drawing visitors from all corners. It’s known for its golden chedi and views over the city. It’s a top spot for those exploring the culture of Northern Thailand.

Our guide will cover everything you need to know about exploring this great temple. You’ll learn about the temple’s location, entrance fees, and hours. We’ll also talk about the best ways to get there so your trip is smooth and fun.

Are you traveling alone or with friends? This guide has you covered. You’ll get all the info you need for an amazing visit to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. This way, you’re sure to have an unforgettable time at this spiritual and impressive place.

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Introduction to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

At the top of Doi Suthep mountain in Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand, you’ll find Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. It’s a temple that’s been a wonder for many through the years. This Buddhist shrine shows the deep faith in spirituality that Thailand holds dearly.

Brief History and Significance

Founded in the 14th century, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep was King Kue Na’s vision. The temple’s location was decided by a miraculous event. A white elephant carried a Buddha relic up the mountain. It then marked the spot where the temple stands now with its passing. This relic, a part of the Buddha’s shoulder bone, is kept in the temple’s main chedi. It makes the temple a key place for Buddhists from around the world.

Stunning Architecture and Views

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep‘s design mixes Thai and Lanna styles, showing the area’s cultural mix. At its heart is the golden chedi, shining under the sun. This view can be seen from many parts of Chiang Mai. To reach the temple, visitors climb 306 stairs. These stairs are guarded by nagas, mythical serpents. The climb is hard but worth it, with a magnificent view at the top.

The temple sits high, offering a wide view of Chiang Mai, a green city. This stunning location, along with the temple’s beauty, creates an unforgettable experience. It touches visitors’ hearts and spirits with its elegance and setting.

Getting to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

Make your way to the stunning Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is already an adventure. It’s found high up on Doi Suthep mountain, offering a spectacular view. Various ways can take you there, each adding to the journey.

By Private Car or Taxi

Choosing a private car or a taxi is easy and stress-free. This lets you move at your own speed and check out the temple as much as you want. Taxis are available all over Chiang Mai and many will agree to take you there and back.

By Songthaew (Local Public Transportation)

For something more local, hop on a Songthaew. These red shared taxis are a common sight in Chiang Mai. They start from places like the Chiang Mai Gate and can take you to the mountain’s base. After that, either walk up 309 steps or catch a shuttle to the temple.

Transportation Option Approximate Cost (THB) Convenience Level
Private Car or Taxi 300-500 per trip High
Songthaew (Local Public Transportation) 30-40 per person Moderate

How you get to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is part of the fun. Whether you pick a private car or public transport, the beauty on the way and up top is unforgettable.

wat phra that doi suthep how to get there

Visiting Wat Phra That Doi Suthep in Chiang Mai, Thailand, is a big deal for many. Its location on Doi Suthep mountain gives awesome views of the city. It’s key to know how to get there with the wat phra that doi suthep transportation options there are.

By Private Car or Taxi

Getting there by private car or taxi is super easy. You don’t have to figure out public transport. You can easily catch a taxi in Chiang Mai. The drive to the temple is roughly 30 minutes, give or take depending on traffic.

By Songthaew (Local Public Transportation)

For a cheaper way, try a Songthaew (a red pickup). They pick up from Chiang Mai Old City and go up the mountain road to the temple. The trip can be between 45 minutes to an hour, depending on how many stops they make.

Transportation Mode Estimated Travel Time Approximate Cost
Private Car or Taxi 30 minutes 300-400 THB (approx. $9-$12 USD)
Songthaew (Local Public Transportation) 45 minutes to 1 hour 30-40 THB (approx. $0.90-$1.20 USD)

However you get there, the trip to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep will be unforgettable.

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep Location

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep sits on Doi Suthep mountain’s slopes. It’s a famous Buddhist temple in Chiang Mai, Thailand. From here, you can see an amazing view of the area.

The temple is at 18.8086° N, 98.9175° E. It’s about 15 kilometers away from Chiang Mai’s center. At 1,073 meters high, it oversees the green valleys and city below.

When you arrive, a grand Naga staircase greets you. It’s a 309-step path to the temple. This staircase is a key part of the temple’s beauty, with carved mythical serpents on each side.

Landmark Distance from Wat Phra That Doi Suthep
Chiang Mai City Center 15 km (9 miles)
Doi Suthep-Pui National Park Immediately adjacent
Chiang Mai University 8 km (5 miles)
Doi Inthanon National Park 60 km (37 miles)

Its location in Doi Suthep mountain area is special. This area is part of the Doi Suthep-Pui National Park. The park’s nature makes the temple even more peaceful and spiritual. It’s a place to visit for both those seeking religion and nature.

Entrance Fees and Opening Hours

Planning a trip to the famous Wat Phra That Doi Suthep in Chiang Mai, Thailand takes some thought. You need to know about the temple’s entrance fees and opening hours.

Admission Costs

For adults, the wat phra that doi suthep entrance fee is 30 Thai baht. That’s about $0.90 USD. Kids under 15 pay half that, which is 15 Thai baht or around $0.45 USD. Remember, prices might change, so check right before you go.

From 5:00 AM to 7:00 PM, the temple welcomes visitors every day. This is your time to enjoy the peace, see the amazing architecture, and learn about the history.

Visitor Type Entrance Fee (Thai Baht) Entrance Fee (USD Approximate)
Adults 30 THB $0.90 USD
Children (under 15 years) 15 THB $0.45 USD

Keep in mind, there might be special happenings that change things up. Always check for the latest news before heading out.

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep Attractions

At Doi Suthep mountain, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep shines with its many wonders. The main attraction is the

Golden Chedi

, it glistens as a symbol of the area’s deep culture.

Walking up the 309 steps reveals the wat phra that doi suthep attractions. The Golden Chedi is covered in beautiful 24-carat gold and has detailed carvings. It’s something you can’t miss seeing.

The wat phra that doi suthep views are stunning too. From up there, you see Chiang Mai sprawling in the valley. The hills and cityscape mix to create an amazing view.

“The Golden Chedi and the breathtaking views of Chiang Mai make Wat Phra That Doi Suthep an absolute must-visit destination for any traveler to northern Thailand.”

wat phra that doi suthep attractions

Coming to Doi Suthep isn’t just about its history and natural beauty. It’s also a journey into deep culture and unforgettable moments.

Historical Significance of Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is a famous Buddhist temple in Chiang Mai, Thailand. It’s located high up on Doi Suthep mountain. The site has a rich history and culture, fascinating visitors for many years. It was built in the 14th century by King Kuena of the Lanna Kingdom.

A local legend tells how the temple was created. It says a white elephant found a Buddha relic on the mountain. The elephant carried it to the top and trumpeted three times. This was seen as a sign. They then built the temple to honor the relic.

In time, the temple became very important to Buddhism. It also stands as a key part of Lanna cultural heritage. The main chedi, or pagoda, is especially beautiful. It shows off the skilled work and deep respect for Buddhism in Chiang Mai’s history.

“Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is more than a temple. It is a symbol of Thailand’s spiritual and cultural life. It brings the past and present together in a stunning way.”

Today, people from all over visit the temple. They come to see its beauty, find spiritual connection, and learn about its lasting traditions. The temple’s history proves the strength of faith, the importance of cultural identity, and the draw of its beauty.

Dress Code for Visiting the Temple

When you visit the famous Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, it’s crucial to follow the dress code. This shows respect for the temple’s traditions. It also makes your visit smooth and enjoyable.

It’s key to know how to dress right for Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. Here are some important tips for the wat phra that doi suthep dress code:

  • Cover up: Dress in clothing that conceals your shoulders, chest, and knees. Don’t pick sleeveless tops, shorts, or short skirts.
  • Avoid tight or revealing clothes: Choose loose, comfy, and dignified outfits. This shows good manners.
  • Remove hats and shoes: Before you step onto the temple grounds, take off your hat and shoes. This is a way of honoring the sacred space.
  • Respect the local culture: Don’t wear clothes with bad or rude pictures or words. Dress in a way that’s fitting and polite for a holy place.

Following the wat phra that doi suthep dress code lets you dive deep into this Thai temple’s culture and spirituality. With no distractions, you can truly connect with the place.

“Respect the local customs and dress code when visiting temples in Thailand. It’s a sign of appreciation for their culture and traditions.”

Remember, sticking to the wat phra that doi suthep dress code is about respect and a better visit. It ensures everyone enjoys their time at this amazing temple.

Best Time to Visit Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

Visiting Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, a key temple in Chiang Mai, is important for many. Yet, the best time to visit plays a big role. The ideal visit time can change based on several factors.

The wat phra that doi suthep best time to visit is in the morning or late afternoon. Mornings offer a stunning sunrise view over the temple and mountains. This provides a perfect chance for amazing photos. Cooler weather and fewer people also make this a peaceful time to visit.

At sunset, the temple also offers a mesmerizing sight. The sun-drenched spires match the twilight’s colors, showing a magical view. Many visitors gather to see the monks’ daily ritual at this time.

While mornings and late afternoons are usually recommended for visits, the temple welcomes visitors all day. If you prefer less hustle, midday visits might suit you better. This time, you can explore without the rush of busy periods.

The wat phra that doi suthep best time to visit really depends on what you like. Whether dawn, dusk, or a quiet midday stroll, the temple can make your Chiang Mai trip memorable. So, pick the time that fits your ideal visit best.

wat phra that doi suthep best time to visit

Photography Tips for Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

To capture the beauty of Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, you need the right skills. This is one of Chiang Mai’s most famous spots. No matter your skill level, these wat phra that doi suthep photography tips will help you. You can take stunning photos to remember your trip to this grand temple.

Timing is Everything

The perfect time to click photos is during the golden hour. This comes just after sunrise or before sunset. The light at this time makes the temple shine and the mountains look amazing.

Embrace the Angles

Try different angles to show the temple’s beauty and its surroundings. You might want to take photos from the:

  • Main staircase, for a unique view from above
  • Viewing platform, for wide views of the valley
  • Surrounding hills, to see the temple from up high

Composition Counts

Remember the rule of thirds when framing your photos. This means placing the main parts of the temple where the lines meet. It helps to make a strong and well-balanced photo. Also, use the temple’s features creatively to make your shots more interesting.

Capture the Details

Don’t forget to zoom in on the details. Show the fine work, colors, and carvings of the temple. These shots spotlight the craftsmanship that makes this spot special.

“Photography is the art of observation. It has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.” – Elliott Erwitt

With these wat phra that doi suthep photography tips, you’re set to take stunning photos. Enjoy your time at Wat Phra That Doi Suthep and create memories that last.

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Transportation Options to Reach the Temple

Getting to the Wat Phra That Doi Suthep temple in Chiang Mai, Thailand, needs some thought. You have options like a tuk-tuk or a guided tour. This journey is an adventure all on its own.

Hiring a Tuk-Tuk or Songthaew

Many people choose to go by tuk-tuk to the temple. Tuk-tuks are three-wheeled vehicles that are popular in Thailand. They’re fun and can take you up the mountain’s winding roads. You could also pick a Songthaew, which is like a shared taxi. They are colorful and offer a cheaper, yet scenic, way to get to the temple.

Joining a Guided Tour

A guided tour can make your visit easier and more interesting. They usually include a ride to the temple and back. With a guide, you’ll learn a lot about the temple’s history and importance. This option is great for people visiting for the first time or who like having a plan.

Transportation Option Advantages Disadvantages
  • Unique and thrilling experience
  • Flexible and customizable route
  • Affordable option
  • Can be crowded or uncomfortable for longer rides
  • Potential for higher prices or scams
  • Inexpensive and widely available
  • Opportunity to mingle with locals
  • Scenic journey
  • Can be crowded during peak hours
  • Routes may not be direct
Guided Tour
  • Hassle-free transportation
  • Informative commentary from a guide
  • Suitable for first-time visitors
  • Generally more expensive than independent travel
  • Less flexibility in terms of itinerary and schedule

Think about what you prefer and your budget when choosing how to get to the temple. You might like the fun of a tuk-tuk, the simplicity of a Songthaew, or the guidance of a tour. No matter your choice, visiting this temple will be an amazing experience.

Other Nearby Attractions to Visit

Besides the stunning Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, there are many places around it worth seeing. These attractions let you fully experience the Chiang Mai region. You’ll find everything from beautiful nature spots to important cultural sites. They give you a chance to see the rich variety of northern Thailand.

Exploring Doi Suthep-Pui National Park

Doi Suthep-Pui National Park is paradise for lovers of nature. It’s filled with plants, animals, and natural beauty. Visitors can hike to waterfalls, find peace in the forests, and see amazing views. This park is perfect for those who love the outdoors and want to see wildlife up close.

Discovering Hmong Hilltribe Villages

In Chiang Mai, you’ll find unique hilltribes like the Hmong. Their villages are full of culture, crafts, and a way of life that’s been passed down for years. Exploring these villages lets you connect with the lasting heritage of northern Thailand.

Visiting the Royal Winter Palace

The Siribhume Royal Winter Palace is breathtaking, showcasing Thai royal design. As a royal retreat, it offers stunning architecture, lush gardens, and views of Doi Suthep. Visitors have the chance to appreciate its beauty and peaceful setting.

Nearby Attraction Distance from Wat Phra That Doi Suthep Highlights
Doi Suthep-Pui National Park 5 km Hiking trails, waterfalls, wildlife
Hmong Hilltribe Villages 10 km Cultural immersion, traditional crafts
Siribhume Royal Winter Palace 8 km Thai royal architecture, gardens, views

Gaining a deeper understanding of northern Thailand is easy with these attractions. Whether you love adventure, want to learn about culture, or appreciate great architecture, they fit the bill. These spots make your journey through the Chiang Mai region well-balanced and unforgettable.


Our journey through the captivating Wat Phra That Doi Suthep has come to an end. It’s easy to see why this Buddhist temple is a top spot in Chiang Mai. It blends history with beautiful design and breathtaking views.

Getting to the temple can be an adventure in itself. You can take a private car, local bus, or choose a guided tour. No matter how you arrive, the golden chedi and views will leave you amazed.

When leaving, follow the dress code and pick the best time to visit. This will make your trip even better. For photo lovers, the temple is a perfect place to capture its beauty. Armed with the tips from this article, you’re ready to explore wat phra that doi suthep like a pro and truly understand its greatness.

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