3 routes the best for day trip

Last Updated on January 1, 2024

Sightseeing in Mae Hong Son

This day trip is designed for tourists staying in Mae Hong Son town and wanting a comfortable itinerary.

Let’s see the recommended route. You can buy a tour or hire a car with a driver. It’s convenient, and the itinerary is not too tight and tiring. Fair pricing will be discovered.

You may also check out our blog post on 3 villages to visit Longneck Karen Tribe if you are interested in their lifestyle.

su tong pae bamboo bridge
Bamboo Bridge across the rice field at Su Tong Pae

1. Top day trip route

Su Tong Pae, Pang Tong Palace, Pang Oung, Mae Aw (Rak Thai), and Pha Suea Waterfall

The most popular destinations are all on this route, which makes for an easy day trip. If it’s a private group, you can travel at your convenience.

Su Tong Pae is a 500-meter bamboo bridge known for its name, which means “successful prayer.” You can find out more details in my post, Su Tong Pae. And how to join the morning activity on the bamboo bridge, please read more at Make merit by offering food.

pang tong palace
Selfie with a baby Sheep at Pang Tong Palace

The Pang Tong Palace was launched by Queen Sirikit. The project aims to provide help in agriculture, cultivation, handicrafts, and the preservation of the watershed area. Wildlife sanctuaries are also built to treat the very rare species of wild animals in this area.

pha seau waterfall
Stunning waterfalls during August–October.

Pha Suea Waterfall will take a while to stop and watch because you won’t get the perfect picture above. Visit between August and September.

pang oung ruam thai
The reservoir has a beautiful scene and a pine tree surrounding it.

Pang Oung is an agricultural reservoir with beautiful mountains and pines in the background. It looks like Switzerland, but this is the peaceful royal garden. Ruam Thai village is on the next, with the well-known taste and aroma of fresh arabica coffee for a refreshing break.

chinese yunan food
One of my favorite foods to come over here.

Mae Aw (Rak Thai): This village was founded by the Kuomintang and is located on the border of Thailand and Myanmar. Till now, they have lived quite independently. You can buy Chinese tea and vegetables, and restaurants offer food and drinks.

Baan Rak Thai is becoming very popular among Thai people. They like to float in the reservoir in the morning mist. By now, there are many more hotels. Enjoy your great Chinese Yunan lunch and local favorite tea, “Oolong and Shing Shing.”

How to get there

If you drive a car or ride a motorcycle by yourself, please see the directions on this Google Map and drive with caution because it is a narrow, winding, and steep path.

For those of you who need a service vehicle, please contact us in advance. Or see more details in the Services category.

jabo scenic spot
Morning mists wait for the sunrise @ Jabo

2. Mystery Cave for day trip

Baan Ja Bo, Baan Mae Lana and Lod Cave

Directions to Soppong

This route goes north of Mae Hong Son on Route 1095, which has the most curves. From Mae Hong Son to Pang Mapha District (formerly known as Soppong), the distance is about 70 kilometers and takes 1:30 hours.

The terrain is limestone mountains, with more than 100 caves, both unexplored and not allowed to be visited. There are tribes, including Shan, Karen, Lisu, and Lahu, that you can see along the way.

jabo lahu village
Black Lahu @ Jabo Village

Jabo is the Black Lahu village where you had an experience of the traditional way of life. It is very popular from November to January for the mist on the hills and the cool weather for Thais.

mae lana rice field
A peaceful valley at Mae Lana

Mae Lana is an ethnic Thai Yai (Shan) community, located next to Jabo village and framed by the rugged mountains. This tranquil village lies in a valley surrounded by paddy fields.

On arrival, visitors will notice the beautiful, simple Shan-style Buddhist temple. A river winds gently through the village, complementing the peaceful atmosphere.

lod cave soppong

Lod Cave: a huge cave that was once a dwelling place for prehistoric man. Nature has created an exotic subterranean wonderland of darkness and mystery.

The cave contains three main chambers: Giant Pillar, Doll Cave, and Prehistoric Wood Coffin Cave. Take a bamboo raft through the darkness to witness the prehistoric wood coffin cave.

Extra service

Take a break at Pang Mapha Viewpoint to see the limestone mountain range and the local hill tribe products.

If you still have time and energy left, try Fish Cave. Walk over the hanging bridge, built for the movie Air America with Mel Gibson, and follow the wooden path to feed fish, relax, and enjoy the beautiful nature trail and green garden.

It is possible to request a stop before or return to visit both places above. It is on the roadside.

From or to Pai

If you drive on your own, plan to visit this route between Mae Hong Son and Pai.

If you have a travel plan to Pai, buy extended services that will be delivered to you after the Lod Cave tour is complete. This will take about an hour and a bit. But it’s worth more than going back to the same route.

3. Bua Tong Festival Route

Thung Bua Tong, Hmong Market, Mae Surin Waterfall and Pha Bong Hot Springs

An idea for a day trip route

Excluding the Bua Tong fields that are only available in November, this route can be traveled even if it is not popular.

If you are traveling between Chiang Mai and Mae Hong Son on the south route of Highway 108 or across to Mae Chaem District.

hmong garden
Flower garden service
hmong market
Fresh vegetables

The Hmong market is open during the Thung Bua Tong Festival. It will be on the roadside before reaching Thung Bua Tong, some 5 kilometers away.

Bua Tong Fields (Mexican Sunflower): The most beautiful golden mountain takes impressive pictures of the Mexican sunflower that covers the whole mountain. The big attraction every year starts in November and ends in early December.

Thung = Fields

There is food and drink, vegetables, fruits, and colorful Hmong clothes. And there is also a flower garden to take photos with a service of Hmong dress.

bua tong festival
Bua Tong Festival @ November
mae su rin waterfall
Mae Surin Waterfall

Mae Surin Waterfall is the highest waterfall in Mae Hong Son. At once, we can get closer to the waterfall for 3 hours of trekking. It is also worthwhile to visit and see the great nature around the falls.

For walking down to the waterfall, please contact the Hua Mae Surin Eco-Village Tourism Community. But if you just want to see the waterfall from a viewpoint, go to National Park Protection Unit 1 Mae Surin Waterfall National Park.

pha bong hot spring
Mineral bath and Thai massage

Pha Bong Hot Springs is the last place to relax with a mineral bath or Thai massage. Please check service hours or make an appointment in advance if you arrive late in the afternoon.

Khun Yuam District

Moreover, if you manage your time well, you will also be able to visit more places, such as the Thai-Japan Friendship Memorial Hall Khun Yuam District, which is a small district of the Tai Yai people with beautiful ancient wooden houses along either side of the road.

This is another view of the role of the Japanese military in Thailand that is very different from other areas.

This small town also has restaurants and accommodation, or homestays, under Shan community tourism.

Our Service

You can consider using our services. And you can also mix and match your other activities throughout your trip to Mae Hong Son, as well as start and return to Chiang Mai.

If you started from Chiang Mai, our service has affiliated transportation. A car with driver rates is competitive and reasonable. See “Yes, Chiang Mai.”


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