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San Pa Tong

San Pa Tong

The San Pa Tong district is located around 20 kilometres from the Chiang Mai old city.

For many travellers looking for unique experiences, it’s the perfect half-day excursion, but there are also enough charming attractions in town for a full-day tour.

San Pa Tong Accommodation, Market, Attractions & Hotels, Chiang Mai

It’s most famous of all for the quirky and slightly odd, but interesting buffalo market. Yes, you can buy buffalos here, but that’s not all! It’s a far cry from the traditional markets of Thailand, and it’s filled with a variety of offbeat goods, as well as the occasional trendy souvenir. The buffalo market is held each Saturday, and just some of the things you can find are clothes, blades and knives of all sizes, fighting fish, bikes, and more. Even if you don’t end up purchasing anything, the sheer random variety of goods sold at the market may elicit a few good laughs. Now if you do decide on buying something, don’t forget to negotiate.

If you get hungry, don’t worry since you can rely on tasty Thai cuisine sold at the many stalls around the market. You won’t have to settle for obscure eats here, and the town also has many excellent mom-and-pop restaurants that serve all your favourites.

There are also elephant care centres in town that invite you to spend part of your day taking care of these lovable animals. All the elephants here are treated well, and it’s an excellent opportunity to immerse yourself in nature and the wildlife of northern Thailand without in an environment that is safe and nurturing for them.

If you’re keen to explore the rest of town, you may also rent a bicycle or motorbike to take you around – it shouldn’t take more than a few hours. To make the most out of your day trip to San Pa Tong, make sure to leave Chiang Mai by 6am – especially if you want to get first dibs on the best items at the buffalo market.

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