Sunday, March 31, 2013

The White Temple and Black House in Chiang Rai - Heaven and Hell

One of the most beautiful and must go places while you're in Chiang Mai is actually a few hours away. However, it's a perfect stop over for when you have to leave the country on a border run.  Instead of sitting on a mini-bus for 10 hours in one go, you can break it up over two days by spending the night and doing some sight seeing in Chiang Rai which is along the way.  The White Temple is most popular and famous because it looks stunning in photos, however, don't miss the Black House as in person it is even more amazing.

The story of the White Temple (Wat Rong Khun) is that the artist, Chalermchai Kositpipat started in 1996 and it won't be complete for another 60-90 years.  A student of the the White Temple's artist broke off and decided to create his own masterpiece.  The Black House is known as the artist Thawan Duchanee's house.

How to get to the Black House and White Temple:

Personally, I combined the trip with my border run to extend my visa.  I went to the bus terminal in Chiang Mai and took a ultra comfortable big bus through Green Bus to Chiang Rai.  From the bus terminal I walked to the main strip where all the westerners stay and got a random guest house.  There weren't many other tourists around.  

I rented a motorbike for the day for around 250 baht and drove to the White Temple which was about 25 minutes away.  I asked random people for directions but over shot it as there are no signs on the other side of the road, only on the side where the actual temple is.  On that same road and on the same side, if you drive up another 25 minutes towards the airport, you'll find the Black House.  There are small signs saying "Artist Thawan Duchanee's House" next left which you can follow but might still have to ask around as it's not easy to find.

Either way, make it a point to go there.  I've seen hundreds of temples in my life and can go without ever seeing one again, but these two were a must see in my book.  

Warm Regards,



  1. Looks amazing! I'd like to stop by there someday.

  2. I'm local people. I can take care you when you're in C.R. Tell. 084 617 5278 Lung Tock is my name.


Hey if you've read this far, you might as well at least leave a comment. Even just to say what's up! If you have any questions about training in Thailand just ask it here in the comments and I'll answer so everyone can benefit from it.