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Monks Trail

Monks Trail

The Monks Trail (Wat Pha Lat Hike) is an exciting activity in Chiang Mai that involves trekking to the famous temple set in a picturesque, serene forest. The best part about it is that it’s off the tourist trail, which means that you won’t have to share the hike with many other travellers.

On the trail, you’ll get to visit one of northern Chiang Mai’s lesser-known temples, which rivals the beauty and splendour of Doi Suthep.

Monks Trail, Chiang Mai, Hike Up To Wat Pha Lat, Map & Hiking Distance

The hike is relatively easy and accessible even for beginners. Start by going to the end of Suthep Road near the Chiang Mai University; you can get here by taking a songthaew, motorbike or on foot. From this point, walk straight then turn right once you see the intersection which will take you to the back entrance of the Chiang Mai Zoo. In the distance, you’ll see a big white and red television or radio antenna, which is a sign of the start of the trail. After passing the zoo, walk uphill for around five more minutes until you notice the trail sign where the road ends, near the left.

Some parts of the trail have a mild incline, and it will take around 45 minutes to reach the end of monks trail – Wat Pha Lat hike. You’ll see trees marked through the bright orange cloth which the monks also use to cloth themselves. The temple itself is quite a sight to behold; old, yet it intertwines with its stunning natural environment.

When going on this hike, make sure to wear the appropriate trekking footwear because parts of the path can be rocky at times. Even though the monks only take this trail wearing sandals, they are already used to it, but for tourists, it’s best to wear the right shoes for comfort and safety. It’s also advised to lather on some mosquito repellent beforehand because the forest has a lot of mosquitoes. Additionally, wear proper clothing because you’re going to visit a Buddhist temple; at the very least, take a sarong in your backpack which you can use to wrap around your shoulders and legs once you enter the temple.

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Moo 1 - at the end of Suthep Alley

Please see the map for exact starting point, Suthep, Mueang Chiang Mai

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