Wiang Kum Kam the First capital of Chiang Mai

wiang kum kam

Once upon a time WIANG KUM KAM was the capital of Lanna

wiang kum kam

Located in attractive countryside, about five kilometres South of Chiang Mai along Ping River, Wiang Kum Kam is an ancient city dating back to the eighth-century, Haripunchai Kingdom.

According to history, King Mengrai relocated the capital of the Lanna Kingdom from Chiang Rai to the old city of Wiang Kum Kam on the banks of the Ping River in 1288. Whilst the new riverside location offered many advantages, the area was low lying and prone to severe seasonal flooding. By 1296, King Mengrai had chosen a new site for his capital on the higher opposite bank of the Ping River and declared the newly constructed city of Chiang Mai as the capital of Lanna kingdom. Years of floods thereafter left Wiang Kum Kam buried meters underground.

wiang kum kam

wiang kum kam

In 1984 Thai authorities were alerted to the discovery of a number of ancient tablets found under Wat Chang Kam. Archaeologists quickly moved in and uncovered the remains of the ancient lost city of Wiang Kum Kam.

Over thirty archaeological sites including many ancient temples were found within the ancient rectangular shaped city wall and just beyond. Finds excavated at the Wiang Kum Kam site suggest that there had been a long history of settlement in the area.

wiang kum kam
wiang kum kam
wiang kum kam

Any visit to the new archaeological sites should start at the Wiang Kum Kam Information Centre, where you can see different exhibitions and details of the discoveries, a multimedia room and other rooms showing the history and importance of Wiang Kum Kam. Then the two most important sites to see are Wat Chedi Liam, which apparently was never affected by the floods, and Wat Chang Kham (or Wat Kan Thom). Other interesting temples and sites are Wat E-Kang, Wat Nhan Chang, Wat Pupia, Wat Tat Khao, Wat Phaya Mengrai and Wat Koo Pa Dorn. You can do a tour around Wiang Kum Kam by car, motorbike, rent bicycle or tuk-tuk, tram, but horse-drawn carriage is the most popular way to enjoy the visit of the ruins.

Entrance Ticket :

Wiang Kum Mam Museum 20 Baht

Rent bicycles 20 Baht

Local guide with a pony carriage (2-4 people) 200 Baht

A tram 20 seats, 1-5 persons 250 Baht, 6-10 persons 300 Baht, 11-15 persons 350 Baht, 16-20 persons 400 Baht

wiang kum kam

wiang kum kam

How to get there :

Wiang Kum Kam is located in the southeast of Chiang Mai, between Km.3-4 along Chiang Mai-Lamphun route, Saraphi district. Take the road at Nong Hoi Police box to the Ko Klang Pa Kluai intersection and en route to Chedi Liam.

Opening Hours : Daily from 08:00 am. – 05:00 pm.

Yi Peng Festival

yi peng, yi peng festival

Yi Peng lanterns lights of wisdom

yi peng, yi peng festival

Yi Peng is as old as Lanna heritage, it represents a close bond between Thai culture and water. This festival takes place on the full moon night of November when the water level is high and the climate is cooler.

Every year on the full moon of the twelfth month in the Thai Lunar Calendar, people go to the Chiang Mai City to take part in the Yi Peng sky lantern release.

yi peng, yi peng festival

yi peng, yi peng festival

The pictures of ten thousands of lanterns like stars brightly and shining soaring in the sky above Chiang Mai area. That is a sign of “Yi Peng” or “Loy Krathong” Festival in Lanna style which is a beautiful tradition as those who need to get a breathtaking and charming experience.

Full moon, brightly illuminated night and a sense of communal well being are the key to the appeal of the annual Loy Krathong celebration. In the Northern Thai province of Chiang Mai, which was once part of the ancient lanna Thai kingdom, the ritual of launching hot air lanterns (khom loy or khom yi peng) is a unique aspect of the region. Traditional belief has it that when the lantern is set adrift and floats away in the sky, so do all the troubles of the villagers. For the residents of Chiang Mai, the Yi Peng Festival is an exciting period where the whole city comes alive swathed in beautifully decorated lanterns made from paper.

yi peng, yi peng festival

yi peng, yi peng festival

Yi Peng takes place on the evening of the full moon of the 12th month in the traditional Thai lunar calendar; hence, the exact date of the festival changes every year. In the Western calendar this usually falls in the month of November.

Art in Paradise Chiang Mai

art in paradise, art in paradise chiang mai

Picture yourself at Art in Paradise

Art in Paradise the First Selfie Museum in Chiang Mai

Forget about stodgy art institutions banning selfie sticks. Now there’s a museum in Chiang Mai specifically designed for social media snapshots… Sounds like fun for the whole family!

art in paradise, art in paradise chiang mai

Like something straight out of a painter’s fantasy, a new attraction called Art in Paradise in Chiang Mai uses 3D replicas of paintings to put visitors in the center of fun backgrounds and art’s most famous masterpieces. It is the first-ever selfie museum in Chiang Mai!

The 3D-trick eye museum, located on Changklan Road, gives everyone the opportunity to actually become part of the art on display. More than 130 paintings inside the museum are divided into six zones: underwater world zone, wildlife zone, classic art zone plus different scenes of cities in Europe, Asia and Ancient Egypt.

art in paradise, art in paradise chiang mai

art in paradise, art in paradise chiang mai

Actively encouraging guests to share their experiences with friends, family and followers, Art In Paradise‘s director explains that “here, art paintings are not complete if you are not with them, if you don’t take pictures with them.” So step into Jan Vermeer’s Milkmaid painting or be Leonardo Da Vinci creating Mona Lisa, then share, tweet or ‘gram to your heart’s content.