Doi Inthanon – the highest spot in Thailand (2,565.3341 m)




A mountain top is probably not the first place you think about when looking for destinations to visit in Thailand. Doi Inthanon however is worth a visit. The mountain is the highest mountain in Thailand, located in the Chiang Mai province. It can be a nice trip to escape from the daily hot temperatures in Chiang Mai. By car it makes a beautiful day trip. As Doi Inthanon is a National Park expect to pay an entrance fee but let this not stop you. The fees are anyway very reasonable, a few hundred Baht per person. The scenic drive up the mountain offers beautiful vistas.

Doi Inthanon, the highest point in Thailand
Doi Inthanon, the highest point in Thailand

The top is said to be 2,565.3341 meter above sea level. Interesting to see how they think they got it that accurate (sorry, my geodetic background is playing up).

 

Getting there 

Doi Inthanon is located towards the southwest of Chiang Mai. From Chiang Mai you leave the city to the south on highway 108. Continue until you reach road 1009 that turns to the right. Don’t worry as there are plenty of signs that will guide you to Doi Inthanon. From here the fun starts. Road 1009 leads all the way up to the top of the mountain. Note that there is no way down on the other side of the summit so you will have to drive back at least some part via the same road. In the lower sections of the road you might pass some beautiful cherry blossoms (of course depending on the season). We were here around the New Year period and the trees were in full bloom. These trees are not unique to Doi Inthanon. Around the New Year you can find these all around this part of the country.

Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon

 

On your way up to the top you have multiple places to stop and enjoy the views. I highly recommend you to do so and not just race to the summit. Some of stop will have small stalls with food and drinks. Just sit down take some drink and/or food and enjoy the view and fresh air. I have added a few of the images from such spots.

Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon
Road to Doi Inthanon

 

During some of the more popular weekends it can get crowded and spaces to park your car will fill up. Further up the mountain don’t forget to stop at the Naphamethinidon and Naphaphonphumisiri chedis. You find them about 5km before the summit of Doi Inthanon. Besides the beautiful chedis with gardens the view from here is amazing as well.

Doi Inthanon - Naphamethinidon and Naphaphonphumisiri chedis
Doi Inthanon – Naphamethinidon and Naphaphonphumisiri chedis
Doi Inthanon - Naphamethinidon and Naphaphonphumisiri chedis
Doi Inthanon – Naphamethinidon and Naphaphonphumisiri chedis

 

A traffic sign announces the summit of the mountain. Don’t expect an empty rocky summit. The top is covered with a thick forest. At the summit there is a small parking. Get out here and enjoy the views in various directions. Then follow the path to a small monument that is supposed to indicate the actual highest point. You can walk a small round before returning to the parking. This round is easy to walk for anyone. The trees here a massive and if you are lucky you can hear and see some beautiful birds.

Doi Inthanon summit
Doi Inthanon summit
Doi Inthanon summit
Doi Inthanon summit
Doi Inthanon summit
Doi Inthanon summit
Doi Inthanon summit
Doi Inthanon summit

 

GPS: N18.5906, E98.4850

 

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