Nothing spells holiday (and Christmas!) like a snow-filled getaway. But whilst popular end-of-year destinations like Japan, South Korea and the likes have garnered a strong tourist following thanks to its snowy—hence romantic—reputation, there are similar (and cheaper) alternatives you can explore.
In fact, there’s one located just a few hours away, in Thailand.
Introducing… Chiang Rai!
So you know Chiang Mai as a popular choice for travellers looking for a less commercialized area in Thailand. But have you heard about its equally charming cousin, Chiang Rai? The mountainous highland boasts rich culture, delectable local cuisine, and not to mention, postcard-worthy landscaped vistas! But wait, here’s our favourite part: Its pseudo-winter weather! (Pssst… It’s happening now, from mid-October to end-February!). During this season, temperatures range from 13 to 25 degrees Celsius. Cool, comfortable, and affordable, Chiang Rai is the perfect getaway spot for escaping the scorching Singapore sun.
#1 Boon Rawd Singha Park
Address: 99 Moo 1, Mae Korn Subdistrict, Chiang Rai 57000, Thailand
Is it the hilltop weather or the lush greenery that make it the idyllic getaway spot that it is? You tell us. Although it may look like it at first glance, the massive beer farm isn’t just acres of boring land. It features tea plantations, beautiful orchid blooms, scenic cycling paths, and more. You won’t go hungry either: There are restaurants and cafes for you to fuel up. Also, don’t miss the signature gold-clad Singha lion statue.
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#2 Phu Chi Fa Forest Park
Address: Thoeng, Chiang Rai, Thailand
Take your love for easy hikes (and romantic sunsets) up a notch by hiking up to the peak. Opt to rise as early as 3.30am and watch the sun creep out of the horizon, as you stand amidst the clouds (don’t forget to snap a #fromwhereistand picture here for the ‘gram!). Here, you can expect a quiet setting, away from the hordes of tourists, and soak in the best part of nature.
RELATED: Coral Island Day Tour (from Pattaya), Bangkok Sunset Bike Ride, and River Kwai & Train Tour (with Lunch).
#3 Doi Chang
Address: Wawi, Mae Saruai, Mae Suai, Thailand
Freshly brewed coffee combined with picturesque surroundings, makes an ideal go-to spot for coffee lovers to get their hipster kopi fix. There are also restaurants, retail shops, factory tours, and more. Plus, learn a thing or two about coffee production and do some coffee tasting, all in the most naturalistic setting with a feel-good ambience. We definitely can picture ourselves sipping on a comforting hot cuppa on cooling day. A refreshingly restful experience, we’d say!
#4 Huay Mak Liam Hot Spring
Address: Lam Nam Kok National Park, Mueang District, Thailand
Hot springs are best enjoyed when it’s chilly, so rest your tired bones and soak in rejuvenating natural bath here! Set in a national park, what makes Huay Mak Liam Hot Spring a hot favourite is its natural setting (just look at the surrounding forests pictured above!).
Have you got a non-winter destination you’d love to travel to? Share with us in the comment box below!
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