Pai Travel Guide

Browse 25 travel reviews, 40 travel blogs and 1,177 travel photos from real travelers to Pai.

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Pai Overview

A small town nestled in northern Thailand near the border with Myanmar along the northern route to Mae Hong Son, straddling the Pai River against one of the most beautiful backpacking destinations on the planet, Pai is one of those places where you can literally disappear for weeks or months at a time and just indulge yourself in the surrounding countryside without ever once missing the modernity of big-city living. Once nothing more than a quiet little market village in the middle of the region, Pai is now primarily a backpacker’s paradise, well-known for its relaxed atmosphere and cheap lodgings, along with good food and amazing scenery. Between the surrounding mountains, the river, the mountains, and the markets, this is an eco-destination just ripe for an adventure holiday.

Apart from the spectacular hiking and backpacking opportunities offered throughout the surrounding countryside, Pai is well-known for its access to many of the hill tribes that live in the surrounding mountains. Technically it is a major tourist destination for the intrepid adventurer, and while luxury accommodations aren’t exactly par for the course, the amenities at most of the local guesthouses are fairly decent. There is plenty of internet connectivity, great food, and everyone who comes should definitely hire out for an elephant ride up the Pai River. Renting motorcycles is also another popular activity for people wanting to get a bit further afield than by foot alone, and you can also rent bicycles to trail around the countryside and explore the various waterfalls, villages, and otherwise.

High season is November through March, so if you don’t want to deal with major crowds you can come outside of these months for a more intimate setting. And while the area was predominantly filled with foreigners up until around 2005, these days there are just as many Thai tourists mixing in with the rest, so come prepared to experience some local color and make some new friends.

Popular Nearby Destinations

Pang Ma Pha or Soppong is a very small town on the way from Chiang Mai to Mae Hong Son. It's laying on the route 1095. It's a market town for the local hilltribe's, who will come to this town…
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