If you’re looking for an off-the-beaten track waterfall in Chiang Rai, then the Huai Mae Sai Waterfall is the adventure you need.
A series of two waterfalls, with one of them being deep enough to send it in from above. But a great place to cool off after a long day in the Thai heat.
Quick Facts about Huai Mae Sai Waterfall, Chiang Rai.
- Distance: Less than 2km out and back
- Time from Chiang Rai: 30 minute scooter ride
- Time needed: Could be done in a 2 hours from Chiang Rai
- Best travel time: It’s a fairly quiet spot so anytime
- Difficulty: Some small steps on the way but nothing crazy.
- Cost: Free
High Points of the Huai Mae Sai Waterfall, Chiang Rai
- Amazing plunge pool deep enough for a swim or dip
- Peaceful and rarely visited
- Superb scenery on the drive into the waterfall
- Not far from the parking so easy to get too!
Low Points of the Huai Mae Sai Waterfall, Chiang Rai
- Just a little out of town, but worth visiting nonetheless.
How to get to the Huai Mae Sai Waterfall, Chiang Rai
Just outside of Chiang Rai itself, the waterfall is still absolutely worth visiting if you’ve got time in your itinerary.
The drive out is scenic and takes you through some of rural Thailand’s best bits.
You’ll likely share the road with dogs, cats, chickens, and even water buffalo as I did!
Once you get to the actual start of the hike, it’s really straightforward to get to. There’s only one trail that leads up toward the falls.
Easy to follow, a small climb to get there but nothing too heavy and you’ll make it to the base of the first waterfall.
The trail leads over the water and up around the back to the second falls. This isn’t something I did as I was content with the first set of falls and spent some time dipping, swimming, and enjoying cooling off!
My Experience of the Huai Mae Sai Waterfall, Chiang Rai
The waterfall itself is really cool.
Narrow, but with a really deep pool at the bottom you could climb and jump in here from the rocks above.
This is where I actually experienced one of my favorite interactions in Thailand. A group of girls walked passed me when I was taking photos of the waterfall, carrying everything but the kitchen sink.
They were making a fire, chopping and preparing food and just having a good time together as friends.
I tried asking how deep the pool was and whether it was safe enough for me to jump in or not, but they were adamant it wasn’t a good idea…
…because it was cold! Ha.
I disregarded their advice and went for a plunge to check the depth for myself. It was cold, but it was also deep enough to jump in.
Once I came back out of the water one of them shouted me over and offered me some food. I accepted some corn and orange and was grateful for their kindness.
I then saw them struggling to prop up their phone to video what they were doing, so I went over and set their phone up on their tripod whilst I enjoyed my corn and my orange.
Thai people are some of the nicest, kindest, and sweet people I have met anywhere in the world.
“Land of smiles” for a reason.