Thailand’s a big place that really does have something for everyone. Whether you’re searching for beach, jungle or adventure… Thailand’s got your back! If you’re looking for tropical paradise then the south has you covered. But maybe you’re looking for the jungle, mountains, hot springs and endless adventure… if so, the north is the one for you!
Some areas of Thailand are less known/trampled than others, the north is very much 1 of these places with Chiang Mai & Pai being missed by many travellers/backpackers… with that said it’s somewhere that turns out to be a favourite amongst those who venture to the north of Thailand.
We’ve put together a bunch of reasons why Pai really is a place you can’t miss and why we & our groups LOVE it so so much!
It’s a vibe ✌🏼☯️
Pai is just 1 of those places that makes you wanna just chill in a hammock and enjoy your surroundings. You’ll feel like you stepped into a bubble tucked away from the outside world. Nestled in the northern mountains is where of group of self-proclaimed hippies ‘found themselves’, they invite anyone and everyone to come and experience their zen way of life. It’s really impossible not to fall in love with the vibe that Pai gives off… it’s very much love at first sight!
Views, views and more views 😍
Northern Thailand is home to some pretty incredible landscapes. There isn’t much that beats standing high on a mountain top and looking at the world below, close your eyes and imagine rice fields, bamboo forests and golden temples… open your eyes and you’ll be in Pai. Natural wonders and viewpoints will leave you spoiled for the choice of where to sit and enjoy sunrises and sunsets.
Chill in the Hot Springs 💦
When you think of Thailand you think of beaches, palm trees, turquoise waters and scorching temperatures… the idea of hot springs is a hard thing to fathom right? Well, Pai is home to a bunch of hot springs scattered across the countryside… these natural hot springs are usually covered by the jungle and are a great place to just relax with other fellow travellers while reminiscing on the epic days that led to this unique experience in the north of Thailand.
Hot tip: Aim to go to 1 of the more ‘natural’ hotsprings vs the more touristy man made spots.
Discover your inner hippie ☯️
Make sure to embrace all that Pai is and what it has to offer. This doesn’t mean you’ll be off on some ‘trip’, but you can still adapt to a much more laidback lifestyle… something you’ll appreciate if you’ve stopped in Bangkok on the way up. Take in the vibrant colours and adopt a different way of living to make the most of your Pai experience.
Pai Canyon 🌄
It’s not all jungle where you look here in Thailand, which is where Pai Canyon comes in. There aren’t many viewpoints in Thailand that give you such a reward with very little work, just a few steps to the top and you’ll be greeted by the perfect spot for sunset. This is exactly how we finish Day 12 on our ‘North to South – 15 Day Thailand’ trip.
Grab a tube and float down the river 🏞
Why not jump in a rubber ring and let it take you on the tour of a lifetime down a nearby river… is there any better way to take in your surroundings? This is 1 of those experiences that CAN NOT be missed, and is sure to make your friends all green with envy. If you’re anything like me you’ll be stopping off at 1 of the many little spots along the river to grab a beer or a Thai style iced coffee 👌🏼
Super Instagramable 📸
We’ve all seen the photos on IG of the turquoise waters of the islands, the golden temples of Bangkok and the Elfies (elephant selfies 🙈) in Chiang Mai… but how many of you have seen the beauty of Pai on IG? There is an abundance of content opportunities for you travellers that just love sharing stuff ya socials. Pack your most vibrant outfits because Pai is waiting for you!
Learn Muay Thai 🥊
Even though Pai is a super chilled spot you’d be surprised how many people head north to eat healthily and find themselves while learning the ancient sport of Muay Thai. If Yoga is more your thing you can easily find a quiet spot to find your inner yen in the mountains surrounding Pai 🧘🏾.
Pai Walking Street 🥟
Almost every night of the week there are heaps of street food vendors cooking up a storm on the streets of Pai. This is absolutely the best place to get those taste buds flowing while you’re visiting the north. Check out the fried dumplings, pad thai, northern sausage on a stick or go for my favourite 100% vegan falafel wrap…. either way, it’s all YUMMM! 🤤
Cheap cheap massage kaaa 💆🏽♀️
After stuffing your face full of all the flavours Pai has to offer you have 2 choices. You can either take to the bars and dance like nobody’s watching, or wind down with the cheapest massages you’ll find in Thailand. I often opt for the latter with a cheeky foot massage… it’s much needed after pacing up and down Pai walking street 10 times looking for more food 🤭
While it may not be super clubs or insane benders, it is still one hell of a night! The people you meet always make a night a success in my opinion, and amazing people are in abundance here. With the incredible people that flock to Pai, you are guaranteed to meet THE BEST people at a bar on a night out. I’ve often found the smallest, simplest bars end up turning into the ones staying open late with the wild parties!
You could be a couple of Chang beers away from your new best friend!
You’ll for sure never want to leave 🙈
Word of warning – there is a fairly good chance you’ll step foot in Pai and never want to leave (also known as the ‘PaiHole’. Why go back to the stressful 9-5 when you can live in a relaxed paradise instead? Sipping cocktails over sunsets, taking relaxing swims in the afternoon and naps in a hammock may be your norm soon. You might even embrace living in the moment rather than fretting about what’s next… wouldn’t that be something?
Pai is a wonderful place, and I’m yet to meet anyone who says otherwise. It’s somewhere I love and have such fond memories of. Whether you’re travelling alone or as part of a group, it should be on your itinerary. If you’re looking to enjoy the best of Bangkok, the southern islands and the north including Pai… why not jump on our ‘South to North – 15 Days in Thailand‘ trip and share the adventure with other like-minded solo travellers like yourself.
Whether you’re looking to travel solo or bring a friend along for the ride, our group tours in both Australia & South East Asia are the perfect balance of culture, adventure & party nights out. You’ll arrive as strangers and leave as the best of friends. There is no better way to travel than with Feel Free Travel 🤙🏻