“MAE HONG SORN, in the northwest pocket of Thailand, is becoming an increasingly popular city for touring, trekking, and venturing out into a very scenic area of the North still relatively untouched, and it is still remote. Forming the northwestern border between Thailand and Shan State under Myanmar (Burma), this province offers the visitor much more than one could ever imagine. The life center of the province is the city of Mae Hong Sorn " small, quaint and serenely comfortable.
Located on a level stretch on a mountainside, the shops and restaurants on the main road of the city are a pleasure to visit. In most of the shops, you’ll find an array of inexpensive but very nice items unique to the area and the shop attendants will wait for your decision to ask about items and prices. This politeness is one of the outstanding features of a visitor’s enjoyable stay in the town.
In addition to the people themselves, you can see the Shan and Burmese influence in the Buddhist temples " one of which is more than 150 years old. Several attractive temples visitors enjoy: Wat Pra thart Doi Gong Mu (วั"พระธาตุ"อยกองมู) located at the hilltop dominates the provincial city, and affords a wonderful view of the city and surrounding mountains and valleys. There are other temples with their own identities and heritage : Wat Hua Wiang or Glang Muang, Wat Jong Kaam, Wat Jong Glang, Wat Pra Norn, Wat Muay Dtor and Wat Gum - Gor.
August 12th Festival for the Queen’s Birthday : Inside the City, Royal Folk Arts and Crafts Training Center (ศูนย์ศิลปาชีพ) : For decades one of the many royal duties of her Majesty Queen Sirikit of Thailand is to accompany His Majesty the King during visit to people in all regions of kingdom. Her Majesty perceived that most people were in poverty-stricken conditions. As a result Her Majesty graciously extended her assistance towards the relief of poverty by creating supplementary occupations in order to increase family income.
Exploring of the City’s Surroundings
- Tha Pong Daeng Development (โครงการพั'นา ท่าโป่งแ"ง) The architecture, costumes and character of the hill tribes here are different from others in Thailand. The attraction of this village is its hilltop location with beautiful view. It is only about 32 kilometers from the district.
-Pha Bhong Dam (เขื่อนพลังน้ำผาบ่อง) about 12 kilometers outside the city at the Mae Ra Maad River for generating electrical power. Nearby is the Pha Bhong Spring.
-Pha Bhong Hot Spring (บ่อน้ำร้อนผาบ่อง) the hot spring is rich in sulfates and the temperature is hot enough to cook eggs. Tourists can bathe here - the single room rate is 40 Baht / hour while a group room is 300 Baht / hour.
-Baan Nam Phiang Din (บ้านน้ำเพียง"ิน) in Tambon Pha Bong, take a 2-hour motor boat trip or 1-day rafting along Pai River vai Baan Huai Dua, a marvellous scenic route of terraced ricefields. Nearby is tourist destination known as Pha Hom Nam.
-Poo Klone Country Club (ภูโคลน) You must try a face or body treatment using mineral rich mud from the natural spa. Horse riding in the forest is also available.
-Tham Pla Forest Park (-้ำปลา) Situated at Baan Huai Pha, 17 kms on Highway No.1095 to Amphoe Pai is dotted with reservoirs stocked with fish and naturally beautiful surroundings.
-Pha Sua Waterfall (น้ำตกผาเสื่อ) Located at Km.18, a 10 kilometers drive offers a huge, picturesque 7-level cascade. The best time to visit is early August until late September.
-Paang Tong Palace (เรื่อนประทับแรมปางตอง) At The Paang Tong Highland Development Project has a stunning view and various demonstration flower gardens, fruit orchards and animal husbandry programs raising, for example, sheep and chickens.Also worth visiting are: -Mae Hong Sorn Bamboo Study Center (ศูนย์ไผ่ศึกษา), -Ruam Thai Village (หมู่บ้านรวมไทย) : -Baan Rak Thai village (Mae Aw) (หมู่บ้านรักไทย / แม่ออ) More details can be yours from the Mae Hong Sorn Tourism Coordination Center, Khunlumprapad Road, Tel. 053-612982 or 053-612983.
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