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Every sustainable tourist’s guide to Chiang Mai

March 22, 2019

With its lush greeneries, cool weather, rich traditions and vibrant communities, Chiang Mai is a dream destination for everyone who wants to indulge in nature’s glory.

Set in the mountainous regions of Northern Thailand, Chiang Mai is on the rise as a hub for sustainable tourism, giving visitors a perfect backdrop full of natural and cultural wonders.

To visit Chiang Mai is to fully experience Thailand’s concept of the 7Greens, which represents Green Heart, Green Logistics, Green Attraction, Green Activity, Green Community, Green Service and Green Plus.

Through the 7 Greens, which the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) introduced, Thailand brings together different sectors in addressing climate-change related challenges and creating a pattern for sustainable tourism.

For the eco-oriented traveler, this means having a more immersive experience basking in nature, learning about heritage, while helping preserve them.

So for those planning to visit Chiang Mai and but not sure where to start, TAT shares with The Manila Times a few ideas for anyone’s itinerary:

Interact with elephants. Travelers who wish to feed, bathe and pamper the gentle giants can make their goals come true in Chiang Mai. At the Patara Elephant Farm, one can spend a day taking care of mother and baby elephants. Chiang Mai is also home to the Elephant Nature Park, where tourists can spend up to two days with an elephant herd. The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary also offers opportunities for tourists to learn about elephants’ personal behavior and history.

Visit a national park. Chiang Mai’s national parks and their raw visual spectacle would be a feast for the senses. Doi Inthanon National Park, nicknamed “The Roof of Thailand,” is a must-visit as it is home to a number of waterfalls, trails, villages. The crowning glory of this place is no other than a perfect spot for a sunrise selfie: Doi Inthanon Summit, which is Thailand’s highest peak at 2,565 meters above sea level.

Get immersed on local communities. Community-based tourism in Thailand lets tourists participate in hands-on activities like traditional fishing, preparing local cuisine and creating local crafts. A plantation called Akha Ama Coffee, for example, allows interaction with a local Akha hill tribe. Here visitors can learn about a coffee bean’s journey from farm to cup.

Another unique destination to try is the Jim Thompson Farm where the nitty-gritty of the silk-making process is being offered.

Go on a volunteer vacation. Sparing some time to volunteer can make anyone’s experiences more meaningful, something that can be achieved with the help of grassroots organizations.

Trash Hero Chiang Mai, for instance, lets tourists join group clean-ups by local and Thai joggers, walkers and bikers. They also allow volunteers in their education program, where anyone can help teach zero-waste, sustainable lifestyle in schools.

By visiting these sustainable tourism hotspots and participating in these activities, lifting people and protecting the planet become a part of sustainable tourism.

Credit belongs to : www.manilatimes.net

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