9. Ban Lorcha (Akha) Thaton and Kok River Tour
Chiang Rai is home to many artists – two of whom are National Artists. The more popular National artist is Chalermchai Kositpiphat – who created the White Temple. The other National Artist – Tawan Duchanee created the Black House complex north of Chiang Rai city. We prefer visiting the Black house as it has a more eclectic collection of interesting things to see.
We proceed to an Akha village where PDA and the Akha villagers have established a community-based tourism project. Before this project was implemented, the Akha villagers were like beggars within their own village because tour companies did not share the benefits from tourism with the villagers. PDA in cooperation with the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) changed this to allow the Akha villagers to become owners of tourism activities within their village.
We then move on to Thaton village some 30 km away. This town which is in Chiang Mai province is very close to the Burmese border. The Thaton temple on top of a hill overlooking the town sits almost at the border between Thailand and the Union of Myanmar. On a clear day, you could spot the Thai and Myanmar flag displayed prominently at border camps on the hills along the border.
We will have lunch here at Thaton before we start a 3-hour long tail boat journey back to Chiang Rai on the Kok River. The Kok river originates from the Union of Myanmar, passes through Chiang Rai and eventually drains into the Mekong River.
During the long-tail boat trip, we will have a ½ hour stop at an elephant village where you can shop for souvenirs. You have the option of taking a 20-minute elephant ride around the village before we resume our journey back to Chiang Rai.
Minimum number of passengers recommended is two.
Note: Your safety is our concern. If weather conditions make travel to certain destinations dangerous, your itinerary may be changed without prior notice.