Those who are in love in ancient cultures, temples, simple lifestyle, nature, tales of the mountains, the living ancient town and overflowing romanticism will definitely fall heads over heels for Nan. Nan is a city with unique characteristics that tourists can visit any season as every season is beautiful in its own way. Despite being a secondary city, Nan is still a popular destination among both local and international tourists.
Once in a life time, one should visit Nan.
Anybody who visit Nan should also pay respect at Phumin Temple, an ancient temple of the city that was established in around 1596 by Lord Jettabuttrabhrama, the ruler of Nan, and was built 6 years after he ascended to the throne. Initially, this temple was named Bhrama Temple and was later mistakenly called Phumin Temple up till now. The style of the main buildings takes after Lanna architecture which makes the temple looks more unique and beautiful than other temples in Thailand. Phumin Temple is a 4-portico building, meaning that ubosot, monastery and pagoda are all connected which imitates the Buddhist idea of universe. The ubosot situated on the back of two Naga statues, symbolises the action of upholding Buddhism for it to remain forever. The 4 wooden doors placed in each direction were carved by skilful Lanna craftsmen.
Inside of the ubosot, situated 4 Sukhothai-style Buddha statues, each facing each 4 direction. The walls are all covered by mural paintings, portraying Jataka, ways of life, legends and ancient culture according to the historical record in Nan. There are several interesting mural paintings, but the most popular that every tourist needs to snap if they visit the temple would be Grandpa Man and Grandma Man or Love Whispering. It is the painting of Tai Lue woman and man, whispering to each other. Besides, there is a pagoda of Phra Malai, a powerful Buddhist monk, saving mankind from sin that displays an imitation of hell to remind people of the result of doing bad deeds.
Location: Nai Wiang Sub-district, Mueang District, Nan.
Ming Mueang Temple houses the city pillar of Nan. Originally, it was a Tai Yai temple and turned into an abandoned temple. Later, Lord Anantaworaritthidech, who was the ruler of Nan, re-established the temple and named it, Ming Mueang Temple as it houses Ming Mueang pillar (the name of the city pillar). Having undergone several renovations, Ming Mueang Temple’s architectural style has changed from traditional Lanna to contemporary Lanna.
Ubosot is the dominant feature of the temple with its white relieves and sculptures on the external walls which was done by Chiang Saen artists and it took 5 years to complete. Inside, display Luang Poh Phra Sri Ming Mueang, the 400-year Buddha statue decorated with gold leaves with the elegant feature of Chiang Saen Singha Nueng art style. Moreover, there are mural paintings telling history and way of life painted by contemporary Nan artists. It is an art that makes Nan people proud and Ming Muang Temple is a famous location that tourists love to visit and pay respect to the city pillar.
Location: Nai Wiang Sub-district, Mueang District, Nan.
Phrathat Khao Noi Temple is located on top of Khao Noi. The Temple has an important and ancient sacred place which is the pagoda, built according to the order of Lord Phu Khaeng’s second consort at around 1487. The pagoda was constructed entirely from bricks and cement, portraying the mixture of Burmese and Lanna architectural style. The pagoda contains the hair of the Buddha. Later, there was a major reconstruction as well as the construction of the monastery during the reign of Lord Suriyaphongpharitdech by the Burmese craftsman name Mhong Ying. In 1980, Fine Arts Department had recorded the monastery as a historical site. From the temple court, the scenery of Nan can be seen clearly. Also, the temple court is where the 9-metre Phra Buddha Maha Udom Mongkol Nantaburi Sri Nan, a Buddha statue seated on the lotus, situated. The top of the statue was made of 4-gram gold. The statue was constructed to celebrate King Rama IX’s 72nd Birthday Anniversary.
Location: Du Tai Sub-district, Mueang District, Nan.
The National Museum of Nan was originally the manor and a piece of land owned by Lord Suriyaphongpharitdech, the ruler of Nan. When Lord Brahmasurathada, the last ruler of Nan, passed away, the nobles gave the manor and the land to the government to use as Nan City Hall. Later in 1986, it has become The National Museum of Nan. The museum displays art exhibitions, artefacts, equipment of Nan and tribal people and the black ivory that visitors are allowed to enter. In front of the museum situated Lord Suriyaphongpharitdech Monument, the statue was constructed according to the photos from Niramitr Sirisukha. Besides, there is a renovation of the surrounding areas by removing the pine trees and replaced them with the plumeria trees as can be seen nowadays. The plumeria trees have grown their branches, forming the tree tunnel that is famous among tourists. Located in the museum’s area is Wat Noi, the smallest temple in Thailand that has Lanna architectural style with Buddha statue and Buddhist talisman displayed inside. In the same year, the Fine Arts Department recorded The National Museum of Nan as an important historical site.
Location: Nai Wiang Sub-District, Mueang District, Nan.
Nan Riverside Art Gallery is located on Nan-Thung Chang Road, about 20 kilometres away from the downtown. It is a private art gallery that was found by the famous Nan artist, Winai Prabripoo. The gallery has gathered contemporary art work from well-known artists, local artists and art students. There are 2 exhibition halls on the area of 13 rai (about 20800 m2). The main hall will exhibit paintings and other art works which go by rotation. Another exhibition hall is located along the riverbank of Nan River. It is called The House of Nhan Bua Phan. This hall holds permanent exhibition, displaying photos of mural paintings that were created by Nhan Bua Phan, the artist who paint the mural painting at Phumin Temple, Nhong Bua Temple as well as other important temples in Nan. Surrounded the gallery are the natural sceneries of river, mountain and various greeneries. Apart from appreciating the arts, visitors can relax themselves at the same time. There are also souvenirs such as hand-made serge, shirts, postcards, books, local products and Master Winai’s art prints for visitors to shop them home. The entrance fee is only 20 THB with a free postcard given.
Location: Bor Sub-district, Mueang District, Nan.
Nan Walking Street is located at Pha Kong Road beside Phumin Temple. It looks similar to other cities’ walking streets. It opens every weekends from 1700-2200 hrs. for tourists to experience Nan culture from traditional meal to traditional performance such as folk songs and traditional dance. Local products like serge, drawings, silverwares and souvenirs can also be found here for more than 300 stores. It could be said that the walking street is the place anybody can enjoy. More importantly, Nan Walking Street is the environmental-friendly street that is 100 percent free of the usage of Styrofoam. So, visit Nan Walking Street for good food and adorable souvenirs and you will not be disappointed.
Location: Nai Wiang Sub-district, Mueang District, Nan.
The Noble House was formerly a manor of Lord Sri Tumma, the nephew of Lord Maha Wong, the 6th ruler of Nan. After that, this manor was passed down to Lady Fong Kham and to Mister Monthon Khongkrachang respectively. This manor is about 200 years, with the whole manor built up from teakwood. The manor consists of 4 buildings, joining together. There are bedroom, living room and kitchen. All the rooms seem to remain in proper condition with all the appliances and costumes neatly kept which shows the way of life of the people in the past. Around the manor grown various kinds of trees, offering shades to the building. In the present, the upper floor is being used as a residence and the local museum, exhibiting way of life in the past and antiques such as silverwares and serge. There is also the demonstration of weaving the local serge. The visit of The Noble House will lead us to witness the characteristics of traditional Lanna style houses that are mostly consisted of kitchen, granary, rice grinder and water well.
The Noble House is an example of the good preservation of ancient wooden house that it was rewarded the best preserved architecture in residence category of 2012 by The Association of Siamese Architects under Royal Patronage. The Noble House is opened on Wednesday-Sunday from 0900-1700 hrs. The entrance fee is only 20THB per visitor.
Location: Mueang District, Nan.
Doi Sa Mue Dao or Sa Mue Dao Mountain is located in the Sri Nan National Park. It is a famous tourist spot of Nan. The transportation route is convenient and there are relaxing and chilling activities to do here at Sa Mue Dao. With all the natural creations, we would not ask for anything more. Visitors can enjoy the breath-taking panorama scenery of mountain tops, plants, sea fog, sun rising and setting as well as night sky full of stars. This is the landmark with the best star-gazing site in Thailand. If you visit the mountain at the right time, you will get to see the Milky Way clearly in the night sky.
The weather on the mountain is cooling all year round and the temperature will decrease to one digit number in winter. Thus, Sa Mue Dao Mountain is really popular among tourists in winter. Visitors can bring their own tents or rent tents for the night. There are many camping area on the mountain, but if the area is filled, visitors can camp at Chu Cliff which is about 4 kilometres from Sa Mue Dao Mountain. Also, campers need not to worry about the food, the National Park has set up many food and convenient stores or you might want to bring your own food if you would like. Sa Mue Dao is opened for tourists to visit all year round. It is a suitable location to go as a family as well since you can drive all the way to the camping area.
Location: Sri Saket Sub-district, Na Noi District, Nan.
It is a small district that used to be an ancient city with long history and is the origin of “slow life” trend. Therefore, anyone who visits Nan should also visit Pua District to experience the real vacation and serenity like the Northern Thai language says, “Do slowly”. Nowadays, Pua District is a popular destination among tourists with natural tourist attractions, culture and history. The location that visitors should really go is Phuket Temple. Apart from paying respect for good blessing, the temple is the best viewing point. Looking down from the temple, there is a panorama view of the paddy fields and houses. There is also Tai Lue Café, one of the café with the best view in Thailand, that visitors can take a sip of coffee amidst natural sceneries of paddy fields and mountains. The weather will get exceptionally good in rainy and winter seasons. There is Lumduan Weaving Shop nearby, so that visitors can purchase local serge and souvenirs. Baan Hua Nam Homestay is also a café, restaurant and an inn with marvellous scenery.
Another option to consider visiting or staying is The Farmer School which educates how to live sustainably with nature. The Farmer School gives training on how to grow rice and do farming. There are small houses for visitors to rest among the green crops. Visitors might want to visit Wang Sila Lang or Grand Canyon of Pua which is as good as other places. Here, the water stream is flowing whole year round that people can swim. If you feel like getting close to the river, the recommendation would be Wang Nam Pua situated at river source of Pua River. The bamboo raft is prepared for visitors to sit and dip their feet into the cold water with food and drink on service or camp and count stars under the night sky. The high-light would be Phu Kha Mountain National Park that visitors will get to see a breath-taking view of sea fog that everyone should see before they die. There are many more destinations in Pua District that awaits you. Nature will calm us under the shade of happiness.
Location: Pua District, Nan.
It is a small district embraced by the mountains. Another popular tourist attraction of Nan. It is well-known as being a rich source of rock salt. Nowadays, there are 2 remaining sources of rock salt which are the Northern Well and Southern Well that still use ancient way of processing salt.
Apart from watching the ancient way of salt processing, visitors can also experience the simple life of the folks as well as viewing the beautiful scenery here at Khun Nan National Park, Sa Pun Waterfall, Huai Ha Waterfall and Phu Khae. Phufa Development Centre under Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s Order is another interesting attraction to witness the plantations and experience the local lives which can hardly find in big city.
Besides, Bo Kluea District still has many locations that worth visiting with beautiful lodgings that are like those in postcards for us to slowly relax amidst the nature, but it would be best to check the weather before visiting.
Location: Nan Tourist Information Centre Tel. 054-751-169 and 054-750-247
Sala Silver (Souvenir shop)
Silverware Is a master craftsmanship of the northern region. Sala silver shop has beautiful silver jewelry. Modern design for all ages, both men and women to choose from a variety of rings, earrings, bracelets, necklaces, pendants, bracelets, brooches, beads, etc. There are both beautiful and elegant Beautiful, chic, sleek Beautiful, sparkling, decorated with gems
Address : 38/6, Naiweing , Nan
Open-Close : 08.30-17.30 น.
Facebook : สล่าเงิน salasilver
Huan Jao Nang Restaurant
Want to eat authentic northern food Come to Huan Chao Nang restaurant. Taste delicious food in a shady atmosphere by the Nan River. There is a menu to choose from both Northern food.
Facebook : ร้านอาหารเฮือนเจ้านางจังหวัดน่าน
Location : Nan River side, Puwieng, Nan
Open-Close : 11.00-23.00 น.
YU Dee Gin Dee Restaurant
Invited to visit a chic café in the heart of Nan, easy to go, come to "U Dee Gin Dee Restaurant", serving a variety of fusion dishes, both Thai and international. Whole breakfast, single dish, spaghetti, steak, with a special menu.
Location : 30-30/1 ถ.ข้าหลวง ต.ในเวียง อ.เมือง จ.น่าน
Open-Close : 09.00-21.00 (close on Wednesday)
Facebook : udeekindee Café
Aung Tong by Rabieng Dao Restaurant
Warm atmosphere, suitable for a group meal. There is a spicy food to the heart as a Recommended menu are spicy food, strong flavour dishes.
Location : 39 , Maung, Nan
Open-Close : 10.00-22.00
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