Bua Tong Waterfall in Chiang Mai is sticky

Bua Tong Waterfall Chiang Mai
Bua Tong waterfall

Bua Tong waterfall in Chiang Mai,  is popularly known as the sticky waterfall.

If you only have time for one waterfall in Chiang Mai, make Bua Tong waterfall your pitstop!

If you want shopping, go Bangkok.
If you want nature and adventure, go Chiang Mai YES!

Continuing our #skbChiangMai escapade, this waterfall is one of our highlights, refer Day 3 “North” in our Chiang Mai itinerary.

Picnic looks inviting 🙂

We have seen folks abseiling waterfall, but climbing up?
Imagine our surprise when we tested our feet on the “lime stone”, it is not slippery, it felt super surreal

Amazing, we can walk up a waterfall!

IS Bua Tong safe for children
Sticky Waterfall

Most waterfalls are slippery, not Bua Tong Waterfall. It look daunting, but after a few climbs, it gets easier!

Definitely doable even for 4 or 5 years old, kids are far more agile and fit than we parents would give credit for.

 

Video (YouTube Link) : Check out the fun, we got dogs to lead the way too!

After a few test trials, kids got comfortable and wanted to explore on their own. But I reminded them to pair up and look out for each other.

Word of caution, this is still a waterfall and parents should exercise caution. Keep the kids in sight, do not wander off the edge. We would recommend a parent to accompany a smaller child.

Although the surface is non-slippery, accidental slip or pushing can still lead to serious injury.

If Bua Tong is crowded, do not try to rush up the slope, if someone on top slipped, he might pull everyone down like a domino.

Just be careful and look out for each other. Do watch out for green moldy patches (and leaves) on the ground as it might be slippery.
Sticky Waterfall

My kids became good friends with the local “guides”, there were at least 4 or 5 of them, all friendly! (checkout Video above on how they climbed the waterfall with us)

After the third “hike”, you will start to feel soreness in your under-utilised core and muscles haha. When we are having FUN, and with the constant showering, we tend to forget about tiredness 🙂

 

There are three segments to Bua Tong waterfall, top, middle and bottom.
For most folks ( ie you and me), the top segment (slope of up to 45 degrees) would be more than enough.

A climb up would take you between 3 to 5 minutes. Sometimes, we need to go on all fours to maintain our balance and grip.

The slopes for the middle and bottom segment are much steeper (up to 75 degrees!) And you would definitely need the ropes to pull yourself up.

Bua Tong waterfall photos

Some visitors were swimming in the bottom ponds, it looked Fun but I had to skip as I needed to look after the kids.

Not sure why a waterfall lime stone (deposits) surface can be non-slippery, but we know Bua Tong waterfall scores 4.5/5 for sheer Fun Factor, and it is FOC!

Map of Chiang Mai North Area, relative distance  from Chiang Mai city (Train Station) 1. Bua Tong Waterfall, 2. Siam Insect Zoo and 3. Doi Suthep (Temple)

Chiang Mai Map

We spent almost two hours at Bua Tong waterfall.

More photos from Day 3 is on our Facebook album .
Tips to enjoy sticky Waterfall:

– You need at least 1 hour to fully enjoy the “climbing” experience. If you have more time to relax,  spend 20 minutes at the 7-colour pond, and another  20 minute for picnic after exercise

– Go early to avoid crowd, you will have the waterfall to yourselves

– Bua Tong waterfall GPS – 19.070030, 99.080118
(about 60km North of Chiang Mai Railway station)

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If you are looking for shopping centres in Chiang Mai, you would be disappointed. All our 5D4N Chiang Mai Family Itinerary photos have been uploaded :

5D4N Chiang Mai Family Itinerary
Day 1Airbnb stay, Grand Canyon Waterpark
Day 2Doi Inthanon
Day 3Buatong waterfall, Siam Insect Zoo, Doi Suthep
Day 4 – Elephant Jungle Sanctuary

 

Grand Canyon Water Park Chiang Mai

Grand Canyon Water Park is actually an unused quarry in Chiang Mai. There are two “lagoons” here, one for cliff jumping (10m!), and the other is family-friendly bouncing water park.

 

I just found out about this Grand Canyon Water Park one night before we flew off to Thailand, and I knew we just had to squeeze in a few hours into our busy itinerary.

 

I know my adrenalin-pumped kids will love the water park.
JUST IMAGINE “bouncing castles”, Ninja Warriors, and SOC (Obstacle course!)

 

 

No way we are going to miss Ninja actions aka Ninja Warrior, in a water-based setting. A scenic sunset photo before I slide 5m down.

Video (YouTube link): Our Fun experience at Grand Canyon Water Park

We would recommend minimum 2 hours to soak in all the Fun. Although the area might not be huge or contain many slides, the obstacles can easily keep my kids entertained for minimum of 3 hours!

Grand Canyon Water Park
Grand Canyon Water Park

Safety is always our top priority. Grand Canyon Water Park has a lot of life-guards on patrol, they were very helpful in pulling the kids out of the water (Parents might be exhausted from all the chasing and jump)

Yes, even adults will find the slides and obstacles irresistible.

Life jacket is a must for all participants. Parents must follow the younger kids around. Just in case they try to play hide and seek and go below the floats!

Water is cool, black and lifeless, water is quite well maintained.

Chiang Mai water play
All the colourful slides and animals

My photos and Video cannot do justice to this fabulous water park!  I was sold when I saw this video (link) !

More about Grand Canyon Water Park :
– GPS 18.695994, 98.892045 (2 hours North of Railway)
Facebook
– Ticket pricing : Adult 350 Baht, Child 300 Baht
– Opening Hours : 0900 to 1900
– Kids must be minimum 5 years old

* Take note this park is relatively new, most Tut Tut drivers only know about the cliff-jump at Grand Canyon (Show them the Panda mascot)

Do follow our Chiang Mai Itinerary #skbChiangMai for more attractions:
– SengkangBabies Chiang Mai Itinerary
– All photos uploaded on our Fanpage album

If you are looking for shopping centres in Chiang Mai, you would be disappointed. All our 5D4N Chiang Mai Family Itinerary photos have been uploaded :

5D4N Chiang Mai Family Itinerary
Day 1Airbnb stay, Grand Canyon Waterpark
Day 2Doi Inthanon
Day 3Buatong waterfall, Siam Insect Zoo, Doi Suthep
Day 4 – Elephant Jungle Sanctuary

Chiang Mai Family Itinerary

Our 5D4N Chiang Mai Family Itinerary 🙂
(We spent 10D9N in Thailand, and beautiful Chiang Mai enchanted us)

If you want shopping, go Bangkok.
If you love nature and culture, go Chiang Mai.
4 nights were not enough for us at Chiang Mai!

Follow out hashtag #skbChiangMai for the updates on Instagram (skb= SengkangBabies). All photos already uploaded on Facebook, links at end of page.

Chiang Mai Family Itinerary

I have group the GPS and directions for the attractions below into North, West and Center, so it is easier to plan your Chiang Mai Family Itinerary.

It is easy to drive in Chiang Mai once you are out of the city-area, folks in Chiang Mai are very patient and we did not experience any cursing or horns during our stay there! We hire a driver and 10-seater van for some days, rate is about 3,000 baht per day (SGD 120).

#TIP 01 :- Take note out-of-city attractions might need 2 to 3 hours transport time (including jams), so always have “Plan B” in your itinerary (ie Must-Go, Nice-to-See etc)

Chiang Mai is famous for temples.

#TIP 02 – Before you go further, and if you are the nature culture loving folks, then you must know the following Thai words :
Namtok – Waterfall
Doi – Mountain
Wat – Temples
Chedi – Stupa

Ok, now you can hitch the next Red Tut Tut ride in Chiang Mai. This city does not have any BTS system, so a lot of commute would be on bikes or 10-seater Red tut tuts.

Let us start with our best experience, no-rides elephant from (1) Elephant Jungle Sanctuary (EJS). We learnt that Asian elephant’s spine are not designed to ferry people, thus some agencies are encouraging No-Rides elephant experience.

We would recommend a half-day tour (one day would be overkill, I mean how much bananas can the elephants consumed). You can spend the remaining daylight to visit the night market (look under “Center“) below.

Video (link) : Fun with the gentle beasts

– Recommended duration – Half day (more than enough)
– Fees – Adults THB 1,700 (about SGD $65), Child THB 1,300
– GPS 18.658668, 98.648556
* Do take note transport will be provide by EJS, you cannot drive in yourself
** The fees are not cheap, but the experience is priceless
*** Two popular no-rides establishment are Elephant Retirement Park and Elephant Jungle Sanctuary (we chose the second one as their Instagram #ElephantJungleSanctuary has more interactions between humans and elephants)

Chiang mai elephant

#TIP 03 – The most important thing you can do before reaching Thailand is grab the maps and brochures from Thailand Embassy Orchard). This might sounds weird but you will not find brochures in Chiang Mai airport itself!

===== WEST ====

Map below is the recommended attractions around (2) Doi Inthanon (Thailand’s highest mountain at 2565m). Just pick your best spots 🙂

#TIP 04 – Take note some attractions on Doi Inthanon will need toll or entry fees.
Ask your guide or driver beforehand. Come weekends, the road leading up to the temple is always congested.

Doi Inthanon hiking at a cool 15 degrees, a light jacket would be sufficient as we can still perspire from hiking. Take note winter period can drop to 5 degrees.
Chiang Mai Itinerary for family

From the map above, we love the following activities :
a) Point 09 – Hiking at Kio Mee Nature Trail (Hire a guide at the entrance for 200Bht + 100Bht tips). 2 to 3 hours round trip, go slow and whole family can enjoy the beautiful landscape, cool weather and mist. With smaller kids and elderly, u-turn at point 10, and exit at the same location (takes a leisurely 2 hours) (link reference)

b) Point 10 – If you only got 60 minutes, go for “Ang Ku Luang” Nature Trail. You will see and touch moss floors and trunks. Highest point of Doi Inthanon.

c) Point 8 – We ran out of time to visit the King/Queen chedi (Naphamethinidon and Naphaphonphumisiri), looks majestic from far.

d) Just choose any two waterfalls, all are majestic. (actually kids and spouse might find all waterfalls identical after the second one hee hee)

e) Point 4 – Royal project flowers and landscaping, but flowers might not appeal to everyone. I love the beautiful landscaping, showcasing the farmers’ produce

Hiking, waterfall, or flowers in the cool weather.

– Recommended duration – 3 to 4 hours (about 2 to 2.5 hours transport from city)
– Fees apply at various attractions
– GPS 18.555768, 98.482446
– Minimum Age limit : Everyone can hike

===== NORTH ====

We noticed the North area (Mae Rim) has a high concentration of adventure and sports, so many ATV (all terrain Vehicles) outlets!

If you only have time for one waterfall in Chiang Mai, do (3) Buatong! Water will not be as spectacular as those normal “cascading” types, but you can CLIMB UP this waterfall! Look at this video and you will know why they call it Sticky Waterfall!(Video link).

Do visit our Photo album as I highlight some inherent dangers which come with “waterfalls”.
– Recommended duration – 2 to 3 hours (optional 30 minutes picnic on the green meadow)
– Fees FOC
– GPS 19.070030, 99.080118
– Minimum Age limit : Everyone can climb, but adult must accompany behind child, it is still a waterfall and any slip could mean serious injury

After a tiring and exhilarating morning, drive 45 minutes South towards lunch (we recommend Baa Baa Black Cafe lunch and cakes) and let the kids recuperate in the car.
(We have added delicious cakes and pastries photos in photo album below)

(4) Siam Insect Zoo is just 7 minutes away from Baa Baa Black Cafe, and it is the coolest insect museum we have seen (or touch) yet.

Staffs are always so eager to push a bug or chameleon to you haha, seriously Fun! So many learning moments and photo opportunities.

– Recommended duration – 1 to 2 hours (stay longer if you love creepy bugs)
– Fees – Adults THB 200, Child THB 150
– GPS 18.918132, 98.908408 (45 minutes from Buatong waterfall)
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If time permits, we would recommend (5) Doi Suthep on the way back to city (Golden Domes or Chedi, we can classify Doi Suthep under zone “Center” too). Doi Suthep is one of the most famous (and grand) Wat in Chiang Mai, it offers a scenic city view too.

– Recommended duration – 1 to 2 hours
– Fees – Adults THB 200, Child THB 150
– GPS 18.804317, 98.919974 (50 minutes West of Chiang Mai railway station)
– You can climb 306 steps up, or take the lift
** We would not recommend you to jog or cycle up the steep hill, we saw many sports enthusiasts!

===== CENTER ====

Where most folks should loiter around for city life, old-city landscapes, tons of cafes. Weekends are night bazaars and night markets. You will also notice a lot of tourists on bicycles, we want to try it next time 🙂

(6) “Old City” Day and Night
You can tour the “Old city” in the daytime, at least ten historical temples (and ruins) to explore.
Enter via Phae Gate GPS (18.787735, 98.993235).

Night Market – weekends only (3 to 4 hours including dinner and snacks.
Food, jostle with the locals, side-walk massage (cheap!) and souvenirs hunting.

Streetfood (we love BBQ aroy!) is everywhere. There are some hawkers selling mango sticky rice outside temples, we tried the one outside “Wat Che Diluang GPS” and it was good 🙂

If time permits, or if your kids are Ninja Warrior or bouncing castle fans, head over to (6) Grand Canyon Water Park. Look at the photos and you will know why adrenaline junkies will spend hours here!

– Recommended duration – 2 to 3 hours
– Fees 300 Baht (price increased to 350 baht)
– GPS 18.695777, 98.890330 (15 minutes from airport)
– Minimum Age limit is 5 years old
– Closure at 7pm, 6 pm during winter time
Facebook and Website

(7) Our lovely Airbnb home away from home (read our review)

Additional tips :

Above GPS locations are group into “North, West and Center” based on estimated direction from Chiang Mai Railway Station (GPS 18.783692, 99.016787). We did not really venture East (villages) and South. If you head North 3 to 4 hours till Thailand’s borders, Doi Ang Khan, Chiang Rai and Pai awaits 🙂

If you are looking for shopping centres in Chiang Mai, you would be disappointed. All our 5D4N Chiang Mai Family Itinerary photos have been uploaded :

5D4N Chiang Mai Family Itinerary
Day 1Airbnb stay, Grand Canyon Waterpark
Day 2Doi Inthanon
Day 3Buatong waterfall, Siam Insect Zoo, Doi Suthep
Day 4 – Elephant Jungle Sanctuary